Thursday, January 10, 2013
Unschooling, classical educators, strict schedules, loose schedule, no schedule, Charlotte mason--and the list goes on and on
We have been many of the things on the list depending on the season. We started out the year pretty intense and now, for the second half of the year we are slowing down and enjoying it a bit more.
I have switched out a few of our textbooks with handbooks and regular books.
One of the most delightful additions to our day is the book "The transitive Vampire" A grammar book that revolves around things my middle schooler finds entertaining. It is not a textbook-instead it is a grammar handbook. We are just taking a section a day and reviewing the parts of speech.
Gone are the odd readers that help reinforce specific reading concepts for the first grader. I pulled out our little bear books and he is enjoying reading familiar stories instead of the stilted speech of the primary readers.
For now school happens in the afternoon-after lunch. I have been working from home in the mornings. Growing my own little business. I need it-something to call my own. A grown up activity.
so what do your days look like? what season of homeschooling are you in?
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
I sit by the water. I float in the water. If there is no water I hide from the heat. It gets HOT in the summer around here.
I'm fine in June-but by the time August rolls around I have lost my tan and my plants are dried out and dying.
A down graded tropical storm Lee has brought a sharp turn towards fall around here.
last week it was 100 degrees. Really.
For the past 3 days it has been in the lower 60's
and it has been RAINING. Some areas have had flooding. We have not.
Our poor dried out garden is getting a good soaking.
I can tell fall is coming. It has brought out my nesting earth mother self. There are things to be done before winter. Pajamas to be made and coats to find. A final decision about trying to can anything this year needs to be made. I am debating hitting the farmers market for tomatoes. End of the season seconds can be bought and canned-but like RIGHT NOW! So I have to decide.
Everything needs a good scrub before the windows are shut and we are left with stale winter air.Dog house needs cleaned and moved closer to the house. It is actually for the cats who hate to come inside except on the coldest nights.
That DaD needs all of his stuff gone through and organized. The magic clothes fairy needs to purchase some new fall gear-somehow she seems to have missed him the past few seasons.
It won't stay in the 60's here. By the end of the week we will be back in the upper 70's. We may even have a bit of really hot weather left before the cold settles in. Time to get busy :)
Thursday, September 1, 2011
I started out doing "school at home". Being unsure and new to the game I just did what the public school did. That did not make for a happy year.
I started researching and found curriculum that worked better for us. Over time I settled on Oak meadow as our primary curriculum.
This year I had a bit of an epiphany. I started asking myself what kind of school we wanted to be.
I want my kids to have a strong academic foundation-but I want them to have a strong LIFE background too.
I want arts and music and nature--in other words I want it all.
How can you fit these things in? Well-I hope if you keep reading it is not because you want an answer. I haven't figured it out yet.
I am starting small. We have guitar classes and jam band--that is music for the middle son. The youngest boy is taking ballet this year and some very beginning violin.
I am trying to figure out some other things though. Adding in things like hikes on local trails in the fall and spring-we are using http://www.atlasquest.com to locate letterboxes along the trails.
Symphony in the winter when it is to cold for outdoor activities. We have a great symphony in Nashville that offers a lot of free performances for students.
I purchased drawing pads for each of us and we are spending some time in the mornings drawing at the table-together. This has started out a little awkward-always trying to think of what to draw. I can already tell that it is getting easier for all of us the more we repeat this activity.
We are taking history a bit slower too-taking time to complete each project laid out in the Oak Meadow ancient history curriculum. The 6th grade curriculum covers ancient history from the stone age up to the explorers in one year-we may take two years to finish it. I WANT to take the time to really cover each time period so we plan to take 2 weeks on each lesson when needed. Taking the time to really do the activities that help make history more interesting.
I want our school to be a progressive model-with a lot of hands on experience that my kids can see as relevant and worth remembering. Still struggling a bit with the actual implementation-but I am getting there.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
from a bottle.
I have 3 children. Two were breastfed. One was not.
I am glad I breast fed my youngest two. That was my first option for my oldest-but it did not happen.
I don't feel the least bit guilty about it though. Life is hard enough without that kind of baggage. There are women out there who want you to carry that burden of guilt around with you.
I cringe when hearing rants or reading forum posts by militant brestfeeding mothers. I participate in a natural parenting forum and some of the moms really get so lost in their judgements that they forget the boobs in uestion are attached to a person-with feelings-and a life-THAT YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT. They mention verbally snarking at complete strangers who are bottle feeding in public. Or throwing dirty looks-or just saving until they can get home and judge others online.
I was an extended breast feeding mom-as long as they wanted-on demand-blah blah blah.
Even in the midst of my own nursing bliss I could not find it in myself to judge another mother's decision.
The most important thing in a baby's life is a HAPPY mother. A consistant, caring mother who can get through the day without collapsing in a sobbing heap. If that means being able to take medications, or just having your body back to yourself after pregnancy then so be it.
My only bottle feeding stipulations are that you should hold your baby while feeding him/her.
If you cannot hold your baby then do not prop up the bottle.
Another person should feed the baby. It needs to be a person who is old enough to say things like "Wow! I have never seen the baby turn blue like that!" or "hey-should the milk be just pouring out of the bottle like that?"
Of course you are under no obligation to listen to me-but bottles are not boobies and they don't always work like they should. boobies don't always work like they should either-so I guess you should always try to remember that too :)
while I am pontificating-let me add--I ALSO DO NOT CARE IF YOU CIRCUMCISE YOUR BOY> nobody on the Internet should know this about your child. Would you want your son sharing the state of your Vag with other people over the Internet? I think not.
Monday, August 22, 2011
see our almost organized shelf? The drawers contain the 6th grade work. The middle boy does pretty well with this set up-the drawers each have everything he needs for that subject including pencils. so no more serching for a pencil each time we start something new.
The three boxes below that are the youngest boy's work. He is in Kindergarten this year. After going back and forth on what to do curriculum wise I have decided to use Our Oak meadow kindergarten materials for our main curriculum. I also have My Fathers world Kindergarten-we will use it some-but mostly just the reading program. We will be doing it in the order tha Oak meadow introduces the letters.
Now we just have to get started. I was planning to start today-but with a vacation coming up the end of this week we may put it off another week.
I'm slacking-I know :)
Thursday, August 18, 2011
A song going to fast-a baritone becomes a shrill, chattering rodent.
Hmmmm...so do people.
What is our perfect speed though? Its not something you can just find on the dial next to the turntable.
Some of us never find our perfect speed-we move to fast or to slow.
We never find that balance that makes our song play perfectly. I struggle with trying o do to much.
I have also wallowed in the lethargy of doing to little. I have rarely found that perfect balance that makes life sing out in perfect pitch.
Something is always left unattended.
I can feel it getting closer. The days pass by with ever increasing harmony.
One day I will find my perfect 33RPM.
It is actually a wood lazy susan that sits on my kitchen table.
I have mentioned before that we have a small house.
everything does double duty-so the kitchen table is where we do a lot of schoolwork,science experiments and it also holds our nature display.
when I need the space it can easily pick it up and move it.
At one point instead of a nature table we used the living room window sill-it is wide enough to hold a lot of small objects-plus it was a window so it provided added nature right outside the window.
right now the nature display is in between phases-we'll be gathering things for fall soon!