I am a planner. I love routines and schedules. Knowing what I am going to do and when everyday is a dream to me. I am learning that I have to go with the flow a little more now. Beka and Jared do not always learn the way I learn or like the same things I like.
My history curriculum is a great example of these differences. I LOVED the history curriculum I had picked out. Videos, reading, writing, and webpages were all included in the curriculum. The planning was done, everything was very nicely and neatly organized by day for 180 days. History was broken down into time periods. It was everything I wanted if I were to learn history. Beka and Jared hated it though. The curriculum did not engage them at all. I still think the curriculum is great just not for Beka and Jared. So, we changed it. Unfortunately, homeschooling isn’t about ME, it is about THEM. I had to remind myself of that.
The plan we have now works for them for now. I am learning that they need the room and time to explore more and experience more. Going with the flow is not my way, but for now it is their way.
Today, we officially started homeschooling. Beka and Jared finished a chapter in math, history, science, grammar, vocabulary, and P.E. all in two hours. Andrew says it is fine that it took such a short amount of time and for the rest of summer I am fine with that. During the school year, though, we may still have to add a little more to the curriculum.
The great thing though was that both children went on to use their free time to learn more about the subjects they had studied. Beka learned more about Otzi and Jared did some research on different animals. I am just so conditioned that school needs to take all day.
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We have decided to homeschool this year. We are all excited for this change and are ready to jump in with both feet. Our first day is July 1st. The curriculum and routine are in place. Organic and delight-directed learning is the goal so things may change. I need to stay flexible which is hard for me. I am praying I will be able to handle this. Life skills such as laundry, cooking, cleaning, and planning are going to be just as important as curriculum in our days.
Beka and Jared are pretty independent at their ages. I am mainly going to facilitate any learning that they want to do. Jared has a weekly schedule of what he needs to accomplish. When he does the work will be up to him, but everything needs to be completed by Friday or he will be working over the weekend instead of having fun. Beka wanted a 2-week schedule and hopefully to move that to a monthly schedule. Again she will have to accomplish her goals by the due date or risk missing out on fun activities.
Beka has been doing math everyday since June 15 just because she wanted to. Jared has been doing research on different animals and doing math. So, I don’t think this transition will be hard nor do I think they are going to complain.
On Friday, Beka and Jared made their own versions of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers. We found the idea at Harmony Fine Arts after a friend recommended it on Facebook. I am hoping to do an art activity every week especially since the kids had so much fun with this one. They really encouraged and complimented each other throughout the whole process.
Beka’s interpetation of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers
Jared’s Interpretation of Van Gogh’s Sunflowers.
I am really excited for this new adventure. I know it won’t be easy and I know I will have doubts. But we are all ready to give this a try.
Beka and Jared participated in Choir at their school this year. One day a week, they stayed after school to practice. They both really enjoyed doing this. At the end of the year, the choir put on a concert for parents and volunteers. Beka had the special opportunity to play the bass metallaphone. I was very proud of how both of them did.
The Past week at the kids school has been carnival week. The school holds a carnival near the end of every year as one last fundraiser. The theme this year was Cowboy Round-Up. The kids could buy cowboy hats and bandanas. Everyday leading up to the main even on Friday night had a different theme. The kids could dress up in different ways for school that day. Monday was school pride day and I didn’t get a picture of that one.
Tuesday – Crazy Hair Day
We tried to dye Jared’s hair with green kool-aid but we couldn’t get it to work.
So we just bought some of the spray hair color which turned out great!
Wednesday – Pajama Day
Thursday – Inside Out and Backwards Day
Friday – Carnival and Western Wear.
The kids had a lot of fun at the carnival. It was a great week.
The family happened to be outside the other evening and we saw the most amazing sight. Now, we live next a grass airport field. Small planes, hot air balloons, and parasails take off/land there all the time. We are used the the noise and the sights now. We love to watch the hot air balloons take off and they have wonderful fireworks on the Fourth of July. But we had never seen a hot air balloon quite like this:
It was amazing! We had so much fun watching it fill and take off. We are hoping to see it again.
Jared is now 9 years old. He is growing so much and is so responsible. He is a great brother and a wonderful helper. For his birthday we went to BD’s mongolian grill for lunch and had a lemon creme pie for dessert. He loved it.
Also, we have the results from IREAD. Jared not only passed the state test that determines whether he could go onto 4th grade, but also he passed with a 100%. He didn’t miss one single question. I am so unbelievably proud of him.
Yes, I am now too many hands to count. Anyway, I just wanted to post a picture of all the cards I received for my birthday. That day was also Platypus Day which I also celebrated. Perry the Platypus is the coolest. Beka drew a platypus in her card.
Yes, I know all of these are mixed up and backwards. It happens. Beka turned two whole hands in January. She was excited all day. We had cheesecake for her birthday cake. She received many cards from her classmates which pleased and surprised here. It was not a teacher initiated idea. The kids did it all on their own. Andrew picked her up during her lunch hour and took her out for sushi. I think that was her favorite part.