Friday, October 26, 2012

homeschooling: the first few weeks

 It occurs to me that after a little bit of educational drama, I've been very quiet about school since our first few days.  Perhaps an update is in order?

So, how's it been going, you might wonder.  Here's the answer: pretty good.  Overall I think we've gotten off to a very positive start.  It hasn't been perfect - and it only took us seven days for our first schooltime-related tears.  They were connected to writing, unsurprisingly.    But thus far schooltime angst has been pretty rare, as has been crying.
on one sunny morning, we took our books outside
I feel busy.  Busier by far than I've ever felt during school mornings.  Whereas before I might be able to get a project accomplished in the kitchen or disappear to work on laundry for 10 or 15 minutes, these days I feel lucky if I can get a load of clothes tossed into the washing machine before lunchtime.    The new approach we're trying is more time-intensive for me, thus I'm having to be a little creative about my own household chores.  But it's working out.  And frankly, I am enjoying myself during school time!  I find myself feeling really excited about the year ahead.
balloon model of our solar system (the sun is on the left)
The thing I am struggling with is my preschoolers.  I sometimes wish I could clone myself so that I could work work with the preschoolers and the elementary crowd at the same time.   My younger ones have been behaving themselves, mostly.   It's only that I wish I had more time to do individual lessons with them.  I tell myself that they're young and that for them, play is an important part of their development - and I know that's true.  But I also know that they relish that personal time with mama, and that there are a lot of worthwhile things I could be doing more with them.  For example, my 4-year-old is very interested in learning about numbers right now.  We are managing to slip in some time to work on it together, but it's a huge challenge.  I always wish we could do more.

The routine will change as time goes on, I know.  The book we're pushing to finish reading together will give way to one that doesn't take quite so much time each day.  Monday school will end next month, and then we will have Mondays back for home activities again.  We'll continue to get more settled into things.   This is only the beginning.

But honestly?  It's been a pretty good beginning, after all.

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