I am a relatively organized person. And I would have thought that would extend into my homeschooling experience. But in the midst of starting homeschool for my girls I had two little ones underfoot. Add to that the fact that homeschooling can be a complete upheaval of all homemaking routines. I spent the first 2 and a half years of homeschooling floundering without a sure foundation to ground us. Every once in a while, we would settle into a homeschool routine. And then life would shift and I would no longer have my feet underneath me.
It was, in short, a struggle. Some things would get done regularly. Other things would get put off for another day (Ahem…1st grade math…ahem). And my kids knew that if they worked me hard enough, the whole day could be put off. Often I felt like a homeschool mom failure.
As if the internal struggle wasn’t real enough, I also had two students who put up a MAJOR fight on most days just to get through the little bit we were getting done. I understood that the early years of elementary learning are supposed to be loose, but this was not exactly what I pictured. I needed a solution – on some days I thought I needed magic. Continue Reading
I am not normally one to completely give up on something right out of the starting gate. But about 2 years ago, I gave up on kindergarten math about 3 lessons in. Yep. 3 lessons. I thought we could go back later, when I had a little more patience. Later ended up being an entire year. We said good-bye to kindergarten math and we never looked back. Two years later and one kid more in kindergarten and I have absolutely no regrets.
Is it time for you to say good-bye to kindergarten math, too? Or should you not even waste your time, energy, and money on a math curriculum for your kindergartner? I don’t know. But I don’t mind sharing my thinking behind this epiphany to help you decide. Continue Reading
We just finished our first day of school for the girls (and AG, by surprise) in our updated homeschool space. I know it is Labor Day. But Labor Day means Daddy is home and I have help for the day. We also have our first community day with Classical Conversations tomorrow. I am trying to alleviate the busyness of the morning tomorrow whilst establishing an understanding that we do school AT home. I had to explain this to the girls a few times because excitement has an affect on their ears!
This past year our girls learned the Preamble to the US Constitution. Well, I should say, we ALL learned it. Previously, I didn’t know it past “We the people!” This homeschooling thing is good for all of us!
Anyway, as we were working on memorizing the Preamble, I had an idea for a simple craft for the girls to do in order to help them spend some time with the words. It is a sort of puzzle to make the American flag. I spent a long time creating it and when I printed it out for G to work on, she informed me I had gotten it wrong. I guess it took me so long to do the craft, she memorized the Preamble in the interim.
In fact, the Preamble states, “We the People of the United States in order to form a…” I was leaving out “of the United States.” Nothing like having a 6 year-old correct you.
There is always a good reason to celebrate our freedoms as Americans, right? So, I thought I would share our printable puzzle activity with you. Continue Reading
We are unabashed book lovers. This home is FILLED with books of every sort. And we are approaching our homeschooling situation with a sort of mash-up of literature-based, classical, and Charlotte Mason learning. (I love a good homeschool book list!) That means we
While I will never leave my first love (in regards to reading): physical books; I have discovered a secret book weapon. And it is ROCKING my world lately.
You see, with 4 kids in our house (all under the age of 7), I read a lot of books. Check out some of our favorite books here. The books we read just aren’t always books for me. I read picture books, chapter books, living books.
This book may have taken us over a year to get through. I can’t even remember when we started it. Our slow progress through this book is not due to boredom or disinterest. Rather it seems life got in the way even as it was becoming a part of our lives. Through this book we, together, have learned beautiful words, interesting conversations, and simple morals. We have delighted in language for its structure and its beauty. And we have gained confidence in public and private speaking.
All that in one little book!!
We just completed Level One of First Language Lessons by Jessie Wise. It is part of a series published by Well-Trained Mind Press. And it is WONDERFUL for kids in early elementary! Approaching instruction classically, it is full of simple lessons for parents and children to work through in just minutes a day. But it is so rich with language, that it can be enjoyed long after the book is closed. Continue Reading