Archive for the ‘homeschooling’ Category

Well, we made it through the first week of homeschooling. The Princess was up at 7:00 Wednesday morning, “all set and ready for school” she said. Yesterday it was 6:30. Today she managed to sleep until almost 7:30 am, still an hour early for her.

As I’ve said before, we’re using the Charlotte Mason method, although we haven’t gotten any nature observation in this week. First, I’m eight months pregnant in Atlanta’s August. Second, I don’t do the outdoors much. I don’t like heat, I don’t like cold, I don’t like bugs, I don’t like birds. I don’t like wind, I don’t like my hair or makeup mussed. I am HIGHLY allergic to poison ivy, and that’s reason enough for me to stay in until I have to venture into the wilderness.

The Music Man is the one who takes the children on shady hikes, points out the trees and birds, gently leads them over stepping stones in a shallow creek and the like. He will largely be responsible for implementing the science portion of this year’s curriculum, as it’s based on the Burgess Bird Book for Children. Did I mention I hate birds?

I also learned some things about my child. She struggles with handwriting and cutting a bit. These make perfect sense because I’ve never really worked with her on these skills.

She’s got an AMAZING memory for detail. CM stresses narration, that is, her retelling a story to me that has been read to her. Princess’ recall astounds me, honestly, especially given that most of our books have no pictures on the Kindle.

She understands poetry better than I’ve have guessed, which impresses me. We’re going to have to work on sitting still, as she likes to move around while I’m reading. This wouldn’t bother me too much, but I read in segments of less than 10 minutes. She’s going to learn this skill, so we’re working on it.

She loves math and can’t wait to learn time and money. We’re using Horizons Kindergarten book 1, and in three days I’ve allowed her to do 12 lessons.

She’s extremely eager to please, and actually apologizes when she makes a mistake. We’re working on that, too. I don’t want her to be like me, always afraid to try things for fear of looking foolish.

Her favorite part of the day is the Enrichment Bucket. I put some flash cards for various subjects, some learning games, and sight word blocks in an old sucanat bucket, and after working hard all morning, she gets to choose one game to play. She looks forward to it each day, even telling me before we start in the morning what she’d like to do.

The Target dollar spot is a FANTASTIC place to get those flash cards. Yesterday I got addition, subtraction, and phonics levels one and two cards for the bucket. They also had math bingo. Music-in-law also got the Princess animals, shapes and colors, and alphabet cards for the bucket. It’s super fun!

I’m also learning some things about me. I’m not at all patient about the handwriting issue. She writes some letters and numbers backwards, and when I correct her, she actually just changes hands with the pencil. How strange is that?! Funny thing is, when she changes hands she actually seems to get it right. I haven’t figured out what that means about how her brain is wired.

I really enjoy learning these things with her, but my patience on the whole leaves something to be desired. It’s a character flaw that I need remedied, so I’m hoping that teaching my girl (and the others, when it’s time) will be abrasive enough to smooth away my rough places.

So that’s week one! We’re loving the Ambleside Online schedule, though I’m adding some things to meet the length of day requirement we have in Georgia. Can’t wait for next week. Good thing they provide a great deal of enrichment reading!

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OK, first I should apologize. Life has been crazy this year, and I’m just now getting my bearings. I’m almost seven months pregnant, started working from home in January, and have just been holding on and muddling through 2010.

It’s a shame really, because I miss writing. I miss writing for myself, something which isn’t related to my income. I’ve been working for a health and fitness blog called GenXXL, and have taken on increased responsibilities in the six months of my tenure.

It’s a good gig, and I’m so thankful for the opportunity, but I do miss getting to talk about the kids, the pregnancy, the general meandering of life.

That said, here goes.

The Firecracker Princess starts school next month when the Music Man goes back to work. We’re homeschooling this year, using the Charlotte Mason method. I bought a Kindle (and a super cute cover) because most of the books for this program are in the public domain (read: free). She’s really excited to get started and begs to use her “school books” all the time.

The Monster is good, still just as sweet and cute as ever. He’s clearly growing up, though, which is hard on a mama’s heart.

The Joyful Babe is now two, and with another baby coming in the next couple of months, I may have to give her a new nickname. Sigh. They get big so fast!

Newest babe is girl #3 for us, so the poor Monster has some competition. He and daddy have been doing “manly things” this summer to up the testosterone quotient in our home!

As for me, I’ve maintained a minimum of activity, but apparently I just get fat every time I get pregnant. I still have 11-13 weeks left to go in this pregnancy, but I’m just 20 lbs less than when I delivered JB. Sigh. I can’t lie, though, I’m excited to work it off after the baby comes. I’m hoping to do a half marathon at Disney World near the end of February.

If you’re doing the math, I’m due end of September/early October and yes, I’ll be pushing it to get in long-distance shape by then. It’s a goal, we’ll see if I reach it!

Thanks for catching up, I hope to be writing more!

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