Friday, September 07, 2012

Preping for school

 Our art wall is mostly all cleaned up now.  The girls are doing their best to fill it up as fast as possible again!  It works so great!  Especially with painted pictures (so they will dry) and when it gets too full we pull them all down and I ask the girls about each one if they want to keep it in their scrapbooks (three ring binders with page protectors) or hang them up in their room or throw them out.
 I got my wardrobe re-organized again.  Now it's ONLY art stuff (almost) so that is an improvement.. plus more labeling.  I can tell the hubby exactly where things go now.  This is a helpful thing.  :}
 Above our school area I made this little collections display!  Works good because I can untie the jars anytime for the girls to open and look at.  We are collecting some for the nature exchange at the library and some are to keep in their own collection.
 This is just fun, but has nothing to do with school (well.. okay, maybe the baby's school?) The rainbow magnet people on our dishwasher make me happy.  The 4 year old likes to turn them upside down and put their feet together so that they are sleeping like bats.  Cracks me up!
 Iced coffee.. it's good anytime.  :}
 This has grown since this picture was taken, but it's the general idea.  I'm still waiting for a bit more school stuff that will be coming.  I've gotten everything from "My Father's World" and a couple extra things, but the stuff from Sonlight is still on it's way.  Getting excited!  We totally need a little fish tank or something for our school room though.  :}
 The Hubby has started "Daddy hour" with the girls when he gets home from work.  They are loving it and I'm feeling so much less pressure.  It's been really great!  Here he's having a tiny tea party with the baby.
 When the girls Grammy was here last weekend she took the older two to the craft store and got them some projects to do.  They got to decorate these fun masks!  They also got some clay which Renna is holding up.

 Gracie's "project" was some sparkly pink poof balls.  We called them "happy thoughts".. don't you have happy thoughts when you see a pink sparkly poofy ball?
 The four year old is due to have a baby.. or a pillow.  ;]  Oh, wait.. it turned out to be a tiiiiny rhinoceros.
 We painted the craft table with a rainbow!  It's all set to go and you can kind of see the dish drainer that I turned into a wooden puzzle rack just behind the open wardrobe door.
 Today the girls got some school things from "My Father's World" The numbers thing that Lily (6) is playing with has been enjoyed by ALL of them (6, 4, and 1) so that is really neat.  The Cuisenaire Rods and book to go with it are VERY good.  Combines learning math concepts and the alphabet in a very tactile way.
This is when the baby woke up and got to test out the new school stuff.  She was putting the puzzle together and doing it all with the best of them!  We will probably be using these pegs to "measure" stuff as well in the coming weeks.

I've been reading to the younger two for as long as they want each day (which is pretty long!) already and the girls have their art time and listening to music or a story on CD while they work on a project.  But next Monday we'll start more of the "real" stuff for their school.  I'm so impressed with how much the girls know already.  Renna can write her name and I have hardly worked with her on that.  Lily I think will take off with Math once we start into that some more too.  What homeschooling has allowed us to focus on has been much more important than ABC's... They can think logically, put puzzles together with little guidance, and figure things out on their own.  My own experience being homeschooled was similar in that I learned how to learn.  I learned how to teach myself things.  My girls are creative and color their pictures with rainbows and pretend and imagine when they play.  They are learning to fold towels and scramble eggs and mop the floor and finish what they start.  It's a beautiful thing.  When I think too hard about what I need to be doing and teaching them I can feel pretty overwhelmed and start freaking out, but it's going to be okay.  Really.  And if you are new to homeschooling and are reading this, know that it's going to be great!  Just like I keep that excited voice going as if I'm reading a picture book to the baby for the first time even though it's about the 40th time that week (no joke) I've got to approach the girls school in the same way-- they will love it if they see me loving it too.  I think we tend to get the most frustrated when things don't go according to the plan, but the great thing about schooling at home is that the plan can change and fit with what we need even from day to day.  They are young enough now that I'm just planning on working through the book shelf of stuff I've got.  Some days we'll read more or do more pages in math and some days we'll do less.  I'm all for feeling out the atmosphere of the day and time.  It's a fine balance and we will make the most of the time we have.  I'm going to lean more towards a 4 day a week schedule as well so that the 5th day can be an outing day with less homework.  There is so much out there that just deciding what to get can feel crazy.  You can spend a lot or you can do some extra work and do it all for free!  I've "Pinned" quite a few ideas onto pinterest in the "Homeschool" file and then re-pinned everything that I'd pinned there (for the last half a year!) to different files so I could find things easier.  Just got to use what I've pinned and collected! 

I'm afraid that making an actual lesson plan (outside of my head) isn't something I'm great at.  I was thinking that rather then plan way in advance what I should do each day I'll just keep a log of what I HAVE done at the end of the day.  That way I'll know if we are missing something and then when the baby is older I can reference it.

 Playing with Legos = Brilliant
 Bubble time on the balcony.

I so often feel extremely inadequate in the organizing department and with a family of five and homeschooling and so on it can seem like too much for my artistic brain, but God's strength is made perfect in our weaknesses so I know it will be alright. 

1 comment:

lenorediviney said...

really great post. I love this.