Saturday, December 30, 2006

School is around the corner

January 2 nd is our day to get back into school full swing. My motivation waned for a bit but I started praying about our plans and asked God to give me some insight to why I wasn't as motivated as normal. These are the type of things I tend to forget to ask wisdom for....mostly because of the pride of self sufficiency. Once again God in his grace provided. The simple things in life are the things that I am amazed at God providing because in my mind they are so unimportant....not to Him.

So some of the changes.....the biggest is creating a routine and system that allows my daughter to be as independent as she is comfortable with. I am creating a school notebook for her that will have her over all week in it, a daily checklist for her to track her progress, a calendar she makes each month, a reading log for her to write down all the books she reads and a pocket for all her needed materials for the week. This makes her responsible to get out her materials and will motivate her to get her things done because she is aware of what those things will be.

There were a few areas that have been hanging over my head and I dread at times. One being copywork. I have never used a formal book for this. I have always pulled selections weekly or monthly. I am so tired of doing this. So I have gotten a list of quotes from good literature (someone else compiled) that for the most part we have read. She has to copy one several sentence quote each week, her memory verse, do dictation once per week and two journal entries. The great part is I have made a soft covered notebook with blank paper for her to put all this in except the journal entries. No more paper everywhere. I notebook everything but have found that her handling the 3 ring binders is too much. So I am using the duo tang until it's full then putting it in the hard 3 ring binder. I am also making a duo tang folder for her FLL lessons and then monthly will transfer them to the hard binder. This way she can get all her things and know where and what to do if I am doing something else (like potty training :o).

The other dread feeling I have is math. I love the concepts of Singapore and how they teach you to think about math but my daughter has begun to struggle with some of the mental math. She is not behind but I wonder if switching to Horizons might make things easier on her and me. I am not one to switch quickly or lightly but this has been on my mind. We will finish 1B because we have started it but I am waffling about what to do next. We are going back to some concepts after about 7 weeks of review and games.

I am the homeschool mom who wants to be done by noon. I am discovering if I am going to educate classically with toddlers it isn't going to happen. So History and Science will be done after lunch unless my little guy would enjoy what we are doing. This also leaves me the freedom to do more one on one with my little guy in the mornings.


Under the Sky said...

"I am the homeschool mom who wants to be done by noon."

Me too! I completely understand your thoughts on this. As my children age I notice that things just take longer because they are harder a) to teach and b) to learn. God is so good though. We have had some really wonderful history and science times in the afternoon, after the rest of the school day is through. The times of discussion and interaction are just not to be missed!


Heather_in_WI said...


I saw your comments on TWTM board, and just wanted to add that, at first, John had this same problem -- subtracting from a two-digit number.

What really helped him was to use manipulatives -- specifically the "base ten blocks" and the "place value disks" with the hundreds/tens/ones chart -- with *every* problem. After a few days of this, things just clicked. After this, if he got a problem wrong, we would pull out the manipulative and do that problem again with the manipulatives. We are in 2a now and had to do the same thing for a few days when we got to three-digit subtraction.

We also supplement with the Rod and Staff speed drills and blacklines. Basically, he does one sheet a day as homework with dad, if there's not a "mental math" worksheet (the ones in the home instructor's guide).


Anonymous said...

I am really struggling with feeling motivated to start school this time around for some reason. I guess I need to just take some time to think about why and what to do about it. We are supposed to start Monday.

I want to be done by noon, too. We are doing the classical thing as well, and I have two young ones who just do some easy school work and when they are done, i end up not spending much time with them in the mornings. We do History and Science in the afternoons, but I still don't have time to do all the things I'd like to do. And can i add that I am up to my ears in notebooks!!! AAAAAHHH!!!