Tuesday, September 30, 2014

What School is now for us and Why-

enjoying the warm fall weather

Well, if you've perused around our blog...you know we have been all over the map with schooling.

I have blogged about finding the right homeschool schedule,  homeschool lapbooks, our transition to public school, half day middle school, and after almost 10 years of homeschool... (i think) we might have found our groove. Knowing high school is right around the corner, we are always in for change.

Our youngest is starting PreK and our eldest is an 8th grader. We live in a small home and I have two shelves with homeschool supplies- If you don't count our huge bookshelf of library books and books we own. I have a chalk board I seldom use, which currently has had Elizabeth sketched chicken coop designs for the past week. (Oh, thats right I don't have any more chalk...hmm.)

Oh, yes. I forgot to say- they are "all homeschooled". It kind of goes with the territory "are they all yours?" voice.  We are at peace and happy with our decision. Last year Jason went to school for a few months and the girls almost completed the year, but we brought them home when Priscilla was born. We found that an "all year round" schedule works best for our family (starting the first week of July) Making sure all the kids are ALL up by 7:00-7:15 as made all the difference in the world. No more sleeping in! Note: Mo and Dess always get Mom and Dad up by 6:30 anyways.


relationships :)
I have never scheduled out my year with curriculum. I have tried, but failed. It doesn't jive with me, but this year I actually marked teaching/learning days. This past Monday we went back to school after a three week break. Thank you Lord! I love taking breaks yet getting back to the grind is always needed (for both the kids and I).

As far as curriculum? I sometimes find used workbooks for the "Littles" (Dess and Mo) but don't ever buy a whole lot. Math is my big splurge. Wise wisdom from my big sis: "If you are going to spend money on any curriculum do it on math." I have stuck to that policy for years. We use Math U See. I only have to purchase a new complete set each year for the level Elijah is on and workbooks for the other kids. All the others reuse the dvds and teaching supplies. Khan.org has been a use success in our home. My biggest resource- GOOGLE. Search any grade/workbook/ subject and add the word "pdf". Buy some printing paper and print what your child will actually learn. How many times as homeschool parents we have bought workbooks and only did the first 20 pages? No guilt sitting on your shelf this way!

(I should say because of our break.. we didn't make it back to the Library and we had over $55 in late fees. em em.. had to shrug that one off)

Which bring me to my next thought: Why waste your money? IF you can teach your child to delight in reading even picture books, there is endless Curriculum at public libraries!!! Sean sections their reading materials off by days with short writing assignments. Living books, books that read like a story or keep your attention are most important. Many time the kids read the books before they are assigned. The librarian politely let us know at the end of the checkout, "just so you know...that makes 65 books checked out tonight." Wonderful! :D lol

the girls ambition one day:making rosewater
My other investments: A LAMINATOR!!! Why in the world did I not purchase one years ago? The Lord propably knew I would have donated it in one of my moving purges. Great for chore charts or educational posters.

Being honest as possible one of our home school days includes--- (but is not without fighting, playtimes, an episode of Curious George, poopie diapers, potty training accidents, kitchen baking messes.. and all sorts of drama):

  •  Family bible/prayer time in the morning. We read either a devotional or Proverbs/Psalm according to the date. Please don't picture us sitting perfect. The little ones are always being loud, fighting or making a mess in the other room. Too, there is usually at least one child in a "grumpy" mood. Somedays it feels like "wow, God really blessed that time" others it is work for even my heart to be there. BUT we always press through. :)
  • Morning Routine/ Chores; this can be lengthy process due to the attitude and motivation of the child.
  • Writing a Bible Verse from our morning reading.
  • Math and Grammar worksheets
  • Reading 
  • History with mom (just started this recently again. so far so good)
  • Khan computer time.
  • Friday is not a full school day. The kids share/present to the rest of the family what they have been learning or studying. This was a huge blessing this year. It has shown me yes, your kids are learning! and given them the opportunity to have voice without interruption.
I do not use a cute "inbox". I've tried! They never were utilized it and many other items always floated in during cleaning. I did however learn about "homework folders" from public schools. They were a way for teachers to share with parent notes and school work they completed/ or needed to finish. The process adapted very nicely. Work "to do" goes on one side of the folder. Finished corrected work on the other. Each child has a different color which helps me find them easier. I made one for Hadassah this time around-- she felt like such a big girl.  ;)
directions from a klutz library book
Well, I could go on and on. I am always learning. Growing. Email me if you have any questions buckout6atgmaildotcom. Sometimes it helps to know another mom that has struggled for years and still figuring it out!
new fall break tradition- the Pitt County Fair
yes, the first time they all wore the same color of shirts and now
I understand how helpful it can be!
"hey mom, get a picture!" lol


Blessings Friends,

2 comments:

  1. I so appreciate your blogging and especially in the education journey. I feel very strongly it will be one child at a time one year at time and our rhythm may change. This year Wyatt is at our sweet little country school and is doing well! Glad you guys are finding your way.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Desra! Makes me smile that you enjoy my blog! :) I know Jenn has been really blessed by their country school too. Come to think of it.. it is probably the same school. I love the area you all live in!
      It was really important for my kids to experience public school because it has given them a huge appreciation for being home and learning. Because our home is so small, I am guilty of missing them being at school. Public school = quiet house. Yet, I have to embrace the relationships we are building and growing with each other is much more profitable long term. Esp my pre teens!
      :) blessing to you and Matt!

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i love hearing from you! have a blessed day!

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