Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Our School House is in session!
(*On a sad note, we just found out that our co-op has been cancelled AGAIN for the Fall. The enrollment was too low so we will not have anything for the Fall. I think this will be better for us with a new baby coming in the middle of Fall but now I have got to find a group we can spend time with and get Josiah in Karate! Wish me luck!)
We planned to take "First Day Of School" pictures under a big tree beside our house but it is pouring today!
This one makes things very interesting.
Our first day of school is done! We were done by noon. Noon is always my goal so we are able to spend afternoons at the Library, at the park, playing at home, Nature walks or field trips but some days it will not happen. I am about to sneak in a nap while they have quiet/reading time. Later we will have story time and of course Mozart hour before dinner.
Josiah's curriculum has a lot more this year, including History and Science. Today we began working on our History timeline and I love how it begins with Genesis 1 written in Hebrew. It is an incredible thing to teach American History and show how God is a part of it. Many of the men and women we will learn about this year were guided by God in their decisions. I wasn't too excited about the timeline showing an overview of US History until this morning. Josiah showed interest which made me breathe a huge sigh of relief. In English we learned about complete sentences and Josiah stopped and said "I like this. Everything we are learning mentions God." And that's why I love Rod and Staff! I don't know if I like the Spelling yet but I will give it a few weeks. The words for the first week are very simple, which is to be expected but he is getting spelling in his Reading lessons and in other areas. I will wait and see what I think after a few weeks. He did great with Math too so he went ahead and did two lessons. The Teacher's guide, in my opinion, complicates things greatly! Of course if he begins to have issues, it will come in handy but sometimes I feel they make simple things much harder than it needs to be. So I decided with the Teacher's Manuals, especially with Math, to look over the lessons and make sure I have a clear and creative way of teaching before I bury my head in "extra" stuff. But that's just my personality so really there is no wrong or right way of doing it. When my kids are older I can guarantee I will be using those manuals religiously.
Ava Beth did amazing! When your Kindergartner is almost six years old, things are sometimes easier and when it is the second child it is A LOT easier. Ava Beth wanted to do page after page after page. We did four pages for each subject. When Josiah was a Kindergartner, he complained when I gave him extra. There are such differences between the oldest and next to oldest and of course between boy and girl.
Ezekiel has a Pre-School game he plays on the computer and he loves it. He shocks us with his mad computer skills! The other two did not play on computer when they were three but I guess you learn to do things a lot faster when you are the baby. In fact, he loves the computer so much that we have to set limits. After his computer time, he played with legos in his room then colored at the table with us.
The day was truly great! But I must say that having two at the table and a pre-schooler is difficult because as soon as I begin to help Josiah, Ava Beth needs me. When she needs me, one of the boys need me and Josiah's stuff is a lot more this year and since My Father's World has a classical/Charlotte Mason approach, it's an adjustment for him. It is a GOOD adjustment but his School Day is not full of worksheets like last year. It will take some time to get "Summer" of his mind and for him to become disciplined again in the daily routine of School. Josiah said several times "I love 2nd grade and all this new stuff I am learning!" and that made me smile.
We started the day off with "Circle time" with Bible, praise and prayer and the kids all wanted to pray too. I love how much they love to pray out loud. It was a great way to start the morning. As we settle into the new year, this is the part of the day that sometimes gets pushed to the side but I pray we can continue and finish strong. It helps to have a Bible Curriculum.
Now that I have changed up the way we Homeschool from the last two years, lesson plans are great! I love doing this! I have a Teacher's Lesson plan book that I got in the dollar section at Target and it works great! I have everything written out for each day and subject and it really helped me stay on track. Plus I like having sort of a journal of what we have done all year.
Last but not least, I prayed a lot about a verse for our School House this year and this is what the Lord gave me. It's posted in our School room so that we may be reminded on the days that don't go as planned or the days when bad attitudes show up that we have a purpose. And in everything we do, we are serving CHRIST.
23Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, 24since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.