Today I’m going to share with you guys what a normal week looks like in our house. Sometimes it feels like we don’t accomplish very much throughout a single day, but a week can be very productive when taken as a whole.
One of my biggest takeaways from the feelings that I struggled with last winter and spring was that when you become more focused on the “to-list” or comparison between your kids and either public school children or other homeschoolers. Even comparisons between two of your own children can be dangerous.
My other takeaways were that learning doesn’t have to be complicated and that if I make too many other commitments, I don’t have the time and energy that I need to homeschool my children. If you’re having difficulty creating the time and energy for learning at home, look at where your time and energy are really going. Have you left your calling to homeschool and your primary ministry to do other things?
So, last week was the week that schools around our county went back to school. Here’s a peek at what our official “back-to-homeschool” week looked like. Since we school year round, this is just a continuation on what we’ve been working on 🙂
We’ve been trying out a subscription to Super Teacher Worksheets, and they have a lot of cute back-to-school themed worksheets. I couldn’t resist the idea of printing out these “all about me” sheets and having each child spend a little time last week filling them out. (If you want to you can count this toward your language arts time!)
We did a wide array of things for Language Arts this week. Right now, language arts tends to be the emphasis of our week, which is great since all my children are working at a preschool or elementary school level for language arts skills. I subscribe to a kit club called Ivy Kids. Each month they send me a fun box of activities based on a book. We’ve been working on and off on a kit from a couple of months ago for Blueberries for Sal. (We work through the kits slowly depending on how much the children want to work out of them.) This week, we read the book and we decorated some stuffed bears that were included in the kit. After that, we used some positional word cards to give us ideas of places to hide the bear and played find the bear together for a while.
Rose is reviewing the Horizons second grade reading, so we did it every single day. It’s not really her kind of thing, and we’ve tried a little bit of everything for reading with her. I’m finally accepting that she’s going to have to learn on her own time and in her own way. Philosophically, I would say that I was an unschooler, but I’ve pushed her more than I meant to because I was embarrassed that she hasn’t picked up reading as quickly as Firecracker did. My mistake! Big time mistake!! As soon as this review is over, I’m backing way way off!!
I read a million picture books this week. Some from the library and some from our book shelves. I also read a chapter book to the older kids called Of Giants and Ice. The children have written daily in their literature notebooks. That’s Monkey’s favorite time of day. He has an elaborate system for drawing and many stories to tell each day.
At Owlet’s behest, we’ve done a little math this week. The little two have worked some on CTC Math and Rose has worked on GPALEARN a couple of days this week. Firecracker’s reviewing Stinky Kid Math, so he’s worked on a tiny portion of that each day this week.
Owlet and Monkey really like math in little doses because they feel like it’s a game. If you’re a long time follower of the blog, you know that Rose has had math anxiety since she was Owlet’s age, so she only does it because it’s what everyone else is doing! Firecracker is very good at math conceptually but deals with computational problems. I finally decided to just give him a calculator and let him learn whatever concepts he wants. He really impresses me with his concept understanding at times.
The only curriculum that we do every day is Veritas Press Self-Paced history. We reviewed a level last year and the kids loved it so much that they’ve requested that we keep buying it. How can I argue with that? This year we’re working through Old Testament and Ancient Egypt, and we’re studying God’s covenant with Abraham with that. (Kids are already asking to make sure that we’re going to buy the next one when we finish this one 🙂 )
Firecracker is also reviewing a game called Mayan Mysteries, and he really likes it. I’m looking forward to sharing more about this one, but he might want some of the other games for his Nana’s iPad at some point because he’s really enjoyed playing this one.
Firecracker is also reviewing a chemistry course right now, making him a very busy 10 year old. It’s inspired him to pull out his big periodic table book and read through it some. He took a Minecraft periodic table class a couple of years ago, and this has brought back some of that passion for him.
Rose has spent a lot of her extra time making perler bead creations. She plans on giving them as gifts to her friends at Community Bible Study when it starts back next month.
Hubby’s been reading through the Bible to us each night before we go to bed. So, I remembered to take a picture of him reading this week, and the boys on the couch drawing on our mini dry-erase boards as he reads.
I also managed to catch Monkey having a nap on a tired day. I couldn’t resist taking a picture because he was just so cute.
That’s about it for this week. We watched Reading Rainbow, took a trip to the library, and even watched a World War II documentary on Netflix. Everything we did was easy, manageable and relaxed. There was stuff that we talked about doing that we didn’t get to, and we were okay with that. Instead, we just roll the things we don’t get to over into the next week. If we really want to get to them, we’ll eventually get them on our finished list.
If you’re looking for more back-to-homeschool ideas, please visit the other writers of this series because I’m sure that they’ve got lots of fun things going to inspire you!!