Sunday, August 8, 2010

What Was I thinking...and other questions that will keep me up tonight

Today was our first official day of homeschool.  Ummm.  Yeah.  So I think the best thing I can say about today is that not one child in our family was harmed, physically, psychologically (at least we won't know on that one til much later in their lives,) or otherwise.  One dog was yelled at excessively, but honestly that's really nothing new.  I rolled my eyes to the heavens in a dire plea for patience and hope approximately 227 times and that is the exact number of times my prayer was answered, albeit temporarily!
So, we did have some good moments.  Jack enjoyed the on-line math, although his joy quickly evaporated when he realized that there were indeed more than 2 problems to the activity.  Ella-Kathyrn made us all laugh when in attempting to write the numbers starting at 20 in decreasing order , or as I so poorly explained "backwards," she promptly, in Amelia Bedelia fashion, began "02, 91, 81"etc!  Poor girl, she really was quite confused, but once I sat down with her, she breezed right through it:)  Will thought today would be the absolute best day ever to not be happy about anything.  At all.  There was much back and forth from his bed to diffuse the meltdown,s so I know that tomorrow I will need to have more out for him instead of just telling him to go find something to do.  Ryan did quite well, scooting about from room to room.  His recent mobility has eased his separation anxiety for the most part, while it has increased the need for my attention to him as he has also discovered that lamp cords ease teething pain.  Oh dear! 
I was up past midnight last night fretting about today.  All day I felt on the brink of tears.  Yet, at the end of the day, I still believe that this is the right choice for our family.
It is now Sunday afternoon and I need to add on to this post.  I prayed every night last week for the Lord's guidance.  I truly felt that the way we were doing school was not right for our family.  Math was taking too long.  I was frustrated trying to meet each child where they were in their lessons etc.  Remembering back to when we first started looking into homeschool, I was struck by Charlotte Mason and her methodology.  We probably won't do the whole shebang, but pretty close.  The main idea is spending more time reading and narrating, rather than doing workbooks, and formal lessons.  Establishing good daily habits, memorization, and reading are key components.  We will scale back math to 10-20 min. blocks, rather than 30+.  This alone will probably save my soul!  The kids can draw, play with Legos, or something like that while I read to them, but Will can participate in this too.  We're taking a field trip down to the Dickson Street Book Shop, one of my all time favorite haunts in Fayetteville, to gather up some more books.  I've been talking this place up all weekend hoping that the kiddos will be excited to go - not sure it's working!  Keep your fingers crossed that we can find the rest of the books we need and we'll keep you posted on our progress this week.

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