Archive for October, 2008

Knowledge Base

October 11, 2008

I am wondering today how competent I am to home school. I was trained to teach first grade but I just feel so stupid sometimes. There is so much I do not know! Honestly, I felt this way when I was teaching too. But we taught the lessons and picked the themes so I could “bone up” on the topic before presenting it. Plus most of the time we were doing Reading and Math. Of course, subjects came up that I was unfamiliar with and/or just didn’t feel completely confident to discuss but not as many as now. Jeez. Alex has questions about everything and I feel like I am constantly saying “I am not sure,” and “We will have to look that up when we get home.” Which I forget. Something is nagging at me that I was supposed to look up adn I forgot 🙂 Thankfully, I am sure it will come up again…LOL. Hopefully my kid doesn’t think his mother in a bumbling idiot. Thank goodness we have the internet. How did anyone manage to homeschool before then? LOL. But I am serious too.

I thought I had the whole should I have Alex memorize debate settled in my mind. I decided that he does memorize things. Books I read to him mostly. I have never had him recite anything but I can tell becasue he is reading along under his breath or throws a line out in regular conversation. Then I read In Defense of Memorization . I should not be swayed so easily! I suppose it is time to do some more research on this subject. It all just sounds so….Anne of Green Gables or Little House on the Praire to me…….

Support

October 11, 2008

We had a good day today despite my being very tired and cranky. I am not sleeping well. We went to my mom’s which we are going to try to do every Friday morning. She will watch Ian while I work with Alex and then hopefully we will all have time to visit. Today Alex and I decided to work on learning how to ride his bike. He did really well! I was nervous that my mom and step dad would think it weird that that is what we chose to work on as opposed to school work, but they didn’t blink an eye. Just came out to watch and went about their day. Well, Papa had to put the chain on the bike…lol. The boys found some rocks later so my mom is going to take us down to the beach next week and see what we can find. It is great to have such a supportive family! My mom, dad and in laws have all just jumped right in!

We ran some errands after we unsuccessfully tried to nap Ian and picked up some books from the library. We have been listening to Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling in the car and Greek Myths at home. Both are read by Jim Weiss who is wonderful!! I like the books on tape in the car- makes me feel like I am doing something educational..LOL.

Fire Station

October 10, 2008


Yesterday we went to the fire station! It was fun (and free) and the fire fighters were really nice.

Our new room is finally enclosed. It is not finished but we can use it. Yesterday, A spontaneously read to me out loud. I was reading a book and got distracted and, I guess, he got impatient….lol. But it was nice to hear. He read several books by himself and wanted to play a lot of games. He even started intentionally losing in order to drag it out!

Peer Pressure

October 4, 2008

I will not give in to it. LOL. Seriously, I read that so and so is doing this, her children can do that, this person is going over this curriculum and I start to think I should be doing that. My children could benefit from that.

I.am.not.doing.enough.and.my.kid.is.going.to.be.behind.

This is when the panic sets in and if I don’t bring myself down to the real world, I am off floating in inadequacy land.

*sigh*

The truth is A is doing great. He is doing core subjects daily even if it isn’t always part of a curriculum or worksheet. The other day he was stoked to find subtraction bingo. To him, it is all good…..he does not see it as boring at all. On that same line of thought, did you know that if you have a brain freeze from eating ice cream too fast you should curl your tongue to touch the roof of your mouth? Neither did I! But A did and he was able to tell me that when I was writhing pain (hehehe). He learned it from a science show. He never misses an opportunity to let me know the benefits of TV :-). I guess the point is that he picks up new information all the time.

Here are some things we did this past week.

Numberbow
I changed it a little bit but whoever had the most colorful numberbow after 11 turns wins. My clever guy decided then that he should make each square he “landed” on multicolored so there was no doubt which one was the most colorful. He kept this all very hush hush and presented it with great fan fair after our game was over. This, from a kid who hates to color. Check outthe rest of her site; Peggy Kaye has some great games!

I was relieved to see him write more than one sentence which usually consists of “I like the cat” or some such nonsense.
It says “Cruellers are round with bumps. white brown. They look like flowers.

We finished up our science experiments on crystals and started fossils.

We started our math curriculum. We ended up skipping a few activities in the beginning because they were deemed too easy (they really were). I am going to give it a few more weeks and then get something else if isn’t working. I have to be careful though. Truth is I really want this other curriculum so I know I am biased.

Serious Things

October 2, 2008

Alex really takes his play seriously. A friend from Chess Club mentioned it yesterday while watching him run around and it got me thinking. I never ever ever start ANYTHING in the morning until he has had time to play. He usually wanders in after 30 minutes adn then we can begin. If we have to leave early in the morning, I try to remember to warn him the night before that he will not have time to play in the morning. Otherwise he looses it. We were playing a math game this morning. He was totally into it and over-the top excited. We finished, I turn around, and he is gone! Off to play……LOL. Like I said: very serious. I have also noticed that if we go out to an activity or class or play date, I really need to make sure that we have time for independent play at home before we do anything else. He seems to need that down time. I like that about homeschooling; we have a lot more flexibility. He would not have time to play before a regular school day. Well, he could but it would not be as relaxed. I do worry that I am not teaching him to be industrious enough but at the same time I think he will only be 6 for one year. Soon enough, he will grow up. The last 6 years sure did fly by!

Here is a great article on play and its importance.

And here is a plug for our library system! I really wanted to read a book that they did not have. So, I asked if there was any way I could get it (I was thinking inter library loan) and she wrote up a request for me. A few weeks later, poof! I get an email saying it is on hold ready to be picked up. What is this book you ask? It is on this very topic. I read another book by her while I was waiting for this one. It was quite engaging and eye opening. (hehehe…I just learned how to link articles and what not. I promise that is the last one for this entry. It is kind of fun though!)