Jan 5, 2015

First Day Back

It's Monday! Not just Monday, but the Monday after Christmas break. Did anyone else have trouble preparing for back to "normal"? My crew has been sick the past week so that didn't help things. I was a little anxious, but we were ready. I was ready. 
My goal for Christmas break was to get our homeschool stuff organized for this whole next semester. I was organized last semester, but as a new homeschooling mom I didn't have it organized in a way that worked for us. It's such a learning game being a homeschooling parent. 
We learned a lot this first semester of school. And by we I mean me. I learned a lot. A lot about what not to do and what doesn't work for us. Which I don't count that as failure. That's a great thing to learn. 
So I knew I wanted to make some changes for the new semester. I like the curriculum we chose and wanted to stick with it. I just needed a different execution plan. 
I was encouraged and inspired after seeing my friend Jill spend a whole day getting her homeschool year planned out day to day. I knew it was time to get this thing going. 
The curriculum we chose is separated by 26 different units. It's actually 6 days to a unit, but I think most of the time we will spend 5 days in each unit, but of course allowing flexibility to happen if we need to spend more time on something. 

I separated each unit into a folder and in the folder I have the lesson plan stapled to the front and the worksheets paper clipped together by day. It also allows me to add in anything else I find to go with the unit, like a magazine, article, picture, game, etc. 

And today went great. I loved having everything right there together. I felt very productive. I am very happy with the new organization and it'll be soooo helpful as I reuse this curriculum in the future for my other kids when they're kindergarteners. All I'll have to do is buy another student pack and split them up! but all my ideas and what worked well and what the kids enjoyed will be in the folder. 
I'm pretty excited about it all. 
We sit down school for about an hour and then we do different things throughout the day. Today we watched some YouTube videos, read a book and played an instrument when we heard certain words/sounds and then we went on a nature walk to search for nests. (After 30 minutes of getting on coats, hats and shoes.) We love not being on a time table because we are slow! and not once do I have to say, "Hurry Up!"
It was freezing. FREEZING. But so fun. I love being able to get outside and learn with my kids. They wanted to use the camera and take pictures of the nests, draw them, count everything we saw and collect bark, pine cones and sticks. 

I know it's not the best time of year to see nests, but I was very happy to have found (probably) 3 way up high and definitely one in this smaller tree. 

I love learning with my kids. No matter how imperfect my teaching skills are. We learn. We have fun. And we get to do it all together. 





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