Are you a homeschooler? If so grab a cup of tea and talk with me. Are we all here? Lets just spread our stuff out here on the table and get down to business. You all know that I have been homeschooling Tink for 3 years now. Homeschooling a learning disabled child is an entirely different ball game than teaching a child who naturally learns.
In the course of schooling Tink and pushing her up to and way past her limits I have had no time for the fun things of home school. Tink will be in junior high next year. There are things she needs to learn. There is no time or inclination on her part for glitter and paste and fun things. Bugs are gross. The study of the human body is gross. Geology is boring. History is not cool. Math is too hard. Reading is to be shunned at all cost! Literature is for the poor geek who doesn't understand that dancing to musical Cd's is way more fun. Yes, this is how Tinks brain works.
Now enter Peter; a boy who loves the outdoors, who loves to invent things, who loves storybooks, who loves board games, who loves science, who loves everything about his world and just cant learn enough! Now do you see why I have to switch gears?
So here I am brainstorming ways to tap into Peters natural curiosity of the world around him. Here is what I'm tossing around:
starting him on a nature journal
setting up a nature shelf
make animal tracks from molds and plaster of Paris
Put together an essay on any animal. Turn in paper report and clay or Lego model of animal
Do a study on the Beaver. We live in the Beaver State. We would make our own dam and read books like Bartholomew the Beaver.
Get a microscope and let him go to town on the thing
Teach both kids how to hand sew on fleece (peter did this at his old school and loved it)
Introduce Peter to martial arts
Do a salt clay map of whatever Peter would want to study. He loves his maps.
Get stuff to add to his back yard scientist kit
Add to my craft shelf so the kids always have stuff on hand to craft with.
On that last point I have tons of craft stuff on bookshelves in the schoolroom and in a craft chest. I was just noticing the other day that paints are drying up and beads are spilled and raffia is almost non existent. I still have gobs of nice brushes, felt pieces, puff paints, iron transfer patterns, t shirts, melting beads, fabric glues, and I have more foam cut outs than I will ever use!
There is just so much to do and so little time. With our new schedule we are gone to classes all day on Tuesday so that day is just out for anything close to constructive hands on learning.
Here is what the schedule is looking like:
10-11 Pottery class- Peter, Orchestra- Tink
3-4 Tai Kwon Do - both kids
8:30 - 10 Pottery- Tink
10- 11 PE Peter
11-12 Tech Launchers- Peter
12:10 Choir - both kids
1:10-2:00 PE-both kids
3:00 Volley ball-Tink
10-11 Orchestra-Tink, Cooking- Peter
3-4 Tai Kwon Do
1-2 PE both kids
6:15-8:15 Awana- both kids
5:30 - 8:30am volleyball-Tink
Volley ball games are on some of these Friday nights
Peters basketball games
So yeah, this schedule leaves me a little dizzy but I did my best to get the children's classes to overlap so we didn't have to spend too much time on the road or at the schools where the classes are held.
Chores and other learning have to fit in the cracks of this schedule. This is why it's necessary to stay on schedule around here and to keep on our toes. I'm trying to work in our Children's Hour into that 8:30 am slot. Its not going to be possible on Tuesdays but we should be able to get to it other days.
If you're thinking that's a lot of sports for the kids, it is. My goal is to keep Peter as busy as possible. He just bursts with energy and the house cannot contain it all!
Each child will be studying and working with me in the times that their sibling is in class and they aren't. There are wonderful study nooks all over the academy along with a moms coffee shanty and a snack bar. I have a lot of friends that are waiting for their kids too so it gives us all time to chat a little. At the Academy parents are not allowed to leave if the student is in grade school. In a way I suppose its good for me to have this down time during classes. I can use that time to do computer work when the kids aren't needing my help.
So there you have it. That's what a homeschool mom thinks about and plans for while she is sick on the couch with a cold.
Do you all need a refill on your tea?
Do you have any neat project ideas for boys of eight years old? I welcome all suggestions.