Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I Guess We'll Call It Homeschooling

Do not ask what level they are at…only, if they CARE. Great Charlotte Mason wisdom relayed from me via Angela via her daughter Rebekah during lovely afternoon togetherness on Friday.
I am only in my third week of homeschooling my kindergartener and preschooler. Should I even call it homeschooling? I keep them home with me and I am pretty sure there is active learning going on.  I have a five year old, four year old and two year old underfoot. I am not going to write about my wisdom as if I have something useful to share but more what I am learning. I agree with Leila from Like Mother, Like Daughter that I really can’t speak on such things as to how to educate your children until they are grown.
I have these plans I did on a nice spreadsheet about what WE, our school, would cover each week. I have poured over the homeschooling books and spent many late nights surfing the blogosphere chalk full of homeschooling blogs. I ordered very nice curriculum and WONDERFUL read alouds. Even as I lit our little prayer candle to begin school on the first day I felt a little like the Ingalls, all nestled at home together in our home in beautiful Alaska.
The first two weeks  in August were fairly structured, school starting by 10, not really stifling. We would be finished according to my check list of things by noon.  However, company came for 10 days (9 extra people in the house) and good weather beckoned enjoyment. My husband then travelled to Japan for work so I had a good two week interruption. Actually it was just life happening, is there ever a pause to learning if its things like being ok with your two and a half year old godbrother tearing down your block tower? I fretted as I checked my nice spreadsheet. We would be behind as we are trying to do the Alphabet Path, which I discovered through Shower of Roses, and C week was running into D week.
So….the weekend rolls around, we will use it to catch up in school.  Hiccup gets into this drawing and writing her own books mode. I mean she talks about it in the tub, all soapy “Mommy I got to get out and finish my book!”
But…I am thinking…in my own schooling handicap…I have such cool worksheets to do!  The good Holy Spirit nudges to follow her lead.
Then they (all my littles) just start playing together, something about using their bunk beds as an Eagle’s nest.
And the books keep flowing out of her head, picture after picture….
Then more playing.
I keep telling myself…do not interrupt imaginative play (why am I gritting my teeth though?). We pour over the library books and snuggle up to read alouds, “The Children of Noisy Village” right now.  Last night Hiccup snuck into our den because she complained of her sister’s snoring, and I let it happen. I let her crawl under the Ohio State snuggy to watch Jane Eyre with me “Cover your eyes ” during the Bertha scenes. Now she is staying up late? Well I guess she’ll just sleep in…err…because we homeschool?
We made cool leaf and wax paper prints.  I least I thought they were cool and they needed to go in our Fall Lapbooks we were making.  Lioness kept picking color after color for the melted wax.. Let her… I mean, I felt one color sufficed…but in school she would have been limited and I thought in my homeschoolingness... let her keep picking out the colors because there are SO many. Hiccup thought the project boring compared to the fairy godmother picture she HAD to draw and then Lioness just kept picking out the colors.
Yet, it all comes back to the question of…do they CARE?  So I am trying very much to check my own ambitions. I am trying to keep ORDER and WONDER http://ourmothersdaughters.blogspot.com/2009/03/order-and-wonder-or-most-frequently.html so as to safeguard LEISURE which is conducive to spontaneous play and stories on the page or even naps.
It is all extremely fascinating because I am the one who is doing the changing and adjusting into what our family looks like and my children are the guides.  I’ve never done this before.