Today was our first day back to home school.
Last night I decided to rearrange the living room – our school room – a little bit. We moved a bookcase from the boy’s room so I could put all the school books together on a higher shelf. The baby can reach the bottom shelves and, true toddler style, loves to pull all the books down several times a day.
I was so excited and ready to get back to our school schedule. The kids must have been excited too because they were up early! I had oatmeal cooking in the slow cooker so breakfast was a no brainer.
Things went well, but – typically – a tiny bit chaotic at times. Sometimes, there are literally 4 people asking me at once for help. I had to call a quick time out to develop a system so the kids will know when I’ll get to them.
We decided on a “youngest to oldest” queue. If they’re all clamoring for help at once, I help the youngest first. The reason I did it this way is because 1) the younger the child, the less patience and 2) the younger the child, the more apt they are to get sidetracked and move away from the task at hand when mom is busy.
Not surprising was the struggle one of my children had with math. This particular kid will quietly be in tears before asking for help. It breaks my heart. After a few hugs and a pep talk about “this is why we’re homeschooling, we can take all the time we need, there are a lot of steps in long division and everyone forgets what’s next at first, etc” the little one was back at work.
I can’t imagine the struggle this child would have in a classroom. This is also the wiggler, the distracted one, the kinesthetic learner. (IS there a math manipulative for long division?!)
It’s now 1:52 and we’re done with school except for History. The baby is napping so I decided to take a coffee/blogging break to rest a bit. We do Story of the World for history, so it requires my full participation. The kids are working on their Science lessons which don’t require much input from me.
It’s only one day in, but the Kanban board for organizing our homeschool day has proven to be a real gift! It keeps me on track so I know at a glance how we’re doing and what’s next.
I’m really pleased with how things are going. I can tell already that my favorite time of day is our Bible reading. We are reading the Bible through together for the first time this year. Already, in our first reading (Genesis 1-3), I’m humbled. Oldest, who is a deep thinker about such things (“Mom, who paid the ransom – did God, or did Jesus?”) had a question about the Tree of Life that stumped me! That discussion led to more research, and him adding two questions to his personal Bible study notebook for further study.
How did your first day of “Back to School” (any kind of school!) go? Any changes this year in how you’re doing things?