Saturday, August 29, 2009


I now have a schoolroom! Last year, when we started homeschooling, I had set up a schoolroom in the playroom upstairs. After a couple of weeks, of spending the day upstairs, we felt really confined. There is only one window in the playroom and the ceiling is low so we felt like we were spending our day in a cave. We made the decision to move downstairs. I have a second walk-in pantry in our kitchen so we used that to store all our books and supplies and basically did school at the kitchen table or in the livingroom. It worked out ok but invariable come dinner time the kitchen table would be piled high with books and stuff. Also, since the kids were working everywhere including their bedrooms, books and papers would become misplaced and we would end up spending precious time looking for things and becoming frustrated.

We are beginning our 5th week of school come Monday. Yesterday we finished up school and there were books, papers and projects from one end of the house to the other. I decided it was time to take over the front room and turn it into our new schoolroom. First I had to convince my husband since the front room had become his "man cave". He, along with the kids, used that room to play the PS3 too. He said he didn't care as long as he didn't have to move anything. That was fine with me and I got to work... 7 hours later and I have it pretty much put together. I still need to organize 2 of the bookshelves, put up the USA map and hang a couple of cork boards for displaying work.

I wish I could move that couch up to the playroom and get rid of the one up there but this one has a hide-a-bed and is heavy and Jeff said no way would we be bringing it upstairs. I still need to bring the kids desk chairs in,

I copied this calendar idea from a friend.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Our Second Year of Homeschooling, Day 3

We started school on Monday and things were good and things were pretty bad. I chose to just jump in and do it all this week. When I say do it all that includes introducing the kids to some of the new curriculum they will be using this year. It really is a lot of info to give the kids all at once and as prepared as I thought I was there was a lot of things I still wasn't fully prepared for. I found this tip today on Kris's website and I will be sure to implement it next year.

Anyways, my middle child was awesome. She really has had no problems with anything so far. We switched her to Horizons Math from Saxon which seems to be a better fit for her. She has a hard time staying focused on things that don't interest her, like Math. Horizons is colorful and she has a workbook to write in rather than transferring problems to a piece of paper. May not seem like a lot but for her it makes a huge difference. She also is using Sonlight 3/4 for her core. This is our 1st year to use Sonlight. She loves to read and Sonlight is all about reading so again a perfect fit. My youngest did ok but still complains quite frequently when she has to write more than 2 sentences. It's easy to get her back on track though. I just give her a choice: go to your room with no privileges for the day (no tv or game time) or do the work I ask. Smart girl, she always chooses to do her work. She particularly enjoys science experiments. So far this week she has done experiments to learn about water currents and to learn how blubber protects whales from the cold temperature of the water.

My big problem this week was my oldest! The first day he complained the entire day about everything! And the sarcasm meter was hitting the roof. It may be his age (12 1/2) but I also think that on Monday he was tired and he was having PS3 withdrawals! During the summer I am very lax. I let them stay up pretty much every night until 11 pm 0r midnight. And towards the end of the summer they were spending way too much time playing video games. Once schooltime hits so does the change in bedtime and restrictions on all screens. Another issue I have with Tyler is his goofing off. If I leave the room he is usually the first one to start acting like a nut and I am not sure what to do about it.

Anyways, today he was good. He told me he thought this year would be a good year (surprise, surprise). He enjoys studying the Middle Ages, loves Teaching Textbooks Pre-Algebra and enjoyed his science experiment today. Also, today we decided to adjust his schedule some so we will see how it goes. I do know it will take a good month to get in the groove of it all so I will try to be patient. Patience not being my strong point.

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