Friday, September 11, 2009

Our Glorious Week!

There is just something to this planning thing! I reaped 100 fold in the work I did over the weekend to get ready for our first week back to school. I'm not even sure I can take full credit for it, I think the Lord MUST have had something to do with it!

Here's what our days have been like:
5:00 am-I'm up! This is my morning time to shower, read, pray and start breakfast.
6:15 am-Banana Taffy up and in the shower.
6:30 am-Chocolate Taffy up and in the shower.
In the mean time, other little people are waking up, getting dressed and coming down to breakfast. We try to eat by 6:45, so we can be done eating and cleaning up shortly after 7. After breakfast we do our Balancing the Sword time, with daddy. This can be quick, or it can be really long. So the rest of the day doesn't have a start and stop time assigned to it, it has more of an "order of service."
It goes like this:
BTS
Morning Chores
Start School-This is what we do for the rest of the morning. I've trained my three older children to be fairly independent in regards to their assignments. Since we've been homeschooling since the beginning, this has been my ultimate goal. All that work when they were little has really paid off and the blessing is amazing! I stay down in our homeschool room from whenever chores are done (usually about 8:30) until lunch time (11:00). While I'm down there I teach my little ones, starting with Bubble Gum. I probably spend an hour, interrupted often by Laffy Taffy, with her. I'm teaching her to read and write and solve problems, count, etc. She LOVES it! Next it's Blue-Raspberry's turn. He really seems to have matured over our little break here. He's reading really well and loves his art book. He doesn't cry when I ask him to do Draw-Write-Now anymore, stuff like that. He's had a great week. I probably spend another hour, maybe a little more with him. One on one time is so much more productive, you can get so much more learning accomplished in a much smaller amount of time. And even with him, I am starting to gently teach him to work independently. It starts real slow, "Can you read that (pointing to some simple direction)? Can you do what it says?" Always watching to see if he understands, available to answer questions. It really is a beautiful thing.

Laffy Taffy has been pretty good this week. Twice I have had to put him down for an early nap because he was making too much noise, not happy noise- whiny, fussy noise. It's hard to concentrate with THAT kind of sound! :o) Right before it's time to make lunch, I've been making a concerted effort to read to Blue-Raspberry and Bubble Gum. They have enjoyed this time so much, and so have I!

We started using Abeka (6th, 8th & 9th grade) for two subjects this year: Language Arts and History. Going through the lesson plans and changing things to accommodate our family, it's gone better than I thought. Each older child has had a quiz and a test this week and they've done great. We've discovered that test really stress Chocolate Taffy out, but at the same time he LOVES them and we've also discovered that tests don't stress Banana Taffy out, but he HATES them!

After lunch, I send everyone outside, for at least 45 minutes (P.E.). They have been walking to the park or skating or playing tennis in the road.

Then it's on to afternoon school. For the most part, my younger ones have free time, to play outside or in their rooms. But the older ones have required 30 minute reading time, 30 minutes of conservative talk radio (this is our solution to the current events required in their Language Arts curriculum), 30 minutes of indepdent prayer and bible study and 30 minutes of hand crafts. For Strawberry, hand crafts include: painting, drawing, sewing, scrapbooking, knitting-whatever she's interested in at the time. For the boys: movie making, weight-lifting, shop projects, etc.

My goal for the little ones is to do one craft with them a week. I don't really appreciate messes, but arts and crafts is so fun for this age group and I do delight in making them happy, so I thought once a week is doable for me. I chose Fridays for our craft day and today we did a little painting. For Laffy, it was finger painting. And he completely enjoyed himself, didn't have any trouble with the slimy feeling and said the words: paint, mess and Mom 4000 times in a half hour! For these two we started out with some color theory (sounds fancy right?) We talked about Primary Colors and painted a primary color wheel.
We also did a secondary color wheel and mixed colors together to make all sorts of beautiful shades. Here is Bubble Gum's work of art. You can see she is VERY proud of her painting. She said the red guy in the middle is a crab. :o)

Here's Blue-Raspberry's...does that look familiar? Remember my old blog, Little Farm House in the Woods? He painted our old house...he misses the forest!
It was really a great week and I can only hope to have as wonderful of a week next week. If I stay in the Spirit, I am just sure next week will be just as nice and the children will continue to learn and grow! Homeschooling is such a blessing! I am abundantly thankful for this freedom!
Joyfully,
Mrs. Taffy

4 comments:

  1. That was beautiful! Thanks for sharing your day.

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  2. Wow, you have such a smooth schedule. Similar to what I do except I don't get the kids up that early. I think I need to though :) It feels like I am schooling way to long.

    I am still trying to figure out what to do with the little boys and now Ana who is becoming more mobile. I am telling you... there are many days I just want to throw in the towel and put them all in school. Or at least half of them. LOL

    I got do some restructuring. It feels like all I do now is school. I know by God's leading and grace I can DO IT!!

    Thanks for sharing.

    Chris in FL

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  3. I couldn't agree more with your last paragraph!

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  4. I use Draw * Write * Now too. I really enoyed this blog. I gained insight from it and, yet again, it gave me ideas. I LOVE the 30 mins of conservative talk show radio! What a great idea!

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