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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How is everyone doing? Anyone "start" their year yet? We are suppose to start on Tuesday; we have been sidelined by a death in the family though and now dh and I are both trying to not succumb to the flu. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/fever.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Fever">: Ds#1 (6) the other day was so cute ... we've been reading the prehistory portion of the Usbourne Internet-Linked Encyclopedia of World History (highly recommend it!), and we finished last week I think and he wanted to move on to the Ancient History section. But me, wanting to wait until we "officially" begin just because I hope to keep everything we are doing as sane as possible, have been delaying as long as I can. (We still read tons of stuff and honestly even if we sat and ended up reading the entire section on Ancient History before next Tuesday even comes, he'd gladly listen to it a few times over. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> ) Anyways, the other day I told him that our homeschooling year starts next week and that we get to begin reading about Ancient History. His reply was, "Oh yay!!! Ancient History!!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/carrot.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="carrot"> I can't wait!!!" He's so cool. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"><br><br>
I'm also happy to have learned that ds#2's speech location is at an elementary pretty close to the house and also really, really close to both a park and a library. Since he'll be 4 in a couple months, I'm much more comfortable leaving him there for the 30 minute session and taking the other two to the park to run a bit before picking him back up. He was so little last year when we began that we just sat in the car the entire time, 3 days a week. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: This year should be only 2 days a week and much easier to deal with (except the jealously that is bound to arise because we get to do "fun things" while he is in speech (which to ds#1 is the fun stuff).
 

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Not 'starting' because we never stopped. DS has a routine where he does a page or 2 out of 3 or 4 workbooks each morning, and the rest of the day is 'unschooled'.<br><br>
He's spending the summer with his dad, 16 hours away from me. But he's kept up his routine. He'll be back here on Tuesday *YAY* and other than replacing the workbooks which he finished over the summer with new ones, not much is going to change.<br><br>
I do hope to get into Saxon Math again this year. We tried it last year -- he was 'in' grade 3 but has tested at grade 5 math level, so we used the grade 4 saxon because he has issues with being afraid of things that are 'too hard'. The work was actually easy for him but he still convinced himself that it was 'too hard' and we only got about 20 units in when I decided it wasn't worth the struggle. We're going to try again, see what happens!
 

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Hey MLW, sorry to hear about your death in the family <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
I had been planning to "start school" on Wednesday, since I'm working on Tuesday, but now I'm working at least 3 hours a day every weekday this month, so the happy process of fitting in school around my work schedule and ds's activities has already started, and we're not even schooling yet <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">: I decided to spread things out a bit and start on Monday, giving ds some reading to do when I'm at work.<br><br>
I bought a Teaching company course off Ebay this summer, on Islam, we'll start listening to that this week. I found a really interesting book at the library last month, called From Hand-Ax to Laser, about the development of technology from, actually, before stone age hand axes all the way to the 1980's (when the book was written.) I just finished reading it. Since one of ds's goals this year is to learn about electricity and build motorized stuff, I thought he'd find this really interesting.<br><br>
I can relate to the wanting to keep things sane idea. I'm holding off on starting our history program until at least October. Ds is playing football this year, and the season will go into October (and maybe longer, his team is undefeated so far <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> ) Ds seems to prefer his education in chunks, he was reading all sorts of military history and political stuff all summer on his own, but has been really focused on his training lately, and reading for fun, so I don't see any rush to start formal history. One of the benefits of being Cdn is that the school year here is 10 months long, and all the US programs I buy are written for a shorter school year, so we can go pretty loose with them, and still cover lots of stuff.<br><br>
I'm looking forward to having a bit more structure in our lives. This is the last week before ps starts, and all the kids in the neighborhood seem to be trying to squeeze in all possible last-minute fooling around as possible. I would have started our school year a little earlier, but with all the kids coming to our door, phoning, IMing, it would have just been cruel to ds <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> . Not that I'm looking forward to other people's kids being in school or anything <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/loveeyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Loveeyes">: , but it certainly makes our daily life a little easier when there are much fewer distractions around.<br><br>
I've been scratching my head trying to come up with a good field trip idea for this month. Ds and I have always celebrated the beginning of the school year by going out to a museum or the zoo, enjoying having the place entirely to ourselves (and the happy staff who have very little to do in September <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> .) Ds is a little old for most of the stuff we've usually done, or he's been so many times it's just not a treat anymore. This whole having a teenager around is still a little new to me <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> . I think, though, that I've come up with a good day for us, spending the day going to second hand book stores and junk shops in a historic market area of our city, stopping in for lunch at the best greasy spoon burger joint in the world (their "mini-Al" burger is 3/4 lb and has ham on it, if that gives you any idea how decadent the place is <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> , ds is a very confirmed carnivore and loooooves this place.)<br><br>
I don't know if ds is getting excited (I kind of doubt it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> ) but I'm really looking forward to monday!
 

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We're starting on Thursday, when my oldest and youngest start school (the actual, go on the bus and attend school all day kind of school.)
 

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We started last Tuesday. I was going ot wait until this Tuesday but the kids were anxious, seeing all the neat stuff arriving in the mail all through August, lol.<br><br>
We are diving into SOTW, Ancients for history, animals and plants for science, apples for our seasonal theme.<br><br>
Kenna started gymnastics Tuesday, which I hated but she adored. It was utter chaos - about 50 kids and more parents/siblings crammed into the waiting room (they split up into small groups after stretching and she is in with older kids now that she is 7 so she loved it - I hated the noise/confusion/chaos/crowd though! I am used to one class at a time, two at the most, and a max of 10-15 kids in the gym).<br><br>
Holden goes for his x-rays of his broken wrist in about a week so we can hopefully get the splint off then and he will be all back to normal.<br><br>
They both start baseall this week with a homeschool group, and then they start art class the week after. Holden is taking a preschool class and Kenna is taking a homeschool class. I hope they like them!<br><br>
We are looking into pottery as well, which both kids will love. And Kenna is signed up for soccer, but it seems to be the world's most unorganized thing so I am pretty sure I am going to pull her. I am not one for complete chaos, lol.<br><br>
Other than that, we are taking in as many beach/ocean days as we can while the weather is still nice. I am starting to plan out fall field trips as well. Yesterday we spent the afternoon at the apple orchard. And this weekend we are getting our pet bunny back (we had to send our bunnies to live on a farm last spring when we moved in with my parents temporarily. Our apartment now does not allow them, but since two of the bunnies have died of old age and there is only one left we are smuggling him in and no one needs to know, lol!), so we are excited about that.
 

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I spent this week getting our *summer term* onto paper and getting ready for us to start on Tuesday. You can read more about this on my blog if you want <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> I am SO ready! I need structure!! DD actually asked me when she could start *doing something with her brain* the other day. Silly me! I thought the reading and writing used your brain <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
Anyway....I actually made lesson plans for out first week (in pencil mind you). DD has assignments in her Math Power book and her Daily Language Review as well as reading assignments in the Encyclopedia of World History. I also want her to read a historical novel about the American Revolution, any ideas? She has some Ann Rinaldi books but says they are really *deep* and she's looking for something a little lighter. I want her to actually do some rosetta stone too, I don't care how much, just some.<br><br>
For DS I plan on covering a letter a week again. He has real trouble remembering his letter due to his visual tracking issues so I plan on doing an exercise a day to reinforce the letter shape (printing practice, building letters in his cuisenaire ABC book, HWT letter building, maybe sandpaper letters or shaving cream). It seems so basic for a thrid grader, but he really needs it! I also plan on doing mini units in science and history. I plan to alternate and will start with the Solar system. Math is pretty self taught as he loves math and has about 8 workbooks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"> I will encourage him to do something every week though, even if it's only a game.<br><br>
Cheer and soccer have already started so PE is covered.<br><br>
So that's my plan...we'll see how it goes!
 

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We started on Aug 20th and things were going well. On the 23rd dh's 19 year old sister died in a car accident. Regular life for our family stopped.<br>
I tried to do some stuff with dd the day after the funeral but it didn't go well so we've taken some time off.<br>
I am happy we are homeschooling and can take as much time as we need.<br>
I'm going to try again on Monday.
 

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Kim, I am so sorry. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
Sigh. I think I'm moving into the eclectic category. This is really hard for me because I have a lot invested in the Waldorf label, but I've really come to realize that while I love the pedagogy and even some of the spirituality, I'm not completely married to the actual curriculum sequence, which apparently makes me some sort of apostate.<br><br>
Anywho, we're starting tomorrow. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> Kim. I am so sorry. I have learned something these last two weeks (it was my dad that died) ... just take it one day, one hour, one moment at a time. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
AM ~ Welcome to the eclectic camp. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> I think you will have fun here.<br><br>
As for us, I hope to feel human again soon. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> And I hope the boys don't end up sick. And, I hope to eventually have the Lego's that are strewn ALL OVER the house put away soon. It's amazing what happens to the house when Mom and Dad don't feel well. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> Kim
 

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I'm so sorry for the losses of family members. It must be nice to know you can at least all be together during this time.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>annettemarie</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/9067131"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Kim, I am so sorry. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br>
I'm not completely married to the actual curriculum sequence, which apparently makes me some sort of apostate.</div>
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This reminds me...I don't feel like the unschoolers want us anymore <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/duck.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Duck">:<br><br>
We were unschooling. I had a KONOS volume so when they wanted ideas they could search through there. Then my second child went to K, so I could focus more on our oldest who was having problems. Well, it turned out he has Asperger's and on the advice of his therapist we sent him to public school which was a dismal failure. So, last year they both came home in the middle of the year and returned to unschooling.<br><br>
They all decided they want more though. My youngest wants to learn to read, so he is happy to do Phonics Pathways. It helps me a lot to have this base to work from. They seem more secure having a curriculum to move them along especially my oldest. He craves boundaries and sequences. He is really enjoying me ripping out a page and asking him to finish it.<br><br>
They are both doing Math U See and Story of the World Volume 1. They both have an Italics handwriting book.<br><br>
My oldest is doing Apples spelling drills and a workbook on Asperger's, as well. Then my second guy is doing Explode the Code books which he loves.<br><br>
They seem to be doing well with all of the books. We are going to join a public school center for some classes this year, too. Again, their choice.<br><br>
So, I still feel like we are unschoolers. I've read Holt and I think he would be happy with us. I don't think unschooling and curriculum has to be mutually exclusive. But, I'm happy to be eclectic if makes people feel better.<br><br>
We work all this stuff around my dh who works from home, but is always busy and my full-time schedule as a University Student. My dh business seems to be picking up though, so I am hoping I can cut back to one class per quarter. Three classes is really draining. My goal is not to finish school, but to enjoy it.
 

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Well 'school' was going great guns, but last week kind of sucked. I'm blaming PMS and a bladder infection though - hoping we get back in the positive swing of things after the holiday. Poor dd was saddled with crabby mommy last week. Dd decided she wanted to sign up for an online class, so we'll be looking at having class room time down on our schedule each week but not until October.
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> to Kim and My Little Wonders, I'm so sorry to hear about both your losses. Losing a loved one is always hard, and there is no shortcut through grief, unfortunately. I'm so glad you have the flexibility in your lives to deal with these tragedies and work through them with your whole family.<br><br>
As I posted earlier, I bumped up our first day of school to today, even though I knew there would be problems with bored kids wandering around for the next two days looking for something to do. And sure enough, there are 3 kids sitting in my living room playing Wii with ds right now. I don't want to be the crusty, weird mom who kicks them out so we can do "educational" things, but neither do I want to entertain the neighborhood when they can't figure out something to do for themselves.<br><br>
I think I'll give them another 1/2 hour, these kids tend to have very short attention spans and get bored with any activity very quickly, they'll probably wander off on their own soon, I'll just consider this "recess" <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">'s to Kim and MLW, I am sorry for you both.<br><br><br><br>
I just finished my year end paperwork for the school district last week. I am so happy it is finished <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> We usually get off to a slow start here. Part of it is the weather. It is still quite warm here in the Northeast, so we spend time outside and are still swimming. It is also dd's birthday on the 12th. We are having a small party on the 15th. We will have some planning to do (altho dd has done a lot of that already). We are cleaning up our books and organizing our resources. Tis thread is good to get me thinking. Tom. we go to the library (regular library day) and will take some of the donated books. Wed. we meet friends for a "Not Back to School" picnic <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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MyLittleWonders- I'm so sorry about your dad. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
Yesterday went fairly well for us. We took long breaks between everything but finished all that I had planned for us to do.<br>
Today dd and I are going to bake a cake for dh's birthday (tomorrow) and clean up the house- because the in-laws are coming. Hopefully it won't take all day.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well, we started today. Ds#1 was excited about history. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> The really nice part was during the block that I like in the morning for school-y stuff, the baby actually took a 2 hour nap (don't mind that the kid has been sleeping horribly the last few nights ... ), so it was just the older two and I. We read one of our stories for the week, did some Handwriting Without Tears, drew a little, read the intro to SOTW ... no one complained and I think a good time was had by all. We had bought last week a couple Kumon books for my 3 1/2 year old, so he did a couple easy tracing papers and on the back we had fun drawing together (seeing if he can copy a straight line, a curvy line, etc. and then making them into pictures). Now I'm thinking through the rest of our week.<br><br>
Unforunately I think I made an expensive error back in April/May when I ordered this year's curriculum. Last year we used both Enki and Oak Meadow for kindergarten and it worked really well. The Enki stories were well loved, I appreciated the flexible schedule of OM; it all seemed to mesh really well together. So, I went ahead and bought the 1st grade programs for both back in the spring. Since then, we decided to not be so Waldorf-like in our approach (really, I realized I was very eclectic and that I wanted to bring in a little of this and a little of that depending on the subject area to best meet the needs of my boys and couldn't be "tied down" to any one approach). So, classical ed. it is for history, some Explode the Code/BOB books to enrich reading, Handwriting Without Tears for help with printing ... not big huge things, but other aspects of learning none-the-less. Well ... sitting down now, I'm realizing that I don't know if I'm going to use this wonderful, complete, 1st grade curriculum by Enki sitting on my shelves. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> And, I can't return it or resell it (it's not "illegal" to sell it, but the company asks that you don't resell your curriculum, which in theory I can agree, but honestly when you are done with it, what do you do with it? Put it all in the recycle bin?). So, considering what it cost, I feel compelled to use it in some form. And I probably will utilize it after this fall term is done. By then, I will probably need and want to utilize the fairy tales, but right now I'm wondering why I spent the money.<br><br>
Ok, that was my pity party for the afternoon. Now I am going shopping by myself because dh finally got home from work (it was his first day back ... though his students don't start until Thursday ... and we all had a bit of an adjustment to do, especially the baby who so wanted Daddy throughout the day).
 

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I'm sorry to both of you who have lost family. What a terrible loss.<br><br>
We won't start school until October - our September is booked with camping and cottaging. I was going to start the last week in September but I think I will just wait until October. There's too much fun stuff going on.<br>
We've just started a co-op group with friends and we have lots of really cool stuff planned. This month for example we are doing food as a theme so we have a nature centre program booked that will teach us about edible wild food, and a museum program that is called If we don't make it we can't eat where the kids learn to make butter, cheese, bread apple cider and sausage,. Our volunteer component is helping with a harvest at a CSA and with an organization that volunteers to pick fruit etc from urban trees which would otherwise go to waste and donate it to the food bank and drop in centre. Our family potluck is going to be a 100 mile meal.<br><br>
We're doing a similar set of activities around water in October.<br><br>
I sometimes feel pulled in 2 directions - there is so much cool stuff to be involved in that we could just unschool it all and the kids would have a rich education. And there are so many cool things we could do with curriculum type resources and my kids would have a rich education. I find it hard to balance both those ideals - the planned homeschooler with the scope and sequence and tonnes of great stuff planned and the unschooler surrounded by so many interesting opportunites for my kids to learn.
 

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First, my thoughts to you both who lost loved ones. We are rather eclectic too, though I love the classical was of learning, dd is loving math but has an aversion to reading. We officially started yesterday and then the head of the school where dd had been going to and where my two little one's still attend, called me up and proceded to insult me in every way shape and form. He has issues, I wish I could go into it, but in any case, after that call, I felt a little panicky and suddenly wasn't sure of what I was doing. But that passed, adn now I am looking for a web site that I found at the begining of summer that had spelling lists...now I can't find it... anyone know what I am talking about? Well, I am happy to be here, and it feels so good to have virtual support! You know that cell phone commercial where the customer is followed around by a large group of people at all times? That's how I feel about MDC!
 
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