Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Finding My Way...

(Pic taken by my mom working in Alaska this summer.)
I'm pulled in many directions these days with our homeschooling. We haven't even started the school year and I'm already questioning my decisions.  

On the one hand, do I focus on a more enjoyable school year? I've been reading up on Charlotte Mason. Love her idea of short bursts of learning, 30 minute increments per subject. I'm afraid that it won't be enough. I appreciate the concept though because I've seen many a time that the child is still blankly staring at her papers, drawing doodles in the margins because she has lost focus. But I'm worried about the content. Sure, I can do math in 30 mins. But we won't get a lesson done. Do I stretch out a lesson over several days? We won't get near the end of a book if we do that. Just so many problems with this approach, not that the hour long approach to math was working though. What to do, what to do?

Last year we used majority Sonlight. I love their programs. Probably too rigid for us but I may slip some of that into this year's planning if I can. The books alone are always a great start.

I hate the way dd is counting down the days to school and a big sad face is drawn on her calender for the day. That makes ME sad that she is already hating a year we haven't even started. It has so much potential to be a phenomenal year. I always start out pretty good but when we start to get behind I get more rigorous with the schedule, the hours of pushing the subjects so we can get it all in and I become the fun-sucker. It's ridiculous. I don't want to be the hated homeschool mom.

Another issue we are constantly addressing is the attitude. No, I was not blessed with a quiet subservient child who loves to be good and follow orders. I'm sure that's genetic, if you were to ask my mother. I never like to go with the flow. I like to do things MY way so I can't fault the child for being so like mom. But sometimes we border on the disrespectful and then I get upset. I'd rather not even get to that point. But how to get a child to respect the process of homeschool and that mom is also teacher and that things just have to be done sometimes? You can't bonk respect into a person... This is probably why I'm always worrying that the schooling is not 'fun' enough. In my brain I think if its fun, she will WANT to do everything, even math! This is a pipe dream, I know. I'd love to find a few lessons on teaching respect and responsibility that actually work. I've read some on it but none of things they suggested seemed a long term effect. She is a good helpful child, don't get me wrong. But she has her moments.

Boy is this a rambling post! Just wrapping my head around this year's school year. I always head into it with determination, resolve, a happy attitude but this year is different. (I think I have an attitude problem of my own! lol) I waited too late to plan, I've been sick for weeks and this set me back considerably. Now I'm rushing.  I need to pray, that should help me focus...

to be continued...

2 comments:

Momma Jan said...

Hey, Sweetie, you CAN'T go wrong with Charlotte Mason! But don't be so set on her 30 minute increments...if your children are enthused about the subject then 30 minutes isn't near enough to satisfy their thirst. I used Charlotte Mason along with my own unit studies for my girls...they NEVER had an official English grammar class yet when tested came out in the top 95%. Why because they read good books, not junk but good books and not necessarily the classics (some of those are junk!) One of the parts I loved about homeschooling is that is was all year long. If you have been sick, cut yourself some slack. Talk to the girls, ask them what they have a desire for and find ways to incorporate that. You can do it!

Love you, Janet Skiles

beckyboop said...

I am going to chime in here and agree with Mama Jan. You really can't go wrong with a Charlotte Mason methodology. Once you really see the fruit of your labor, you will be so impressed and never look back!

Also, I agree about not pigeonholing yourself into 30 minute lesson boxes. Some topics you will want to cover longer (like when the kids beg for more chapters of a book), and some things need as little as five minutes - really!

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