Thursday, September 6, 2012

School DAZE

The first week back to school is always a tough one as we get back into our usual full-time school routine.  So time for blogging is minimal for sure.  But I wanted to get on here before today starts just to give a quick update how things are going so far.

We started school Tuesday morning, after dropping my nieces off at their respective schools and having E come to stay with us throughout the course of the day.  Having a one-year-old around definitely adds complexity to the school day, but I'm figuring out some things that work to keep her occupied and maybe I'll share those in another post at some point.

Meanwhile, the first day was the worst.  Ha!

Let me just say that we did not finish our school day till 7:00pm.  Enough said?

Okay, I'll elaborate a little.  Basically, this year I'm using a different class time format.  I've tried teaching the kids in pairs or individuals for the most part.  But this year, I teach H and Z together during their social studies/history/geography time, as well as giving them their math, reading and language arts assignments.  Then all four kids come together for Bible and science time.  Finally, I teach J and O their math, reading and social studies together while the older boys are finishing up their independent work time.

The tricky part is in the transitions from two to four back to two again.  Every transition has to be chaos! Yesterday, I tried working in "grabbing a little snack" as we transitioned and I'm not sure if it made it worse or better.

Meanwhile, giving four kids in the class equal opportunities to share their stories and perspectives on each thing takes a while and sometimes generates under-the-table kicking or poking.  I don't know how teachers with 20 or 30 students keep the positive attention of all those kids.  I am struggling with four at once!

But we'll get there.   Yesterday we finished school by 4:30.

Anyway, the science part that I am developing, seems to be going really well.  I'm excited to see something that I've put my heart into all summer being played out in the classroom setting.  I'm happy to see that they don't hate it (yet) and I've actually seen them laughing and smiling about some of it.

One of my best finds so far has been this book.  It's funny and cute, but extremely science-rich and has even taught me a thing or two!

Off to get my nieces and start our day!  Today I get to fit in a dentist appointment for O, too.  Fun!

Blog you later...


  1. Once again I'm here to say I'm sorry for being a terrible reader! Feel free to take your time on blogging since I'm not keeping up. :P My own blog is pretty pathetic, too.

    But my friend Tina told me she added your blog to her reader/whatever today! So that's some fun news for you.

    I will send my friends over to your blog again soon. Lots of them are starting up on homeschooling and could probably benefit from your recommendations. :)

    (So is J not doing night classes this year?)

  2. Sounds like you got things rolling. I guess that 7:00 pm close means you have after dinner class or is that class for S?

  3. Welcome, Tina! And Jessica, no need to apologize. :) You are my best referrer and one of my original followers, so I'll cut you some slack.

    J is not doing night school this year. That was a year I tried teaching each child separately and I won't do that again! It takes every moment of the day and I sound like a broken record (to myself) when I'm teaching similar subjects to each child. I was always the least energetic when it came to night classes, too, so J got the worst of me every class.

    The 7pm close on day one was straight through pretty much -- except lunch -- we ate a late dinner that night. :/