I’m not overly paranoid about my kid’s education. I know they’ll learn what they need to learn with gentle guidance and self motivation. Over summer they resisted learning to read because “it’s not school work time!” I didn’t sweat it. Summer is supposed to be chillax anyway.
Fall is for back to school, new school clothes, fresh Trapper Keeper plastic ‘let’s learn something’ smell. (oh wait, that was back in the 80s).
Anyway, school starts mid-August in Puerto Rico. My son is in a new classroom after being with one teacher the past three years. There are new routines and new expectations for him. I knew once he got into the swing of it he’d stop asking, “Do I have to go to school?” in the mornings. Give it time, he’ll be fine!
Hm. Time is one thing we haven’t been given this fall. Hurricanes cramped our style. No time to get into a groove. No rhythm. No routine. We had two and a half weeks of school then a week off for Irma. Then seriously ONE week of school, a puny half day the next Monday and the school principal sent out an email that basically said, “Closed until further notice. Take care of yourselves!” Ok, she was more eloquent and optimistic than that.
At first it was a little joke when my son asked, “Do I have to go to school today?” and I could, in all seriousness, repeatedly answer, “no.” But when it became overly clear that we wouldn’t have school again for another month, I’m not sure if it was guilt or motivation to tackle a challenge, but I realized it was time for homeschooling! Bring it!
Right away in Wisconsin I whipped out some worksheets I had stored at my Mom’s – math and writing. Workbooks aren’t necessarily Montessori approved but I let them pick what they wanted. I hit the library for reading materials and was gifted more workbooks by a local first grade teacher. We took nature walks and learned about hickory nuts.
We went to the zoo and made posters of our fav animals. Yes, one poster had a pic of an elephant butt. Know your audience, right?
In a few days we will embark on a Route 66 roadtrip – a vacation planned way back in spring. So, without any other rhyme or reason to my homeschooling, I decided to teach them about things we’ll see on the Mother Road. Geology of the Grand Canyon, science of asteroid craters, chemistry of neon lights, physics of hot air balloons, and the artists who covered various versions of the song “Route 66”. Heck I’m learning a lot too!
The chemistry lesson about neon went a bit over my 5 year olds head, but she did pet a snake at the ecology center!
If we got 30-45 minutes of work time in a day I considered it a success. All in all, I’ll be happy when school starts again! What a crazy fall.