Homeschool recap for the week

I plan on writing a summary of our homeschooling week each Thursday. We do lessons Monday through Thursday, most weeks, and thus have a 4 day school week.

Seeing as how this is the first week of this blog, I will review our homeschool stats. I is in 6th grade, and just turned 12. H is in second year kindergarten, is 6.5 years old. And my preschooler is P who is 3.5 years old now. We have been using Waldorf curriculum  (this one, to be specific) for two years now. Love it! I’ll probably blog more about our journey that lead us to Waldorf at some point in the future.  My 6th grader uses Making Math Meaningful math curriculum, by Jamie York.

This week, we were wrapping up a three week block on Islam for my 6th grader. He’s been building a model of a mosque out of hot glue, Popsicle sticks, and clay. It isn’t quite done but he wants to finish it, so that’ll spill over into next week. It has been a wonderful block for us both, and we’ve both learned a lot! I’ve been surprised to see how I has enjoyed this block, more than any other block this year. He is a true history lover, too, and that adds to his enjoyment. He worked on his math each day this week, as usual, and that went well. Today he learned about prime factorization. He’s also done a number of sketches. He’s really improving. He did one of his brother and it looks so much like him.

My kindy boy has been doing a lot of his usual this week: drawing and building fairy houses.  He heard a Super Sam story, and had fun with that. We did a few penny whistle lessons. He isn’t always excited about doing them, but once we are in the middle of it, he loves it. This week, he’s also been busy chopping wood. He’s quite good at it, and he feels so much pride at  being so capable. He and I also have been working on a chore chart for him this week. I wrote out a rough draft of what it’ll include, and he’s now drawing a picture of each thing on the final copy.

Today the kids also helped to plant some Japanese maple trees that my husband brought home. They were given to him for free, as they were being thrown out at a nursery where one of his tenants works. What?!? Crazy. Anyways, there was much discussion about where to plant them. H got busy digging a hole for one of them. It was a sunny warm day for February, and somehow H and P managed to make a mud pit and before long they were fully covered in mud. Playing ‘mud ball’ as P said. (Mud Ball is the name of one of her favorite sparkle stories.) That was a whole lot of work and cleanup for me, but they enjoyed themselves!

 

Some days

This journey of parenting and homeschooling and being home with our kids full time is awesome. And yet, some days, it brings me to my knees and makes me question everything. That was my day today. So much crying, screaming, fighting, and other big feelings, it almost knocks the wind out of me. I saw this today and thought, YES! This is only sane way for me to move forward though days like this.

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A child screaming that they hate me?  Accept it, as it is what is happening. (Doesn’t mean that I like it, of course). A child crying LOUDLY for 30 minutes in my arms because she wanted to stay longer at the park?  Accept it, as it is what is happening. Embracing the moment actually does help me to move through these hard moments and not give in to my desire to go hide in my shell, in the quiet (if only I was a turtle).

I went through a dark period a few years ago where days like this would have me in the depths of hopelessness and overwhelmed with feelings of inadequacy, and it would linger for days or weeks. I’m very grateful to have navigated my way beyond that trap of my thoughts and into a new reality. We still have these sorts of days, and I still have dismal thoughts pop in my head while we are in the midst of them.  But my spiritual practice is my lifeboat now. Meditation and prayer, self-empathy, and embracing what is (letting go of resisting), remembering we are all whole and perfect (imperfectly perfect, that is) including my raging child, and that my thoughts about what is happening around me is the source of my suffering.

So much gratitude for sleep each night and a brand new day each morning!

It’s a whole new world

I’ve been vaguely aware of the existence of 4H for probably 5 or 6 years, but I didn’t really grasp what it was until recently. And, today, after our first real show, I’m still a little dazed. It does indeed feel like a whole new world that we’ve entered.

R is showing cavies ( I didn’t even know that word in English until a few months ago!), aka guinea pigs. He owns two piggies at the moment, and wants to buy more. That will have to wait until we can get them a larger cage. Today was his first time showing, so he was in the novice group. The entire event was huge today, so many people!! And each group had so many kids in it. When I saw how big his novice group was(10 or 11 kids) I was worried that he may not get champion, which was what he wanted. But, he did! He got reserve champion (second place). He was thrilled! He said he’d never felt prouder in his life!

After having spent the whole day there (we left our house at 7:30 and didn’t get home until 3:30), I feel initiated into this foreign 4H world. I’m not a loud-noise-crowded-areas person. So, that is difficult. But, I’ll learn to deal with it, and get down a routine for the shows. (Important to remember: bring more snacks than I think the kids will eat!). I had good company today, as we had three other families in our group and our lovely 4H group leader with us. That sure made the day more enjoyable. It was amazing to see so many rabbits and chickens. Some of the bantam chickens are so tiny, it is incredible!

R cannot wait until the next show. So, I think we are in it for the long run. It is exciting to see him growing and unfolding as he nears his teen years. So much love for that person.