You what's so great about home school? There's so much freedom. You know what stinks about home school? Trying to choose what you want and how to teach your children. The world is so full of amazing things and curriculum plans it is so hard to pick what to teach them and how to teach them is super hard. I am so thankful for great friends and pinterest. Pinterest is a homeschooler's best friend.
We are changing things up a bit for this year. We are going to begin year round school. We have designed a nine week term with big breaks in between. The girls approved our plan. I think the best part is you can immediately begin counting down, 9 weeks left, 8 weeks left and so on. When you put it that way it seems so much more manageable. I think that's how I sold Deryn on it. Also I have developed a new lesson plan for each day. We have less text book time and more hands on time, which I think will also make life easier for us too.
We are sticking with Math U See. It worked wonders for Deryn and we're starting Ryann on it this year. We are introducing Essentials in Writing to them both. I like this program because it's a lot like Math U See. It has short lessons that build on each other. We are also adding All about Spelling. I am excited about this one because I am a horrible speller. I know God invented spell check for people like me. We are going to "un-school" science and social studies again. What does that mean? We're not getting text books for these subjects. Instead we take the girls to it. We do "hands on it" rather than "read about it." So lots of field trips and experiments are in our science and social studies lessons. I am also adding lessons about artists and composers. I am very excited about this year.
We have many friends who are joining us this in the home school world this year. Our friends are tired of the lack luster performance of our schools. I have many friends who are just fed up with Tennessee schools. Once again, our girls had excellent teachers. We are still in touch with them. The girls' teachers have even helped me with their home school curriculum. Our friends have not had the great teachers our girls had. That makes me very sad for their children. Every child deserves to have amazing teachers. I guess that's why we parents just step up into that role.
Through this journey, we learned Deryn needs one on one attention. If she's in a large group she tends to lose interest and focus. Deryn has to be highly engaged and needs someone to help her with some of the concepts. Sometimes you have to come out of left field to help her too. No she's not ADD or ADHD, she just has to be interested in the subject. She needs lots of hands on activities to get the concepts to stick. Ryann doesn't need them, but really enjoys them. So we take everything and make it fun. I wish more people knew that learning can be fun.
Many families here home school their kids because of our warrior's schedules. Our lives are just too crazy to add in the school system's calendar. Heck we can't even add in our own calendars, how can we add in anyone else's?! In addition, we are in an environment that if you put our kids in a school they will stand out because of their fathers' injuries. Our kids just want to blend in. So much focus goes on their dads. They deserve to choose their path. They deserve to be that person's daughter and still be themselves. The only way to do that is to create it yourself during this stage of the healing process. Together we have created a little home school network of support so our kids can have some sense of normal. We are so lucky because another family here has girls our girls' ages. Best of all they get along so well. I think this year will be an even better school year.
For those who are interested, here are the links to the girls' programs that we are using. I was able to get several of these off of ebay and saved quite a bit!
I also get a lot of resources and ideas from this site too! http://www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com/