Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Week Two Homeschool Report

This report is for the week of September 8-12.

On Monday, the children seemingly conspired to make my head explode. My head barely stayed intact, but my chest did hurt by the end of the day. Ugggghhhh!

It began when a certain child, who shall remain nameless, spent a half hour looking for his math CD. I didn't catch on to the search right away, but I detested that much wasted time.

Later in the day, I was impressed when a different child asked if he could put his math materials in the van an hour ahead of when we needed to take Sophie to cello lessons. "Such responsibility!" I thought-- until we were in the van ready to leave and said child could not find his math CD. Hence the namelessness. He ran inside to find where he dropped the CD as each minute painfully slipped away. I tapped the horn but got no response. I ran inside to round up the child and different schoolwork to occupy him. I despised being late!

On the way home from the cello lesson, the kids and I stopped at the grocery store to purchase the weekly groceries. Check! When we got home, we unloaded the school books, cello, and groceries, but a certain child could not find his literature book that he brought in the van. For the next half an hour, the children searched for the missing math CD and book while visions of the book lying in the store parking lot flashed before my eyes. I should have known, from past experience, that we should have all prayed together about the missing items before searching and freaking out, but being an adult doesn't always mean that I am the mature one. Sigh. Thankfully, both the disk and the book were found, and we didn't have to search the grocery store parking lot or order new materials online! Oh me of little faith!

The second week was definitely and literally a step backwards on the preparation front. By mid-week, the kids were only two steps up their stairway to computer privileges by Saturday to their chagrin.


My lack of sleep and feeling ill added to my frustration this week. During the first week of school, we benefited from starting our school day off with a group time in God's Word. During the second week, my lack of sleep and energy made it difficult for me to get up before the children in order to have time for my own personal devotions. My spirit was willing, but my flesh was weak. We also got going a half hour later on our school day part of the week and our morning Bible study went by the wayside.

To combat the problem I just described, I need to do my personal Bible study the night before in order to ensure that I am prepared to lead our group Bible study in the morning. My morning devotions can be more contemplative.

On a more positive note, Evan and Sophie not only accomplished their schoolwork during the second week, but they also did substantial additional reading. Evan got hooked by the book Hittite Warrior which is historical fiction based on an earlier time period than what we are currently covering with Tapestry of Grace. I had begun it as a read aloud this past summer (it pains me to call it "past summer"), but did not finish it. Sophie also read the book Adara which was not assigned to her, but she read it for fun in two days! (It is a dialectic level book for Tapestry of Grace and she is considered upper grammar level.) I let her read the book, because I know she will enjoy reading it again when she is older. She even asked me if she could read it again right away!

For history and Bible via Tapestry of Grace, the boys once again ignored my repeated instructions to pre-read their Accountability Questions and to fill-in their timelines and answer their questions while they did their reading. Consequently they had to do some re-reading in order to do their written work. I wouldn't have minded that process, except that school took too long when they read and re-read. Hopefully they learned for the future the benefit in following my instructions!

During the second week of school, I sat down with our daily schedule to try and tweak it to make it work any better, but after rearranging it several times, I realized that what I set down in the beginning was best.

We have made a good start to our school year and just need to shore up some weaknesses in order to keep on keeping on!

Sophie working on grammar

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Evan practicing and typing in backyard along with a cute distraction


Dell said...

My present week sounds like your last week. OOF! Monday and Tuesday have not gone as I'd hoped. We've actually done "ok" on the academics, but everything is just "off" somehow. In my case, like yours, I know my own exhaustion and health stuff is clouding things too.

Praying things have smoothed for you this week!

Wanna move north a bit? I'll bring you a big pot of soup on days like this. I'll share our books too! (Especially since we are studying different eras of history, lol!)

How does the little step chart work for the computer games on Saturdays?

Meliss said...

Hi Dell

I'm sorry that you are struggling this week! I will pray for you too.
Homeschooling is a little smoother so far this week, thanks!

Wouldn't it be fun to be closer together?!

The kids can move up one step each day that they have all of their school materials in the right place at the right time. If they lose something or do not put it away, then they go bump-bump-bump back down to the bottom. If they were always prepared, they could play their computer game by Saturday. They did the first Saturday, but didn't make it by last Saturday. If they make it to the top before Saturday, of course they can play their game whenever they make it to the top step, and then they begin their climb again.

Gayle @ thewestiecrew said...

Oh my gracious, dawdling and lost items are two things that send me over the edge, too!

Why is it that right when school and full schedules start, so does the cold/flu season? We have been dealing with that around here, too, and it has made it pretty hard.

Hoping things start to look up starting tomorrow! :)

Dell said...

So glad things are going smoother. Our week improved and ended well too.

Great idea on the step chart! A fantastic way to have them take responsibility. Thanks for explaining it for us nosy--er--curious folks. ;)

Susan in va said...

We just completed Lesson 20 today and so far, I can say without hesitation...boys DO NOT like handwriting. And that's okay. Right? :D I'll have to pull out The Well Trained Mind and find where Susan W.B. talked about this very thing - at least I THINK she did...

Congrats on completing week two! Two down...and ??? to go!

It's fun, isn't it?