Early Days

As homeschoolers we are somewhat deluged by the availability of choice. There are so many methods and resources it can be quite overwhelming trying to work out how to approach things. I am far too much a lover of change to be able to sit within one particular method for long. And it takes time to discover what works for the family and what will work for each individual child. We are very much at the beginning of our journey, kind of playing it by ear and taking it as it comes. Some days are highly structured and other’s much more free range. Bit by bit we are developing some kind of rhythm.

I need time in the mornings to wake up and to be able to focus on mothering, I am slow to wake up to the world. Generally I wake up to my mind, filled with the ideas and thoughts that occupy my own journeying through faith and seeking meaning in life. I generally don’t wake up thinking about practical things. And I am grateful that at this stage in my life I don’t need to, I can entertain my own idiosyncrasies and I don’t feel pressured to be ‘normal’. So generally we all get up to take my oldest daughter to school and then we come home, the kids make themselves some kind of breakfast and I drink tea or coffee and check things online and then empty my mind of it’s clutter. I usually write something and this brings a kind of tabula rasa to my day. The kids can play outside now it is Summer. Then at around 11am we all gather together at the kitchen table. By then they have used up some physical energy and I have been able to focus and start thinking about facilitating homeschooling. I don’t think at this stage we are going to be Unschoolers, there are things that I do want to teach them formally.

I have decided to maintain this blog as both a kind of visual record but also a way of documenting a journey towards what I hope will start to fall into place in a much more coherent way than it is now.

We are using Oak Meadow and Earthschooling as main syllabus resources basically because that is what I have now but I can’t see us sticking to a solely Waldorf curriculum. I love it but there’s a preciousness with it also that doesn’t rest well with me. And my children too are far too flexible or perhaps wild. When working with making E’s and F’s out of icy pole sticks, Lili wants to also make an i and an L, she draws through her beautiful large blue workbook with enormous squiggles and shapes using sharp edged crayons, we are never going to be restrained by method. I am also teaching her to read because she seems ready and whilst I don’t want to encourage too much academics and force her into that part of her mind it seems foolish to not run with her interests.

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We are also using Fitzroy Readers.

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Both Tom and Zeph need to practise their cursive writing, Tom is really just beginning to learn so I need to find some easy worksheets. I am also starting dictation so they can improve their spelling and handwriting. We are continuing to read aloud from Little House in the Big Woods. Zeph is studying Ancient Indian history. We have started reading the Ramayana and I am thinking of making some shadow puppets with the kids, we watched a few Youtube video’s telling the story in a way that makes it easy for children to understand.

Twice a week we are visiting a friend who is doing some childcare for me and also helping the kids with some maths. This gives me time to hopefully do some planning, some organising and attend any personal appointments. This week I organised our homeschooling space/kitchen.

Of course several days later it no longer looks anything like this but it was pleasant while it lasted!

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