Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Back to school

We officially started our new school term yesterday, but today was our first "normal" day and an opportunity to test out our revised routine. Last school year I planned to have Angel and Star mostly working separately, only to find they were joining in with each other's work. This year, I planned to have them work together more. Once we started it became apparent that Angel had made a cognitive leap and was getting frustrated waiting for Star to catch up. Either that or Star was getting frustrated and disruptive because things were going over her head. Back to the drawing board. This term I have reorganised our day a little so that they are mostly working separately and I have more one on one time with each girl. We are still starting together with either a Bible story or saint story, followed by another reading (either geography , mythology, or history of science). After that I will work with Star on French, history or catechism (depending on the day) and maths while Angel works independently on grammar and a notebook page. She has reached a point where she likes to research and write about a topic, so will do a page most days covering a variety of subjects. Even her pet hate, history, becomes tolerable when tackled this way. (I'm a historian. How did I get this child?) Then the girls will swap over. Star will finish her maths, do grammar and either draw or do copywork for her notebook, while I work with Angel on French, Latin or catechism and maths. I haven't decided yet whether to have them continue to work together on science or not, or quite when to slot it in. We will experiment a bit over the next couple of weeks. Once work is done for the morning the girls are free to do their own thing, and I'm aiming to spend some time decluttering. In the afternoon, Angel will do independent reading while I have 30 minutes with Star to read aloud and just chat; then they will swap over and Star will read while I spend time with Angel. We can then do art and other fun stuff - crafts, educational games - or just have more free time.

Today's trial run worked beautifully. Everything got finished promptly and cheerfully, even Angel's maths which has been such a bugbear we took a sabbatical last term. We had plenty of free time, most of which computer whizz Angel spent experimenting with a new webcam and making a "spy" movie. How she would love a video camera, but as we don't have one she will have to make do with the webcam. Star "helped" Angel for a while, then went for a walk with Tevye, who was working at home. Later they went out to run a few errands and I unashamedly took a nap! If only all homeschooling days were like this one. I love it when I feel we have completed a fair chunk of academics, completed them happily, and still had plenty of free time.

1 comment:

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