Last Friday we played in the pool with Mrs. Cuddle-me and boys. Later Makrothumia and kids also joined in the fun. A day with friends is always so very uplifting. After an entire year, Littlest finally accepted Sprite and played with her in the pool. He also let her cuddle him in a towel after swimming. He always wants cuddle time after getting out of the pool or even the bathtub. After a year of effort and possibly some hurt feelings, Sprite was rather pleased to have won over Littlest and he seems quite content with his new friend. He talked as much about her as Big E the past few days.
Sunday was a rough day at church. I usually have a pretty good time with my two-year Sunday School class. However, on this particular day I was vomited on by a sad little fellow who only wanted his mommy. Later, I was peed on twice! I was so glad to go home. Thankfully, I have July off from nursery duty but my group will graduate to their new classes by the time I return. I’ll miss them. I took a really nice long nap that day…after getting cleaned up.
We did very little school work this week. Most of our time was spent working in the school room getting ready for our new academic year…which begins on Monday. We did go shopping on Tuesday morning to get the rest of our school supplies. The crew decorated various folders and made little posters for the first day of school pictures. I printed out papers, ripped apart workbooks, and prepped the workboxes for the first day of school.
Our year begins the first Monday in July (unless it happens to be the fourth of July, then we start on the first Tuesday). First I fill in our yearly calendar and mark off non-school days, holidays, vacations and my husband’s time off from work. Then I count off five sets of nine week terms and see that our year ends on June fifth. We are going with a four-day school week (mostly) this year which is why our year is forty-five weeks. Most curriculum doesn’t last forty-five weeks even with a four-day schedule so by the time nice spring days arrive we will begin finishing up our various curriculums. We will also take a week or so off when my mom visits sometime in April.
After getting our basic year figured out I then made yearly overviews for most of our courses. On these sheets I can see all five terms on one page and make very basic lesson plans. I will then journal our daily work into my lesson planner as it is completed. This year I am using A Simple Plan planner. I think this system will give me plenty of flexibility without a rigid schedule that makes me bonkers when I can’t keep up…and something always messes up the schedule.
Once the yearly overviews were completed I made folders for each week and placed them in my daily basket. Each folder contains all of the pintables and worksheets that need to be completed. I printed out all of them for the entire year. Last year I printed papers and
tore out worksheets on Sunday evenings. Now all I’ll have to do is fill the workboxes and I can even do that job on Friday mornings. Middle Boy didn’t want to use the workbox system this year. He hated the workboxes and just wanted to put all of his things in a crate. I like the workboxes (everything in its own drawer!) but not everything has to be done my way. I like my world “nice and tidy” and in its proper place. He needs to see everything at once which looks like a chaotic mess to me. He even plays the same way…Legos and such spread out all around him. He practices his piano the same way. He plays bits and pieces throughout the day and then experiments with the melody and changes things around. Every week I get frustrated and just want him to play the piece from
beginning to end…Maybe I am wrong but it seems creative people do not see messes. Perhaps they thrive in disorder. Anyway, I am doing my best to see how he views the world and accommodate him. My daily basket also contains my attendance sheet, course of study sheets, answer keys, grade keepers, and books for the week. My year is planned and we are ready to begin on Monday.
Littlest woke me early Wednesday morning. I should say Doctor Angry (imagine Angry Birds combined with Doctor Who) woke me with his sonic screwdriver (made by Middle Boy out of Legos)! Littlest was saying, “Doctor Angry is sonicing you to wake up and make me chocolate milk and a peanut butter sandwich!” An Angry Bird stuffed animal was bouncing on my chest and the Lego sonic screwdriver was pressed into my cheek. What a fun way to start the day! After breakfast we prepared for another morning of swimming with friends at Mrs. Cuddle-me’s.
By Thursday we finished up all of our work in the school room. I put together their Reading Response binders. I wanted my crew to start keeping a reading log this year but I wanted more than a list of books. I happened to read this post on Scholastic and loved the idea! I adapted it for our needs and am looking forward to reading their entries. They will list the books they read during free reading time, graph them each month by genre, and then write up a short response (from a list of choices) for me. I plan to read through
their responses and write a note back. Even though I will not be grading their responses I will be watching for improvement in spelling and grammar or areas that need extra instruction. All of the forms I used in their binders can be found on the Scholastic post shared above from Beth Newingham.
Friday is July the fourth, my nation’s birthday. The day we are supposed to celebrate our freedom. We usually spend the day at home and just enjoy being together. For the past few years we have sat on our porch and watched the neighbors fireworks. This year we will spend the evening at one of my sister-in-law’s home for a cookout. The kids were really excited when we told them.
Saturday is our promotion party, the day we promote the crew to their new grade level. We’ll have a fifth grader, two third graders and a preschooler. The kids have chosen to go out to a Chinese buffet for lunch. They will also enjoy double game time and we’ll make tie-dye t-shirts. We are ready for our new school year and a return to the much-needed routine!
Linking up with Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers.