Saturday, September 12, 2009
Reflections: Week Two - It's So About Me!
We got some great workbooks and that helped Katie get a bit more excited about doing the work. I think the workbooks feel more familiar to her - more like "real school" as she would say. [And like "real school" if you notice in the photo, she does have one of her favorite deskmates to help her study. That's Lulu the wonder cat - as in we are always wondering what the heck she's getting into.]
I am trying to keep track of what we do during the week based on a form the school gave us - of course I had to customize it to work for me. Story of my life - always making things "better!" That's helping me see how we do across different categories. And as I suspected, I need to beef things up in math and science.
Laundry, Work, Teach, Cook
But the big "wow" I got this week is that this process is a lot about me. I kind of knew this was going to be about me because I was going to have to adapt work a lot to allow for home school. And what we study has to interest me or I am likely to disengage. So the changes I have noticed in my behavior is I now view everything I (or we) do as a "teachable moment." I was already kind of like that - I come from a family of know-it-alls - but now I approach it less from that perspective and more from a why/how point of view.
Another surprise, I didn't expect to enjoy pulling together the curriculum for the coming week so much. I look at what's happening in politics, current events, holidays, local events and celebrations and then work to tie-in where we are with what's going on. I kind of get my rocks off being clever! (Shhh, don't tell Katie, I like her to think she's "discovering" things I kind of leave out.)
I find reviewing her work to be similarly self-satisfying. It's so intimate. And it lets me look for new ways to help her learn where's she struggling.
Here's an example: she's a terrible speller. No secret. I think this because she doesn't read enough. She knows the words - she has a huge vocabulary - but she doesn't see them spelled enough to get the patterns. So now I have the challenge - which I take very personally - to find ways to expose her to more things in writing (without having a fight about reading). Check back for my diabolical plans.
Week Three: Expect the Unexpected
As Katie began this weekend with a huge fever, I realized even my best laid plans will have to remain flexible and adaptable. I am sure the experienced home schoolers out there have written entire chapters about the need for flexibility. I am getting it!
And I can't wait for week three!