Monday, September 13, 2010

Our FIRST Day of {Home}School

Before, I forget, A made these for dinner the other night:

So....yesterday was our very first official day of homeschooling.  We decided to start on a Sunday so that Jason could be part of our first day.

My mother-in-law had this fab recipe for sticky buns that she made for holidays and we normally make for holidays and special occasions, but the girls found another recipe for sticky buns in the Southern Living Kids Cookbook (same book A got the recipe above from).  This recipe required getting everything ready the night before, so we did:

(yes, I am crazy for the Pampered Chef stoneware!)
(I think this looks more like vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup than bread dough, butterscotch pudding, butter, brown sugar and cinnamon.)

P was so excited that she woke up several times during the night, came in my room, kissed me and asked if we could start.  At three am.  At four am. At five am....Finally, at 8am, we allowed her to wake up her sister and we got started.  (you would think it was Christmas morning!)

The girls couldn't wait to get downstairs, as I had set everything up last night and told them not to go down until we all went down in the morning.  P made us walk in age order down the stairs: Jason first, then me, then A, then P...she claims this is how we have to walk when we walk down to school.  (I think she has a little too much school in her.)

The girls were excited to see their books and desks.  They were elated over the individual white boards, binders and supplies.

The first page of A's Word Study book has a poem about success, so I asked her to read that.  Then we discussed what success means in our family.  Jason said it was having work so we can pay the bills, keep the house, snuggle in bed together, make sticky buns and homeschool.  I said it was setting out to do something and accomplishing what you set out to do.  A said it was getting good grades.  P went with getting good grades so you could get a good job and pay the bills, keep the house, snuggle in bed, make sticky buns and homeschool..  (That's P!)

Then we mapped out 'Pathways to Success'.  How do you get good grades?  What do you need to do at work to keep your job?  How do you complete a project you started?  We talked about planning and perseverance.  The girls set some goals and we talked about how to accomplish them.

I already see the beauty in homeschooling.  When the girls had a question, they asked it.  I am pretty sure that they would not have asked it in school.  Or maybe they would have.  But one-on-one, I can focus on the question, answer it and make sure they understand the answer.  (A had a teacher in school who...I really need to let it go!)

Then the girls were given the task of making their own 'Pathways to Success' poster.  I was thrilled that, on their own, they mapped it out on their white boards.  When they asked how to spell something, we handed them a dictionary. (I am BIG on dictionary skills--something that they didn't...ah, enough about that!) 
They made the posters in the dining room, because it seemed like a better place to spread out.

After the posters were made, the sticky buns were ready!

Then, we had a little family Wii-fest
(it was kind of like Christmas!)

Then we hung up the posters:

We spent the rest of the day reading, playing Wii, working on A's latch-hook rug, converting VHS to DVD, researching history curriculum, riding bikes and watching football.  Then we went to our favorite restaurant for a celebration dinner!!

Today is our first official day of co-op, where the girls will take Latin, Recorder, Yoga, Drama, Science, Recycling Art and Literature classes.  After that, we are headed to my Grandma's house for dinner!!
Tomorrow is our first official day of lessons: Spelling, Word Study, Writing, Math and Reading.
Wednesday is our first official field trip to a nearby beach to learn about Indian tribes native to our area.