Hello world!

So, WonderGirl has been a busy wee bee.  I’ve been cleaning and teaching and mothering my little heart out lately.  Last week was kinda bleh.  I was impatient and tired and basically feeling sorry for myself.  So, when Monday rolled around again, I was determined to have a better week.  I would say that we succeeded in that.  It’s amazing how a simple adjustment to your attitude can improve your whole outlook on life.  I didn’t feel nearly so overwhelmed or frustrated.  I smiled more, hugged more, and actually accomplished a good bit.

Yay!

One of the things I did was change out the school room (again).  My mom laughed at me when I told her that, because she knows I get it honest.  We were forever rearranging our house growing up.  I love rearranging, even to this day.  Poor King Pen, he never knows what he might come home to after work!

Anyway.

Our dining room was this huge, under-used space, and considering the fact that I will have three students to teach and no room for more desks in the house, I’ve converted the dining space to be a school room.  So, we’ll be using the dining table as a communal desk, which is fine.  I’ve got my teachers desk and the bookshelf, chalkboards, etc. all set up  as well, and there’s plenty of space.  The computer is also now incorporated into this area, and I really love it.  It has become the hub of activity in the house.  I would love a formal, separate eating area, but I’m happy to compromise on that for now for such a large, cheerful work environment.  So, now HeroBoy has moved into what was formerly the school room.  He is so excited to have his own bedroom, he can just hardly stand it.  In the other boys’ bedroom, the Duke has now moved up to the top bunk of the beds, and Chipmunk is out of the toddler bed and in the bottom bunk.  Calhoun (who still needs a blog name!!) sleeps in the crib in my room still.  We also got in and worked on Czarina’s room, which is now infinitely cuter and neater.  Everybody is a happy duck.

It was crazy moving all that around, but it’s much more comfortable now.

Besides redoing the school room, school has been on my mind in general lately.  I got in our curriculum for the fall, and am starting to think it all out in my head.  I have decided to make some unorthodox changes to our schedule, and I’m really psyched about it.  First of all, we’re going to a different yearly schedule.  Since the summers are so dang hot in Louisiana, taking those weeks off isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.  It gets so uncomfortable that there comes a point where I will not make the kids go outside, unless it’s for water play.  So, the summers can get loooong, and the kids get boooored.  So, what I’ve decided instead, is to just work on through the summer.  We’ll take two weeks off for VBS, and that’s it.  Since we’re doing that, we’ll take the whole month of December off, and the whole month of April, when that Spring Fever sets in real good!  That leaves me with about two weeks to use for a Fall break and other holidays.  I have informed the kids of our new plan, and they didn’t think it sounded so great.  Yet.  They’ll love it in December, though!  And April!  Delayed gratification, children.  You’ll love it later on.

The other big change for this year is we’re going to a 4 day school week.  If we get everything accomplished in those first four days, then Friday will be a child-led study day.  They’ll each get to choose a topic that they would like to learn about, and we’ll do it!  We can research online, checkout books at the library, do activities focused on their topic, take field trips, etc.  It’s going to be fun!  I can’t wait to see what they want to learn, and to give them a chance to direct their own education.  I think this will be a good way to instill in them the joy of learning just for the sake of it.  There’s actually a whole philosophy based on that idea, called “unschooling“.  (Go on, click the link, it’s some crazy stuff) With that method, all learning is entirely child-directed.  I think they have some good points, and I am sure it works for the right people.  Not us, though.  We need books and lesson plans and charts.  And school supplies.  Must have those.  

But this whole unschooling thing is kinda cool. I can’t go completely hippy and out of the box with it, but I AM taking some bits and pieces and mixing it in as I go along.  That’s the great thing about homeschooling!  You just throw it all in the pot, and let it simmer like a good gumbo.  

Delicious every time.

Well, that’s all I have tonight, folks.  I wanted to get to the actual subjects we’re studying this coming year, but I’m about all typed out for now.  I’ll save that for another post.  Have a happy Saturday night, and a wonderful Lord’s day.

Sweet dreams, butterbeans!

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