Three weeks in, how's it going?

   We are finishing up our third week of "school" here today.  I decided to start slowly in the last week of August to become familiar with our reinstated schedule. The first week of minimal work and routine was great. Last week, the second week, with more focus and some more demands, was met with resistance and not so fun.  Of course that week we were also studying love/showing others love, in our Bible lessons.  This week has been going fantastic...fantastically? One of those. 

  Now that everyone knows the routine (it's posted in the school room for school expectations and in the kitchen for daily routine and chores they check off) we are in a much better groove.  Of course there are still times when there's resistance or whining or something, I'm not sweating it.  Karter has been sick this week and sleeping later and so Kian and I have been starting school early, before 8 am, and flying through things easily. 

While, taking them to all my appointments can be a pain (still a bunch), it's nice that we can work around those times and have so much flexibility.  Not only in time, but in what and how and when we do things, what curriculum or units we're studying, etc.  If Kian wants to go on a tangent about how connects the topics of Charlotte's Web to our Bible lesson to the plant life book, go for it. If he wants to build pyramids out of legos, great. If we decide instead of butterflies to go with dinosaurs, that's cool too. I've learned to let go of my Type A planning and have more ability to go with the flow.  There's no hard and fast rules about when and what and how we learn stuff (yet) in the state.

There are a few requirements, such as fire prevention/safety and abuse prevention, that we are covering this month to get out of the way.  Other than that, most of the goals I had set for Kian, well... he's already halfway to mastering them.  He decided the other day he wanted to know about Roman Numerals too. Not in my plan, but he kept seeing them in books as chapter titles and wanted me to teach it. So I did, the basics, but it's nice to be able to do that instead of saying "well in 3rd grade you will learn that" sort of thing.  

History is:  The Story of the World and so far we're enjoying it. We do history/geography twice per week right now. It's easy to read and understand and interesting for us all.

Language Arts: We are starting cursive due to Kian's trouble with printing and left-handedness. Montessori schools start cursive early and I like the idea after I read the research (briefly here), so we shall see how it goes. We're reading Charlotte's Web aloud together.  Grammar basics were easy for Kian so we're moving onto the next concepts, like pronouns and sentence formation, etc.

Math:  It's kind of all over the place. He, on his own, has figured out some multiplication. I'm giving him double digit adding and subtracting, along with time (which he also has pretty much mastered, as he tells me how many minutes it will be in x hours, and can read a regular/non-digital clock to the 5 min marks) and money (he knows coins and we're moving on to adding dollars, etc.)

Science: anything that's plant or animal life. The textbook I have is The Animal Kingdom. A nice basics of animals, mammals, vertebrates, insects, etc. Mostly we're using library non-fiction for bugs and insects at this point. The Magic Schoolbus books are great for early science. (hint hint for Christmas, we don't own any)

Everything else we add in, using various resources.

We are able to get everything done by lunchtime, taking a quick snack/run around break in the middle. We may save the chapter reading aloud until later or bedtime.  Then the "PE" and Art are done whenever, after that. Chores are first thing after breakfast, which makes it easier for us all. No screen time (aka tv, computer-unless it's school related, video games, etc.) until chores and school are completed. That was the hardest for them, as I had been letting them watch a show in the morning before or after breakfast. But, it was not ending and they'd fight it, so no tv, no fight, win-win.

Hopefully things continue as they are now. I am fully anticipating changes and tweaks during/after the baby comes. Being ahead with things right now though, definitely helps because we can allow more breaks in our schedule.There was a couple days I thought "dang it, today I would like to put his attitude whiny butt on a bus and get a break!"  But, that passed and so has the attitude. Thankfully.  We will just assess how it is year by year. So far, so good. We're happy with how it's going right now.

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