Homeschooling – Part Abe
UPDATE (9.25.2013): Abe’s teacher sent out an email last night that I just have to share because it’s so hilarious. Seriously brought tears of laughter to my eyes:
“The boys and girls have formed such great relationships!… I love how they have all become friends! Just last week, while doing our geography lesson, somehow Texas came up. I had to stifle my laughter as somebody said they lived in Texas, which started a chain reaction of them ALL making comments such as: “You live in Texas? SO DO I!!” and “Me, too!! I live in Texas, too!!” They are all so adorable and I feel so blessed to get to spend two days a week with them!”
I can just see them next spring when we study the solar system… “You live on Earth?! Me too!!”
This just feels like one of those times in life where each kid needs their own blog entry. So, I’m going to start with Abe and then do a separate entry for April and Andersen; it’s just too overwhelming to think about compressing it into one post.
First chapter book he finished on his own and his first piece of homework, completed for the second day of school.
We’ve been in school for 6 weeks now and have gotten into a pretty good groove. Abe is really the only one that I HAVE to do school work with on our days home, and at this point we’ve figured out pretty well what works and what doesn’t. For example, we’ve learned that both Language Arts and History are impossible to do while Andersen is awake, so we break those out at nap time. However, Math, Handwriting, and anything on the computer (educational games or audio CDs) work fine at any time. And memorization happens throughout the day, whenever it crosses my mind.
Geography is one of his favorite things to learn, especially if a song is included. The globe was a must have and we regularly get it to locate things, mainly during History. (My mom isn’t here right now; the globe picture was taken during the first week of school when she was.)
How are things going? Awesome. But before I get into details, I need to put a disclaimer here – I wouldn’t be doing other parents justice if I didn’t. Teaching Abe specifically makes it incredibly simple. I’m not trying to brag on my kid… well, okay, maybe just a little. Really though I’m trying to down-play my part in it. Doing this whole university model schooling with two youngsters at home should be a thousand times harder. BUT, Abe is reading at a 3rd grade level – wow that helps! He can read instructions on his own, so I can just let him go on so many things. We found a book series that he loves (A to Z Mysteries) and will sit down and read a 13 chapter book, to himself, in one sitting. He loves to read to his sibling and they love to listen. And he really does love to learn. I LOVE that he finds this all fun and exciting! That’s the way it should be!
I love the variety of the things we get to do. Seriously, being in kindergarten is so much fun!
On top of having reading down pat, he memorizes things at the drop of a hat and RETAINS it like you wouldn’t believe. He can, WITH EASE, quote you John 1:1-4, the first verse of the poem “Rise Up, O Men of God”, his 3 timeline dates, all the countries in the Middle East (and their locations), and all the oceans and continents (also their locations). He also is starting to talk to me in Spanish, which I LOVE, and find a bit frustrating at the same time since I retained very little from my years. But the whole reason we have him taking it already is so he can really learn it, so that’s fantastic. Writing is probably where he struggles the most, but nothing that isn’t age appropriate. Mainly I think he just hates that stupid copy book.
We practiced writing numbers in shaving cream and did patterns with beads. In the picture on the right they are actually both making bracelets for their teachers. Abe did his in “code words” and it says, in not quite correct spelling “From Abe. I love you and you’re my friend.” He adores her and I do too!! Both of their teachers are fabulous.
What I love the most about our days are the moments created just because we get this time together. Things aren’t rushed around a busy schedule with either lots of school or extra activities. For example, a couple weeks ago Abe was insistent that he wanted to learn how to knit. So, after learning myself, I taught him how to finger knit. April, of course, joined and while the three of us were sitting there knitting we had this random and great conversation about God and bad guys and who’s heart does God live in and what does He do when he’s in there. Moments. Parenting is about moments and my heart is full with the crazy beauty of them. God truly does make beautiful things out of the dust.