Saturday, September 14, 2013

Feeling slacked

This week was a more slacked week. I am not sure if the beautiful hot scorching weather had anything to with our very minimal attempt this week on our school work but we definitely spent more time outside than in. However, we still did a lot of learning using more kinesthetic learning techniques and making sure that while we were having fun we were still learning.

We started our week with our usual morning routine, which I have learned to never go without. The morning routine of brushing our teeth, making our beds, getting dressed, and saying prayers, sets a pace for our day and holds the boys to be accountable to the expectations I have of them.

This weeks goal was trying to get Isaiah to understand the concept of the calendar. The first thing we do to start off our homeschooling, and before attempting any lessons, is going over the calendar and dates. We talk about the weather, the dates, and the seasons. So at the beginning of this week I also wanted to incorporate the story of creation into our lesson. I wanted Isaiah to understand the days of the week and what better way than to read about how God made everything. I read them "My Creation Bible" By Ken Ham. It is a visually pleasing kid friendly book that also rhymes, which is great for these boys. The book not only covered on the lesson of days of the week but also on sin, God, Jesus, and choice. I am not sure how much they understand but they really enjoyed the book and even asked me to read it to them again.

The kinesthetic part of this week's learning was getting the boys to help out and learn about the concept of chores and responsibility. Since the sunny weather lured us outside I decided that they needed to burn off their energy, and what better way to do that than wash the car. And this car definitely needed washing.

In addition we learned about differences. On our walk to the park we observed the different trees in our neighbourhood. Isaiah learned that certain trees have sharp prickly leaves or needles whereas other trees were more tall and had flat red coloured leaves.

We also continued with our language arts curriculum and started our first lesson on learning how to read. This curriculum is great as it incorporates the different sounds of each letter and instructs you how to move your mouth when saying the sound. This is great for Isaiah's apraxia as it will help him develop the phonological structure he needs for his speech.

The boys are not the only one learning. I too am learning a lot.

What I learned this week was that schooling does not have to be during the day from 9 am until 3pm but it can be in the evenings as well, which is great because Aaron can teach too and he has. In addition I have learned that I need to have a schedule but a flexible one. I need to plan my days and hold myself accountable as well, not just my kids. This will also help me as I gradually return to my usual work schedule and allow me to see what days requires more or less schooling.

I don't know how this will turn out but Lord have mercy on us!

Friday, September 6, 2013

2013/14 School year

The last time I posted on this blog it was on Isaiah's status with Apraxia. This time it is about Isaiah's start to homeschooling.

Initially I was quite weary of home-schooling and dreaded the thought of it. The underlying emotion I felt was fear... fearful that I would not provide and meet the expectations, mostly from myself, of being a good teacher and that I would not be able to do it whole heartedly.

I think that my expectations will never be met but I will try hard to provide and do the best I can.

18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18
As I reflect on this verse I have to remember that my love for my child is stronger than any fear and that in itself will be sufficient enough. Also I have so much support from the staff at our registered school, Fr. Richard, Presb. Jamie, and Melissa, that if I did have any problems I know that they can help me. I am very thankful for that!
We started our home-schooling as of last week working on little things throughout the week. This week we did a little everyday. Our days starts off with the morning prayer and after the morning prayer the boys sit on their little blue Ikea chairs in front of our large calendar pinned to the cork board and learn about the month, day, year, season, and the weather.
Last week we collected leaves from the park and learned about the season fall. We traced the leaves by placing it under a piece of white paper and rubbed crayons to get the imprint. I also utilised a few YouTube videos about the different seasons in a year. After watching this I asked each of them which one was their favourite; Isaiah likes winter because of the snow and Micah likes summer because of the beach.

This week we continued with our morning routine and chores, and worked on printing and learned about letters and numbers. We used the curriculum Saxon math and Handwriting Without Tears: Get Ready for School handbook. 
Isaiah has surprised me so much. He is so eager to learn and has been very productive in his activities. He enjoys writing on the chalkboard and has shown great dexterity. He is also very artistic and was able to make a wonderful picture out of the patterns blocks.

Isaiah has surpassed my expectations and I know he will excel with home-schooling. This week has confirmed that my husband and I made the right choice to have him home-schooled as he needs the extra support and one on one learning.
I look forward to this year and to be able to look back and see his growth.