In light of the recent "snow days" I thought it might be fun to give an update on what we have been doing. We started homeschooling off and on last fall, we puttered in and out of preschool..and then dropped preK completely in favor of homeschooling. We are loving it!
Kayley has already worked about 1/3 of the way through Kindergarten...and she is really having fun with it. I don't have to push her to do school work, she actually ASKS to do it. "Is it time for school yet Mommy? Are we ready to start now?" She has enjoyed school so much and wants to keep going long after we are done that I ended up creating an "independent work file" (We are using the workbox system-more on that later) for her so that she can reach in the file and grab something to do.
We also have our daily chores to complete... and Kayley does a pretty fair share. She can clean windows, sort laundry and help empty the dishwasher! Hey! Home Economics! It counts! And, it is good to contribute to the family...If we are going to stay home together indefinitely, then it is necessary for everyone in the family to pitch in and keep the house clean. I won't have a chance while the kids are out of the house to clean...so I need help!
I think I had mentioned a long while ago that we are using Bob Jones University Press Kindergarten. I did buy the "kindergarten in a box." Honestly, it felt like the easiest way to get started and see what we even thought about homeschooling. I know there are a LOT of different methods to homeschooling, and I am still actively researching all of them (more on this later too) and there are a lot of people who do NOT approve of the "school-at-home" method... And I'm not sure I am 100% fan either...but...Kayley is liking it right now and since she enjoys it so much, it has bought me a lot of time to really watch her closely and see what learning styles she enjoys the most to help me as I research all of the different homeschooling approaches.
We are really enjoying the flexibility that homeschooling is offering us. I'll admit I'm still nervous about the start of Kindergarten coming and going...and Kayley NOT going. But, the more time we have been spending together, and learning together, the easier it is getting.
There is a definite plus in planning a vacation in February while everyone else is in school or, instead of missing a ton of school during "snow days" the last 2 weeks...we will wait and take "sun days" while the other kids are in school this spring...
We are just enjoying the flow of homeschooling. We have not used the videos as much lately, Kayley claims that she likes Mommy's teaching better...(I'm flattered) and the video is so slooooowwwwly paced that Kayley gets frustrated waiting for the video teacher to catch up. We get done a lot faster and easier when we just sit down and work on it together. Our favorite part is reading time. We spend easily 30 minutes just reading and discussing books together. In fact, Kayley has become proficient enough to take turns reading with me.
Lets not forget Maggie! Children are learning from birth, and Maggie isn't left out. She only plays in the highchair for 15 minutes or so (we only homeschool for 2 hours while Maggie is awake), but I have a designated "Maggie basket" for her to play with during school time in kitchen. We move to the living room and find a 'comfy cozy spot' for reading time with both girls. The rest of the time, Maggie can putter around in her walker, play in "baby jail" or even her room. She comes back toward the end of our schoolwork to enjoy a snack...then we wrap up and have lunch.
We do Kayley's reading time after Maggie goes down for her nap. (Baby Loo is just WAY to distracting for Kayley to concentrate...) I am so pleased with the progress Kayley has made and I tell you, she LOVES being able to read!!