Wednesday, July 10, 2013

My Latest over at Crafting a Green World: Knitting, Chalk, Beans, and Elephant Poop

and a review of Side by Side, the research for which entailed a VERY contented afternoon of kid portraits done in sidewalk chalk, colored sand, and birdseed

In this summer season of swim lessons and day camp and finishing up unit studies and reviewing the year's math and big chores like weeding the garden and cleaning out the chicken coop, I've temporarily left behind our daily work list and transitioned to "work hours"--two hours in the morning and/or afternoon, depending on our outside activities schedule, when the children know that they're working for me. I have the master list in my planner of what I'd like to get done by the end of summer--our animal biology studies, the rest of the Bob books, the girls' grade-level Splash Math, experimenting with bubbles using our Zome tools, vacation scrapbooks, etc.--and I tend to alternate some of those activities with the chores that I'd like to get done that day, until our work hours are over. 

The structure is pretty chill, too, in that if a child takes the recycling out to the garage, and then stays out there for an hour to follow the chickens and swing on the tire swing, that's okay. Frankly, I'd feel ashamed to call myself a homeschooler if that wasn't okay. Chicken watching and tire swing swinging are VERY important to our homeschool.

And that's how, right this minute, Willow is finishing up the last three pages of a workbook associated with our horse study, and Sydney is throwing a royal fit as she "looks" (read: runs around the house and screams) for the outfit she needs to wear to aerial silks class tonight. 

And yes, I AM counting down the minutes (130) until they're at day camp for three hours this afternoon. I tell you, I could get spoiled by all that fit-free time!

P.S. I solved the mystery of Sydney's major fit-throwing streak these past few months. Matt measured her against the door jam a couple of nights ago, and discovered that she's grown two inches in the past four months; that's a half-inch a month! I've noticed since the girls were toddlers that they emotionally regress when they have a physical or intellectual growth spurt, so there you go. I also won't be surprised if when this growth spurt calms, Sydney is all of a sudden reading.


Tina said...

Isn't it crazy how that growing can throw things off!? Now that you mention the connection between less then desirable attitude and growing, now I think I know what Emma's problem was last month. It will be interesting to keep an eye on that in the future.

I'm trying to figure out a schedule of sorts around our house. With me taking college classes, I feel less guilty ignoring Emma if she's busy doing something productive.

Maybe I'll try implementing the "work hours" thing.

Arial silks class sounds fun!

julie said...

Work hours hasn't spelled as much productivity on our various unit studies, but it's turned out to be just the thing to zip through math units, grammar books, independent work, etc., as well as get the girls back on track with the regular chores that I'd been neglecting my supervision on. Our public school kids go back to school in a couple of weeks, but I haven't decided when our own "summer school" might transition back to the weekly schedule.

Maybe after all the daily swim classes are over with...