Rawlins Family

Rawlins Family

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Still alive!

Okay, now we've been through a couple weeks of this homeschool business and I'm still convinced it is going to be great. We've had awesome days, we've had lots of "do overs" especially after bad attitudes, and we've had more snuggles on the couch than in the six months leading up to starting!

But it's not perfect. We're just figuring things out day by day. The thing I'm struggling with the most is to let go of MY expectations. I'm trying harder to rely on the Spirit to help me in this effort. I firmly believe that these are Heavenly Father's children and He won't abandon me. He knows Cameron, Miles, Sophia and Haley better than I do, and He wants them to learn, grow, and flourish. I need to do my part (preparation, striving for more patience, teaching the kids to diligently work towards goals), but I can't cut Him out of the process. So I'm working on that:)

Cameron is really enjoying homeschool. I'm learning to lay off a little - I think that helps! I've discovered that a lot of the books I was trying to push on him were way over his reading level, which explains his reticence. Instead of ditching the materials we're doing lots of reading aloud, and we found him some new reading material on his level. Everyone is happier now that that fight is over!

Miles is Miles. He's busy and happy all the time. He loves doing his school work. He also seems to have my love of reading, and would sit and read all the live long day. Amelia Bedelia and Frog and Toad are his books of choice at the moment. He's rocking math and history as well. I've been so surprised at how well he internalizes what we're learning. If you're interested to learn about nomads, early farmers, and the fertile crescent, you should ask Miles. Be prepared for him to show you EXACTLY how a shaduf works, though.

Sophia can't stand being left out of anything! As a result, I think she's going to be schooled right along with Miles. They're only 21 months apart, so I'm not really surprised. She's definitely not on the same level with Miles' reading, but she's incredibly proficient with math. Her handwriting is the only thing lagging behind, so we're just not worrying about it much. She can write as much or as little as she wants at this point. Her favorite thing to do is the handwriting app on our kindle fire.

Haley is amazing. She has finally reached the perfect height for reaching onto the counters, which means nothing is safe. She also knows how to push a chair or stepstool over to the counter/bookshelf/filing cabinet and get whatever she can't normally reach. So I really, truly mean it when I say nothing is safe. Sigh. She's a serious handfull! Sometimes she feels very in the way, and I question why I started homeschooling while she's still so young. But then I remember this article I read when I began seriously considering homeschool. I'm so glad for this reminder. The best thing that should come out of this grand adventure should be deep, rich relationships within our family.

So there you have it. I'm still alive, the kids are still (barely, at times) alive. We're all still getting our feet under us, but having a good time doing it.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

We're homeschooling! Wowza!

Last Wednesday was our first official day of homeschooling. It was horrible, if I'm being honest. I was anxious all day long! My biggest fear about homeschooling is that I will leave out something critical and my children will be poorly trained for the world ahead of them. Because of all my anxiety I was frantically rushing through each subject and assignment so when I hit a roadblock (Cameron not wanting to read the books I had painstakingly picked out for him)  the day just kind of went south. I kept thinking, "WHAT HAVE I DONE?!?!?!" But we plugged on and finished our work for the day.

Thursday was better. Not perfect, but better. I could see the ways that I needed to lighten up. No teacher is able to stick perfectly to their lesson plan every day, and you have to be able to roll with the punches. So I tried to dial down the crazy and I felt much better at the end of the day. And wouldn't you know it? With me being less of a stress case my kids were less of a stress case! And I started to see how maybe this is all going to work out.

So here we are, five days in and I'm feeling like this is all going to be okay. Here are a few pictures from our first days!

Cam is working in a really great watercolor book.
Geography puzzle
We spend a lot of time reading. Sometimes in weird places.
Miles coloring a picture of a prehistoric farmer using a shaduf.
Haley building a dinosaur at the museum.
Cameron being forced to read classical literature in addition to his favorite stuff.
Not quite as happy about it.