It is that time of year again where we start back with the homeschooling after taking a couple of months off to enjoy the humid summer months of our probably last summer here in the South. Last year we thought we would give mommy a break and send the school age kiddos to public school. We did it with the best of intentions. We started with four of them in school. By Christmas, #4 was pulled out of preK for reasons simply due to my health and not being able to physically meet their requirements to drop her off and pick her up. We loved that program. And by March #2 had to get pulled out for missing too much school due to his seasonal allergies getting the best of him. So by the end of last year two were being homeschooled and two stuck it out till the end of the year. We survived. This year we decided it was best for our family to go back to homeschooling. I know it is not for everyone but with the kids spread out through different schools in our district and us all not being morning people along with other various reasons it is just better/easier for us to home school.
What curriculum are we using? This year we are using two different curriculum’s. For all of the core subjects minus math, plus extra subjects we are using Cathy Duffy’s Easy Peasy Online Homeschool. It is free and amazing! Everything is laid out and ready to go. It has been a blessing on many regards for us when time for planning is limited along with not wanting to spend a small fortune on curriculum. For math we went with Math-U-See. We’ve used it in the past and loved it. Easy Peasy does have math in it but I just wanted to stick with something that I know works with my kids for this year then we’ll make changes next year if we need to.
So I had everything sort of prepped and had an idea in my head of how I wanted it to go on the first day and was really hoping it would all just flow and work… It did not go as planned. Computers weren’t working. Tablets wouldn’t load various pages. It wasn’t pretty. Kids got frustrated, mommy got frustrated with everyone asking a million questions at the same time. There was no way that this would be able to continue another day going the same route. So once the kids were in bed I sat down with my planner, made sure I had anything printed that needed to be printed, cause I apparently missed a whole work book of printable for our first grader(#momfail). Went through each child’s work for the next day to see who’s would work on a tablet and who needed my laptop or the desktop computers. I even managed to print off some extra coloring pages for the younger two cause they were done in about 30 minutes then got bored while waiting for the others to be done. Thankfully we have our TV in an area of the house that is far away from where we do our schoolwork so for the umpteenth time I put on Frozen again so the rest of the kids could work without two frustrated, bored, whiny girls distracting them. The baby was just happy as a clam to be strapped into her seat at the table with a box of tannagrams and unifix cubes to mess with.
So we went into the second day more hopeful than the first. There was certainly a lot fewer tantrums than the day before, I mean one of them is three years old so tantrums are bound to happen but still. We managed our merry-go-round with the electronics to get it all done, had blank paper for the kids to color something quietly till I could help them. It was just all around a much better day.
Now I just need to repeat it for tomorrow and get a good momentum going. I know that this year will be eventful with a potential move at some point in the spring, or winter, or summer. We really have no clue when it will be but are trying to be as prepared as we can. I even took that into consideration when originally prepping for the school year. Their supplies are ready to travel so if it’s for our big move or to just quietly study in the back of the room during story time at the library for the little ones, we are ready.
I should add that our first day of school was also the day of the Solar Eclipse, who knows that might have added to the crazy behaviors that we experienced that day. But we did have some fun watching You Tube viedos about what to expect and when it would happen for us. We live in one of the areas that it was at 90% so we actually got to experience it without having to travel. Pretty sure having that in the afternoon is what salvaged the day and made it not so crappy.