Well here we are finishing up month 6. And we are both are still alive and seem to like one another. That’s always a win in my book. As of the date of this post, we have about 35 days of school left. Zoe has been doing an amazing job. She’s a right-brainer. What does that mean? She’s creative, intuitive and artsy. Me? Well I live in both, but am learning to be more right-brained when it comes to school work and teaching her. It makes it fun, interesting, and easier on the both of us. Here are a few things I’ve observed/she’s learned in the last month.
Science :: We are talking about life cycles. So for a hands-on approach (and to kill two birds with one stone :: insert evil laugh here) we saved up egg cartons and planted seeds for the #HessGarden2014. Bonus. She loved it. I have a couple of books we found at the yard sale that talk about it, so double bonus! Her responsibility is now to water the seeds and make sure they are out in the sun. Guess what?! They. Are. Growing. I know, right?!?! Triple bonus. Once they are a bit larger, we’ll transplant them to the garden box we had last year.
HomeEc :: She’s wanting to cook now. So, I’m letting her – here and there, of course. We are measuring, learning about how to time things so it’s all finished cooking at the same time, and responsibility (keeping things clean, letting me know when we are out of something, etc). She’s done an amazing job. Omelets are her forte’ right now. Yes. She wants to make them all of the time. She also helps with dinner when it’s an easier menu night. Time will tell what the next big menu item will be.
Arts & Crafts :: I’m just not an artsy person. Crafting in any shape or form bores me to death. But she loves it. So, we have had a few days of arts and crafts. She has made things from play dough, painted, crocheted, and written songs. She’s even formed a trio with 2 other girls in the neighborhood. She (along with her Dad & Grandma) wrote a song for them to sing. If they dare do it, I’ll video it for future black mail purposes. Oh. And to count for homeschool too, of course. ;)
Miscellaneous :: We built a fire pit in the backyard. We had Zoe help as well to teach her to appreciate work, to feel some responsibility and of course, the free manual labor. Duh. I’m finding that homeschool really entails a lot more than book learning. And sometimes, book learning can be set aside to teach about life and how to do life and how to enjoy life and how to be present. So there you go. A really long sentence and a bit of wisdom all in one.
Actual School Work :: Back in November she wrote a letter to her penpal, Yulia, in Belarus Minsk. We weren’t sure the timing or if she’d even write back. But in the middle of this month, Zoe received a letter and several cards from her. She was so excited! Heck, who am I kidding? I think I was more excited than she was. She has already written her back. I’m so happy that she has a pen pal. I had one growing up and it was great to talk to someone else from “far away.”
Sometimes we do school on the run. We’ve been at the doctor’s office on an average of twice a week for the last few weeks. That means our days can be unpredictable. Last week Zoe completed a couple of days of work while we were in the waiting room. Mobile school. Score!
Having Fun :: And sometimes, well sometimes you just gotta have fun. So there were many days that all homeschool consisted of was playing with play dough or cooking or planting seeds. We even had a girls night while her Dad was out with friends and did “spa” night – facials, mani’s and pedi’s.
I’m learning a few things about teaching along the way. I’m learning a few things about how to teach Zoe along the way. I’m even learning a few things about me along the way. But the greatest nugget of wisdom I think I’ve picked up and actually taken to heart is this: Sit back, relax, enjoy the journey and more importantly enjoy your child.
You know what? I think I will.