After 8 years, you’d think I’d learn?

Well – No.  Again – I fell into the trap. I spent the entire month of August planning out the year – trying to decide what to do – thinking, agonizing, post it notes, computer charts, homeschool planners, spiral binders.  My poor friends.  If you are an In Real Life friend who lives in earshot of me – I just apologize. For all of the listening you had to do this month.

The first week?  It was wonderful. School was new. Books were shiny. We had too much boredom during summer. We were excited about the topics – and the week went great.

This week? Not so much. We walked through it. I was still glad all of the topics worked together so well. I am really excited about having a wonderfully rich learning day.  We have not been, however, excited about all of the book work and worksheets involved.

US Presidents?  Sigh. Even though I got the books from a reputable company – I knew they got the books from a warehouse closeout.  I had no idea how they would try to re-write history. We got into the third President, Thomas Jefferson, and I had to explain the rest of the story after each page. Explain why I disagreed with the angle they took. I know about the first few Presidents – how do I trust the history of the rest of them?  

We are going to focus on a world view history – as we have been doing in the past, a focus on geography with historical events plugged into the time line. We’ll work on reading the historical documents.  I ordered George Washington’s World by Genevieve Foster.  We’ll prioritize history through Science and Composers, so they will have a history rich year.

Composers?  Reading 3-4 pages of dry material, and then playing fill in the blank for a worksheet for 4 pages – well – the second week – it was just boring. The first week sparked table conversation – but it didn’t spark them to want to learn more about music. This week, Jon left the table, and Nate only obediently quietly with frustration tried to fill out the blanks.  The program – the history of it – I LOVE. The delivery? Not so much.

You’d think after so many years of wonderful full rich learning – I’d get it. Books/curriculums/plans.  They are resources. Tools. Guidelines. My boys have learning differences – I have a certain delivery style. I need to stick to the delivery that I know works.

I woke up this morning to turn on my email to see if I could switch up my plans for next week, and a dear online friend sent me her art and composer study – I’ll share more about it in another post – but it was Exactly – what I had gotten on line to try to fix up.

Think about our nature study . . .. We read the text in the Handbook of Nature Study – the mom – before going out in the field.  Then we take the tools and points to ponder out with us. We have a short directional-ized observation time. A time to ponder, think, reflect, see differences, use the senses. Then a time to come back and record what we felt and saw. The one hour of nature study – usually goes on for more time with the interest – and lasts throughout the week as we run into the ideas other places. We share with people what we discovered.

That’s how we learn.  I need to know, research, have the guides and tools – to share when the boys have questions. I need to give them just enough to spark their interest – so they can fly with it.  Some kindling, just doesn’t light as fast. That’s OK.

We will still do a 2 day History/Geography, 1 day Music / Art, 2 days Science/Nature for our week – but I’ll be back to approaching it with more of a pure Charlotte Mason, relaxed eclectic – fire lighting – approach.

Sigh.  Some day. In August. When you see me getting fretful. Could you remind me?  Thanks.

About +Angie Wright

The Transparent Thoughts of an Unschooling Family of Boys - Answering the question - What DO you DO all day?
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4 Responses to After 8 years, you’d think I’d learn?

  1. Angie, I promise to remind you, if you’ll remind me. Although I do like my pretty little planned notebook.

    Cori, learn from the both of us…planning is fun, implementation, not so fun 🙂

  2. Oh, thank you for this, Angie, seriously! I closed my ears to the planning hub-bub and tried to remember what I said last year. Then we started school and I freaked at not having anything planned. So here I was thinking about planning this weekend…. Now I will just keep it basic. I think you are right about boring stuff, life is too short for that.

  3. Heather says:

    ah, returning to your true roots. I am glad you aren’t dropping the fine arts and nature. Somehow, I do the same thing every year.

  4. Our first week of school is more a of a “run through,” a fake week, to see what will work and what needs to be revamped or hit the road. Thankfully, nature-study always rocks!

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