Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Typical Day in Our HomeSchool--October

I frequently hear both homeschoolers and non-homeschoolers wondering what a typical homeschool day ‘looks like’. That or they think it looks like public school, which is rarely true. So I thought I would share a day from each month, to give people an idea.

Note: I am currently unemployed. Actually, I have been unemployed for far too long and it’s a serious problem, but that isn’t the point of this post. Obviously, when I am working, our days are quite different.

Up at 9 a.m. We have been staying up rather late at Nate’s request. I think it’s puberty, ‘cause he used to be quite a morning person. Now he needs about an hour to laze around after he gets up, before he can accomplish much with any enthusiasm. So this morning he put on a Magnum P.I. episode while I checked my email and fixed breakfast (smoked sausage, eggs and hash browns). After his show was over, he got dressed. Handwriting comes first nearly every day. I am using a modified version of
Donna Young’s instructions for making remedial handwriting lessons in a composition notebook (handily acquired for 25 cents apiece during the crazy back-to-school sales). Today I will also have to make more entries for his handwriting book, as he will run out tomorrow. I use tongue twisters for his practice sentences because I find them funny, they are easy to Google and they tend to repeat letters, which is good for practicing. His handwriting has improved quite a lot in the last couple months, and that is a relief! (I used her printable worksheets first, and then moved to the composition book method when we ran out of the worksheets)

After handwriting I gave him his
Key to Percents book. He’s on the very last one! (Some other day I will share my theory, scope and sequence of math ed. with you.) Today he did three pages, and completed them with few mistakes and plenty of cheerfulness. But wait! It has not always been so. He used to complain at nearly every Key assignment, beg to do one or two fewer pages than my schedule called for, promising to make it up tomorrow (when I knew he’d beg again), and take two hours to do the work. However, not long ago, something in his brain finally clicked and not only is he enjoying his math, but he is ‘seeing’ things that he was not ‘seeing’ before. That is to say, he could follow the processes and do the work, but he is now discovering for himself WHY things work the way they do.

Then break time—for Nate that means heading downstairs to play on his computer, and for me that means doing the dishes and putting a load of laundry in. Since I had to go downstairs anyway, I commandeered my son to help me work on the still-packed boxes from our move over a year ago. I have a theory: if I can just spend 10 minutes working every time I go down, eventually I will actually make progress. Nate vacuums.

Once we are finished with that, we find it is noon, and thoughts of his coming hunger haunt me, so off to the grocery store we go. Come home, eat lunch, and then work on grammar. On Mondays I have him do
Spelling and then Grammar is spread throughout the rest of the week. While he does that I organize school papers and such.

Because it is Tuesday, we have a bit of a time crunch. In addition to Jukido Jujitsu class in the evening, we know that DVDs are coming in the mail from Netflix. Since we haven’t gotten any for a few days now, and we don’t have regular television, when they arrive it is difficult to get the kid to concentrate on anything else. Fortunately the mailman doesn’t usually show until late afternoon!

Tuesday is also a typing day. I am not as militant about that as I would like, but I am improving. He will also do his
Teaching Textbooks Math 7 program on the computer. He will take out the garbage, put away the clean dishes, and then be free for the afternoon.

The movies will arrive, during which I will probably strip the turkey I roasted the other day and put the carcass in for stock. Dinner is turkey and rice pilaf. Because it is my sister’s boyfriend’s birthday, we will bake some cookies, as well. Off to Jujitsu, home to feed the boy once again, probably stay up later than we ought watching the presidential debate (I know I said we don’t have regular TV, but we have bunny ears and can get OK sound and a really fuzzy picture of four candidates. Yes, I know the rest of you can see only two. That’s my point.) and something off the DVDs.

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