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I am a very lucky woman with a husband and son who are smart, witty and entertaining. Our son, B, attended public school for two years, and then we embarked on a new adventure in the Fall of 2010 - homeschooling. We don't have all the answers, but we know B and this has been the best thing for him. I blog to preserve our stories and our memories, share recipes, vent and ramble on about our crazy, yet blessed, life. Would you care to follow along?

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

First Official Day of Homeschool

I am pleased with how today went!  This is going to be a learning experience for both of us and it will take some time to get into any kind of habit or set lessons.  But I am OK with that.  We may never get into set lessons.  I decided months ago that there really isn't a wrong or right way to do this; the main goal is to find my son's way of doing this.

We both learned new things today, so that in and of itself is a successful day.  Do you know what the largest desert is in the world?  We were both surprised to learn it is Antarctica.  When I went to school, I was taught the Sahara was the largest desert.  But a desert is defined by lack of rainfall, and sparse to no vegetation and can be hot OR COLD.  We're starting with a geography unit study.  Today we worked on some natural landmarks, like rivers and deserts.  Ben located some on a world map and compared river lengths and deserts sizes to determine their orders from largest to smallest.  I worked math problems in where I could - the Gobi dessert is 1/2 the size of the Arabian dessert (500k sq mi compared to 1M sq mi).  He did a word find of related terms and I created a spelling list.  Since "desert" was on the spelling list, I also added "dessert".  I know early in school it was hard for me to remember which was which until a great teacher told us a trick to remembering it, so I passed it on.

I learned that we need to set aside more time for learning if I continue to let him set the pace.  And with the amount of time he likes to take, we won't be covering every subject everyday.  When he would stare at the map for a few minutes, I did not push him to move on to a question; I let him take in the map.  When he saw the shape of a whale in the Sahara, I let him draw a face and water spout on it.  I bet that will be a good reference to remember the Sahara - it's shaped like a whale!

He's always amazed me with word finds.  He'll stare at one for minutes, and when he's done, he'll circle 3 or 4 words at once.  I am keeping a journal and made notes for myself as we went along so I did not forget anything.  Once he saw that, he put his pencil down and wanted a pen just like me.  ERRR!  I want him to use a pencil so he can erase and fix things.  But I let him have the pen.  Maybe he will work harder to make fewer mistakes.

When I saw he was fading, we took a break to dance and sing some Bon Jovi.  My son's current favorite song is "Livin' on a Prayer".  He has excellent taste in music, just like is Mama.  :o)

Before heading out to run an errand and then off to my work for the afternoon he said to me, "I really liked this homeschool thing today, Mama.  I'm gonna like this year."  I said, "This is only day one.  It's going to get harder and most days we'll be schooling more time than we did today.  But we'll work together to make it fun."  He says he's up for it.


  1. So awesome Jess! I'm happy that you and Ben are doing what works for you, and no I didn't know the largest desert was Antarctica. I think this is going to be a great year for all of you! :)

  2. That's so great that it's going so well for you guys, Jess! Glad you're taking the time you need to get going on things.

    Becky J

  3. sounds like a great first day! Congrats! Robin