Yesterday, as I was doing school with the kids I was thinking of how far I've come from my "structured" days in school and my frustrations last year of what I thought school should look like. Something that I have found is that my school day is fluid and moving , like water swirling, touching an obstacle and morphing and changing. This concept has really encouraged me to be thankful for what is going on but not feeling so much that it's not looking like " school". What do I mean by this? Great question. Yesterday, we were doing some lapbooking on Oregon. I found a cool mini unit study at www.homeschoolshare.com and ordered a bunch of the recommended books from the unit study, " Apples To Oregon" , from the library. I then proceeded to print off the necessary, FREE information online and got started with the kids.
Here is one way to describe what our moment looked like: We read our cool books together, began to sit down and assemble our lapbook and then enjoyed reading it and explaining it to Daddy. I could put it like that, but then I miss out on really explaining what it looked like, what home educating can look like, at least in my home, and realizing that it's family, we are not a public school so it doesn't need to look like that....so here is MY way of embracing the moments and describing it as such:
After reading our cool books together with Jayden listening closely, Hannah nursing, Moriah climbing , listening moving to and fro, and Austen listening and then curling up in a ball on the couch and informing me with his furrowed brow " I'm not going to read anymore", we finished. There was a myriad of questions after each page. Moriah kept wanting to review the previous pictures and Jayden then wanted me to repeat each written page as he was not liking the idea of flipping back and forth of pages. We stopped, and I put Moriah down for a nap. Then, we grabbed the glue and scissors and file folder and sat on the floor of the kitchen with our papers and markers and got started. I have been only doing one lapbook for both boys as they can then work together and do the different activities that are applicable to them . So, we went over the state bird, flower, and flag- I cut them as our little scissors are at a friend's house, Jay assembled the book and glued it with huge, sticky gobs of Elmers glue. Austen, did the apple math part where I we talked about coloring half of an apple, different ways, etc. Oh no, water spilled! Quick grab a rag! ok, resuming.......and Moriah is up with a fury! Ok, here is some pretzels Riah, sit next to Momma on the floor w/ your blanket. Austen is on my lap and Jay next to me. Now, let's talk about Alliteration....." Jay, can you think of an alliteration for plumb?"
Jayden- " Plumby??" ....." Ummm, yeah but how about like poignant or precious or plunging???" ok ok, getting the idea, " Jayden about cherries?" " Umm, cheery?" :) Ok, we are getting there :) ( The book Apples to Oregon uses a lot of Alliteration). Austen your turn! ok ( with Moriah crying in the background about wanting the silk side of her blanket wrapped around her but not touching her neck...geesh!). Alright , Austen can you color and draw the different types of weather on this paper?".......oh I forgot to mention sweet Hannah decieded to sleep during this time period......
Do you get my picture up there....just like in "public" school, my school isn't any less crazy or busy or hectic...it's different and it's family. We still get done what we need to get done, and it's done with excellence but we are not sitting at a table all the time, and we are definitely not sitting still. But we do our educating on the move and it's precious. I am dealing with different age levels ( Jay and Austen's being the easiest), different personalities and learning styles. I also am dealing with unexpected accidents ( water spilling, crying, running and tripping, etc). But that's ok.
God gives us the grace we need in our season. I am learning that. I am probably the hardest person, on myself, that you will ever find. I have an idea of what I want it to look like and if it doesn't I am so frustrated. That is what God is really teaching me through all of this. I didn't think I needed to be such a student, but God knew how much I have yet to learn. Oh the best part of it all, after the markers are strung everywhere, the glue is gobbed on, the lapbook is all assembled ( and I'm pretty proud of it :)) Jay begins explaining to Daddy...., " and this is the flag, and flower and weather page" :) ok Jayden, since Momma is proud of this, go play and I will show it to Daddy... " Ok Ben, look at this...isn't this page cool...it talks about the different weather patterns and in the story the family experienced......" Ahh, life in a one room schoolhouse :) and if you've seen my house....it truly feels like that...blessings!