The flexibility of home

Today post is just a little update on our schooling at home adventure. I had a plan for this year. I bought a teacher’s planning book, filled it out with lessons, crafts, activities and field trips all the way up to Christmas. Books were on order from the library, no joke, a month in advance of my plan. Three days into my plan, Liam looked at me and very calmly informed me that he was bored. He didn’t want to make another “A” craft and he had already learned everything. Fantastic.

I’ve kind of floundered for the last few weeks with what to do. As much as I love the idea of unschooling like the super cool Hobo Mama, I need a plan. I decided that since he is only three and he does know all his letters and most of their sounds, we are going to use this year to build a foundation in math and science. I wanted to spend some time working on his OT, so he did the first session of a local preschool gym and swim and I loved the chance to sneak in some gross motor skill development. And finally, we are using art to work on his fine motors and tie in with a few seasonal themes.

Right now, we are working on learning days of the week and I’m going with the flow on his weather obsession. We have a huge calendar wall/information center in our kitchen and thankfully, there was enough space to add 3 boards for his weather center, fruit of the Spirit tree and the date. I didn’t make a calendar grid for schooling because of the giant one on the wall… eventually I’ll make a marker so he can see where the current day is in the grand scheme of the month.

The project with super time consuming. As in, 3 days of time spent cutting and gluing and painting… I have two small children in my home, I have accepted that if I want to do a project that is not strictly necessary, it will take up to a month from start to finish. It is what it is. I laminated everything. Some pieces are hot glued to the boards and some are velcroed. 72 total pieces of velcro. I bought mine at Home Depot because they had perfect little squares that were self adhesive for far less than the craft stores.  The check out lady looked at me like I had three heads as I purchased an arm full of velcro at 730 in the morning. I really was trying to be cool about it, but I guess it was odd.

I used the 3M super duper velcro wall hangers, 4 on each board.  The package said it would support weight up to 17 pounds, but I wasn’t messing around… preschoolers and toddlers aren’t very delicate.  When Matt left for work that morning, I had supplies spread out in the kitchen and living room.  When he came home, most of the mess was cleaned up and the boards were on the wall… without needing any of his help.  *Insert moment of self empowerment here*

As luck would have it, my aunt brought over a rain gauge at some point in the planning process, so Liam and I put it in the flower beds next to our front porch and he was ecstatic to discover 1/2 inch of rain in it yesterday.  Every morning, we open the blinds in the living room and assess the weather.  He then tells me what he thinks the weather board should say and we put up the right cards. I downloaded the weather board from Mr. Printable and it comes with about 20 options for descriptions of the weather like dry, humid, freezing, snowy or sunny. The way the weather has been this week, we have gotten to discuss quite a variety already!

We are really just introducing the concept of the days of the week, so that board is getting a lot of review.  I am still working on a storage method for the pieces we aren’t using, but for now, I just have them in a little basket that I keep in the closet (which is this weekend’s organizing project) so little hands won’t spread the months of the year all over the house when bored. I found a few magnetic chore charts on Etsy that I’ll eventually make a decision on and start implementing.  My little guy loves to check things off just like his Mama!

So that’s our school update.  What are you doing in your home? Do you homeschool? Unschool? Public School? Private School?

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