Sunday, October 3, 2010

October is here

September is done, October is here.

I thought I'd take a minute to go over the good and the bad of the past month. Reflecting on what's happened can be very, very useful in figuring out what steps to take next.

The good:
*had some focused days here and there
*dd has learned a song on the piano
*ds has developed a passion for dinosaurs and has been spending countless hours focused on them
*Joe has been showing more maturity

The bad:
*lots of interrupting others
*lots of letting random thoughts that pop in be our focus; lack of focus in general
*lack of commitment to work, schedules, routines
*Joe is VERY behind in his work
*lack of planning on my part
*lack of previewing work dd does on her own
*for Joe: too much time spent on his computer
*tiredness and illness
*have done nothing new for 2yo niece

What to do with this knowledge? Well, I've already gotten myself going with this. I have worked out a work chart for dd, with days of the week on top and subject areas down the side (French grammar, French composition, math, science, social studies, music/art, German, English, religion, PE/health, other (cooking, sewing, typing, etc.)). I will create a list of things I want her to do for the week and each day, we'll talk about what I'd like for her to do and she will pick some additional things to do. I do have to make sure and look at her math and French work FIRST so that I can give her a little preview lesson or "cheat sheet" as needed.

I have also started working on her Confirmation preparation and have her lesson for the week done up as part of her religion time.

Just had a thought that perhaps having a work folder with the chart, worksheets, checklists and the like can go into and she can just refer to that for the week.

I have also looked a bit at how much time I have with Joe this week and how much we can aim to accomplish. He is leaving at lunch time on Wed. with his Dad; they'll be gone until next Monday or Tuesday. So, he has all day Monday (which really only works out to about 4 hours), all day Tuesday (4 hours) and then 2 hours Wednesday morning. Trying to decide if it would work better to do CM-style quick lessons or just go all out for a large block and get through a lot of stuff at once, especially since he's behind. Some of his work involves conversation--hard to get through the readings and conversations in 20-minute blocks! My instinct is telling me to go for the large blocks this week--with a set list of things to cover during the large blocks and his goal is to get through that list in the time given. That's what I'll do then.

I still have to work out some plans for ds. I think I need to sit down and work out goals, first. He has done a tiny bit of handwriting, French work and math, but tiny. I mean a couple of days' worth. I want this stuff to be daily. I know that's not very Montessori, but hey, I don't have a Montessori classroom where he's seeing everybody writing and doing math and can do it with them! I can, at least, give him the option of when he will do the different work, plus have subject areas for him to work in, but he decides what he'll do. Exactly as I'm doing for his sister.

For almost 3yo: I have been neglecting her educationally, I admit it. Goal for this week: One new Practical Life activity and one new Sensorial activity. I'll figure that out later. AND I should have story time with her every day.

More thoughts to come later!

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