Sunday, August 26, 2012

I need to babble a bit--First Week "Jitters"

This morning, I tried to sit down and write out a rough plan for the first week of school. It stank. I feel so stuck! My son has been so unschooled and now I have to transition him out of it. Transition. Good word for me to remember. (See, this is why I blog? Helps me sort out my thoughts.)

Okay, so I'm transitioning him. What are some things that should be part of a daily checklist?

  • Religion: We've got the Faith and Life series from grade 3-8 and are still in the grade 3 book after, hm, 2-3 years? lol. A little daily reading and discussing won't be too much, especially since I don't have the teacher books; we just use the student text and don't do the activities in it. A morning prayer has never been a habit, but it could always become one! (But this just throws my mind into a whirl: When do we do it? Do we do it with his sister? She's likely to sleep in until past the time he and I will get started. So do we just say a prayer on our own? But then when will she say a prayer? And forcing her up earlier is not an option: I've seen what it does to kids her age and their thinking capacity and know how lack of sleep affects me and leads to more illness; I'm allowing her natural sleep cycle to rule here.)
  • Natural Vision Improvement: I discovered earlier this year that my son is near-sighted. I don't know that he's so bad that an optometrist would tell him to get glasses, but possibly; if so, they'd be really mild. I had suggested a few things for him to try to do, but, hey, he's 11, he needs consistent guidance. I would like to resume that NVI because it did improve my eyesight in the past and I would love to get back into it and improve my eyesight even more. Ultimately, being glasses-free would be FANTASTIC! This reminds me that there is a book I've been thinking about buying--the name and author escape me at the moment--but I can always get going with the simple exercises prescribed by the one who started it all, Dr. Bates. (More info, if you're interested in how to reverse eyesight problems or prevent them, can be found here.)
  • Yoga or Pain Free exercises. Pain Free is a book by Pete Egoscue. He has other books and they all talk about problems that come about due to dysfunction in our bodies. My 14yo has flat feet and some other little issues, so she wants to do stuff with this and I've noticed my son's posture is not good and it kind of looks like his big toe joints are getting big, which, I mean, honestly, he's 11, they should be fine. So daily yoga or Pain Free (either from that book or one of the others; the book for women has sections aimed at kids, not just women). I guess both this and the NVI constitute "self-care".
  • A time to sit and talk about the day ahead, the week ahead, the previous day (as the case may be) and have a look at what has and hasn't been touched. I did this years ago when I had 4 of them doing school and it worked very well.
  • *frozen moment* I hit the point of thinking, "Work time. What will we actually do? How will it look?" And not only did my mind freeze, but I realized I had paused my breath. Good grief, this isn't that big of a deal, is it? lol. As I let the thoughts come here, one thought is to have the little talk about, have a list of possible presentations I can show him that day, and then let him pick. Where my breath catches is when I think of how much time there is to fill! Eek! I want, at least to start, to focus on the academics being in the morning; the art and music and other phys. ed. stuff will usually be afternoons. But even if I count the NVI and yoga as part of the work cycle (should I?), that still leaves, 2-2.5 hours before lunch. (I just had to see if the 3-hour work cycle is still part of adolescent recommendations. Here they say it is! Actually, they mention about doing "seminars" at that level is causing some ideas to start working.)

    Let me just babble away, okay? What are his academics? Math/geometry. Science. Social studies. French. English. I was thinking about starting up the Writer's Workshop concept again, à la Nancie Atwell, but I don't have the book yet and not sure I could just wing it. A math presentation could be done each day or skip a day to do a geometry presentation or I suppose both could be done in the same day. For science and social studies, I want to go through the Great Lessons first (oh boy, that first lesson seems to take me a while anyhow! lol.). There is Sequential Spelling for English, handwriting for either language, I'd like to introduce the grammar boxes (in French) to him... Maybe there's enough stuff to get going with. Just the Great Lessons alone will take up some time!
  • Afternoons: art, music, phys. ed. out of the house, not sure what else.
Okay, it feels good to get some thoughts out! Now time to make supper. (Oooh, there's another subject to add in: home economics! :P )

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