Hello there! Sorry It’s been awhile. We’ve been…I dunno, I’d say busy, but the past two days the majority of my time has been spent binge reading The Lunar Chronicles, and now I’m in withdrawals because I have to wait until November to read the final book in the series!!! Sometimes life is hard. 😉
But one thing we definitely haven’t been doing is “back to school.” We’ll probably “officially start school” in a few weeks. By which I mean, in a few weeks I’ll grab a blank poster board or something and take “1st Day of…” pics of my girls. And then we’ll “do school” which will look drastically different from our current schedule in that I’ll require Artist to do some math work at least a few times a week and Boo and I will spend some time working on reading and writing…possibly around an hour or two a week.
I know…you’re reading this and thinking we’ve lost it. Gone off the deep end. You’re possibly considering reporting me to CPS for not educating my children properly. But here’s the thing we pretty much “Unschool” and it’s working for us!
To give you an idea of what our eclectic form of learning looks like, this summer we’ve been “not doing school” at all. (At least according to Artist, who likes to have a set summer break.)
During that time, Artist has taken it upon herself to memorize the names of all 50 states and where each is located, along with most of their capitals. She then memorized the names and locations of all the countries of Africa, and is working on the countries of Europe.
She’s read at least 15 books this summer ranging from simple “Judy Moody” books and “American Girl Mysteries” to the unabridged “Anne of Green Gables” which turned out to be her favorite, though she’s officially going into 3rd grade this year and it’s listed as a 6th-8th grade level book. She also took a book test on “Anne of Green Gables” just for fun, and aced it. Then she aced a “3rd/4th grade Language Arts assessment” despite the fact that she’s never officially studied Language Arts.
We went to an aquarium and she told me all about tons of aquatic animals, including a “Skate” which I’d never even heard of. I also had no clue that clownfish are all born males but one of them will become female if the group’s female dies. What? Anyway, Artist is constantly getting on her computer and looking up all the information she can find about whatever random animal is on her mind that day. Yes, she also spends tons of time watching “Wild Kratts” and “Octonauts” but whatever.
We’ve played tons of games that hone her problem-solving skills, as well as math, reading, etc. Our favorite is “Small World” but she also loves more obviously educational games like “7 ate 9” and “UpWords.” We’ve read books out loud, done science experiments, memorized random facts about Texas, written stories, and learned about the hummingbirds that come to our feeder. She’s grown by leaps and bounds in her cooking skills, and she and Boo have now mastered baking a handful of items all by themselves.
Wow I’ve rambled, sorry!
My point is, for us, not using a set curriculum or even having a scheduled time every day where we sit down and do specific, pre-planned lessons works! At least for now. I’m definitely not tying to say it’s for everyone, and I have no idea how long we’ll continue like this, but it’s been working for us so far, and it’s pretty different than what I think most people picture when someone says they homeschool, so I thought I’d share. 🙂
My preparations for this “official school year” include purchasing a family subscription to Always Ice Cream, buying the girls each a science kit (this year artist requested this electronics kit, which should be exciting), and buying each of the girls a handful of books including “Emily of New Moon” by L. M. Montgomery, which I’m stoked about, because somehow I never realized that she wrote anything besides the “Anne of Green Gables” series. I’m also getting a few new games and puzzles, and restocking our art supplies.
Other than that, I have my eye on a new coffee mug. Because if we’re “officially starting school” it stands to reason that I should get something fun, too…right?