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If we value the pursuit of knowledge, we must be free to follow wherever that search may lead us. ~ Adlai Stevenson

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Wordy Wednesday... Adjustments...

I have, thanks in part to the many supportive comments, gotten over my issues from the other day. I know in my heart that our approach is right for us. Enough said.

Image courtesy of AllenCentre
Now, I was reflecting yesterday on how our school year is going so far. For the most part, I am delighted with it. But (yes, you know there would be a "but"), I feel like we're skimming along the surface. I feel like I am constantly juggling library books: looking them up; putting some on hold; stopping at two libraries to get the rest... you get the picture. My library card is constantly maxed out, and I've thought about using the kids' cards to add to the pile(s).

Then I stopped. Yesterday, I was working on another list combined from A Picture Perfect Childhood and the Core Knowledge lists. And I just stopped for a moment.

We're having fun, check. The kids are learning some interesting facts, check. We are reading lots of books, check. But... we're not really getting any depth. We're missing out on some of the things I wanted to do this year. We're jamming in history where we can fit it, instead of enjoying it. I don't have time to read one-on-one with the kids.

Image courtesy of Aero-Lite


There are books I would love to share with them. The Girl wants me to read Pippi Longstocking with her, and I think The Boy would enjoy Breakthroughs in Science by Isaaac Asimov.

I've decided for the time being, to back off on the multitude of short [i.e. picture] books, at least to some extent. To choose more carefully, so that we have time to go deeper, instead of just skimming along the surface.

I'd also like to have time for my Narnia study!

This week we'll slow down. I don't need to read them every book on the aforementioned lists. I'd like to revert a little more to this schedule, which I found so inspiring at the start of my planning!

In other news, The Boy is really enjoying cross-country. He does find it to be very challenging, and I think today, hill training, will be a bit difficult. But his coach is awesome! He encourages every kid to do the best they can, not judging themselves by what others are doing (hmmm... I think someone said something about that to me in one of the recent comments on my blog!). And The Girl still loves her roller derby. We haven't managed to get back to piano lessons yet - I'm still trying to tighten down my college schedule. And no 4H this year. Too time consuming, and the kids just weren't interested in the projects being offered enough to make it worth our time and effort.

Hey, while I'm rambling, any tips on household cleaning/maintenance when you have a busy schedule? I find myself consistently falling behind on dishes, laundry (especially folding and putting away), dusting, etc. I did fare much better with planning ahead for menus, groceries, and the like this week, so that is a step in the right direction!

Image courtesy of evanlaar


And one final thing worthy of note... I have, at long last, hit the FIFTY pound mark in my weight loss journey. I hit 45 quite some time back, then plateaued for a long while, although I was happy to see that I could maintain the loss! Only 12-17 pounds to go!

2 comments :

  1. Ah, yes. This is exactly what I was thinking after spending literally an entire weekend, reserving books. I thought--there is no way I'm going to get through all of these books--authentically. Also, you KNOW they'll be repetitive. Plus, it's just scratching the surface.

    So, now I reserve ALL the books from all of my lists and I carefully go through them (one-by-one) to decide which one or two titles are worthy...the rest go in a "library books" basket to be returned!

    To focus on the "important stuff" in each book I'm using the K-W-L chart before beginning a book (just orally, not a formal written chart). We stop A LOT while reading and talk. It gives me an opportunity to see if he understands the material -- otherwise, he'd listen for days without interrupting (he loves read alouds/audiobooks).

    We started Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution this afternoon and it's a great little book. We're also in the middle of Paddle-to-the-Sea, after which I think I'll focus on the geography aspect of Paddle's journey, plus some of the other industries, etc. discussed in the story.

    I'm trying to settle in to a nice schedule, too. It's tough. Maybe I'll e-mail you when I have a moment...we can chat! :)

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  2. Hahaha...Hmmm...I wonder who said enough with the comparisons?!

    CONGRATULATIONS on your 50 lb mark! I'm very proud of you, impressed and inspired. I will hit a 50 mark, of sorts in a couple weeks...though not pounds...Can you guess what?

    BTW, I thought of you today when I was working with Ben on some literary summaries of short stories for his Grade 9 College Prep English class (at Pathways). He hasn't studied English formally ever (well, since 2nd grade) but can type with accuracy and at good speed (from computer gaming and skype chatting), has excellent spelling (natural?), has a very good command of writing conventions (daily encounters with language in life?), and after a bit of a meltdown, even was able to do some decent analysis. That's the unschooling way. Even if they don't get it formally, they can get it...when they are ready.

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What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
Emerson

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