St Gabriel Windows

St Gabriel Windows
Photocopy c. 2013 Jamie Laubacher

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Living a Learning Lifestyle

Although my dynamics have changed since I last posted this two years ago, our "Living a Learning Lifestyle" hasn' we accomplish that has been altered and adapted to our family dynamics, so it's interesting to contrast with it...which I will do in my next post. In the meantime, isn't this a beautiful fall image?

The last two years of homeschooling have been tough for us for several reasons; so I was determined to change the dynamics in our approach this year. I have our eighth grader and tenth grader together in the morning after breakfast and prayers with everyone, doing math in our one-room schoolhouse-diningroom :) Long ago, we use to do almost all our school subjects together this way -- then, babies and further distractions led to some dispersing to rooms and other corners of the house for subjects.

However, I'm bringing the bigger ones back together and we are doing math together - I'm right there for them; I go through the chapter concept in geometry with our oldest son. We love the book: Jacob's Geometry (Euclidean). Our seven year old keeps our almost three year old busy with books and puzzles and play while we do math, religion and latin. Then comes lunch; after lunch, I go over all the subjects per syllabi that are left, and some can be done in bedrooms after that -- THEN, I sit with our second grader and "do school" with him for the day. Now and then an older one will check back with me -- while all the while we have popped in a DVD for the youngest one to keep his interest away from us. Used sparingly, this can be a great little resource trick :) We like to use "learning" videos and DVDs; recently it's been The Letter Factory. When we are all finished, I spend some one on one time with our youngest -- and by then, it's usually time for a nap (for both of us!)

So far, this is working. We seem happier and more productive -- the teens seem happier to have me more involved in overseeing more for each subject and commenting on it/guiding it more - but not looming over them the entire time, and allowing them some independent work breathing room. I'm happier, because I can stay abreast of exactly where they are at (I feel I did not do the greatest job of that the last couple years - but I was pretty fragmented due to other distractions in my life) and I can grade right away -- esp. math. I have my daughter begin to check her own math work with the key right away.

This is only our third week, and it's the full one that we worked up to. We are chickens here - just starting with math, then adding in religion, latin and grammar the following week, then finally, all the subjects. We also have piano and art lessons and our own mix of physical education mingled amongst this academia.

Hoping to keep a good pace going.....


Esther said...

I've often wondered how families with lots of children of different ages manage to successfully homeschool. Now I see it takes a lot of effort and ingenuity on the part of the parents. I really admire you Denise!

Denise said...

Thank you Esther. I read other blogs and loop friends who have more than my four and wonder how they do it! I know each family is different in their management and it's so nice to read about tips here and there. I'm only able to manage through the grace of God and the support and encouragement of those that have gone before me showing me the way. Amen.


Cay in La. said...

Praying for your school year, dear...

Denise said...

Thanks Cay. So far, so good. We are getting the rhythm down. Now all it will take to throw us off is for someone to get sick! :) Probably me!


Lynn said...

Wow. I'm in awe. I see the makings of a saint before my very eyes - no false flattery intended!
God Bless you.

I really miss that quote you had on your blog by Thomas A'Kempis - I copied it somewhere, just need to remember where :o)
But I love the nature quotes!
God love you.

Denise said...

Hi Lynn,
Thanks for your kind words! I found a Kempis quote - not sure it's the same one - but I've reposted it. At any rate, it's a good quote.

Bless you!

Julianne said...

Thanks! I like your blog and I love Elizabeth Ann Seton.