Making School Plans and Other Stuff

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It kind of goes against the whole idea of Unschooling to make  plans.  This, I know.  But the boys have already expressed an interest in some things and now it’s my job to provide them with the materials to learn!

Will is still very interested in learning about pirates, so I found this for him: 

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(I thought it would be particularly interesting because it’s set in Savannah, which is where Scott and I met.)  And we may still get to go to Savannah this Fall, which would be an excellent opportunity for field trips!

And I just bought this:  (More pirates)

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It was recommended when I polled my teacher friends on Facebook last year.

The new Assassin’s Creed is coming out in October and is set during The French Revolution.  I’ve found tons of material on that time period that I think the boys will find interesting.  Lots of movies and YouTube videos like John Green’s Crash Course that I think the boys will really like.  (even a model guillotine to assemble.)

I LOVE and believe in unschooling ideas.  I’ve seen, in my own life, that interest-led learning is really the only kind that works.  So why am  I still struggling, trying to cram Math and Language Arts down their throats?

Our boys have a very good grasp of basic math:  addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, area, volume.  For my own peace of mind, I think I need to help them get a little further:  fractions. 

Then after that, do I let them decide what to do?  (and hopefully, like all of my unschooling friends would tell me, “There’ll come a time when they realize they need that knowledge and they’ll go after it on their own.  And because the boys sought it out, it’ll stick.”)  Just HOW strongly do I believe in the Unschooling ideology?  Am I willing to take the chance?

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And what about Language Arts?  One boy struggles with spelling, the other doesn’t get punctuation, they both struggle with sentence structure.  But will forcing them to do it, really be good?  Or will it just be wasted time and an exercise in frustration that will eventually make them hate writing at all?  Will they get it when they need/want it?

My other issue with school right now is the condition of this room:

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We agreed that Scott needed his own space/office again and this was the room he wanted.  But it has become clear very quickly that it isn’t working well.  My antique hutch isn’t being done justice in this spot either!2014-07-181 

I need better access to our school stuff, birding stuff, art supplies.  Truth is, Scott needs our things out of there too.  (I hope he leaves the WILL and SCOTTY letters above the closet…)

So we’re going to rearrange furniture this weekend.  I’m putting the hutch back out in the living room.  (It was painful when we put it in the study – it’s such a beautiful, sentimental piece, I didn’t want it stuck somewhere, out of sight.)  Now it’ll be where we live and breathe again! (which also means that this year the Christmas tree will be back in the front bay window, where it belongs!)

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And not sure yet about all the school stuff.  I’m thinking about making a nook in the basement with the book shelves and maybe a little table and lamp.  It’s yet to be seen if the boys’ desk and computers get to stay in Daddy’s office…

Bee was in this room the other day, playing on his computer and I asked him, “Does the condition of this room get on your nerves?”  His answer was so funny to me:

“No…  no it doesn’t.  I like it when it looks nice, but I’m a boy.”  ALRIGHTY THEN…  (I need a drink.)

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So the plan is for Scott and me to go out to breakfast this morning, go to the Farmer’s Market and go shopping for a new loveseat for the living room and a new desk for his office.  Then home to get to work. 

I have a bunch of cooking to do this weekend too:  Waldorf salad making, squash noodle sautéing, rice pilaf cooking (with fresh eggplant from the garden), early birthday cake baking and grilling hamburgers for dinner tonight with OUR FIRST TOMATO OF THE SEASON!

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(so glad we got all the yard/garden work done yesterday!)

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Just like the Iroquois taught, there isn’t much weeding when the squash plants get big!  I was worried about the constant weeding the first few weeks, but there isn’t much to do anymore. 

I am a little worried about the lateness of our beans.  Not even one flower yet…  We’ll have to wait and see.  This is an experiment, having never done beans or corn before…

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Ever seen corn roots?   (They’re kind of creepy looking…)

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