Well, it was relatively painless… I have to remind myself, several times a day, that the first week is trial and error, learning everything new again, seeing what works and what doesn’t.
Will, upon seeing text books again this year, was the first to ask, “What happened to unschooling? I want to do that some more.”
Eight months of mostly Xboxing made me reevaluate unschooling for our family. And as many times as I asked unschooling friends, “Is this ok?” and they replied, “Yes, they’re learning, go join them.” It still didn’t feel right.
The same unschooling resources would also suggest that it’s because I was damaged by my own traditional education. It might be true, but it all boils down to doing what I feel is right for my family. (and that’s what I had to tell Will too.)
I’m thankful that a random post on Facebook led me to learn about Minecraft Homeschool because this stuff is going to be fun! (I’m even enjoying it, watching the tutorial videos, learning pc/game commands and seeing the creative part of the game.) The class doesn’t officially open until September 8th, but the boys have already watched all the tutorials, read the introduction material and even started playing with classmates.
We watched the first Learn It video yesterday about deserts. This is an introductory class and the content is probably a little young for us, but I wanted to make sure they could handle the pc game portion. If they love it, we can sign up for a class that’s more age appropriate next time.
The first day of school was marked by a record high temperature of 98 degrees. We had no desire to do pretty First-Day-of-School pictures outdoors. We stayed in and it was a good day, although it was very long, ending around 4pm.
A very welcome cold front came in on the second day with a high temp in the low 70s and a cool breeze all day. PERFECTION! We got some lovely pictures, which made me a happy girl. But it was an unusual day, with computer problems and a high-maintenance Goldendoodle, who had to have an emergency bath, and an exploded gallon of milk, most of which ended up on the carpet and a school bookshelf…
The boys had a hard time adhering to the schedule, which is fine with me to an extent. I mean, unrealistic time constraints are one of the things I hated about public school. But when my teenagers start taking 2 hours to eat breakfast and shower (after I’ve let them sleep til 9, because the experts say their little bodies need it) something’s gotta give!
I thought I could possibly wrap my schedule around theirs, you know, doing my stuff while they sleep in the mornings and starting school later in the afternoon, but with the level of supervision that they require right now, it isn’t working out… They like to horse around A LOT!
So, it’s Friday, the end of a short week for us. A good, soft reintroduction to a school schedule. Next week is going to be an exercise in flexible education: a trip to Colorado, school at Guh and Umpa’s house, our first field trip with our homeschool group on Tuesday, a trip to my “skinny” doctor in Cheyenne on Wednesday, Daddy’s leaving town on Thursday… Busy, busy!
I just want to slow down and make time for it all. As I was getting ready for bed last night I could hear the boys hootin’ and hollerin’ downstairs, having fun with something. And the thought crossed my mind that they’ll be gone before I know it. There’ll come a day, sooner than I want, that I won’t be hearing their voices in our house. They’ll have their own place.
Even with milk disasters and dog chaos and kids procrastinating, I love this life. I love these boys. I wouldn’t change a thing.