Our first week of homeschooling was met with glorious weather. Today was not so glorious. But we still made it out for some rainy day play at a nearby playground. I’m so glad my kids are pretty weatherproof. Patrick hung out in the carrier, and then fell asleep, rain suit and all. Though I will admit, he wasn’t too gung ho at the beginning.
Our island is small. Small enough that there no homeschool co op groups. But large enough that there are quite a few homeschoolers, and we are blessed to be friends with many of these amazing families.
In an effort to burn excess kid energy, talk with other adults, have Rachel realize she isn’t the only homeschooler on the planet, and spend more time outside, I have started a weekly Nature Group for the homeschoolers here. I led a more fast paced hiking group last year (until pregnancy complications stopped that) but I wanted something slower and more open ended. It’s more like a Nature Stroll. Or a Nature Stop-and-taste-the-rose-hips sort of event.
For our first outing, we started out walking, then standing at the view point and looking at what we thought were whales but turned out to be rocks, then playing on the old cannon, then meandering down a trail while the kids darted off to climb bunkers. We ended at a grove of spruce trees that just begged to be climbed, too. Nature Walk turned into Nature Play and it was exactly what I hoped for them all.
Today was out first official day of homeschooling. R had her first day of Kindergarten! It was, surprisingly, an absolutely delightful day. Picture perfect. I couldn’t have scripted it better myself.
We are following the Mater Amabilis program, which is a free online week-by-week plan for a Catholic Charlotte Mason education. It looked so incredibly overwhelming, but everyone said “just do it and see” and so far, it looks perfect for us.
Today’s schedule consisted of Morning Time, Handwriting (cursive), Math (connect the dots and write out dates 1 – 7 in our blank September calendar), Nature Walk/Recess (where we serendipitously met up with another homeschooling family in our neighborhood), picnic lunch on the porch, Phonics (sing ABC song, identify magnet letters, clap syllables), Spanish (pick out a few pictures from the Spanish word book for Mommy to stumble over the pronunciation of), Rest Time, Literature (Peter Rabbit), and Glow (an extracurricular Praise and Worship chorus run by another homeschooling mom at a church in town). All interspersed with coloring, playing, picking sugar snap peas, laughing at Patrick, negotiating with Allison, and just generally having a wonderful day. It was idyllic. And I’m putting it all up here because of that–because I know there will be many, many days that are far, far from idyllic, and I will need to remember this golden day and how amazing this homeschooling life can be.