Do you ever have times where everything feels easy in your homeschool? On one of those days:
My children greet my suggestions with enthusiasm (or better still, make their own suggestions).
We flow effortlessly from one happy learning experience to another.
I don’t have time to worry about whether I’m fulfilling my responsibility to provide my children with “an education” – we’re too busy having fun learning.
I am blessed with two outspoken children who have approximately zero tolerance for tasks that don’t inspire them. It means there’s no margin for pushing ahead with what’s not working – I get immediate feedback as to whether we’re on the right track. As Michael Neill puts it:
Moving forward when you are inspired is like climbing into a canoe and going for a ride down a river. Trying to move forward when you are out of touch with your inspiration is like carrying the canoe up a dry riverbed.
Some days it’s easier to get into the flow than others. During the recent schools half term holiday I found it easy. Because local schoolchildren weren’t spending hours doing sums or memorising spelling words, I didn’t worry that C(9) and J(7) weren’t.
Instead, we were free to play with magnets, make salt dough maps, and try art journalling. We had a great week and the kids learnt loads. It struck me that I could choose to take this same relaxed approach whenever I wanted. Why should I let the quality of our time be dictated by whether or not schoolchildren are sitting in classrooms?
So this week, I chose to stay in the flow. Learning has been organic and abundant. Here are some highlights. I’ll say more about most of them in separate posts.
When we studied magnetism I noticed the children were especially interested in magnetite and the magnetic field of the earth, so this week I strewed some resources about rocks and minerals. This has been a success! Even reluctant reader J(7) eagerly reading me extracts from the books they’ve found lying around (yay!).
We also watched a few You Tube videos to review the continents and for me to gauge their interest in volcanoes and earthquakes. We will definitely be following this up!
History & Geography
We’ve reached the history of medieval Japan in The Story of the World vol 2, so I brought out the lapbooks the children had made when we looked at Japan for geography last year. Happily looking back on what she’d made, C asked, “Why don’t we make lapbooks any more?”
This was a useful reminder to me that just because children lose interest in something (“I don’t want to make lapbooks any more. I much prefer notebooking now!”) doesn’t mean their interest won’t revive a few months later!
We also painted our salt dough maps (having finally given up waiting for them to dry and baking them!).
C and I used kneaded erasers to “draw” on charcoal. This was such a different way of looking at things, I could almost feel new brain connections forming as we worked!
New Projects – Kids’ Blogs
I was delighted when J(7) decided to create a blog to review video games, and I was even more thrilled when C(9) offered to type for him. These two do not often collaborate, so my heart sang as I heard them. C(9) meanwhile also learned how to scan her artwork and post it with commentary into her blog, Comics Are Fun.
Two successes here:
The children enjoyed practising their maths facts playing against children around the world in preparation for World Math Day on 6 March.
I introduced C(9) the relationship between fractions and decimals. Not only did she get it straight away, but she turned to me with a smile and said “You know Mummy, you’re getting much better at explaining things.” That made my day!
Friends joined us for poetry tea (and I discovered a new gluten and sugar free lemon drizzle cake – delicious! I just substituted a gluten free flour blend and added xanthan gum).