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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

that's quite a gap!

August 21, the day after the start of a new school year.  Kids across the valley have climbed upon those big yellow buses, to big whisked off to new classrooms with new teachers and, hopefully, old friends.  Or, in our case, they've gathered in homeschool rooms or around kitchen tables with a stack of new books, a pile of sharpened pencils, and all the time in the world.

Yesterday, we started off at a [not] back to school pajama breakfast at a local restaurant.  A gaggle of fellow homeschoolers sat around, sipped coffee, discussed the coming year, and gorged themselves on sticky buns.  It was quite delicious and even more enjoyable.  Later, we stopped by the library to pick up that last book we needed for our first month of studies (in our pajamas, no less), and returned home to begin the children's coursework. 

The funny thing is, I didn't realize until just yesterday that I was about to have a son start middle school on the same day that my daughter started preschool.  It was a big day for both of them!

Katie was very excited to start her first day of school.  Alex was less so.  At first, I thought that he might be feeling down because he wasn't going off to the middle school like his best friend.  However, upon inquiry, it turned out that he was feeling nervous about the amount of course work that he has to do this year.  I will admit, it is quite a lot.  

He will be using the following texts: Spectrum Math, the Tan Book for Literature, Logic Liftoff, Spectrum Writing, Apologia Zoology, Mystery of History.  Alex will also be taking Keyboarding and Spanish I.  I was a little dismayed when it took him 5 hours to complete his schoolwork yesterday, but I think that we will hit a groove and it won't take him quite as long after a few weeks.

Katie will be following a letter of the week curriculum, concerning which she insists that she already knows her letters.  That may be, but she doesn't know their sounds or how to actually write them.  So, that's the plan for now.

My goals for the year don't focus around academics so much, though there are obviously goals for both children in that regard as well.  I hope to follow a more consistent discipline plan (we just starting using the If-Then chart from Doorposts), and to teach Katie and Alex to more cheerfully help with house chores.  Furthermore, I will strive to maintain more focus on being in the home, rather than running here, there, and everywhere about town just because we can.  

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