We have made it through our first three days of home school. Only 2 more days until the weekend!! Is it bad that I’m counting down to the weekend already??
This week is all about figuring out how I want to do this. I’m pretty sure the whole year will be about that really. Every single day has brought a different set of challenges. The first day it was Daniel in the afternoon. The second day it was a battle of the wills with Joshua. Today it was a nap time struggle with JD and several phone calls and door knocks. I’m always torn on whether or not to answer these things.
The biggest change today that I made was the behavior system. Alan suggested, after yesterday’s battle of the wills, that I switch to the color system that the boys’ elementary school used. In their eyes, everything that our Virginia school did was the golden standard of what should happen at school, so anything that I can do that is like their old school will be well accepted.
Boy, was Alan right. We made a very official looking chart last night for the boys to track their behavior. Joshua walked in this morning, saw it hanging on the wall, and said, “Oh, ya made the colors chart, eh?” Then he giggled, “You used Candy Land cards.”
Hey. The Candy Land cards are perfect little color squares, and I was rather proud of Alan for thinking of it. 🙂
I consider this our first great victory of home-schooling. This worked like a charm. The threat of being changed to blue or even yellow saved my school day. Everyone managed to earn their way back to orange by the end of the day, and that was an accomplishment because one student spent some time on yellow, let me tell you.
What am I talking about? Well, everyone starts out on orange. If you’ve been warned, but you still aren’t obeying, you get changed to blue. You have to go up to the front of the class and change your color yourself. If you continue to cause problems for your teacher, you go to yellow.
If you are an amazing and exemplary student, you can even earn double orange.
Today feels like that Mary Tyler Moore song, “You might just make it after all!” Where’s a hat I can thrown in the air???
The Dan Plan: Dan must do a craft every day. This keeps him extremely happy and well occupied. He’s actually an AMAZING student. He runs and sits in his seat every morning, first thing. He never argues with me, and he always finishes his work without complaining. He also doesn’t bother anyone……Well, he does bother JD. I can’t imagine what it’s like to have THREE older brothers. I hope you all treat JD with a huge dose of grace. I can’t tell you what he goes through.
Dan wants to do EVERYTHING his brothers do. They love show and tell.
Academically, the kids are off to a high-flying start. The first week is review material, so they’ve found it very easy, especially Caleb. This has made Caleb very easy to deal with. Caleb is a wonderful student, as long as he doesn’t feel intimidated. Actually, Caleb’s happy attitude has been a life-saver. Thank you so much, Caleb!!! I’m taking him to the pool Friday to reward him for being such a positive influence in our school.
A Beka Math is no joke, though, so I have to introduce multiplication to Joshua on Friday. It’s in the review section. Ha! Joshua’s never done multiplication. I’m so thankful his teacher last year made him do so much addition and subtraction practice, though. He’s had two addition speed drills this week, and he aced them both with flying colors–way under the time limit.
Also, I assessed their reading levels using a test that only went to 5th grade. Joshua scored perfectly, so I know he’s at least at a 5th grade reading level. Caleb’s score was still in the 1st grade level, but I expected as much.
I kind of feel like I will learn as much as they will this year. I know I’m going to have to make serious strides in self-discipline and patience!!
1. Caleb: I just want to sit by Joshua!
2. Joshua….on a different day: I just want to play with Caleb!!
While it’s a little sad that we don’t have friends, I do appreciate how much closer we are all growing as a family.
3.We heard knocking on the door. Joshua ran to the window. “It’s ups! It’s ups!”
Me: “Huh? What’s ups??” I looked out the window and spotted the UPS truck. “Ohhhhh. It’s called UPS, boys. Yes, Joshua, go get your package.” (He was excitedly waiting for a new book he’d ordered.)
One thing you don’t have to worry about is the boys being with other kids. They truly are each other’s entertainment. Right now two of them are in Joshua and Caleb’s room, discussing costumes and Lego creations.
I would also like to say thank you to Donna!! Donna has been sending me wonderful Pinterest links on teaching ideas. Keep ’em coming, Donna! I’ve found some great ideas this way.
I need to say thank you to Alan too. He’s in up to his eye balls in school work, but he’s been coming home everyday and picking up toys, vacuuming floors, and folding laundry. What would I do without you???
By the way, my house still has almost nothing on the wall, and the boxes are not all unpacked yet. When will we ever have time???
Home school perk: I don’t have to build Dan’s tracks anymore. Joshua and Caleb happily did this for me. Roll tide!!