It’s what works for us.

We don’t fit in any mold.  I don’t follow any one theroy or philosophy of education, a la Charlotte Mason.  We aren’t as unrestricted as Unschoolers, yet are no where near as demanding as Classicals.

My philosphy of education is:

Do whatever works.

That said, what worked last week may not work this week. Heck, what worked yesterday may not work today!  But we keep trying.

The only problem with this approach, is that it is very easy for me to get discouraged while reading through “support group” emails and newsletters.  Homeschool has become a big business.  There are catalogs to look through, and advertisements every where all claiming that with this product your life as a homeschool will be so much easier.  Don’t fall for it.  I love this quote:

“No curriculum will miraculously turn you into the happy teacher, or your children into the happy taught, because those roles are won only with much prayer and relationship-building.” – Jenni @ One Thing

Because it’s so true!  The same is said for approaches, methods, and educational philosophies.  There is no one sizes fits all package.  It gets discourageing to read about the child prodigy who was reading before he could even speak.  (exaggeration, yes…  but only slighty.)  It’s like that book I read a few months ago, Lies Homeschooling Moms Believe, I so need to re-read this one, on an almost weekly basis until the truth settles in.

So while it seems so hodge-podge and so much like we aren’t doing a blessed thing…  The proof is there.  Whatever it is we are, or are not doing…  It works.

GeekBoy is steadily blowing through 3rd grade math and masters the concepts at an almost frightening speed.  Keep in mind, he’s only 7, and according to the state should be in 2nd grade.  He is requesting more Science experiments, and is a whiz at complex games.  True, our history is sorely lacking, but he understand economics better then most of our Nation’s Senators, including the ones running for President!  In today’s world, a firm grasp on how our country’s economy works is far more importnat then knowing who started Babylonia back in the BCs (Hammurabi, btw, we just covered that in Story of the World).

ThePinkDiva can read, when she wants to.  She can also add and even subtract, when she wants to.  The key there is “when she wants to.”  Believe me, if she is not feeling it right now, it will do you no good to press the matter.  She will do it when she is good and ready and not one milli-second before that.  She’s proven, by reading the text on her video games, that she is light years ahead of our phonics program’s sticker chart.  But try to get her to read a book is like pulling teeth!  She likes to just make up words instead of reading what’s on the page.  It’s frustrating!  It’s maddening!  It’s just like my baby sister was at Diva’s age.  I remember it was me who got Nani to focus on the pages in front of her to “find the fun” 20 years ago.  Diva laughs at me.  I think I’ve lost my touch.

BigBoy.  He’s my baby, but don’t tell him I said that.  His little face is my solace after a morning of fighting and arguing.  He’s also very, very physical.  And he’s another one that can do things when he’s not really thinking about it…  Example, I asked him to count to ten, and he couldn’t.  He got to five, then skipped to 9, 12, 16.  Not a big deal, I mean, he got the order correct even if he skipped a few.  So we started working on counting to ten.  Then, a few days later, while waiting for me to get his snack, I told him I need I minute, and he began counting super fast! 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 14 15 16! Well, ok he missed 13, but dangitall if he can’t count all the way to 12!!!  And again got the order correct all the way to 16!!  When did this happen?  I surely have not been working on this with him.

So the proof is there.  What we are doing is working.  If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!  Now I just need to keep reminding myself to utilize that delete key and quit beating myself up.  They are thriving.  That’s what counts.

First Game of the Season

Kickin the ball

BigBoy had a great time kicking the ball around until the other parents took the field with their kids. There was like two parents for almost every kid!  We had two dads drag their screaming 3 yr olds on and insist they were going to play, and another mom rolled her stroller on the field… and keep in mind the whole “field” for the 2-3yr old is maybe 5 ft wide & maybe 10 ft long. Not very big, so with all the grown ups, the kids didn’t have much room!  Then there was the dad who decided that while the 3 yr olds were kicking balls into the goal, he would play goalie, and he kept blocking them! They are 3!!  AHHH!  Next week, I swear I’m taking more control of BigBoy’s side of field, and kicking off the parents and organizing the kids.  But whatever, the chaos was enough to make BigBoy decide he was done.  So we left & went to watch GeekBoy’s game.

My Ball!

GeekBoy played goalie.  They got one past him, but that was it.  I have photos of 7 different saves, and I know there was at least one that I didn’t get a picture of.  So, he had 8 saves.  He was all over that goal line.  Even his coach was impressed.  Coach said he has a natural talent for the position.  We have a few shots where you can see he was on the other side of the goal, and the ball looks like it’s going in, and in the next half a second, he’s behind the ball, and has caught it!  The boy moves fast!  At half time, one of the other boys on his team asked to be goalie.  GeekBoy didn’t mind, so the switch was made.  While GeekBoy was playing somewhere out in midfield he stopped the ball, with his chin.  Poor guy.  It stunned him more then anything, but after a tooth check, and a slug of water, he was back out on the field.  The other boy lasted in goal for all of about 5 minutes before he started yelling for GeekBoy to come take the “penny” shirt and be goalie instead.  GeekBoy didn’t mind one bit, he loves being goalie.

HA HA! Denied!

Final Score – Our team – 3, their team – 1.

View the whole set here.

Spy Codes

We had planned a field trip for today. We were supossed to go to Williamsburg for the Crack the Code class.  GeekBoy was really looking forward to learning about spies.

But.

A stomach bug hit our home, and at least one of our number spent the better part of the morning on the pot.  Add in mom’s bad foot & arthritic flare-up, and well, it made more sense to stay home, closer to the throne.

So after a quick scramble, and a bit of help from Google, I pulled together some fun Spy type stuff.  Like an encoded message, using the CUPID code, to tell him it was lunchtime.  Here’s some more links for your little spies:

Revolutionary War Spies @ CIA.gov

Colonial Williamsburg Spy info

Revolutionary Spies

A Few Fun Activities

Hanna hits the East Coast!

We took a few days off to prepare for what was supposed to be almost a direct hit from a fairly-powerful-Tropical-Storm-which-might-be-a-hurricane-when-it-gets-here.

Well, the storm was a bust.  The almost direct hit wound up being a state & a half away.  But, we had fun learning about hurricanes & weather patterrns. GeekBoy also did a few weather reports.  It was fun.

Enjoy!

Soccer!

So, GeekBoy has decided to play soccer this year.  August 30th was his first day on the field, and yes, I’m just now getting to write this up!  tell you anything about our week?  *S*  Anyway, it was the Opening Day, come meet ur coach type clinic.  Coach K seems to be a nice coach.  He seems very mild mannered and understanding.  “He’s nice & good.  Teaching us good stuff. Showing us how to exercise our bodies and stuff,” says GeekBoy.

Practice was last Thursday.  After a few drill Coach broke everyone up into teams and let them play a little mini-game.  GeekBoy requested the goalie position, and he loves it!

SAVE!

Coach said he’s not nailed into it, but if Goalie is what he wants, it’s all his.

View more photos at flickr: the soccer set.