Friday, August 25, 2017

Homeschool Lately

I’m a big believer in two things at the preschool age: books and play.

We all love reading and we spend a lot of time each day curled up on the couch or in somebody’s bed. We’re still reading through their daily devotional and we’re finishing up another run through the Jesus Storybook Bible. Along with that we read a daily poem from either A Child’s Garden of Verses or Where the Sidewalk Ends, and all kinds of fun picture books. We read fiction stories, fun science books, beautifully-written picture book biographies. A few recent favorites have been What’s New? The Zoo! // The Human Body // Mary Engelbreit’s Nursery and Fairy Tales Collection // Queen of the Diamond:The Lizzie Murphy Story // Actual Size // Gingerbread Man Superhero // Secrets of the Vegetable Garden // Nibbles the Book Monster // Summertime in the Big Woods

We learn around five new Spanish words, write a letter to a friend or family member and write a story in his journal each week. Otherwise, we play.

He has a really impressive four-year-old grasp on geography which I attribute to his love for puzzles, including our USA puzzle (and his excitement about reading lots of books that will let him color in states on our USA reading map). He’s starting to sound things out and to spell simple words (B-O-T, boat! F-R-E-N-D, friend!), and I think a lot of that comes the word games we play and the fun he has putting letters together on our Scrabble board and asking me what they say. He’s got a good grasp on his numbers and I think a lot of that is from all the time we’ve spent playing Chutes & Ladders, a simple version of Uno, Go-Fish, and hide-and-seek. He loves ABC and 123 dot-to-dots and loves coloring them in afterwards even more.

This has been fun all along. It makes me really happy when he makes a connection in a story we’re reading, when I catch him teaching his little sisters a letter or a number when they stumble across one, when he suddenly and randomly wrote six letters by himself one day, when he says Spanish words… but lately, gosh. Watching him put letters together and start slowly figuring this all out has been so amazing. I’ve sent Ryan probably 20 different text messages telling him about some super cool new development and then telling him I’m crazy thankful he’s on board with homeschool.

This has all been such a blessing to me. I am not naïve enough to think it’ll stay fun and easy forever. I mean, math. Chemistry. Eventually parts of this homeschool thing will really stink. We might have to tackle a learning disability down the road. We might have to deal with a constant power struggle with one of them… but for now, pretty much every minute of it is fun and amazing. And I get to be the one to teach him and to learn beside him. That has to count for something, right?

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