A homeschooling post

My mom recently gave me Beyond Survival, by Diana Waring–a very nice book about the nuts and bolts of homeschooling.

I’ve been following several homeschooling blogs, one of which is Simple Homeschool. They always feature interesting bloggers and teachers and seminars. Lately they had a lady posting about Waldorf education, which basically runs like this:

Arts, crafts, and science experiments until they’re 7, then workbooks.

While this sounds lovely, I can’t face the idea of arts and crafts every day for school. And what if you have a mixed crowd, with some ages doing crafts, and others doing bookwork (and being very jealous of the younger kids)?

Kind of makes me want to grab a tent and run away to someplace like this.
Kind of makes me want to grab a tent and run away to someplace like this.

The 4 AM campfire, from InterfaceLift

I commented and said as much, and the nice lady replied,

As a non-arts and crafts person myself, I took this Waldorf idea and made sure that we had nice art supplies for the KIDS (not me) when they wanted to use them. I also found that while I don’t enjoy painting or drawing much myself, I do like making things that the family can use (like baking, candlemaking, etc.) and so I’ve put my emphasis there. There’s no pressure, just take what works and discard the rest!

Which has gotten my wheels turning. I’d love for the kids to have some textile art stuff around–you know, beginning knitting/crochet kits, beginning sewing, that kind of thing. And heck, it’d be fun to get some Sea Monkeys or some Triops. I don’t think any of those things cost very much (Sea Monkey kits cost less than 20$).

This is a sea monkey, otherwise known as brine shrimp. Full grown, they're about the size of a kid's fingernail.
This is a sea monkey, otherwise known as brine shrimp. Full grown, they’re about the size of a kid’s fingernail.

So, this weekend, I think we’ll take a trip to Michaels and see what we can dig up.

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4 thoughts on “A homeschooling post”

  1. How fun, my favorite way to homeschool. I always did that when you guys were small.
    Except don’t let the kids feed the sea monkeys/.:)

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  2. Sounds like fun! I’ve been pondering how I can make early homeschooling as low-stress as possible for myself, given that I will have 4 littles ages 4 and under (my husband wants me to start kindergarten officially with the oldest this fall, but we may wait until next year when he’s 5).

    My mom did homeschooling very formally: starting at a set time every day with a flag salute, a lesson plan for each day, a scheduled snack time, etc. It was fantastic and solid and structured, but I *know* that’s not going to be what homeschooling is like for me and my family, simply because I don’t have the same organizational strengths as my mom does, and because I have so many children who are all still very young. I’m thinking early homeschooling will involve lots of reading…lots of art…lots of discovery. Not a lot of rigid structure.

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    1. Hey Bethany, have you ever read about learning/teaching styles? It’s all connected to Myers-Briggs, so I know you’d love it. The four learning styles are Thinker, Sensor, Feeler, and Intuitive. I’m an Intuitive to the hilt, so a bit of a free-form approach works for me. I’m also planning my next school year to be very simple.

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      1. Ooh, that does sound awesome! I need to look that up. I’m probably very Intuitive in my style too, since an INFJ’s dominant function is their introverted intuition.

        My mom always made sure to find out whether our learning styles were auditory (that was me), kinesthetic (my sister), or visual (my mom is very visual). I bet I’d be inclined to be very auditory in my teaching style, but my kids may not be auditory learners and may need a different approach to learn some things.

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