Wednesday, January 4, 2012

We are back!

Yesterday was the beginning of the third quarter of our first year of homeschooling. Now that we are halfway through our first year, I want to reflect upon what we have done so far.

Things I am proud of:
  • He will be finishing his kindergarten curriculum in February, and we will begin 1st grade work in March.  He is only 4 1/2 !!
  • He is doing a great job reading.  He can easily read three letter words and we will be starting to work on blends and digraphs in a few weeks (I just want him to continue reading what he is good at for now- no need to push him too far when he isn't even 5 yet)
  • His math skills amaze me. One of his favorite things to do is to solve math problems we give him while in the car, waiting for dinner to be finished, or any other time during the day.  I try to stump him, but he is very clever.  He is just like his daddy. :)
  • Tae Kwon Do is a great outlet for his energy and it is also helping us with his self-control issues. He is also doing better with courtesy and empathy with others.  I cannot stress how important this class is to his behavior.  It has been a God-send.
Things we need to work on:
  • I want to work on more music with him.  He isn't a fan of music.  He doesn't particularly like to sing and he has no interest in instruments.  He is so young that I haven't really felt it matters.  I still want him to be doing musical activities and I have let them fall to the wayside.  We can listen to music, do program music lessons, learn funny songs, etc.  I can incorporate more music in my lessons with him.  I feel bad for not doing more with music since I am a music teacher, but I feel that he gets so much exposure to music in the normal day that I don't need to beat him over the head with it.
  • Science!  We had done a lot more science earlier in the year, but then with the holidays I let science get skimpy.  I need to bring it back in again.  He loves doing experiments and observing nature.  It is so easy to do science with him, but I just have to plan it.
  • Fun.  We have fun, don't get me wrong, but he knows how to push my buttons before school starts.  As soon as he sees we are going to start doing something he begs to have a day off and gets a temper.  Once I push past that initial "I don't want to have to stop doing whatever I am currently doing" phase and start doing the lessons I have planned, he has fun.  He really does enjoy school, but he puts up such a fuss before we start.  I want to start the lesson with a really fun activity that he wants to stop whatever he is doing in order to play with me.  That will take some thinking, but I think it may be the best way for Sebastian to easy into the lessons.
Overall the school year is going great!  Some days are better than others, but I am so happy with the progress he has made this year.  It has solidified my resolve to continue homeschooling him for the next year.  If I put him in public school for his kindergarten year next year he would be BORED to tears.  To be honest, I think he might even cause trouble because of it.  Luckily for him I am hear to challenge him and help him to become whatever it is that he dreams to become.
Judge each day not by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant.  ~Robert Louis Stevenson


April said...

Your effort into planning and working with Sebastian does wonders! I wish more parents of public school kids would be as involved as you are.

How much writing are you doing with him? That's usually a good place to introduce blends and digraphs, when you have to stretch them out orally.

Elyse Rinehart said...

Thank you, April! I do writing with Sebastian every day. We have a phonics notebook I made and there are different writing activities in there that we do. Also, every Thursday we do Kid Writing, which makes him extend his writing to a sentence. He isn't the biggest fan of kid writing, but I can see an improvement since he started doing it in September.