Sunday, October 26, 2014

granola mommy

I had always intended to be at home with my kids.  Prior to having kids I designed a career that would allow that.

I wore my babies because it made sense and I knew they would be warm.  I liked knowing they were next to me and I could look at them and chat with them easily.

I breast fed because it made sense to me.  My milk was free and always handy.  All I needed was a few diapers, wipes and a bib.

I became an advocate of allowing free play after seeing how well my kids and their friends who played developed in multiple domains.

I started shopping organic when both tr and qt got diahrea at 1 and 3 and we later got notice of a recall on eggs.  After that we only got cage free and decided to get milk without hormones if we were buying free egs. Now I like my farm fresh cage free eggs.

Home school started because I accepted my kid didn't need to mold herself into an average box when she is able and wanting more challenge.  I really enjoy homeschool and I think it makes family life so much easier and relaxed.

Sometimes I look at how granola we are, and realize we didn't begin that way, we just did what worked for our family and what made most sense for our family goals.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Suddenly Homeschool

TR is now a homeschooled student.  QT still is in kindergarten and says he wants to homeschool next year.  I told him if the school gets a good teacher TR can return.

The school is looking for a teacher to split the grades but homeschool makes sense for TR.

Last week we met with the teacher and school superintendent.  I had a list of concerns with the instruction.  A teacher is supposed to speak to the children and allow them to speak to help develop oral language and verbal communication skills.  If th teacher is speaking using proper grammar the students model that and they learn turn taking, listening and how to participate in group dialogue.  TR's teacher did not speak to the children.  The woman told them the next assignment, and never had dialogue.  She did not explain any material or review any work.  She put the answer sheet on the overheard/smart board and the kids self-corrected.

TR was bringing home grammar work sheets so I assumed the teacher was covering grammar.  The teacher was not, she had them do the sheets independently and never explained anything about parts of speech or constructing a sentence.  So I am beginning at the beginning of everything.

TR and her classmates would spend much of the school day writing and passing notes or games back and forth.  I discovered last week that the 1st graders do not get reading books until the end of the year.  Right now they read little books with 2 and 3 letter words.

The teacher told me, most of the kids in the class do not read.  I feel like they were casting us as the parents who wanted our advanced child to be focused on.  I only want a teacher who knows how and wants to teach.  The teacher should be able to expand or reduce assignments to meet kids needs.  Her only strategy was letting kids read once done with their work.  The teacher also gsve out bunches if dittos but those dittos don't go home.  The dittos are just busy work.

I had been suspecting nothing was being taught but I was hoping she was waiting to get the kids familiar with the rules or her class room methods.  I just accepted that the woman is there for a check and the school won't fire her.

I have been informed that multiple parents are complaining and meeting with the superintendent.  We met with him but we met just to explain to the teacher why she was failing in her jobs and that TR was done in her class.

Back to honeschool 

My mom did an academic assessment on TR and she is at a 3rd/4th grade level.  We are beginning homeschool with 1st grade materials because I want to be sure she has a foundation in everything.
We started spelling in 2nd because I cannot torture her with 1st grade words.

Today we started with a math assessment and it indicates we should do 3rd grade math.  TR's favorite subject is math, so we spent 1.5 hours on it.  Part of math was reading a story called Bigger, Better, Best about measuring area because, a brother and sister were fighting about who had the bigger window and room.

We read Strenga Nona and discussed the problem and solution, we then moved to Spanish.  I am using 'Teach Them Spanish" the kindergarten book.  We did phonics, grammar/language  and identified nouns, we used a dictionary and .we did reading comprehension and TR took notes on narrative text.  I did not tell her to take notes.  She wanted to.  We discussed diagramming stories and purpose of  narrative texts.  She wrote about her first day of homeschool.

It is only the first day but I like that I don't have to beg a teacher to educate my kid.  I will save my tuition and ensure she is thoroughly educated.  I wish she could have the school experience but being stifled and forced to sit and do nothing in a classroom would be a disaster.  Fortunately she has football, gymnastics, karate and girl scouts to socialize with kids.

We read a story

Friday, September 26, 2014

Here we are

We are into the first month of school.

I don't think TR has an effective teacher so I am pondering what to do.  QT has a great teacher, so I intend to let him stay but I cannot let TR spend two years with a teacher who is blahhhhhh.

TR had such an excellent kindergarten teacher and it breaks my heart that she now has to deal with a mediocre teacher.

I offered to volunteer in TR's class and the teacher said she did not need help. What teacher cannot use help?

So I volunteered on Thursday and she had me work with 3 2nd grade boys. 2 of the boys could not read, one did not know how to space his words when writing, or spell and the other just kept saying things were hard and he could not do it.

The third boy was just a slower reader but he was focused.  TR's teacher taught these boys in 1st grade, so it seems she failed to teach them.  I also wonder about the parents.  Even in private school, I do no expect the teacher to replace a parent.  Parents have to ensure the kid is progressing.

I need to figure out what the teacher has planned because I can homeschool and save that tuition.  I like the 3rd/4th grade teacher so TR can return then.  QT is also doing well and if this teacher does not retire I cannot turn him over to her to fail.

It is quite frustrating.  I wish my mother would observe for a  day and tell me if teaching was
occurring and if the teacher is so useless as to cause regression,

Friday, September 5, 2014

school things

I am still evaluating my feelings on this new school.  QT is happy. He is also 4.5 doing kindergarten work.  TR's kinder teacher was amazing and only had 3 students.  So TR is ready for 3rd/4th grade but doing 1st grade work.

Mr. A was voted to lead the parent association. He is a trained leader and a natural leader so it makes sense.

The A's on the first day of school 2014

The last time I gave TR a bananna and honey hair smoothie her curls stayed.  She wore it down for about 4 days and then I finger parted it and went with this.  When I get time this weeked, I will dampen it and section it and twist it/braid it.

Friday, August 22, 2014

1st day of a new school

QT began Junior Kindergarten today (Thursday) and TR started 1st grade.

QT likes his teacher.  He packed up a gift to take her on Friday.  A few kids from TR's old school are also at the new school.  It still makes me sad that our wonderul little school closed so I imagine it is hard for TR to move from a school she loved.  She  regularly asks if the school will remain closed and if she can return if it reopens. She knows she has options for schools and has identified a school to go to, if this school does not work.

The new school is also small though bigger than the prior school. QT's class has 18 kids and TR's class looks to have 20.  TR said a little boy in 1st, laid on the floor and spun during class.  She prayed for him in her pre-dinner prayer.  QT said a boy in his class kept interrupting the teacher and other students.

Hopefully the teachers will reign those kids in.  Kindergarten and 1st is to important to lose instructional time for behavior issues.

The 1st day was 1/2 a day, and that gave the kids a chance to see the environment and go home and prepare.

Saturday is TR's first meet and we'll be busy the next few days.  I have hearing out of town and I am hopeful my case settles so I can stay home.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hair Smoothie

It has been a few weeks since I gave TR a hair treatment.  Her curl pattern changed.  It used to be corkscrew curls and now it's more waves when wet but the corkscrews appear when dry and moisturized. QT and Mr A will get some and maybe me too.

This morning I plan to put the following ingredients in the blender on smoothie setting

-1 whole  ( I love the moisture results from the bannana.)
-two tbsp avocado oil
-1 tbsp coconut oil
-1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-1 egg
-1 tbsp honey

After a few months of trial and more trial, I really like what bananna and honey offer in the smoothie.

Friday, August 15, 2014

bye bye summer

Science class was the body
We visited Fairyland

We signed TR up for Karate. She doesn't have much free time with gymnastics but she really wants to take the class.  Her class is a different day from QT's karate so I just gave myself a new task. *deep sigh*