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