Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Second grade, Day One- Homeschooling Update



Today was our first day of school for the year, officially speaking.































I know that we don't really need a first day, considering we have settled into a school-life balance where learning is just part of our normal flow, but I still want that for my kids. Maybe this is because I am a product of the American public school calendar and it's hard-wired into me. Maybe it's because everyone else's first day of school pictures on social media are so cute. Regardless, we kicked off the year today.

My second grader was exuberant. He was dressed and ready, shoes on and already-finished cereal bowl in the sink, before most of us were even out of bed.

As we prepared for the upcoming school year, I asked Sam to think about his goals as a second grader. He reminded me today that I had promised to post them for him. Here are his plans for this year:

"My goals are to build a robot, read some King Arthur and Shakespeare, learn to write in cursive, learn more about castles and how they were made (and big weapons they used like catapults, ballistas, etc.) and learn to make bread. Also learn to identify some new constellations I haven't learned yet."

This list makes me so unbelievably glad that we're homeschooling. I can't wait to dig into all that stuff with him!

We started our day today with breakfast, chores and free reading, followed by our Morning Meeting. Then we headed out to meet friends at our local greenway trail for some nature exploration.

The explorers ended up at the creek (as they often do). There's something magnetic about kids and water. The creekside nature exploration became kind of a mid-creek exploration, and the rocks were slick, and, well, you know...

In the end, two out of three walking Dupuy children were wet from the waist down, so we went home for dry shoes. (I had dry clothes with us, and snacks, and water bottles, and everything we'd need...just not extra shoes. Silly me.)

After a wardrobe adjustment and a snack, we met up with our homeschool group at the library to build some catapults that shoot marshmallows. Sam had made one of these a long time ago with a slightly different design (with hilarious results that might have ended with an interview by a catcus-turned-sports-commentator), and he was excited to try again now that he could do it without help.

When he was done flinging marshmallows around, we checked out some books and headed home for lunch and rest time.





I was dismayed to find that Sam had checked out a pretty awful My Little Pony book for Lucy at her request on his library card. This leads me to believe she asked him because she knew I would try to talk her out of it, since I had already read it to her five times at the library (and since it was SO AWFUL). 

The afternoon was spent doing a little math (Life of Fred, which Sam says he's missed so much that he couldn't wait to see what was going to happen in this next installment), some grammar review, and some light saber construction out of PVC pipe and painter's tape.

Sam got in some piano practice before dinner with a little assistance from the shortest member of the family, who has a real fascination with all things musical. I expect he will be over there every time the piano is open for a while. Fortunately, the gap between their ages is old enough that Felix never annoys Sam, just amuses him. It's amazing to see what a different reaction Sam has to Felix - he'd have been completely frustrated by his sisters' doing something similar, but when Felix does it, it's just cute. Sibling dynamics fascinate me.



We also celebrated the feast of The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary with a stack of Krispy Kreme donuts and some candles. (That's what happens when feast days sneak up on mama after vacation and coincide with homeschool donut fundraiser delivery day.) We'll call it Anti-Pinterest Liturgical Living- Do Not Try This At Home, Because You Can Surely Do Better.


All in all, it was a pretty awesome day.

How did your first day go? Anything you are planning to do differently on the days to come? Anything that went so well that you'll never change it again? I want to know!


Thanks to Janell for the creek and library photos!