Learning to Adapt in Order to Accomplish Tasks
So maybe your wondering what a typical day looks like in a homeschool classroom. We are fortunate enough to have a nice classroom set up. Jonathan has a student desk and next to it is a small table for keeping his supplies on. I have a desk, which is really an old dining room table, where I have a computer, printer, calendar, pens and various other desk supplies. It is here, that I try to plan and organize lesson plans and keep track of Jonathan’s work.
We also have a counter-top with cabinets above and below which is great for storing all the educational supplies that we purchase from year to year. On one wall I have a chalk board, and yes, I still use it regularly. Jonathan also will often go to the chalk board to problem solve in math, or write out sentences in writing. For him, it’s easier to free think with chalk than paper and pencil. I guess he gets writer’s block when I hand him a blank piece of paper and tell him to write something.
We do class work 4 days a week. Friday’s are reserved for extra-curricular activities. Friday mornings he has swim lesson and gym class, 2 Fridays a month he has co-op. Other Fridays I try to focus our time on service projects, or life skill lessons. Most days we begin our school day at about 10:00.
The first year homeschooling I really stressed about starting on time, and putting in a minimum of 5 hours. Now, we start when we are up, dressed, have breakfast eaten and minimal housework done, like making beds. We spend about 2 hours in the morning and 2 to 3 in the afternoon. Everyday we have Devotional or Bible Class, Spelling and Math. I believe those subjects are core to all of his learning. On alternate days we do science and history. We rotate between writing, reading and language arts on various days. This year, I’m trying to encourage a love of writing into Jonathan, he hates it, so we will most definitely be spending more time in that area, but in fun and different ways.
Then there are weeks and days like the one we are having this week. Since resuming school this school year Jonathan has had very little desire to actually spend time in the class room. So I moved the class room to the dining room table. I give him an overview of what is expected for the day, then let him decide what order he wants to do them in. He has been much more cooperative and willing to complete his work. He is working at a quicker pace and we are finishing up school in 2 to 3 hours.
Today, that left plenty of room for him to have some unexpected learning. My father-in-law was here helping my husband change tires on the vehicles. Jonathan was fascinated by this and wanted to know and see more about what was going on. Rather than insisting that he stick with me, get the classroom work done before going out. I allowed his curiosity to shine. Whenever he’d say “What’s that noise?” I’d say, “Go find out.”
He’d run outside and ask his grandpa all kinds of questions about the air pump or whatever other device was being used. Grandpa let him loosen some lug nuts and suddenly my sweet little boy felt like a man. He’d run back inside tell me what was going on then proceed to finish his assignment without argument. It was a good day.