Thursday, September 12, 2013

homeschool {ten years later!}

I haven't done a homeschool post in a good long time.
But I did a quick calculation in my brain today,
and as it turns out, I have just entered my TENTH year of homeschooling.
One decade.
What, what?!!
That's just crazy.
Mostly because I still feel like such an amateur.  
But YET, when I take a good look at the entire picture,
I think I've got a good grasp on this thing.

1.  I am militant.
I don't take any excuses for laziness.
And I expect and enforce HARD WORK.

2.  I can contort any math, spelling, or language arts lesson into a life lesson.
AND make it a stand-up comic act, if necessary.
Oh, yes I can.

3.  I can coerce and convince any child that he/she is amazing and that
doing extra work will turn them into a super hero.
(Or something like that.)

4.  I can come up with the most amazing motives and rewards that would make
even Donald Trump feel like a million bucks.

You know what?  I'll stop there.
Because if I go on, I'll be flat on my FACE tomorrow.
And believe me, I'm there OFTEN.  

Here's the thing about homeschooling.
You can be on Cloud #9 one minute, and the very NEXT minute,
plotting how you'll throw your kids onto the next yellow bus that passes your driveway.
I'm there, as I said, OFTEN.

The key to it ALL is, reminding yourself FREQUENTLY, why you're doing this.

As for us, TODAY, it just happened to be a VERY GOOD DAY.
Like, these kids were ROCK STARS.
They worked HARD, FOCUSED, and GOT. IT. ALL.
And in the end, I said to them,
"Hey, do your hearts feel right now?  You worked super hard,
you paid attention and you got your work done.  Doesn't that make your hearts feel HAPPY?"

They said, YES.

They got it.
Another LIFE lesson learned!

And then I pulled out all the stops and implemented a game I saw on Pinterest.
They thought it was THE coolest thing since Pacman.
Or something like that. 

Taking paper towel thingys (or as we call them here, hoo-hoo's),
or as I improvised in this situation, toilet paper hoo-hoo's,
and blow cotton balls across the kitchen table into a cup secured 
onto the other side of the table.
It was SO fun!

 They did this for HOURS!  No kidding.

And I'm going to let YOU in on a little secret.
These kids were ALL OVER that table.  Feet, butts, arms, legs, the whole thing.
And I completely, COMPLETELY, forgot all about it and just set the table
for dinner, as if nothing had happened.  

It's our little secret, okay?

It's all about immunity, right?
We're building strong immune systems here.

That's it.

And in keeping with the cotton ball theme,
I do a little incentive program.

For every good day the kiddos have...(and other favorable behaviors),
I give them a cotton ball in their assigned jars.

Once their jars are filled up, they get a prize.
Of some sort!

I have no idea what yet!

No really, I'll reward them, I will.
They will deserve it, if they ever get their jars filled.

And at the pace they're going, they'll be filled in in NO TIME.

In conclusion:
I am super thankful for our freedom to homeschool!
I pray that that freedom is PRESERVED.
And I am super thankful for these little humans who keep me going,
and who keep learning and learning.

They are so smart, I can't even believe it.

And tomorrow will probably be a completely opposite day than today.
I'm braced for it, man!


Karin said...

I'm having a different...ahem...week with homeschool (not the kids--they are fine--just me being overwhelmed). We have an incentive program too with prizes. I buy them at the $1 section at Target whenever I see something I think they would like. It goes in the 'treasure box' and they get to choose a prize when they get 10 stars (they get a star for one good day of not complaining and getting all their work done in a timely manner). I implemented this program in an attempt to stay sane last year after being driven to my wits end by copious whining.

connie said...

You are an amazing teacher and mama!!!

Cari said...

Great idea!

I have that same table & bench set!

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