Sunday, 11 September 2011

Continuing the journey

This week just passed marked our first official week of Home Education. It was a fairly ordinary week. Nothing amazing happened (although i went to a great workshop on Saturday - more on that another time) and for the most part the days slipped by us, uneventful.

For Phoebe, the fact that her peers have started school is irrelevant. She is fortunate to be in a position where most of her friends are also home educated. She also is friends with children of varying ages, from ten down to three. So the importance of the moment escaped her, and that is as it should be for us really. I had kind of forgotten that this was the week until a good friend reminded me. I listened to her lovely plans for her sweet daughter, whose friends were going off to school, and the way she was going to make the week just as special so there would be no feeling of being left out. I thought it sounded so special (and it is) but failed to take into account the differences in our children's situations and temperaments. So on Monday when I spoke to Phoebe about it any mention at all of the words 'education' or 'special day/week' were met with a resounding "No!".  But you know what, thats just fine and as it should be. We really don't need to mark what is a natural continuation of our life and learning experiences so far. Not when Phoebe is not even aware she is 'school age' or any different to the majority of her peers.

So we had a nice week, just as we always do, but I did have a moment, just a moment, of going "Wow! We are actually doing it!". Not because i didn't think we would, or think we could, but just because now, when we are asked, I will no longer be saying "We are planning on Home Educating." but actually "We are Home Educating.". And we are so proud and pleased with our decision. It is so right for our family.

I am going to post more soon about our thoughts on the subject, and what Home Ed looks like for us, but for now I thought I would post a list of some of the things we have got up to in this, our (arbitrary and far too young) official first week.

Building train tracks and playing games with them and the dolls house and lego people.
Jumping on the bed, singing and being a 'rock star' with a tennis raquet.
Phoebe read books to Ezra on the sofa - Topsy and Tim and the Builders.
Reading stories together from a book bought by Grandad - A Children's Treasury of Literature.
Played with the children next door.
Tap Tap Art.
Playing in the garden - swinging, sliding, running, jumping, riding bikes and trikes, hula hooping, feeding the chickens, playing in the sand pit.
Making a mini book - Phoebe dictated the words to me and drew the pictures.
Building towers with blocks.
We started our first ever chapter book - The Folk of the Faraway Tree - and Phoebe loves it.
Played with our friends who came over to visit for the day.
Chose five cuddly toys to donate to an orphanage.
Played Poisson Rouge and Peep and the big wide world.
Made popcorn.
Made a birthday cake for an imaginary birthday and blew the candles out.
Did splatter painting and print making.
Played in the bath.
Had family drawing time.
Went shopping
Played with our new playtable and some vehicles.
Made patterns with bricks
Watched new playhouse being delivered and new front door being installed.
Had pancakes for breakfast.
Played chasing and tickling games.
Made a big indoor tunnnel to crawl through.
Used window crayons.
Took the dolls house dolls to their toy park.
Played imaginary games about going on holiday on a boat.
Blew bubbles
Started making a 'busy list' of fun things to do this autumn.
Made indoor slides.
Watched a few programs.
Made up jokes and magic tricks.
Made a finger print piggy photo frame.
Started making a cat bookmark.
Played on hammocks made from slings over the table.

These are just some snapshots from our week. It was a very enjoyable one - as they nearly always are. I want to end with a quote from Phoebe this week which just sums up the myriad of ways to learn and things to learn...

"Mummy, there are so many ways for everything!  Aren't there? Like swinging on tightropes... and sliding. Just everything! It's all so clever!"

1 comment:

  1. See to me that sounds like you celebrated the first week of term in your own happy unique way too. You talked a bit about 'education' (not sure I used that term with Charlie, think we just talked about it being a new term and what fun things did she want to do over the next few months), you marked the day with a small gift, and you've started something lovely and new to share together (chapter books). For us the week passed pretty much as all weeks do as well. We played, we read, we planned new adventures together and we got on with all the usual day to day family stuff as well. I think its easy to try and compare what different families do and question whether it would be right or wrong for you but the key thing is always to look at what suits your family and not worry too much about whether you tick the same boxes as others. For Charlie marking the first day was fun and a good excuse to start a couple of new family traditions but for Phoebe it sounds like she would prefer not to acknowledge it at all, neither is wrong nor right, just different :)