Wednesday, September 10, 2008

We survived Day One!

Here's a picture I took of Nathan today. There were no sleepy, puffy morning eyes -- just as cute as ever. Hardly seems fair. Our first day of school went well. I got to bed around 1:20am and woke up with a horrible sore throat. Not a fun way to start the year off, but we managed. Neil had rough start too and came into my room telling me how school was dumb and that it was still the middle of summer. Poor kid. I hope the year goes smoothly. Neil is in 1st grade, Nathan is in 4th grade and Nicole is in 12th grade. Nathan's curriculum took a big jump from last year to this year, so he'll have to get used to that. He already asked, "Can we skip these problems?" when he saw some 5-digit addition math problems. LOL -- no, not today, not on day one. Nicole's physics might be another story.

Every year I keep track of the kid's reading a different way. Last year I made a huge gumball machine on poster board. Each time the kids read a book, they wrote the title on a little round sticker. I made the machine too big, but by the end of the year we had a good amount of gumballs in our machine. It was mostly Nathan & Neil's books, so there would have been more if Nicole had added all the stuff she read. This year I made a giant pickle jar and I have a cut-out of Dilly next to it. For each book the kids read, they'll write the book title on a little green pickle and stick it in the jar. Hopefully, we can get that jar filled up. I'll post a picture of it sometime when I have the okay to show Dilly. He's happy -- he already has a pickle in his jar! We started reading How To Eat Fried Worms today. I think the boys will really enjoy that story. I loved it when I was a kid, even with my aversion to worms. Anyway, I'm just glad we made it through the first day -- whew!


  1. What a good looking fella!

    Great idea with the gumball machine and the pickle jar...I might have to try something like that at the complex I manage to try to get those kids to read more...

    Hope tomorrow or is it already today (3 a.m. here...couldn't sleep) starts off better for you and your students...the first day is always tough...

  2. Well done. You'll soon have forgotten what it was like to be on holiday! :-))
    Hope the sore throat feels better soon. (Sleeping might be a good idea!)

  3. Brenda -- We've done all sorts of things for reading. We've done a tree with the books written on paper leaves. That was fun to watch the tree go from being bare to full. We've also done ants on a picnic scene, dog bones, paper chains, gumballs ... This year it's all about pickles!

    Thanks Doda! Yeah, I probably should get back to bed. I was sound asleep and it's 3am now. Don't know what possessed me to turn the pc on at this hour.

    Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Hi Rena,
    As I said, I don't know HOW you do it! I can only imagine how things would go here if I tried to homeschool my kids. How do you keep two kids occupied and quiet while you're trying to teach the other a completely different curriculum? Do you have a special room that you use only during "school hours" so there are no distractions? And how do you get anything else, cleaning, laundry....?? Wow, I give you so much credit - I think I would lose my mind!

    I think its great that you use so many cool, creative ideas like the gumballs, trees, and paper chains!

    Btw, hope your sore throat is better :)


  5. Hi Neen,

    Thanks for stopping by. Yeah, it does get crazy with the different ages, but we manage. I'm only doing 3 now, whereas I was teaching 4 kids. Nicole is a senior and she's been homeschooling 10 years already, so she's really set in her routine. A lot of stuff she can do on her own. The boys are different and need me there all the time to keep them on track. Sometimes I work with one while the other does something, and sometimes we do things together. It works out in the long run. We have a big office downstairs that we use as a classroom. It has several tables, so we just spread out in there. If I'm working with the boys, Nicole usually goes someplace else so she can concentrate on what she's doing. It gets crazy and I always have those days where I get frustrated and say, "If you were in public school you would have to ..." LOL! For the most part, we enjoy homeschooling and it works well for our family. It's definitely not for everyone though. :)

  6. Nice picture. Sounds like you have a lot of creativity going on over there. That's the important part - keeping it interesting and fun - otherwise, you wouldn't make it but as long as you've been doing it, guess you are down to a science with the teaching and all - E :)