Thursday, December 29, 2011

Easing Back Into Homeschooling with a Head-Heart-Hands Rhythm

At first, the thought of starting school again next week terrified me.  I feel like I'm finally catching up and getting a break (although we do still have a birthday next week to plan for), and I don't feel like I've had any time to regroup and plan for our second half of the school year.  I considered taking an extra week off to do this, but the kids get restless if we take long breaks.  Instead, I'm going to treat January the same way I treat August, as a month of transition.  We're going to start slowly, and build as we go.

First, we're focusing on form drawing for the first two weeks.  Ella and I both love that, and we can get start on some of the new forms that deal with symmetry.

Second, We're easing back into math.  Slowly.  Earlier this month we gave Life of Fred (Apples) a shot, and it was a BIG hit.  Continuing with that and relearning those 11+ fact families that never quite stuck.  That should help us with that pesky subtraction block.  Multiplication is going well (just the 7-9 tables left to learn), so we'll  just review 1-6 for now and maybe add the 9's.

Most importantly, we're reestablishing our rhythms.  Particularly, we'll be focusing on what Waldorf  educators call head, heart, hands.  It's a method of teaching the whole child (head, heart, and hands) at different points throughout the day.  I find it's far too easy to finish with the head part of our schooling and kind of zone out for the rest of the day, but those heart and hands activities are so, so important.  I'm going to make it a point to really build some good habits and hit all three parts each and every day.  If you want to read more about head-heart-hands scheduling and what we're trying to fit in different portions of our days, you can read my post over at The Homeschool Classroom.

The Homeschool Classrom

Of course, we read a lot, and maybe doing a little spelling (because it's easy and rhythmical, and no one complains about it), but everything else can wait.  Baby Steps.

What's your plan for January?  Do you like to take things slow, or do you prefer to jump back in with both feet?

1 comment:

  1. I think easing back slowly is a great idea. I hadn't thought of doing it that way before (I know! It's so obvious! How do these things never occur to me?) but I think I'll do it that way this year. After I get done smacking myself in the forehead. Thanks!


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