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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Summer Homeschool - Not All Fun and Games

Spelling Words

I can't even begin to describe to you how stress-free I have felt this last week since making the decision to keep my kids at home during the last fluff week of school rather than having to deal with getting them there on time and then picking them up in the hot summer weather. I feel rejuvenated--I can even get more things done during the day...something I thought was impossible to do with my kids at home.

We've already gotten up at 6 am to go blackberry and wild plum picking. Our grocery shopping for the week is done (I'm now spending an average of $25 a week on groceries since most of our food needs are being met through our garden and harvesting of wild fruits). We even started a summer school homeschooling program for my oldest son, but it will be beneficial for all my kids.

I haven't really eluded to the main reason I took my boys out of school a week early, and my reason is because I feel my oldest is ill prepared for second grade. I honestly don't think he has retained much of what was taught to him his first grade year. I am worried that if he continues on the path he's been on that he will most certainly fail second grade--or at least should fail second grade if it weren't for the special education program he is currently enrolled in.

I've spoken with my son's current teacher about my concerns with my seven-year-old and together we have come up with some solutions that I hope will help him over the summer. About a month ago she gave me all the first grade spelling words and the second grade high frequency words to go over with my oldest during the summer.

Spelling and Vocabulary Words

She's also given me practice workbooks and the basic letter workbook they have been using.

Practice Books

Both of these resources should help all my sons with school since all three will be attending elementary school next year.

We're also daily going over math.


Have I Ever Mentioned How Much I Loathe Math?

I even picked up a few basic readers to help me teach my sons how to read. Most of the books I picked up at yard sales, and this one has to be my favorite.

The Little White House basic reader

The Little White House basic reader

We are rewarding my oldest with trips to the dollar store for getting at least an 80 percent on the two spelling tests he is taking each week. So, even though I have taken my kids out of school early, it is definitely not all fun and games over here.

Although sometime this week we are going to the lake. Tomorrow, in fact, if my zoom lens arrives in time.


Leigh said...

It's so great that you're taking such an active role in your kids' educations. My kids have always been home with me because we've never lived in a school district that we were comfortable sending our kids to.

Good luck with your summer school!

Screwed Up Texan said...

Leigh, The more I blog, the more I find parents that have chosen to homeschool. Schools can be so frustrating...although I am looking forward to being home alone in a couple months.

Foursons said...

I love that his teacher gave you so many resources. And honestly- the first thing I noticed was your son's pencil grip. It is PERFECT! Hahaha- spoken from a mom of a child with fine motor skill disabilities. :)

You are doing great and I'm sure your son will benefit greatly from all your hard work.

Malina said...

I hope it goes great for you. Glad you got resources from the teacher.

Actively involved parents are needed for their kids' education no matter where the parents choose to have the kids formal learning take place. So kudos for you! (And lots of Dr Pepper to keep you in a good mood. ;) )

There is a website called spellingcity for spelling games if you want to try it out maybe. And then for math games you could get math blaster. There should be cheap versions on Ebay possibly since its been around forever. :D Reading website - is pretty cute for learning to read.

Make sure to sign up for the library summer reading program since they give your kids little trinkets for reading books. The library has tons of easy readers as well. If you don't want to take all 3 with you there, you can always go in the evening and pick some up yourself. (Library Elf will email you and tell you when books are due too. )

Screwed Up Texan said...

Foursons, I hadnt even noticed the pencil grip!

Malina, Thanks for the tips!

Teddy Started It said...

Wow! I'm so impressed with your discipline. I spent yesterday afternoon with a mom who tutors 1st graders. She's already booked all summer. I was shocked to learn how many kids are already behind when they finish 1st grade. Good for you for doing what it takes.

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

DON'T BE A MATH HATER!!! :-) can you tell I used to teach HS math and I've seen your kind before.

ha ha

Good job keeping going on school. The last week is always a joke and my husband always gets his panties in a twist over it. So I just say, Was it any different when we were kids? Has it ever been any different at the 3 different schools we've sent our kids to? No? Are you noticing a pattern here????

My kids did fine in school this year. All a's and only a handful of b's. But, I still want them to stay sharp and have something to do this summer. We are just doing workbooks, probably not that interesting to them but they are at least using their brain for something other than trying to remember the TV program schedule.

Mindee@ourfrontdoor said...

Good job! That requires a lot of self-discipline on your part. I'm impressed with you.

Weekend Cowgirl said...

You get a Dr. Pepper for being such a good mom!!

Games said...

Great post! I'm impressed with you.

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