The Shinny Eyes (The Story of Waiting for AO Year 1)

I’ve very glad I waited until my daughter was almost seven to start with AO year 1. She is a September girl, and it had to be either starting last fall when she was just six, starting in January, or waiting until this fall. Last fall would not have worked, January was odd to me, so we waited, but not to the fall, just until now. We have started now because we will have a long vacation, and I feel the summer was getting too long and boring without some ‘school’, and because I knew she was ready. I wanted to change the all year round idea, but it is the one that fits our family best, being without our daily read aloud times, without me finding math games and learning how to better teach it, or without having ‘excuses’ to get the clay, play dough, paint and such out, I go crazy, and they too!

But this time we are doing things differently. Before, when we were supposedly in Year O.5, I always used to load her plate much more every day we did lessons. What we have started may be insufficient, but who is to say? It was very needed to regain that passion and love for learning they are born with and that I cultivate too, and we had to, had to slow down and start small. I’m very convinced that the POETIC KNOWLEDGE BOOK CLUB has much to do with my renewed attitude.

The picture is from last Thursday with a friend when they three painted t-shirts with fabric markers

In less than a week, today my oldest daughter declared that she loves our new ‘homeschooling’. And when she listened to Our Island Story from Librivox, thank you Pam, and to Fifty Famous Stories read by me, her eyes were shinning, and her narrations were truly good. The same yesterday with Paddle to the Sea, and the day before with Aesop Fables, Just So Stories, etc. In one word, I truly thought it may still be quite challenging, but it’s right on the spot for her. While narrating the story about King Alfred and the cakes, she just thought he was fighting for the Americans, and she asked me about the Danes, and why they wanted to fight. Truly children have a talent for realizing the absurdity and selfishness of wars and human nature. She was captivated too by the story of Absalon and Brutus. We are also reading a poem a day from A Child’s Garden of Verses, and delighting on The Dragons are Singing Tonight, by Prelusky.

I’m also glad I got Kitchen Table Math. We played subtraction and addition war with cards, and I see lots of benefits from this paper pencil break, and from reading the book to understand how to teach math. You can truly use any program with this book, or use none, you’ll be fine, the trick to me it is to make some math happen every day or often (we skipped it today!). We are still in a transitional mode, I do know we will gain more momentum, because for example, my husband is off tomorrow and Monday, so we will take them to the movies for free. They’ve been to the movies for a dollar once almost three years ago. We went to see The Tale of Desperaux, we listened to the book in audio, and my husband and I loved it.  I can’t believe there are free family shows in the theaters around! We’ll see how it goes.

She is also enjoying her recorder and the DVD to practice from it. All in all, we are having a wonderful summer season alternating some of the Charlotte Mason principles with a summer with friends in the water park, lazy afternoons, walks, and some special things with mom and dad or friends.

As for me, I continue with The Republic, but I got The Diviner yesterday, and I started to read what it is a wonderful collection of short stories by Friel. LIFE IS SO GOOD!

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2 comments on “The Shinny Eyes (The Story of Waiting for AO Year 1)

  1. How sweet for you . After a few weeks of very minimal school work, I'm ready to start our new year. Our aim is to start in August. We just need to finish some summer reading, a little math, wrap up our history readings and some swim lessons.

    BTW I have the Munro Leaf's “Manners Can Be Fun” as part of our habits/virtues for my 1st and K boys. 🙂

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  2. That's true Pam! Both Ferdinand and Wee Gillis are in the Five in a Row lists, and both are lovely books.
    We read his Manners Can Be Fun, and it was fun. I have a small collection of manners books I love, Grace'n'Chaos, I'll post about it. I have a weakness for manner books, and I've collected just a few great ones.

    Sounds like a lovely summer. I wish you a great August start.

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