September 3, 2013

First Day of School 2013-2014

We started school last week, so I wanted to share with you some photos of what we did...
Now some homeschooling families go year round. Other's choose the 6 weeks on, 1 week off cycle. And then a few take the the summer off. We are of the last group. We always take the summer off to allow maximum time for the boys to spend as part of our harvest season. They do a LOT of "man work" with my father-in-law and Love Of My Life on the farm and we believe that's an important aspect of their education as boys.

However, that also means that starting school is a bit like pulling teeth...LOL! So this year I decided to ease into our full schedule, knowing that Little Britches was going to have a LOT more to do this year as part of this 2nd grade curriculum.

We started their day with a lapfull of snuggles and morning prayers. Then while they were both doing their chores and getting dressed, I made a special breakfast...eggs, beef summer sausage and toast w/jelly! And because I know that he LOVES them (even though I think they are disgusting) I made Little Britches a "sunnyside up".
It was a fabulous breakfast--we get farm fresh eggs, the sausage fresh made from our local butcher and of course bread made by me! And something we normally only eat on weekends...needless to say he greatly enjoyed it!

We started our school day with school photos. I made the boys each a sign to hold so I don't have to remember what year it was!
I'll share more of their photos when I post our curriculum list later...

Rather then jump right into our curriculum, I had them sit on the floor with me and we looked through our curriculum basket to see what we are going to be working on this year. I showed him each book and let him look through it if he was interested. He enjoyed flipping through the science books and checking out the magnet kit.
I will be sharing our full curriculum next week. But you can see our basket here...some of you might even be able to pick out what we are using.

The next thing we did was make a chain to count down the days until we will leave for our trip to attend the Feast of Tabernacles--this year we are going out to Oregon to be with my parents and grandma!

We started by counting the total days on a calendar. Then we counted how many Sabbaths there were. Then we noted when Feast of Trumpets and Day of Atonement were. Then we used our math to figure out how many "regular color" links we needed compared to our "special color" links for the Holy Days and weekly Sabbath. See, THAT math is "fun" to figure out! LOL!

Both boys worked on the chain--Little Britches wrote words on the special chains while Baby Britches put stickers on them.

Then Little Britches started putting it together--I helped with the stapling since it can be hard sometimes. He had to remember our pattern--AND remember to put in the special links--then pick back up the pattern!
We hung it up in the doorway when we were done...they will be cutting a link off each day--as of today we are already down to 13--that red one midway in the door!
After we made the chain, I pulled out our Curious George My First UNO cards and we played a few games of UNO. Baby Britches can play with us now that he knows his colors and can match numbers. It's WAY better with three people! 

One of the last things we did was a word puzzle. I wrote the words SCHOOL TIME on the board and then let Little Britches see how many OTHER words he could find in the letters of these two words. He did pretty good! But I had to help him find the 4+ letter words. I had him record them on his paper...then I wrote even more once he had recorded 10 words of his own.

We threw in some independent reading from our Library basket and then called it a day! Nice and easy for a new school year--but this was the only REALLY easy day he had this week! I started adding more and more in the rest of the week--I will share our week #1 summary on Thursday (hopefully!).

So we had a great first day and now school is in full gear! Over this and the next week I plan on sharing posts about our curriculum, our classroom and yes, what that first week looked like!

I hope you have had an excellent start to your school year!

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