Tuesday, August 23, 2011

First Day of Homeschool!

It's our first day of homeschool!  This is an incredibly big day for our family.  I began opening my heart to the idea of homeschooling when Merrick was 16 months old.  Now, here it is, more than three and a half years later...the FIRST OFFICIAL DAY!

I had to get Merrick a present.  Had to.  He got just a few, inexpensive, little things like marbles and army men.  I also put in the bag of Skittles that we would use for our math activity later in the day.

For breakfast, we fried up Paula Deen's biscuit donuts with cinnamon and sugar.  NOT a good idea, really.  But, I was in one of those "I will give you any thing you want to make today special" moods.  I didn't have a donut hole cutter, so I used my smallest heart cutter and we ended up with little donut hearts instead of holes.  So sweet.  ;)  And very worth the burn I sustained on my left wrist.

Then, of course, we had to get dressed and get outside for some crazy "first day" photos.  I'll spare you thousands of pictures of Merrick crossing his eyes and sticking out his tongue.  That's a whole 'nutter post. 

Side note, I made little signs like this for Pre-school through 12th grade.  I'll post those soon.

Then, miracle of all miracles...all three of my children sat for 2 seconds in the same general area all facing the camera (couldn't get everyone looking, of course...that would be TOO good).

Had to take a pic with my new Kindergartener.  Again, I'll spare you all the pics of him licking my face, etc.  I'm so grateful I didn't have to say good-bye to him after taking this picture.  I would have totally been one of those loud, ugly sobbers standing in the classroom doorway in public school that the teacher had to beg to leave.

After I took about a hundred and fifty pics, we went upstairs to the school room for our first Bible lesson.    I was AMAZED when I pulled out the coloring sheets.  All three of them grabbed a chair and sat down to color.  I read through Genesis 1 - 2:2 while they colored.  I used the curriculum here.  

Even sweet Sawyer said, "co-wawls!" when he saw what we were doing.  I had no idea my little man liked coloring so much.  

Next, we went over to the "Circle Time" area to talk through the day, month, year, season, and daily schedule.  When I encouraged the kids to sit in a circle, Merrick was the only one who stopped coloring and sat down.  He was throughly confused at to why we were calling it a circle when there was only two of us.  We resolved to call it "Line Time" or call him a "Dot" instead.

At "Line Time,"  we started with a prayer.  Merrick's prayer just melted my heart.  I can't remember his exact words (though I was trying so hard to while he was praying...I sat there wishing for a tape recorder...or some fancy iPhone app), but he said something like, "Thank you God that Mommy is my teacher.  Thank you that I can color my picture for the Bible story later.  Thank you that Scout and Sawyer can be with us.  Help me to learn a lot."  Pure awesomeness.

After "Line Time," we layed on Merrick's bed and had a reading lesson from Teach Your Child to Read in 100EZ lessons.  Merrick is on lesson 82!  Then, we went back to the table and did about 10 minutes of phonics with Explode the Code.  Merrick worked on circling the correct answer counter-clockwise, which was a change for him.

After phonics, we broke out the play-doh!  Using Handwriting Without Tears and the Mat Man, we learned how to write the letter L from top to bottom and left to right.

Naturally, we had to play with the playdoh.  I used my tub to make an ancient Japanese T-Rex.  Merrick made the world.  Why do kids have to mix the colors?!?  Ugh...

Although this all may seem like a lot, it felt like it was going by really quickly.  Our last activity before lunch was handwriting practice.  Merrick did a full practice sheet of L's.  For every sheet he completes, he gets a sticker.  For every 10 stickers, he gets to grab a toy from the treasure box (very motivating!).  After the practice sheet, we worked on writing his name.

Wow.  I am just now noticing the Sawyer was drawing on the table as I was taking this picture (below)!

Here's what Merrick came up with for the name sheet:

I was pretty impressed with the picture he drew of himself.  It's him flexing his muscles.  The first muscle on the left that he drew was "too small."  He erased it and drew himself a bigger one.  :)  What a man.

This all took from about 9 - 11:15pmish.  Then, there was free time until lunch (yeah...that means free time for Mommy too!).

After lunch, the twins took a nap while Merrick and I finished our last activity: Skittle Math.  We opened his package of Skittles and (after eating a few, of course) sorted them according to their color.  I got the free printable here.  Then, we colored in the graph...which took toooooo long.  We ended up only answering 2 questions on the math sheet and left the rest for tomorrow.  Mommy was done for the day.

Soooo...what were the twins doing during all this school stuff you ask?  Well, Sawyer checked his email, they played together, did puzzles, made messes...  It was a challenge at times, but it was manageable.  Thank you, Lord!

And, doesn't my little Princess look so pretty today?  Even with her Mommy haircut?

What an incredible, special day.  I'll leave you now with a little video Merrick and I made to document our day:

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  1. This is pure AWESOMENESS!! I never saw myself as a homeschooling mom...but this just made me what to be just that:) BTW, you're looking hot mama! Love the do and you are looking svelte!

    Rachel P.
    ange's sister

  2. You are a braver woman than I am!

  3. I came over from the hop. Congrats on your first day! I started my K4 child last week. We are only doing about 45minutes to an hour of work each day right now, but we are able to do it when my youngest is sleeping, so we fly through the work. Have fun!!

  4. Awesome first day! Love all the pics. Hope you have a great year.

  5. I love your blog! What an awesome first day you had. Homeschooling is challenging but can also be so much fun. I know - I'm going on my 10th year of it! I mainly teach grades 1st through 4th or 5th, and then put them into regular school. I know...it's a bit against what most homeschoolers do, but what can I say except that this seems to work for us!

    I wish you the BEST first year ever!


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