This was an unusual week…perhaps a taste of what it would be like to homeschool one child (with the exception of Little Mister underfoot). Our two middle girls stayed with grandparents for the week to allow C-Bear to adjust to being home from the hospital. It was good for her to have a quiet house for a few days to convalesce. C-Bear came home from the hospital Monday evening. She understandably did not want to do “school” when she got home. I told her that for now we would focus on Christmas fun. Her letter to Santa would be copywork. Geography would be accomplished by reading about how Christmas is celebrated around the world. Google’s Beethoven animation this week in honour of his 245th birthday counted as composer study. She must have watched it ten times! She also watched BrainPop videos on everything from earthquakes to how authors use plot and characterization to develop their theme. We started an audiobook of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. And every evening she was tickled to stay up late with Mommy and Daddy to watch a different Christmas movie. Scrooge (the musical, starring Albert Finney…is that not the best version?!), Mickey’s Christmas Carol, and Mr. Bean’s Christmas were all thoroughly enjoyed.
She sort of overdosed on handicrafts this week, assuaging my guilt somewhat for having dropped the ball in that subject this term. Friendship bracelets, Loopdedoo bracelets, Christmas ornaments and gifts, and Christmas cookies were some of the projects that kept her busy.
Today I suggested something a bit more “schoolish”. She had received a few beautiful flower arrangements during her hospital stay. Before disposing of them I thought we could learn a thing or two from those limp lilies and wrinkled roses. We spent the entire morning dissecting flowers, learning their parts and life cycle, and making an entry in our nature journals of some of the things we had learned. She loved it. I was thrilled when she remarked, “I had no idea flowers were so interesting!” I was also quite surprised by what she already knew regarding pollination and fertilization. I should have known “there’s a Wild Kratts episode” or “there’s a Magic School Bus episode all about that.” I think I know what I’ll be assigning her for science next year. Ellen McHenry’s Botany in 8 Lessons and Ernest DeVore’s Quark Chronicles: Botany should work wonderfully for taking her deeper into the study of plants.
So that was “school” this week in our house. I desperately wanted to finish Term 1 before Christmas, but it looks like we’ll have one more week of it to finish up in the new year. I am determined to relax with it and keep my eyes open to recognize the natural learning happening all around us.