Ah, one of the hugest advantages of homeschooling in my book is the ability to school whenever we feel like it. Yeah. That's right, whenever we feel like it. In the morning. In the afternoon. At night. In the car. In our PJ's or all decked out. Or we don't have to do it at all.
Since our oldest is only in Kindergarten, it isn't like we have to spend hours schooling. Kindergarten isn't just learning to read, write and do math, it is learning about the world around us, learning how to interact with others, trying new things and meeting new friends. In a normal week, we may spend about 5-7 hours actually sitting down and doing school work. Twice a week the girls attend swim school, and once per week they attend a homeschool gymnastics/recreational class for 90 minutes. I don't have to mention countless play dates with friends, trips to the park, zoo, museums or just playing outside, and yes, I do count that as school because it never fails that there will always be a moment for teaching, whether it be about nature, math, reading, or learning to play and interact with others.
Just like our crazy winter weather back in October when we were dealing with snow (and little did we know that snow would be one of the very few times we'd actually see snow this year) we are dealing with some crazy weather here in March - but this time it is premature summer! The last few days have been sunny and in the 70s, and school has obviously taken the back burner, you know, that burner wayyyyy far in the back??? Yeah. That one. All the girls are interested in is wearing sun dresses, riding bikes, picking flowers and playing outside with friends. Instead of school during the littles nap time, we head right back outside where the big girls will do some exploring together and I don't blame them. I don't have the heart to tell the girls they have to stay inside to learn while they are learning outside, so, I don't. So, on the days where school works takes a back burner, we will try to read an extra book or I'll have her do a few modules on Time4Learning - that way I don't feel quite as guilty that we didn't do any "real" school that day. Or come a lazy rainy day we'll do extra school that day to make up! That is the beauty!
Today, we headed to a friends house. They played together at a park, rode their bikes and had a picnic outside. We came home, the littles went to sleep, and now Mairead and Lilah are actually doing school for the first time this week. We worked a little bit on counting money, and now Mairead is working on a writing piece "All About Me" - Lilah is doing some work on starfall which is absolutely great for preschool through Kindergarten/early 1st grade.
One thing I will miss when Mairead is in public school next year is the flexibility that homeschool gives us. I love that, and will miss it dearly, but our little big girl wants to go to school, and I cannot deny her the opportunity to be with the friends she loves so very much! But, just because she goes to public school does not mean I will never have this opportunity again. This whole experience has taught me so much about myself, my kids and to prove that I can really do it if I want to, and that it isn't as scary as it sounds!