The good old days. I’m remembering them so clearly that it almost seems like I’m reliving them. Wait … I am reliving them in a way.
I’m helping my daughter pull together her school plans for her two oldest. It’s not like I’ve never done this before … answered her questions as best I could, given suggestions, directed her here or there, offered encouragement, etc. But this year I’m playing a more active role than previously.
Can I just say Alice has her hands very full this year? Five children, ranging in age from 12 down to 1 with a 3 year old who has an enormous amount of energy and determination, (you can interpret “determination” any way you’d like and you’d be right). He took forever to talk and now he chatters all day long! The 1 year old is toddling everywhere and the 8 year old is moving full speed ahead and ready for greater academic challenges.
|Baby Elliot loves Big (and only) Sister Charlotte and vice versa!|
The two oldest, who are just a smidgen over a year apart have always been pretty much even when it comes to school books, AO years, and general academics. That’s been a relief to their ever busy mama. But this year they are making jumps in their studies and I’ve come alongside to help with the planning and implementation thereof.
|Energetic and “Determined” Peter with Big Brother Calvin, and John Adams (the cat)|
I’m helping her with planning and decision making. And I will also be involved more fully on a weekly basis throughout the year. It’s taken me back to my “good old days” when I would spend large blocks of time over the summer researching, planning, reading ahead in some of the books, and just generally prepping for the upcoming school year. Yes, those were the days!
Needless to say the crochet has of late taken a back seat. There have been days recently that I did not pick up hook and yarn! That is saying quite a bit since it is a rare day that I do not crochet! But first things first and school planning has moved front and center.
|Little Bunny is waiting for her friend to be completed. She’s still lacking a head and arms, not to mention proper clothes and shoes, but she does have her panties and socks on. Thank goodness it’s so warm!|
It’s been stimulating, all this school planning. I’ve been frequenting Ambleside Online’s Forum asking questions and meeting new people. My baby graduated in 2014 so it’s been awhile since I’ve been there on the asking side of a question.
The plan isn’t to follow an AO year as written (I’ve never done that!) but rather to pull together what will best fit these children and their academic needs at this particular point in time.
What’s been especially fun about this is the input I’m getting from my two AO/HEO graduates. We are sharing memories of books read and experiences had. It has been sweet to say the least.
“Oh, that was one of my favorite books!” has been heard more than once recently as we’ve been discussing school books. One book in particular Alice wasn’t too sure about. At first glance she was thinking it wouldn’t fly. However, after she began reading it, at younger sister Anna’s encouragement, she discovered what a gem it was, and then Anna had the satisfaction of being able to tell her, “I told you so!”
I’ve been searching through my numerous boxes of books trying to locate specific titles to loan to Alice and sometimes coming up empty. Did I loan that book to someone and it wasn’t returned? Did I sell it? And then I discover that Molly or Anna had already claimed this or that one for their own. Who says children who have grown to adulthood can’t still LOVE their school books? If those books are living and part of a Charlotte Mason education then you can bet they are worthy of being saved and remembered and “claimed” as my girls have done.
I’m still formulating with Alice exactly what my role will look like in their school from week to week. There are several areas I’m interested in taking part in to some extent or another … geography and mapping, math enrichment, perhaps a book club of sorts, Plutarch and Shakespeare, and nature study.
Not really sure how it will all shake out but I’ll keep you all posted along the way!