Some days are rough, especially with all four of us together for most hours of the day. Having Rob at home means trying to blend both our expectations for the kids. I think taking until 3 p.m. to finish math is fine; he does not. So we are trying a token system, rewarding the kids for timely work, neatly done. It sounds like school, which I don't like. However, when I am hastily handed a scribbled representation of the human eye with misspelled words (and the diagram and words were PROVIDED), that's a sure sign of getting used for my permissive personality.
Nate is thriving on this system. He loves knowing exactly what's expected.
Madelyn, with her aptitude for interpreting what it means to "finish" a job, is stumbling some. She is apt to dramatize and try to slink by with inferior work so she can do what she wants. She likes to wander away from our lesson and start talking to the dog, for instance. How interesting that the easier child has become the harder one, in this instance.
Our history segment is wrapping up. We have come to the end of the history CD ROM (Intellego Unit Studies), and I will continue with this company come fall. We insert the disk, do some reading, watch short videos or do a worksheet or game, and the lesson's done. The kids can find the Tigres and Euphrates on a map; they know the Game of Ur; they know the Code of Hammurabi was considerably more strict than laws are now, and they have tried Mesopotamian cookies but declined more than a bite. (They were dried and pureed figs, dates, and raisins + flour + butter, fried lightly. I found them delicious and reminiscent of Fig Newtons.)
I found picture books about the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is obviously the origin of Noah's Ark, the serpent in the garden of Eden, and every super hero since. Gilgamesh was 2/3 "god" and 1/3 "man," was unstoppable, and he STILL wanted to live forever: the first overachiever.
We will continue to work on math through the summer since we started back one grade (to cover any holes left over from public school). We'll read, of course, and take a round of swimming lessons (Pool School), but that's about it.
We have an offer from a friend to volunteer at a local store, learning about how to make change, keep the shop, wait on the public. We have to see where Rob's next job lands, but if we take her offer, it's a chance to work that most people don't get until they are sixteen.
I know the kids don't meet all Rob's expectations. I don't know anyone--including myself--who meets all of mine. Overall, I am enjoying our homeschool experiment, sloppy work aside.
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