Friday, October 11, 2013

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

Still no luck in finding a counselor.  I have had ONE person give me a name of one they trust that's on our insurance.  ONE.  And at least a dozen suggestions of folks who aren't on our insurance.  And the problem with that is that I don't trust the judgement of the person who DID me a workable name!  The frustration is nearly unspeakable.  However, the boy has been putting forth some effort, and I'm quite proud of him.  The Respect Jar is helping.  Today he got up and did his morning chores without me having to say a single word.  It was glorious.  I know it won't last - I'm painfully conscious of that - but it's something.  I'll take whatever I can get.  Still considering putting him back in school at semester.  We'll see how the next couple of weeks go.

I've put on 4.4 lbs. this week.  I'm going to spend the next three weeks taking it off, I'm sure.

I still haven't posted the 11th week of Homemade History.  I know.  I'll do it later today.  I've enjoyed slacking off.  Next week, however, the kids have requested (and I have decided) changes must be made in the way we do things.  The current methods are getting stale.  History will contain much the same, but the kids would like things to be more mysterious. So each Monday, rather than posting reading options, I'll be posting a question or mystery on the whiteboard.  We'll watch some videos on the topic, and then we'll spend later days in the week doing reading and geography and other stuff to 'solve' or 'answer' the question.  For science, they want to start with the lab and then spend the week figuring out why it did what it did rather than reading something and then seeing it demonstrated.  I can certainly appreciate where they're coming from.  It's much more fascinating to feel like you've conquered an idea, not been spoon-fed one.

For language arts, Boo has asked to stop doing formal spelling as well as Writing With Ease.  She and Doodlebug are both excellent spellers, so I've agreed.  She'll still do grammar, since she doesn't mind First Language Lessons and it takes her hardly any time at all, but for spelling and narration/dictation, I've agreed to pull vocab and narration/dictation selections from whatever books she's currently reading.  She's in the middle of Anne of Green Gables right now, so I'll go through the first few chapters of that book over the weekend and see what I can find.  She's gunning for 'amiable,' but something - her persistent insistence, perhaps? - tells me she's already memorized that one.  I think I'll find other options.

Finally, we're throwing out some electives.  They're electives, for godssake, not mandatory subjects, and it's time to weed out the ones they don't like.  This means that Doodlebug is giving up music theory.  I'm all right with that.  He likes music enough and hears enough of it between me and Boo that he'll still get a thorough grounding in music history and various genres and will probably still pick up theory by osmosis.  She's giving up music theory as part of school as well, but she and I will still play around with it during her violin practice from time to time.  The other elective we're tossing is geography.  The curriculum I found wound up being quite dry in practice, so I had been using it sporadically for a while, and now it's just gone.  I'm not entirely letting geography go by the wayside, since they'll still be doing some with history (and I found Mapping the World with Art that I think both of them will enjoy), but I'm letting up.  So they'll still have Spanish (finishing up with La Clase Divertida and moving over to Rosetta Stone), logic (various books from The Critical Thinking Company) and art (we attend a once-a-month class and do some projects in between, but I'm giving up a formal curriculum there, too) together.

It seems like a much more doable plan.  They're old enough and smart enough to know what they want.  It's time to let the little things go and realize I can't - and shouldn't try! - to teach it all.


4 comments:

Wendy L. Callahan said...

I hope you find someone. I know it's tricky. One of my nephews has a whole host of issues and actually needs residential treatment. So frustrating for my sister and brother-in-law. :/

Here's hoping you find a wonderful counselor who is RIGHT for your family.

Electives were always the fun part of school for me. :)

skrink said...

Love Ellen McHenry! Mapping the World is so much fun. :) Have you checked out her science units yet?

Totally get the frustration with finding a therapist. We're on our 4th in as many years. I'm hopeful that we're on the right track now, and I hope you find some good leads.

Sarah said...

I love(d) electives, too, but Boo has always been a writing girl and Doodlebug has always been Science Boy. So it's all good.

Skrink, I haven't really checked out her science units, but I have her site bookmarked now and plan to do so soon. I think they would be fun for both kids.

As for the therapist thing... yeah. We saw one when Doodlebug was 5 whom we will NOT be revisiting, and the one that helped Boo a couple years ago was great for her but I suspect would not relate as well to Doodlebug. It's a balancing act, and not one I care to do any more than I have to. Thanks for the well wishes.

Gillian said...

We need to get back to Mapping the World with Art, so much fun! I love the idea of posing a mystery to be solved each week too... very creative, and I'm sure it will intrigue your kids!

The therapy thing is hard... best wishes!