Wednesday, June 18, 2014

A Break of Sorts

We're taking a little break from school until July 16.
We've worked hard. I've done research,  printed, laminated, organized, purchased, purged, scheduled, encouraged, pleaded, inspired, and read until my eyeballs were ready to pop out of my head.

I've spent hours thinking. Thinking of ways to spark interest in subjects, ways to encourage Sean to read, or write, or see something in a new way. (I've spent way too much time worrying.)

Sean has worked so hard on cursive, been diligent with his piano practice, worked on math, done research on science and physics, and branched out on his own with some history research on the French-Indian War. He has demonstrated a knowledge of timelines and of how everything in the world is related or connected in some way.

He has happily worked on learning about the elements, inner workings of Earth, and understanding the solar system. He did lots of his own work, including a written report on the 10 deadliest spiders, which he presented to the family. He did a science experiment with tangerines to see which one would rot the fastest.

The required work that was on our list included ancient civilizations, and he has willingly read the books, and researched those civilizations. We covered the earliest humans, how they settled and became farmers and began the first civilizations. We studied Mesopotamia, Egypt, and China.

We had a conversation about the work we still have to do with ancient civilizations, and we plan to cover Greece and Rome this summer. He suggested we save Native American ancient civilization for September.

Though he doesn't like to write when asked to do it, he did a lot of writing this year. He did descriptive writing, we worked on diagramming simple sentences, and then moved to more complex sentences. He wrote poetry, and he wrote stories from picture prompts, and his own imagination.

Art has been a part of every single day, and his art has become his own. He attended art classes, which gave him instruction on charcoal, pastels, glass beads and how to make a wind chime. He had piano classes, math instruction, chess club, and we spent the fall and early spring doing homeschool classes at our local Camp Seymour. There he learned about water systems, fungi, birds, and dissected a squid. He also did archery and scaled the climbing wall there.

He spent many Wednesdays at the archery range, and took a Parkour class this spring.

We packed a lot into this year.

I didn't realize how much I would enjoy the break until today, when I woke up and realized I could do anything I wanted to do without supervising him to be sure he was doing something school-related. It will be nice to have a few weeks off. But I'm already gathering information and materials for September when we start our full curriculum again.

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