Monday, September 27, 2010

New "School" Year

Tot School

When Ryan and I first got together we talked about what we wanted from life, how we wanted to raise our kids, etc... all the things young couples talk about. We decided that we wanted to homeschool our kids (not knowing that it would take us over 16 years to get pregnant!). Xander is only 20 months old now-- so we are years away from officially homeschooling, but we are casually doing Tot School and busy learning about homeschooling, thinking about how we want things to go, and what we want Xander to learn.

One of the things I've decided about how I want our homeschooling to go (all subject to change as real life happens) is that I want us to school year round-- with a flexible schedule and plenty of nice vacation breaks. At first I really wanted to start our official school year in January. My weeks start with Sunday and the year starts with January, it just makes sense to me. It also works well with Xander's birthday in January. Then, while reading my local homeschool mailing list and seeing all the different workshops and co-ops that were offered, and reading all the different blog posts of people planning for the "new" school year, I decided there is some sense in following a typical school year schedule. Still schooling year round but starting in September. A big bonus with that schedule is that the end of the year wrap up won't be during the busy holiday season!

At first I was thinking we would start the week after Labor Day weekend, just like I remembered from childhood. Then I realized that I would like to plan an annual camping trip in September-- after Labor Day-- when the camp grounds are going to be less crowded (once Xander was older). So I decided that we were going to start our annual first day of school on the Autumnal Equinox (or to be more accurate and not Northern Hemisphere biased, the September Equinox), I really like the idea of following the earth's schedule.

To begin our new year of Tot School we started with a yummy morning snack of mini Drumsticks (Xander needs to gain weight and is a supremely picky eater so anything with fat and calories that he'll eat we'll feed him!).

Bad hair day? What do you mean Momma?

 After our snack we did some finger painting.

After finger painting there was bath time and then a first day of school photo shoot.

Later Xander had fun reading with his Tag Junior.

He really loves "reading" his Tag Junior books and he is learning from them.

After lunch we had a treat of Scandinavian Almond Cake (recipe from a Hannah Swensen mystery), which was a big surprise. Not only did he taste it he actually ate a good bit of his slice, very amazing for my picky boy.

Next we colored, or that was the plan. I printed out some fall coloring pages but Xander was much more interested in playing with the clipboard instead of coloring.

After that we made a fort and played until all his energy was exhausted and finally he napped on the couch.

It was a good first day!

To see what is happening in other Tot Schools visit 1+1+1=1.