Tax Refund Means Books and Mess

I know that most mothers who blog about their homeshcooling life paint an idyllic world in order that they may convince others that they should homeschool. I understand why they do it. They do it to counter the negative attacks of the majority of the outside world on homeschooling.

This post will be an honest one about how it is HARD WORK to homeschool! It IS!!! It’s worth it, but it is very hard work! Don’t let anyone make you believe differently! If you are trying to decide and are wondering, I want you to know I highly recommend it but it is not for the faint of heart. I also do not think it is a side thing, to do on the side. It is DOUBLE FULL-TIME work (like an 80 hr. a week job)!

Also, there is no money in it. You are in it for spiritual reasons. You are in it for family. You are in it because you love your kids and because you want to be the one in charge. If you cannot stand having others, like the government, in charge of what your children learn and do for most of the day, these are the reasons for which you are doing this EXTREMELY CHALLENGING thing called homeschooling! It seems impossible. It is not impossible with God helping you. If God tells you to do it, DO IT! If God tells you NOT to do it, please don’t do it. You need His help!

I am going to tell you about the state of the house due to the ordering of books for next school year, which we do much of, with tax refund money. Right now, we are in the thick of it. The children must do their assignments and learning all over the house because I told them 3 weeks ago not to touch the newbooks, which cover the homeschool table.

My lack of desire to decide where to put all of the books has also made extra messes pop up in and at the entrance of, the homeschool room. I absolutely MUST figure out where to put which books, but it is SO MUCH WORK and PLANNING that I do not know where to begin!

I need to do the following.:

  1. Decide what everyone will be studying from April to the end of August.
  2. Take the books they will not use during that period, downstairs.
  3. Put the books they will be using during that time, on the homeschool bookshelf or into the homeschool cupboards.
  4. Go through (Ugh!) the paper stacks and figure out what to do with all of the papers.
  5. Finish cleaning. Vaccuum.
  6. Snap photos and post them on my blog so that you can see I do have a more elevated standard most of the time!

The entrance to the homeschool room.

The entrance to the homeschool room.

The desk in the homeschool room.

The desk in the homeschool room.

papers and workbooks not being used

papers and workbooks not being used

closet and bookshelf

closet and bookshelf

table, including newly purchased books

table, including newly purchased books

Springtime And Being Very Busy!

I have been so busy gardening, organizing, de-junking and cleaning the house, that I have not made a blog post in a while. This past weekend, my husband and son finished building our Shelf Reliance shelves and we loaded them up with food storage cans. I am excited about that. Lately, we have been working  lot on that. 

On Saturday, before LDS General Conference, I worked hard putting the math in its own binder. It is a red binder, so it stands out from all the white ones I have for other reasons. I went through the math checklists and evaluated, knowing full well what the kids know and don’t, where each one is in math. Then I made lesson plans. I made plans for 6 homeschool days. 

“Pirate,” by my son:

  

Right now, at 7:30 a.m., my daughter is teaching my younger boys. She uses my math checklist for the math. I love the help. One son is telling her emphatically, “I already know my numbers!” He had been stubborn, but he just now passed off an item on the math checklist without any help at all. This is big for him! I am happy. My older daughter and my older son are now enthusiastically and with dancing, teaching them. My daughter just asked me, “Mom, what does fluently mean?” We have decided the one is fluent at a certain concept. Well, it will not be long before he can do even more difficult things fluently. I am so excited.

This is something most people who homeschool understand and most who don’t, don’t: The older kids teach their siblings happily. It’s awesome! It frees me up to focus on being the leader. I am not the leader and the one who does it all. I am just the leader. I give direction and my kids help it happen. They want homeschool to work. They want mom to be happy. They enjoy teaching because it is fun. 

When it comes to teaching siblings to ride bikes, play baseball, work in the garden, cook, clean, make lunch, etcetera, they are all great! I love this about homeschooling. Sometimes, younger ones even help older ones, because maybe that is their favorite subject, or one of their favorites, so they are beyond their years in ability because they have learned so much in a certain area. For example, my son loves science. He teaches his siblings all sorts of things because he “gets it.” I am usually surprised at what he knows. It’s amazing. He has the ability to explain science concepts by jumping up and down and acting them out. It’s fun to watch him. 

My daughter is still in her pajamas but is now looking over the Montessori list of skills and asking me whether this one has learned that yet. I am so grateful for her help in keeping on top of that. I used to have to do it all myself, which after a while, meant I never got to it. It is nice to have someone who gets to it on my behalf. She will be an awesome mom someday. She will be an awesome homeschool mom someday! Whe wants to be an early childhood educator, so all of this fascinates her. It is one of the things she lives for!

My son is reading “Lord of the Rings, The Two Towers. He told me that he has 2 bookmarks. He does not like going for so long with these characters before getting back to what those ones are doing. He would rather just go one chapter with these, one chapter with those, instead of 3 chapters, then 3 chapters. Fine with me! He invents stories, too, so I would not be surprised if we get an author here! He is also still in pajamas. Oh, well. I am hoping he gets dressed by 9 a.m.!