Monday, October 15, 2018

Home School, Week 1- photos



















Pivot

My, how quickly things change!  Just when things seem to be cruising along, totally smooth sailing, you see dark storm clouds in the distance. It would be unwise to keep going in the same direction, right? Better to change course before the storm reaches you.

That sort of sums up the last few weeks. We've implemented some pretty big changes, and others are in the works. What am I talking about, you wonder? Education.  This is where I tell you we've/I've always been more of a pro public school person.  Both my parents were involved in the public school system. Brian and I fought long and hard to set Myles up for success in the public school system. Going through the IEP process was not fun. Ultimately, did it work? Yes, and no. Academically, yes. It set up the infrastructure, the support, needed.  Myles was getting A's and B's so far this year.  What it didn't address were the social/emotional deficits. Deficits that, in grade school weren't as obvious, became glaring issues in middle school. What do I mean? Well, normal "middle school" behavior is very upsetting for him. Rough housing, bad language, obscene jokes, name calling, realizing you don't write the same as other kids-yet you have to pass your work to other kids to correct and they see your work....which results in more name calling, being told you are stupid, dumb, gay, etc.  So while he was doing great academically, he was suffering in more important areas.  Areas that there is no easy fix for. Things that again, are totally normal for other kids, but for him were troublesome on a deeper level. What does that look like? Coming home in tears. Not sleeping. Talking about things that happened at school over and over again, working himself into tears again. Hating going to school, and begging to home school.

So what's a mom to do? Pivot. I thought we had everything set up perfect this year. Smooth sailing. A new chapter of having no elementary school to deal with, moving on to high school and middle school.....pivot, make that home school. Things happened really fast. I sent an email on a Monday to the school districts home school program, heard back Tuesday, filled out the application and met with them Thursday, and his last day of public school was that Friday.  I sent an email Thursday evening letting his teachers know Friday would be his last day, and I took his books to the office Friday to turn them in. His teachers were shocked because "he is doing so well academically", "he's so sweet, and such a joy to have in class." Yes, he is. It's things they can't see that are the issue, and it's hard to explain that to them.  I am not going to wait until his emotional health hits bottom and is a huge, obvious problem to everyone else before I step in and make changes.

So, here we are. One week into home school. A huge, massive change for me. Obviously, my days are totally different. I'm still figuring everything out. Lesson plans, pacing schedules (breaking down the books into how much needs covered per month, then week, to get through by June), planning projects, labs, field trips, planning ahead for supplies, breaking down each day, making sure if we are doing something really challenging in one subject, the following subject is a lighter load......it all has my head spinning a little. It is why I'm up at 3 a.m. typing this instead of sleeping. HOWEVER, it's also amazing.  We had the best week! He's super easy to teach.  He's so grateful to be home! We've done PE on the mountain, hiking. We tried to make dye from mountain plants, but ended up digging through the bbq pits for charcoal instead. We are making a world map to use in History. We did a lab making a topography map. I love making things as hands on for him as I can since he seems to really enjoy it more than just reading about things. We've also been learning about all the local "home school days" at businesses. Who knew Six Flags had a home school day??

So that's been life lately. A huge pivot. Happy to be able to do it. We are already seeing benefits.
If you are still reading, wow!! Thanks! I'll follow this with a picture post.

Monday, September 24, 2018

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Mountain Sunsets

Y'all. Wow.
What a way to end the long weekend.
I wanted to get the family out to where the pigs were last week on the off chance that they would still be hanging out in that same area.
They were! The kids got to see them, and we also saw tarantula #5 of the season.
But the highlight of the hike was the sunset.
Just amazing.
Trail info on this one - I park on the side of North Gate Rd at the Burma trail head. It's Burma to Buckeye to Stage to Burma.