Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Fun Parts:

Shopping, and planning it all out! Where it gets sticky is actually implementing all of my wonderful plans, but I'm not going to burden myself worrying about that just now... ;)

Yesterday we finished buying all of our school supplies. We started with a trip to our new Supertarget a couple of weeks ago, which I posted about on my other blog. Yesterday we went to Officemax and back to Supertarget to get everything else we "needed."

You'll see below why I put the word "needed" in quotations:

I mean, does anyone really need a ruler that bends up like an accordion? Or big, bubbly calculators? (Which are, by the way, color-coded by child.) Or lots of pens in funky colors? Well... hyeah!

In case you're interested in what's what, my son's stuff is on the right, mine is in the middle, and my daughter's is on the left. (And if you're really interested, you can click on the picture to make it larger!) She got a cute, striped clipboard at Target because she likes to doodle, draw, take notes, etc. while I'm reading and notebooks can be floppy. She also chose a cute planner (which I'm going to insist that both of them write in daily/weekly this year) from Target, while my son found a digital camo/army one with a pocket on the front at Officemax. He also had to have those Crayola Total Tools, which I have to admit are pretty cool!

The kids both alerted me to the fact that they wish I would refrain from grading/marking up their papers with plain, red pen, which apparently hurts their ::cough::: self esteem. I will henceforth be using fun, neon colored pens. (Which, in my defense, I've been using pretty frequently because I've usually got a highlighter within arm's reach even when I can't find a pen to save my life.) But, apparently I've been pretty free with the red ink.

As you can see, I'm a fan of Post-it Notes. I restocked my supply of various sizes, and I'm not sure if you can tell how HUGE those pink ones are, but I'm pumped about those. Sometimes I need to write a note that CANNOT! BE! MISSED! and I think those might fill the bill.
You can also see my son's new Trapper Keeper, which he is excited about not only because it will hold all of his "stuff" but because they are outlawed at the local public school (according to their supply list) so it feels like contraband. That's the way to rebel. With a Trapper Keeper.

Oh, and check out his new backpack! He found it in the Cabela's catalog, which he reads with great anticipation each time a new one arrives. It's a Surplus German Military Rucksack. It fits his contraband Trapper Keeper just fine. ("Mom! It'll hold more than 25 kilos!") That's a lot of sixth grade work!

As for the planning, I'm doing as I described last year and putting the puzzle together at the moment. I've got my spreadsheets for the year made and am plugging our subjects/curricula in to see how to best spread it out. We may not stick to it as specifically as I'm listing it, but it does help to know what months we'll be in which time period, or when we'll be hitting certain projects for geography, etc. I like to see it all laid out together so I can move things around if I see that certain subjects will be heavier than others at certain times.

One resource I'm having fun planning is the Colonial Life unit from Homeschool In The Woods. It's a cd rom that is just packed with resources. I ordered it a few weeks ago and had no idea how pleased I would be with it. I would encourage you to check it out if you're in Colonial period this year in history.

Another resource I just received is The Cambridge Music Guide. I don't use a music "curriculum" but we have been going through the Usborne Internet-Linked Music book together slowly over the past couple of years (when I think about it, frankly!). I wanted to more coherently focus on American composers and modern era music this year, and I find that this book has such comprehensive biographies and wonderful listening notes, I wish I would have been using it all along! I probably won't read it aloud to them straight from the text, but will use it as a guide for myself and pull selections from it, using the listening notes for pieces I get from iTunes (another invaluable resource!)

One thing that is HUGE that I gave myself, which incidentally is not available at Target, Officemax, or on any online catalog... is T-I-M-E. I found myself getting bogged down with planning school as well as orchestrating the beginning of our Awana club year (which my husband and I coordinate together). One day I was feeling particularly burdened trying to get it all done and I felt a gentle nudge in my spirit asking me, "Why?" So I asked myself, "Why am I trying to start school on the 13th? Or even the 20th or the 27th? Just because those days work best for other homeschoolers or school districts? They aren't me!" So, I sat down with our calendar and adjusted our start date to the day after Labor Day (which just happens to be the day after I turn the big 4-0) and it's all falling together. We can still be done by the end of May/ first of June. Life is good. I have more time. And the kids have 2+ more weeks to squeeze all the fun they can out of summer.

I hope your school planning and starting is exciting as well!


Amberly said...

Whew! You put me to shame! Sounds like y'all are going to have a lot of fun this year! And I LOVE LOVE LOVE school supplies! FUN!

lize said...

hi Cyndi, yes we plan to go shop today to and Target is my fav store. Did you see the coupon for the pot-it's? I plan on using mine. The homeschool convention for Houston Tx. is this weekend and I plan to go I believe Homeschool in the Woods will be there I plan on getting the Time Traveler kits. Thanks for your encouragement.

Sherri said...

You and I seem to be so much alike. I LOVE buying the school stuff...new pens and other things that we may or may not need. I have ordered the last of my books and am in the middle of my planning. I have been working on Science for the last couple of days. Like you, I decided that it is okay to start the first of September. It is up to me to work out our time schedule....not when our public school or anyone else starts back. We are going on vacation next week, and I am giving myself a week after that to recover from that :).
Good luck getting it all ready!!!

Jenny in Ca said...

oohh, I love school supplies! I saw those clipboards at target, but couldn't think up a reason to buy one!!

your son's 'contraband' made me laugh!

good luck on your new school year, I am deep into planning here...


my5wolfcubs said...

Loved reading this post! We actually in week 7 already and feeling...mundane. Thanks for the lift!
Lee (from the WTM board)


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