Wednesday, December 21, 2011

What to do the week before the holidays!!

'Since this is my first year homeschooling, I had no idea what to expect the last week before Christmas vacation. I made my lesson plans as usual, with a little more flexibility. For instance, I didn't plan any formal lessons for Friday, since it's a half day at public school and my older child would be home earlier. I figured we can have a half day as well or even a day off.

What I didn't anticipate is the lack of enthusiasm for school work during this time of year. My daughter simply isn't interested in doing any work. Monday was totally stressful because I was in teaching mode and wanted to get all the work done. My daughter on the other hand was whiny; she complained she was tired, or sick, or anything that would get her out of doing school work. Throughout the month of December, we did tons of Christmas or holiday themed activities. We made Christmas tree mosaic, we made wreaths and snowmen. We did activities that taught us about Christmas in other countries, we even learned how to say "Merry Christmas" and "Santa Claus" in several different languages. I think we both feel all Christmased out!! So I re-assessed the day's plan and decided to do things differently.

We still got some work done but I chose to go a more relaxed, casual way. We did some guided reading and other activities that didn't involve deep concentration and focus. Success!

Tuesday started out the same way. So we veered from my plans again. Today is Wednesday and we are a little more focused. So we are trying to get some work done. I'm even hoping to get ahead of schedule so we can take it easy the rest of the week.

The other thing I didn't anticipate or plan for is the fact that I would be so busy this time of year. I have shopping to do, holiday meals to plan, guests to entertain, and house cleaning to do. With all of that homeschooling became a chore even for me this week.

Finally, I just allowed myself to be flexible and stray from the structure/routine, in order to preserve my sanity and not have a completely stressed out kid by the end of the week.

So far, so good. This afternoon we are baking Gingerbread Men cookies. That counts as part of school, doesn't it? Measuring=math, reading the recipe=language arts, talking about the origin of these cookies=social studies. Awesome!

I wonder how other homeschool moms deal with things this time of year.

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