Chaotic Coordination

…adventures in growing together…

Preparing for Kindergarten December 3, 2009

Filed under: Homeschool — chaoticcoordination @ 7:01 am

To follow is a compilation of lists I’ve found in various homeschool and mainstream school literature regarding preparedness for Kindergarten.

I take such things with a grain of salt as Logan is the only one that can truly decide what he is ready for, no list can do this. Nor am I going to judge him for being behind or ahead. Being labeled as gifted can be just as damaging as being labeled as slow. It is however good to gauge where you at in relation to your past experience as to be able to map where you’re going..

Reading

  1. Speak in five to six word sentences. [x]
  2. Tell stories. [x]
  3. Ask questions and remain on topic while talking about the answer. [x]
  4. Sing songs, and recite nursery rhymes. [x]
  5. Match letters and name letters in own name. [x]
  6. Read own name, symbols, and signs. [x]
  7. Understand a reader looks at print, not pictures, when reading, and that print is read from left to right and top to bottom. [ x]
  8. Be familiar with several stories and/or books.[x]

Writing

  1. Use a mature grasp to hold a crayon, marker, or pencil. [x]
  2. Learn to copy or write readable letters or numbers, write or copy his/her own name, and draw simple recognizable people and pictures. [x]
  3. Pretend to write and read own writing in a left to right direction. [x]
  4. Dictate a story with detail to someone who writes it down. [ ]

Math

  1. Make sense of numbers. [x]
  2. Learn about shape and space. [x]
  3. Learn about measurement concepts of same, less or more correctly. [x]
  4. Recognize, make and describe simple patterns, relations and functions. [x]
  5. Use data investigation to sort and classify common household objects, learn about problem investigation and make decisions. [x]
  6. Learn about the area of randomness. [x]
  7. Learn about structure as it relates to math concepts. [x]

For safety, children should learn:

  • Their full name [x]
  • Address [ ]
  • Phone number. [ ]
  • The name of their school. [x]
  • Full name and place of work of parents or guardians. [x]
  • Location of school either by walking or driving. [x] (er.. he knows how to get home..)
  • The bus corner pick-up and drop-off (before school starts). [N/A]
  • To look both ways and cross streets at safe corners. [x]
  • How to contact available, safe adults in case of emergency.[x]

To support health/nutrition, children should:

  • Wash hands before and after meals, after using the toilet, and as often as needed. [x] With suggestions..
  • Cover mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, use arm not hand. [x]
  • Make healthy food choices from the basic food groups.[x]

To develop responsibility, children can:

  • Dress and undress without assistance. [x]
  • Tie shoes and put on footwear. [ ]
  • Take care of things and put them away. [x]
  • Share belongings. [x]
  • Share in home duties and responsibilities.[x]

Other activities:

  • Playing with other children in their own age group. [x]
  • Using crayons, pencils, markers, scissors and paste. [x]
  • Following the rules and directions you give.[x]

He also knows several Yoga poses, counts to 20, tells time on a digital clock, operates a computer more efficiently than most adults, knows the way to many of our favorite destinations (beach, park, Granddads), builds things out of legos I could only dream , etc. etc.. I’m sure there are many other things that are slipping my mind.

I hope one day that he masters the delicate art of sitting still. He makes me dizzy on a regular basis. I have a feeling if he was placed in a regular school that there would be a lot of notes home.

Triangle

Warrior

Now realize that these look better in person than they do when I take a picture of them. Mommy should really take a photography class. hehe

 

Resource Center Tour December 2, 2009

Filed under: Homeschool — chaoticcoordination @ 2:10 am

As previously mentioned today was our Orientation Tour at Edmonds Homeschool Resource Center. My expectations were ridiculously high. Heck, this involves Littleman’s future – if my expectations were anything but sky high there would be worries I am sure.

I google map’d our little adventure and set out way too early as to be sure we’d have time JUSSSSSSST in case we got lost. Can never be too paranoid careful right?

EHRC happens to be located right next to my favorite-ist grocery store of ALL time PCC.

Little side note because I freaking love Love PCC this much. It is an Organic grocery store that is full of nom nom happiness.  (http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/)  One of their most fabulous policies is that any child that comes into the store is allowed to pick any piece of produce they want to eat, anything at all. They can either eat it while at the store (the staff will wash and prepare said produce) or they can take it home.

So anyways we find the school which happens to be the old Edmonds-Woodway High school.

We arrive a half hour early and head to the main office where we are ushered into the library to kill some time before the tour begins. We sniff around a bit – they are having a Book Fair, oh how I missed such things. We peak at homeschoolers in the library with their parents doing random projects.

Shortly before 2pm (the designated start time) we head into the room where the tour is going to begin. People start to file in, normal looking folk not the extremist religious weirdos people tend to think of when one mentions homeschooling.

The principle was out for the day so one of the front office managers lead the presentation. I was impressed by her speech and I was eager to move on to the actual tour itself. Our little family as well as about twelve others started filtering through the school. It is a well organized establishment and I didn’t meet anyone that was less than pleasant.

There are many classes available through the center itself, many are free where as some have a fee (such as individual piano or guitar lessons, or the martial arts class). There was a Video Editing Lab that I personally was particularly interested in. Also we came across a Lego/Robotic lab where students practiced Blueprint reading and Robotics with Legos and other such materials. Of course there are your basic reading, writing, & math classes full of students & parents that looked excited to be learning.

Needless to say we are excited. There is an 8 week orientation for parents to get everything in order and Littleman won’t be able to be actively enrolled until this coming September as he turns five in March.

♥ ♥ ♥ We’re doing it.  ♥ ♥ ♥

 

Our decision to Homeschool. December 1, 2009

Filed under: Homeschool — chaoticcoordination @ 7:35 pm

My list of reasons why I have chosen to home school my children grows everyday. Growing up my best friend was home schooled – she eventually went on to go to a public high school by her request.

I remember being envious of her studying at home. It wasn’t because she was at home playing and doing what she wanted but because she received the educational attention that so many of us that went to public school lacked.

As a small child I had an unbridled passion for learning. I hungered for knowledge.  I would meet with my teachers after class and ask for extra work. I just wanted to keep studying, I didn’t care if I got credit for this work or not. I wanted to learn.

This lasted till about 2nd grade when I was in Mrs. StupidTeacher’s class. We were doing math and she had put some ‘problems’ on the board.  We went out for morning recess, came back and I snuck up to the front of the class and completed one of the equations on the board.  I quietly sat down at my desk and waited. The class began to filter back in slowly, taking their places. Mrs. StupidTeacher’s walked up to the front of the class shushing us all.  She then began to laugh, and asked who was it that thought they knew what they were doing enough to write on the board when they weren’t told they were allowed to.  I sheepishly raised my hand and admitted to my crime.  She spent the next few minutes berating me for breaking the rules and not being intelligent enough to even get the correct answer. The class joined in with her laughter.

I was crushed, devastated..  I believed at that moment I was an idiot. What is worse, I was an idiot that didn’t follow the rules.

My love for education went dormant due to this single event and didn’t resurface till late in my teenage years.

Life moved on, crazy things happened often, I dropped out of high school.. I partied like a rockstar.  Education (or the future homeschooling of my children) was not in the fore front of my mind.

Later I fell in love with a cute boy who I shall refer to as Husbandface from here forth. Husbandface and I lived like gypsies exploring the ‘world’ however we could.  Then it happened.  The ginormous life changing event that would transform me into the snot whipping, clean butt providing, homeschooling, breastfeeding  person I am today.  I was carrying a stowaway. I was pregnant. My carefree, things will take care of themselves lifestyle had to come to an end and fast. I realized that this little life needed a better start than I had, better than Husbandface had. I scrambled to create some sort of normalcy in my life.  I had NO clue what I was doing and made plenty of mistakes in getting our lives in order.

Littleman had changed my life in an instant.

As  Littleman grew older I realized I was in for it. This little poop machine was is intelligent. He shares the same zest for learning I once did.

I would be damned if a teacher in a bad mood was going to ruin my son’s thirst for knowledge.  I decided then to homeschool. Now all of this all happened in my head, I hadn’t discussed this with Husbandface yet.

Realizing this, I also realized I did indeed need to discuss my plans for our son’s education with his father. I had really worked myself up about this, planned exactly what I was going to say and my argument for why I was right should his opinion differ.  I presented my case to him and expected to be immediately shot down. However that isn’t how it happened at all, his response, “That sounds like a great idea” shocked me.  I was totally prepared for the debate of century and it wasn’t necessary. Husbandface went on to share some of his public school stories nightmares.

I started researching like crazy. I needed to find out a recipe for success for this homeschool thing and I needed it quick. I read countless blogs, ordered books from Amazon.. read said books.

I talked to a woman who I played WoW with (yes, I’m a geek) who Unschools her children. I asked questions about what Unschool was, bought a book about it and researched the heck out of it. Her children aged 18 & 12 are the most articulate, intelligent kids (other than my own of course, hehe) that I’ve ever had the pleasure of sharing company with.

I don’t know if I am quite confident enough yet to venture down the Unschool path. However I defiantly am going to keep it in the back of my mind as we toddle down the path towards educational success.

My step sister also homeschools her children she uses a public school resource center to make this possible.

I am researching a similar center to assist in our introduction to homeschool.  http://www.edmondshrc.com/ We have an appointment today at 2pm to tour the facility and get a feel for what Kindergarten there would be like.

We’re excited.