Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Thoughts for this year

So, although we lean towards a more relaxed approach to learning at home, we are not rooted in it.  As a result, when we are moved to explore a new way of doing things, we are still flexible enough to lean in that direction and see what it holds for us.  That's where 2009 finds us, looking for new possibilities.  I'm sure it's inherent in the gift of a whole new year, fresh and untainted, ripe with hope and new beginnings.  And a gift it truly is, for without my asking or hoping or even praying for the ability to start afresh, here it is anyway, as faithful as an old dog.  Thank you, God, for the opportunity to look with new eyes.
Yesterday morning, the boys and I sat down and decided to do some thinking (I know, dangerous undertaking!).  While they busied themselves with watercolors and castle design, we chatted about what they might hope for in the new year.  Again, even though we are pretty darn relaxed, the truth of the matter is that I have personal tendencies towards structure and before I completely take over the reins of what Aidan and August are learning, I was curious to know what they think.  The results were quite enlightening.  First, I will provide you with Aidan's list.  For the record, 90% of what you see is straight from Aidan's own thoughts and hopes.  The other 10% comes simply from the fact that I may have asked a leading question as a means of subject suggestions.  And I only mentioned those because I knew that he had shown interest in them at some point.

What I want to learn about in 2009:
  • Geography--Special features of different states (ex. Mount Rushmore); State capitals (having already mastered the States); learn the countries of South America
  • Wildlife--Continue Nature Center Programs (Kids Conservation Club, other special programs); Insects; Forests
  • Math--Telling time; Addition and Subtraction practice; Money
  • History--Ancient History, specifically Nomads and other early civilizations; continue study of Ancient Egypt (this is really big right now and has been for about 6 months); continue study of Medieval times (this, too, has been consistent for almost a year now)
  • Reading--Stop phonics for one month and practice reading on my own; then, add more phonics and then practice reading again; continue Read-a-Louds with the goal of completing one chapter book every week or two
  • Sports/Recreation--soccer
  • Instrument/Music--he wants to learn to play the tuba (I informed him that he would most likely have to wait a little while before he could take that on), and percussion instruments (hand drums, like bongos, and the xylophone); sing in a choir
  • Art--improve his drawing skills; sculpture
  • Play--make sure there is enough time for playing
So, there you go.  I think he has put forth a very full year of learning and exploring.  It helps me, too, to know exactly where he is going in his not so little brain.
Now, not to be outdone by his big brother, August insisted on getting in on the action.  What follows is August's list.

What I want to learn about in 2009
  • Pirates
  • Gladiators
  • Knights
  • Soccer
  • Guitar, violin and sing in a choir
  • Painting
I love it!  I can't wait to begin, again.

1 comment:

  1. VERY cool!! I should try this with Easton. I would love to have a little list that can help bring us back to the point.