Monday, August 18, 2008

Buckling Down

Last week I decided that we had ENOUGH, thank you very much, of near-completely unstructured summertime. Ian has been bored, and as a result clamoring for having a friend over almost every second of the day. As much as he can be a self-starter, I think I'm slowly learning that he needs some boundaries within which he can work his magic. You'd think that in all this time that I'm not imposing any expectations on him academically, he'd be reveling in this freedom and producing all kinds of great, creative work. Not so much.

So I sort of scrambled over the weekend and came up with a plan for the year, which I'm still fine-tuning. I'll post it in the next day or so, if I can get my computer to cooperate. We're disregarding the public school schedule, which Ian is aware of because of his friend Oscar next door, and easing into things as of today. Bravely I sally forth, lists in hand, armed with plans, schedules and visions which may vaporize by Thanksgiving. Hey, isn't there some saying about shooting for the stars, and if you miss them, landing on the moon?

This year seems like it might work out a little better on one front at least. Last year it got pretty frustrating trying to accommodate (read: distract) Caroline while I read aloud to the older ones. As she's gotten a bit older, she and Eliza are playing more together, and she's playing on her own a bit more. This morning, for example, Ian and I did some math, practiced the first couple verses of Psalm 23, and read a chapter of Pagoo while the girls plotted an elaborate queen-and-princess celebration, complete with costumes and hand-cut confetti.

May I ask that if you are a praying person, you remember us these days? I've been wondering all summer how this year is going to go. It's funny, but after homeschooling officially for three years, I still don't feel like we've found our real groove. I know it's very challenging to homeschool a child who's been diagnosed with ADHD, but there may be aspects of my own personality that get in the way as well. I've been praying that the Lord would give me the wisdom as to how to proceed, as I can swing back and forth between the "we need structure, and lots of it -- give him lists!" and "I don't want to ruin his love of learning by making it a chore and creating resentment." Now that I write it out, it sounds like I'm flaky, indecisive, and lacking in confidence.

Oh wait. Maybe because I AM flaky, indecisive, and lacking in confidence. :-) (Sorry, I'm not beating up on myself, just letting it all hang out on this blog ...)

And in case you're wondering why I only talk about Ian in the context of homeschooling? It's because his sister is, like, a textbook candidate for homeschooling. She's sensitive, yes, but not ... um ... quirky. I say, "Lizey, want to read a book?" and she's there, on the couch, ready to listen and discuss. Emphasis on "discuss."

OK, sleep might be a good idea. Tomorrow morning's plans include a site visit for another magazine article that I'm (somewhat reluctantly) writing, and inflicting ultimate pain and torture upon my son by dragging him to his super-nice pediatrician for a checkup. We love you, Miss Hannigan.


Jenny said...

Sounds like you have a good plan! Hang in there!

Julie said...

I'd be having those same worries and I don't think you should beat yourself out because it's sounds like your doing a perfect job..thinking about all your kids needs and trusting in the Lord to lay out a plan..Hope you don't mind be totally laying my opinion out there!!

Beck said...

Each kid is so different.
And my kids are SO bored right now - actually, not so much this week, because they have the fun of being in VBS all this week. But you can tell that they're actually wanting school to start up again...

Becca said...

The elusive 'finding the groove.' That's a tough one. When you find it, let us know!!

Kezwick said...

Have enjoyed you being real in your posts. Know what you mean about still finding your groove, it is such a journey and I'm learning slowly to let go whilst still balancing some needed structure for my special needs son. All I know is God is good and will give me the grace for this day! Praying this for you too.