I’m traveling this week, a little time away with my husband, a little time with a dear friend, and a little time to celebrate my Nana’s 90 birthday with my family on the West Coast.
Last September we had just moved, we were in the throes of discovering life in a new province and a whole new schedule. My husband went back to school and I walked everywhere with my girls (and our trusty BoB stroller, I refer to it as my car). We found playgrounds and baby rabbits, we found woodland trails and quiet fountains. We made friends with the librarians and said yes to almost every opportunity that presented itself to us.
It was sort of a game plan but it looked a lot like survival mode.
This September, things are different. A lot different and I am grateful. My girls are also a whole year older (funny how that happens) and I’m starting to answer all the school questions. Is she doing preschool? Will you homeschool? What school will she be going to? Most of the time, the answer is that we’re taking it one year at a time, one girl at a time. I was homeschooled from day one (as was my husband) so that is the background I am coming from.
Kilmeny, my eldest, knows a lot already. Like most oldest children tend to since their parents have to prove to the great, big, scary world that we are good parents and they will score higher then their peers on everything. Thankfully, I’ve relaxed and I know she will know all the things that she has to know when she has to know them. I’m not pushing her to read by four just for parental bragging rights.
And this is part of our plan for this year.
We’re keeping it interest-directed.
Last spring, we went on a mummy/daughter date to Swan Lake ballet. Since that night, she has not stopped talking about ballet, practicing ballet, and dressing like a ballerina. We’ve read all the books that the library has about ballet, renewing them as many times as we can. This fall, we’re starting her in ‘creative movement’, a precursor to ballet. She is very excited about it.
We’re keeping it simple
My girls are 3 and 2. Our days may not look that exciting or move that fast but they will be full and good. Lots of small motor practice with colouring and cutting and playdough-ing. Lots of gross motor practice with bike riding, playground activity and trail walking. With lots and lots of story time.
We’re keeping it book-based
I love the idea of using the books we read as a springboard for all learning. Some smart people created a whole program for this called Five in a Row, its fantastic. We’ll be reading our way through many of those books (using our great library system) and then doing an activity based on the story. I’m not using the actual curriculum because I’m independent and cheap but I will be using the other great resource of Pinterest to come up with creative ideas. Things like splatter-painting after reading Olivia, making ‘fancy’ shoes after reading Fancy Nancy and we’ll be making apple pie after reading How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World. I’ll be adding ideas to my ‘creative kids’ board for further inspiration.
I’m excited! I love stocking up on brand new crayons and pencils, a full pad of construction paper and notebooks to catch doodles and ABCs.
If you have preschool-ish aged children, how are you answering the school question? And for the rest of you, what was your favourite memory from those early school days?
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