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Throughout the day I really had mixed emotions. I had a romanticized idea of traditional kindergarten in my head. The whole... first day of school outfit and the experience of meeting new little friends and recess and all the fun things that happen in kindergarten. I loved kindergarten and elementary school and part of me was wondering if I was doing the right thing. Was I robbing her of these childhood memories?
But then there were moments during the day I felt so happy we were doing homeschool. For one, 9am is a much easier start time for our family than 8:15 am. We are 100% fully ready to by 9am. I love that part. Second, we made cookies for our snack. I thought that was something really special.
Today was our second day and I didn't feel as unsure of myself and our decision to homeschool. After talking to my sweet neighbor she reminded me that things like this don't have to be forever. If we ever want to put her in a traditional school we can. My husband reminded me that we will create our OWN traditions that Leelee will be fond of and always remember. So those comments coupled with the experience of today made me feel a lot better.
Another thing that surprised me was the importance of an actual classroom. I have read many blogs and talked to other homeschool parents who didn't use the space of a homeschool room. For them school is done on the couch or at the dining room table. I was really close to setting up our homeschool day in such a way that we would do our lessons at the dining table. But for us, an actual homeschool room really sets the precedence. It's an atmosphere that as soon as we walk in we know the purpose of the room and the roles we need to have. For our family right now, the room is a big part of our success. Leelee talks about how much she loves her classroom and the last two days as soon as we walked in the room she has been in student mode. That might change as we get older, but that's the beauty of it all. We can be flexible and next year we may be doing school work in the living room. (btw, I hope any friends that read this know I am NOT comparing or even knocking traditional school. I think there are excellent teachers, schools and curriculums. We have our own reasons for why homeschool is right for us at this point in life. But it's definitely not something I feel is better. It's just better for US right now and that's all :)
Although I did set up a classroom for us, it's nowhere near as fancy as some of the rooms I've seen on pinterest and the blogosphere. I tried to not overwhelm myself and just K.I.S.S with the homeschool room since this is our first year.
I bought the monthly calendar from amazon. The rug, little table and chairs are from IKEA. The banner and alphabet letters on the wall I made and printed myself.
If you like these wall letters, you can print them here for free. Just please be kind and do not alter the images and just link back here if you do share the image on your site.
With SO much going on it's essential for me to write EVERY single thing down. I have a lot less stress knowing that dinner and grocery lists are planned and appointments are scheduled right in.
I printed the "week of" printables here.
The calendars can be downloaded and printed here.
I really love this message and wanted something inspirational for myself as well as Leelee in the classroom.
I bought these cardboard storage boxes for IKEA. They were 5.99 euro for two boxes. I printed up these labels so the entire family knows where to put things back and also where to find needed supplies.
I also saw this idea on pinterest for helping to teach time. We haven't gotten to that yet, but I thought the idea was so awesome.
Day two and I don't feel so nuts for taking on such a huge responsibility. I can do this. Sure there will be days we are in pajamas all day. And there will be days I want to pull my hair out. But I think this is going to be worth it all.
Till my next blog post....Tschüs!