One of the things that's constantly on my mind is homeschooling. Or unschooling. Or some sort of combination of the two. We think V will be a really good candidate for unschooling (though, truthfully, we think all children are) because she is such the go-getter. If she has a question, she needs an answer. And we're happy to help her when she needs it and happy to let her figure it out when she doesn't.
At 4.5, V has been reading for a good year now. I don't think I could say that I taught her to read exactly. I was always better in English class than math or science. R tells me he learned to read in daycare when he was 3. So, genes? All I know is that we've been talking about letters and the sounds they make and the sounds at the beginning/end/middle of words and what words mean and what they look like since before she could possibly understand. But we've never pushed, it's always a fun thing. So now she can read. This is very helpful in the car on trips to see the grandparents - especially since we've been through 2 DVD players now (so annoying).
But just because she can read, doesn't mean she always understands what she reads. And it doesn't mean that she writes. Or that she's doing calculus. She's a regular 4-year-old kid. But still, it's exciting. Because she's fresh. She has no preconceived notions of what learning should be like. If she decides she likes worksheets, we'll get her worksheets. But if not, that's A-Ok with me. There is always another way to learn something.
Yesterday my MIL gave us these bookshelves. They're in the playroom now - which is also where my computer is and I'm guessing the formal homeschooling area of the house. Though I'm sure the actual learning will take place all over, it'll be nice to have a place for the books, pencils, paper, etc.
V set the books on top of the shelves to look like our local library. I have a really hard time not buying every single book I think might interest her, in addition to the ones she wants. So we have a lot. And I want ever-more. Thank goodness for the library!
I finally have a clear idea for this room. I'd like a twin mattress to use as a daybed/guest bed. Also a chair or loveseat. A lamp or three. A proper desk for my computer. One day I want these shelves as well. And I super-de-duper want this wall map.
I truly think one of the greatest perks of homeschooling must be doing it how you want to do it, how it works best for your family. Like having a ($5 from a local thrift store! woot!) Hello Kitty table as your desk. And having Movie Fridays. And filming science experiments to post on the internet (one day soon, I hope). Daytrips to roadside historical sites. Or whatever we feel like doing. I found The Organic Sister blog the other day and have been reading it from now to the beginning. While I sometimes wish we could just pack it up and head out, I don't see this happening. But that's what Tara and her family have done and I'm enjoying reading about it. Knowing what I know about school from my own experience (and believe me when I say that this is just the tip of my iceberg), reading what I've read about it, and (so far) feeling the relaxed attitude and yet constant learning that goes on with my own child, I have to say I feel pretty lucky to live in this age of the Internet and all the resources that are available to us.
Just wanted to say that.