Monday, January 6, 2014

Icky, Rainy Mondays-- Homeschooling When You Have the Blahs!

Ugh!  It's Monday and I feel like I just HAVE to start school.  I don't want to though.

All of the stuff I printed out right before Christmas just doesn't look at all appealing to tackle.  I'm not sure if it's because I've been re-reading all my old blog posts about the importance of play and reading about all the really neat stuff we got around to doing last year.... or if it's that the last two weeks of unschooling have been GREAT..... or if it's just the usual Monday blahs!



I woke to pouring rain and a monster grocery list so that just added to my icky Monday feelings.

Seriously, it was the kind of morning where I just wanted to pull the covers over my head and go back to sleep in the hopes that it would be Tuesday when I next woke.  With three kids those kinds of fantasies just remain fantasies.

 Instead I dragged myself out of bed and got ready to start the day.  I picked a few quick activities to get us back into the swing of things today.  I didn't want anything difficult or to involved since I did have to do a major grocery shopping  and I didn't want to overwhelm the boys on our first day back to school either.

Typically when I have the Blah's and don't feel like schooling with the boys I have a few things we fall back on:

  • We'll declare a no- school day.. yep sometimes when I don't feel like schooling we take a day off.  I find the boys naturally find things to do and in keeping busy they tend to school themselves.
  • We'll watch movies- I'll pick some old favorites or new movies I want to introduce the boys to and we use the movies to jump start our day.
  • We'll play games- I can always walk over to our game shelf and choose a game or two at random to play.  Games are often educational and can help get me out of my funk. 
  • I'll put out some new curriculum materials.  Some days I'm blah about school because I am sick of doing the same lessons over and over again.  New materials put some spark back into our learning.
  • We'll declare it an art day or a science day... anything to break up our routine.  We often have science kits and art materials that we want to get around to and somehow never actually seem to get around to doing.  On some blah days we'll pull out all our kids and just decide to focus on one fun subject for the whole school day. 
  • I push myself to just do it!  They aren't usually my prettiest or my best days but some days even when I don't want to homeschool the boys I just force myself to go through the motions.  

Today I pushed myself to just do it.

Ian and Alec worked on a very basic add and color sheet and then worked on correcting some sentences.  They really struggle with editing and I thought a few practice sheets now and then would be good for them.  Evan worked on counting on.


When they finished I asked them each to read quietly for 10 minutes and since Evan can't read yet by himself I asked him to go through his pile of early readers and pick a book or two for us to read together when I was done in the kitchen.   He picked two more Bob's books and since we had never read either one I helped him out quite a bit.
 
We also had a snowball fight with Evan's sight words.

I saw this idea on Apples and ABC's blog... our snowballs look kind of pathetic compared to hers but I only have one child who needs this lesson and it seemed silly to use a ton of our computer paper.  I had a few sheets of sight word flash cards that I had printed out ages ago and so I cut them into rectangles and made mini snowballs.  I knew the boys wouldn't care and would have tons of fun with this.

Our pitiful pile of mini "snowballs"
We did not keep score since Alec and Ian know all these words already and that wouldn't be fair but basically they stood in opposite corners of the room and flung snowballs at one another until they ran out.  They then scooped up all their new snowballs (we had 30 so I told them to each scoop up 10), then they opened them up and read all the words (or all the words that they could in Evan's case).  They then crumbled the snowballs back up and played another round.  I let them play until they were bored.

Reading his snowballs
I declared school was done and Ian went to work filling our wood rack, cleaning the basement and putting the next batch of polish and stuff into his rock tumbler.  Alec and Evan worked on Evan's Skylanders Mega Block sets.  We watched AxMen, Alaska The Last Frontier, Pawn Stars and a Star Wars Mythbusters episode today.


It rained all day long but we made the best of this icky, rainy Monday!

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