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Monday, May 20, 2013

The Diva has graduated!

Here is a photo from her Sr project/ performance and entire graduation class.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Let's hope I make it to graduation day!

I'm on the verge of pulling out my hair!  This is no ordinary graduation!

Homeschool graduations are an interesting thing with no two being the same.

In this case, we are working our way to a graduation that includes Arts presentations (my daughter's self designed show is timed at 20 minutes and includes costumes and songs... hard songs).  We have been to rehearsals twice this week already, and there could be one tomorrow, to make sure she feels secure.

Costumes need adjustments... partly my job.  And daughter is still trying to add things.  I am certainly drawing the line there.

In addition to the Arts presentations, there is a reception and award ceremony, then caps and gowns.  The affair will last pretty much from 1-6, meaning we will very likely be there from 12-6:30.  I'm going to need to rest up.

Friends are coming over tonight, and I hope they help me power through.

And then, I've got to do The Diva's hair.  (From now and henceforth, I think I'll call her The Diva.)  It is the focus of her show, and it fits her.  I wish I'd come up with it earlier!

Anyway.  Wish me luck and success, and peace.  I'm going to need it.

ps. click the photo tab above.  I just updated with the latest pictures.


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Last Week of Homeschooling!

In exactly 1 week, Jordan will be in the midst of graduation exercises along with 10 fellow homeschoolers in the same Arts Program as she.  Some also did the academic leg, but Jordan did most of her core courses independently.  I am looking forward to seeing everyone's senior presentations, as I am only privy to what my daughter is doing.  If the rest are giving presentations as ambitious as my kids, and I am sure they will, I will be so thrilled and happy!

Meanwhile, I spent the bulk of this morning calculating grades for the 2nd half of the year and reporting those grades to her homeschool Accreditation agency.  I already actually have her diploma on my desk, as it arrived a couple weeks ago.  Before I get up from this chair, I will also submit attendance for the year.  I am gathering that will take an hour.

Plus, I am scheduling her road test Monday morning.  She would have been driving sooner, but I refused to move forward if she refused to finish her work.  It came down to health vs. the drivers license.  No health.  No drivers license.  Needless to say, she finished her health curriculum.

This next week will include:

Agonizing over my son's application he has into the state college.
Sewing assistance on one final costume for Senior Project.
More rehearsals.
Crafting for things I want to put on her Sr. Table
Buying a dress for each of us and making sure the guys have on decent  outfits.

Oh-shoot!  I never ordered a yard sign.  I'll get that around the corner.

Ugh.  I'm sure I'm missing something else.

Wish us luck on getting through this week without killing each other.  ... So stressful.


Thursday, May 09, 2013

Three major things I wish I had done differently in our homeschool journey

As we finish up our homeschool experience, and evaluate what we have accomplished and where we have weaknesses, there are 3 major things I would change.

1.  I would have unschooled through grade 5.  I have determined that the only thing a student really needs to know to prepare for middle school are:

  • Math: add, subtract, multiply, divide
  • Language Arts:  How to read and be able to comprehend what is read
  • Exploration: so much about all other subjects can be learned through exploration, field trips, and group activities. 
Some might not call it unschooling if you are teaching math and reading, but that would be where I would draw the line.  I guess you could call it uber-relaxed homeschooling. 

2.  I wish I had found earlier.  I have found this to be the most intuitive and affordable system of teaching math to date.  It allows kids to learn math at their own pace whether it be slower or accelerated.  This program is still imperfect, but after all the ones we tried it still is the best.  The only thing that could make it better is to add a video instruction option to the problems. 

3.  Dual enrollment in the final two years.  My kids did take classes outside the home throughout their homeschool experience, but I think I regret not putting them in an actual college classes, so I could help them walk through their first collegiate experience.  I wonder if I can get my daughter to do a summer class before she leaves home in the fall.