I know. Only one photo and its already been posted on Instagram. Please forgive me. This week has been non-stop, or at least it feels that way. This was my week to host our preschool co-op and we decided that we were going to start meeting every Friday as opposed to every other week. We are going to alternate lesson plans every week, focusing on letters and numbers for one lesson and stories and crafts for the other lesson. I volunteered to research a few curriculums for the parents to review and hopefully choose one to follow as a group. So far, I like Easy Peasy Homeschooling but I can’t figure out how to combine one week’s worth of lessons into one day, especially without creating homework for the parents and kids. They are only preschoolers after all. Any recommendations? Ideally the program would be online and free. Other than that, I am pretty open to suggestions.
I’m plugging away on my Wellington Shawl, the test knit I’ve been working on for Sam Lamb. I have to confess, I’m a little behind, and I’ve had to drop my cup of tea socks completely to ensure that I finish the shawl by the deadline. I don’t mind, though. The shawl is a fun knit and I think I’m going to love wearing it once it’s finished.
Gabe and I hired an arborist to help us plan and plant our new orchard this spring. We fenced off about an acre a few years ago, leaving plenty of room for raised beds, berry bushes and fruit trees. So far, all we’ve managed to accomplish are the raised beds. But now that Gabe is retired from the Army, we finally have the time (and the finances) to start our orchard. Walking through the new orchard site with the arborist, we discussed which trees and berry bushes we wanted to plant and then chose varieties that thrive here in the Pacific Northwest climate. I won’t be getting my much coveted avocado tree (too cold) but lo and behold there is a persimmon tree that can grow this far north. Isn’t that exciting? (Gabe does not think it’s exciting. He and the children don’t like persimmons, and I’m basically planting a tree that will bear fruit that only I will eat. Whatever, it’s worth it.)
Besides that, it’s just the usual happenings around here: our days are filled with children’s activities, grocery shopping, laundry, folding clothes, wiping tears, handing out snacks, cleaning up toys, pulling Smartwool socks out of the potty (thanks, Eddie), playing trucks, story time, changing diapers, giving kisses and drawing pictures. In other words, life is good. Full. And good.
Oh! I must include a baby update: I’m 23 weeks along, so only 17 more to go! He or she is moving around a lot more and seems to really respond to music. Whenever I am listening to the radio or people begin singing in synagogue during services, the movement always increases. I don’t know why, but that makes me happy.
I hope everyone is enjoying their week. Happy knitting, my friends.
How wonderful that you can bring in a professional to help you plan! I love persimmons so I am on your side with that one 😉 We used Easy Peasy a little….and it was nice to use. Being able to learn with a co-op will be so nice for you! When we joined our home school group it made a world of difference for us and enhanced their experience.
Love the baby update…and the toilet socks 😀
I am so happy to have stumbled upon your blog via the Yarn Along. I will have to add you to my Feed! Happy knitting. Good luck with your projects, fruit trees included.
Thanks, Andrea! I’m glad you enjoy the blog. I certainly enjoy writing it. Come back soon!
Good luck with the orchard. We have some space in our garden for a few fruit trees and I think about planting every year and then don’t do it. So silly as we have been here ten years and could have pretty big trees by now!
Looking forward to seeing that shawl.
Congrats on only 17 weeks to go. I thought the end of my pregnancy flew by! Enjoy the time 😉 You natural color yarn is gorgeous.
That shawl looks lovely so far – I really like the color!
Thank you, Lynn.
I just stumbled upon your blog but I love it. Gorgeous photos and projects. You have a great sense of color when it comes to the patterns you are working on. Sorry those socks can’t get done sooner – I really like them!
Thank you, Lisa. I hope you come back again soon!
If you mean cramming teaching the preschoolers all the content they need to know within a day, I have to tell you it’s impossible. According to the research studies of child attention spans, (found and quoted/referenced accurately in the Daily 5 book), kids have about the attention span of their age. They can go longer or shorter based on background, but if you are teaching 3-4-5year-olds, you can bet that your range should be centered around 3-4-5 minutes. On top of that, going over what they need to learn in a week in one day won’t help it stick with them. I teach Kindergarten, and I know that the BIGGEST help to me (I teach at a private school, where we want them to be reading out of Kindergarten) is that they know their letters and numbers by sight. They need to know their sounds and names, because that’s the foundation for Bob books (great series, really good, also not a curriculum, but good books for kids to start, when you get there), and they need to know at least numbers 1-10 to be ready for Kindergarten in our school. I understand this would be different, but it’s the standard for us, and it seems to work pretty well. Here is the basic structure of their classrooms:
Morning: letter/number work. There is a letter a day, a number a day, and some sort of art centered around that. Afternoon: it’s basically explore/play time. (yes, they do have full days, which is crazy, but they also have naps, which my Kindergartners do not have. 🙁 )
I hope this was helpful to you. It might be good for parents to work on one number/letter a day, and then at the end of the week collaborate and see how much the kids learned by assessing (asking them, “what is this letter?” and “what sound does it make?” and “what is this number?”). I know that there is a phonics program that is great for learning sounds, but I think some of my Kindergartners would have trouble with it. (it goes over inconsistencies, like the ough sound or the ea sound as well as letters, and is basically flash cards, but it might be a good start). Oh, also, reading to kids has shown to positively affect their reading skills later on. Hope I could help.
Hi Julia, thanks for all the info! I don’t intend to cram everything into one day; I agree, that would be painful for both the kids and the parents! I like the idea of reviewing on Fridays when we meet; I’m just not sure if the other parents will want to have “homework,” during the week. That is something I will have to ask everyone when we meet next time. Also, I’m so glad you recommend the Bob books! I had read about them but I don’t know anyone who has used them. Again, thank you!
What a lovely family! And I love your Cup of Tea socks 😉
Thank you, Cheryl. Once I finish this test knit, I hope to be back on track with the socks! I so look forward to wearing them!
Love the color of your yarn – such a perfect shade of white – not too much, but just right! Good luck with the orchard!
Thank you, Alina.
Check out Wee Folk Art Homeschool free preschool-K curriculum. I love the season based crafts and good quality picture book suggestions.
Dawn, I will do so, thank you.