This year, our family decided to take advantage of a local homeschool co-op that meets for a full school day. The boys were very excited with a sprinkle of apprehension on their first day. Mama, on the other hand, was full of apprehension with a sprinkle of "I think this will be a good fit for us this year..."
Heading out the door on their first day! New monogrammed L.L. Bean backpacks received as birthday gifts from Grandpa and Grandma Farwell, lunch bags, and new school supplies...
The boys have attended classes for six weeks...our seventh week, the end of the first quarter, was cancelled in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy's wrath in our area. Thankfully, we escaped unscathed from the storm...we didn't even lose power though other streets around us did! We took time to pray as a family before bedtime...something we are doing more and more often. Praise God! It was neat to talk with the kids the next morning about how God had answered our prayers for our family and our home to be safe as well as those around us. God even kept all the food in our fridge and freezer safe, too! I am trying to share the Scripture below with the kids each time we see our prayers answered (even if our prayers are answered contrary to how we wanted a situation to turn out).
"The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." James 5:16 (NIV)
Elijah and Luke have adjusted quite well to going to school one day a week. They attend their classes and bring home assignments or reading to be completed before the next class. This set-up has eased my "teacher load" this fall and is working wonderfully! They enjoy P.E., History (focused on our government and election process this quarter), Science (Chemistry), Art/Performing Arts, Lego Robotics Club, and Writing/Literature. I am thrilled for them as I see so much progress being made specifically in their writing skills! In that class, they are required to write in a journal at least four times per week. At the end of each quarter they turn in a "final" paper based on one of their journal entries. This quarter they both wrote excellent fictional stories in the style of Mary Pope Osborne's Magic Tree House series. I worked alongside them, typing, encouraging, and making suggestions as their stories progressed over several drafts to the final paper. One of the biggest things I learned during this process is that we really need to get them working on typing skills! Beyond that, it was just plain fun!
Isaac has had a harder time adjusting to being at school all day. This really is his first time being away for such a long period of time without someone that he knows well being right there with him. The director and his teachers have been so encouraging to both Isaac and myself. I have appreciated their willingness to help us work through this issue by offering suggestions to help him not be anxious or sad. I visited his class twice during lunch time to give him a chance to see a familiar face. His teacher has allowed him to call home just to hear my reassuring voice. Each time Elijah or Luke see Isaac in passing, they stop and talk with him for a second. We also found that tucking a special trinket in is pocket filled to the brim and overflowing with Mama's hugs and kisses was quite effective. Anytime Isaac would start to feel sad, he could reach in his pocket and get some Mama-love. He had a good day on the sixth week of school! Imagine my delight when he was actually disappointed that school was cancelled for the storm on Tuesday. I believe we are over the hump! Praise God!
While the boys are at school, I have been able to make dr. appointments, run errands, work on projects at home, or just "be" while adjusting to life with our newborn, Silas. I imagine that as life settles in a bit more with the baby, Sadie, Silas, and I will have some great adventures...just Mama and the littles! I am thankful for this time to really dote on them as I find the other four days of the week to be quite busy with homeschool and keeping up with the rest of life's responsibilities.
I'm thankful for how well our school year is going so far. I feel like it is going to be our best year ever. The Lord is answering my prayers, too!
"The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results." James 5:16 (NLT)