This week held good news and bad news for Miss Muffin. The bad news? School began on Monday. Just when we had begun to wrap our minds around an August starting date, they change it to July. Although our county is earlier than most, many other Tennessee counties will be joining the trend next week. The good news? Fifth graders here attend the middle school. That promotion is a year earlier than expected and one that Muffin happily embraces. No matter that her classroom is still our home. It’s the title that counts!
Homeschooling has held some surprises for me. One is the impact that public school schedules still have. While it’s nice to have flexibility in scheduling, no homeschooler wants to be hitting the books while the other kids are having a vacation. Another is the amount of preparation required. I’m not sure why this surprised me, since I know a number of teachers who spend much of the summer vacations preparing lesson plans. While much of this summer has been devoted to house hunting, moving and settling in our new home, Calico has still devoted considerable time to selecting curriculum and preparing lesson schedules. As much as possible, she likes to provide links between subjects. Reading and art, for example, might pair American writers & artists. Imagine Mark Twain’s Tom Sawyer paired with Norman Rockwell’s delightful illustrations of American life. It makes me want to return to school.
I’m always happy to help out with schooling, but I’ll be more involved this year. As Calico starts her own classes again next month and pursues a dual major, she’ll need all the help she can get.