Thursday, April 7, 2011

Losing Steam

Before I get into the meat of tonight's post, I want to share the story behind this picture. For the last three years, I have been building spelling lists for JT from the English from the Roots Up flashcards. I like the way the cards work, several words all made up from the same Latin or Greek root. But sometimes, I wonder how often he will need to know how to spell some of these uncommon words, such as phillumenist. Today, I found out. The drawing he made on the white board incorporated one of this week's spelling words, thermoplastic. Not a word I've ever refers to something that can be molded or formed when heated. The picture is a man, tied to a spit, being cooked by cannibals. Turns out the man is thermoplastic, so their plans have been foiled. Now THAT'S a good use of education!

According to the calendar we are rapidly approaching the end of our school year. For me it feels like time has suddenly started to drag its feet. I have a hard time getting excited about planning right now. I know it's because the end is in sight. I realized today that the best way to cope with this lack of motivation is to lighten up a bit. My plan for this week came together late in the game. I left the schedule a bit more sparse than usual. So far, that has been working in my favor allowing the days to be less tedious. We had more time to spend on projects. We spent a little more time outdoors. We stayed at the library longer than we sometimes do. We put a New England seaport diorama together today that normally I would have skipped out of shortness of time. All of these things have turned resistant kids into happy kids. By this time of the year, I feel like we have already met so many of our goals that we deserve a little down time. Learning is still happening, maybe even more than usual.

I had already planned to spend the last month of our school year summing up in many of our subjects. I thought a review format for spelling would be better than picking up any new words at this point. More games and projects are also on the agenda. The boys both made nature journals at the library homeschool day last week. Our weather has been too rainy to really put them to good use yet, but we plan to work those into our daily activities soon.

I know these last few weeks will be full of interesting days, but I also know summer will soon be here. I will be able to recharge my batteries, coming at the next year full of energy and new plans. For now, I'm just going along for the ride...learning as we go.

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