Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Wednesday update

The past few days have been kind of blurry. I haven't been super well. The 12yo has a cold. His sister's barely been sleeping. Ds is getting super tired. Dd's been sleeping in... Something in the air!!

Yesterday, I decided that we needed some sort of structure for the morning to actually get things done. It was for ME more than for the kids. Dd actually did her own self-directed thing for the most part and I called the 12yo to come work with me at specific times. He LOVED the simple schedule. As soon as he saw it and read it, he said, "I like this. This is better than the other things we've done." It's simple, straight-forward, tells him what needs to be done without putting the pressure on him to figure out how to get all his work done (I just really don't think he's ready for that). I said something about it being for today and he said he wanted that every day. I asked, "In the same order, every day?" "Yes!" Great! If that's what will work for him, so be it.

What's the schedule?

8:30 - Phonics/Spelling

9:00 - Reading

9:30 - Writing

10:00 - Math

10:30 - Science/Social Studies

The stuff I'm having him do does NOT take 30 min. each. So, it gives him a brief lesson/work time, then he can go do whatever, then he comes back, etc. This is soooooooooo him. I've tried Charlotte Mason-type schedules before, but they didn't leave enough open blocks. It's still not as much work/as many lessons as we need to work to getting in, but there's always the afternoon time we can work out. And for right now it gives him a framework, he knows what's expected, and he knows he gets frequent breaks. (Have I mentioned that the schools classified him as ADD/ADHD?) The breaks also mean that I can do something with somebody else. Despite being under the weather today, he was quite enjoyable and it worked very well.

To add to all of this, I ended up learning about Ray's Arithmetic series last night and spent quite a while looking at different stuff online. I ended up telling him about an old copy available on ebay and was just talking about how the books were set up and he asked if it was something he could do--his interest being that if I bought this cool, old book, would he be able to use it to work from. :) Then he came up on his own with the thought that with such an old book, we probably wouldn't want to handle it that much anyhow. However, the whole approach to the math intrigued him, and I had been contemplating having a couple of the books on hand anyhow, so I've been looking further into it.

THE FOLLOWING IS A BABBLE TO HELP ME SORT OUT MY THOUGHTS A BIT. I can get just the basic books bound, for about $45US or so, not including some extra books that can accompany them (which includes some guides/keys as well as extra-practice books). OR, I can buy a CD for $59US from which I could print ALL the books (including high school level geometry, algebra and more) and accompanying books--20 books in all, I think. I really prefer having a book, but the 8-volume elementary set is going for $78US at this one place and I can get 20 volumes for $59US (plus the cost of paper and ink, but the 20 volumes include volumes that just can't seem to be found ANYWHERE else). I don't know that I necessarily want all 20, but I definitely want the algebra book. I can actually print that off (with difficulty) at one site I found. But the other intermediate/advanced are nowhere to be found. And if I should decide late that I do want them available, I'm going to have to pay $29 for the intermediate CD and another $29 for the higher level. But I'd have my bound books... *sigh* I could coil-bind, but it's not quite the same. I have to decide if my obsession (lol) with actual books is worth the extra cost and hassle! Probably not. Logically I know it isn't. It's this total emotional reaction on my part to not having a physical book. lol.

Another thing to add to my weirdness list. ;)

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