Random brain dump, or….can I fit it all in?

What a terrible subject line.  But one way to guarantee only people who want to read a brain dump will read it.  Because the post is super random and has no point.   However, so many things have been happening in the homeschool front that I want to share, yet they don’t really have a big point.  So a brain dump.

I’m coming up from under a mountain of craziness that is the last 3 weeks.  Mostly because I was running around to 4H and playdates and hikes and then yelling at the kids, especially Thumper, when we didn’t get enough done.  I haven’t had time to prep and I was feeling like we’re behind.

We’re in 3rd grade!  And we can’t read in English!  And we can’t write in Chinese!  What about science and history! or music and cooking and gardening!  or folding laundry and washing dishes and chores?  There’s no time to read or listen to cool audio or watch Magic School Bus!  Then the worry that I’m not following the child or letting the children really follow and explore their interest when there’s 10 other things on the list that they must do daily during school.

I could not figure out how to fit it all in.

Thank goodness for friends who also homeschool in Chinese.  After some plea for help from Hotelier Mama, I made some changes.  Looking at Mandarin Mama‘s schedule also made me feel better.

But I’ll write about that some other time.  Once I stopped freaking out so much, I looked back at what we’re doing and I realized we’ve been having good homeschooling days quite often actually.

Let me count the ways.

  • We got our test scores back and Thumper scored really high in math and high in English.  She had the questions read to her.   It eased my mind and reminded me that knowledge-wise she’s right on track.  We can add the reading part in still.  It doesn’t mean she’s not learning just because she’s not reading in English.
  • We spent a really great Saturday doing school all day.  Normally this would tire me out.  But having no plans to go out that day, we rested when we felt like it, and then worked when we were ready.  Astroboy learned about the moon and we caught up on all the work we’d missed (that I’d planned for) during the week.
  • Astroboy is getting playdates 4-5 times a week with various playmates and seeing him so happy with friends makes me happy.  Thumper was having a lot of fun in her dance “class” as well.
  • I’m tickled that I found some music demo “class” online and we’re using that for Astroboy’s music lesson.
  • I’m even more tickled that I’m having Thumper watch the Great Lessons given by a teacher from a Montessori school on youtube.  Because it means she will finally hear the 6 Great Lessons this year and I can feel less guilty.  I don’t even feel so bad it’s all in English because she’s at least getting the lesson.
  • I’m super happy about the Chinese co-op I have set up.  Really need to find a nickname for my friend so I can type that instead.  I’m thankful she is flexible and willing to drive all the way to my house and I get to learn how to work with 3 children.  The dynamic is so different from 2.
  • I’m happy we have managed to do some science presentations due to said co-op, even if I have not had time to follow up yet.   I love it when I’m able to implement some of the things I want to put in my classroom/curriculum but have been putting off due to lack of prep time.
  • Thumper is reading.  I don’t know how well she’s reading but she’s super enjoying her Dahl books.  She’s zipping through a book a week.  It pleases me because she’s reading in Chinese!  At grade level!  And not relying on all on zhuyin!  It makes me feel like my insistence to homeschool to make sure the kids’ Chinese are good has been worth all the worry and effort.
  • My curriculum planning paid off a bit when I was able to have both kids do a moon log, then sing a moon song, and Thumper learn the moon song on the piano.  We will hopefully make some clay sun/moon/stars wind chimes.  Wow, I tied different subjects together like I’m supposed to!
  • Astroboy is spelling with zhuyin left and right but still very slow in reading.  I’m actually seeing how writing comes before reading like Montessori observed!
  • My brain is constantly thinking about what it means to teach 2 languages at once, what the best way is (if there’s a best way), but I can never reach a coherent conclusion to write about….

Time to go to bed!

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