Gentle Summer School

Kiffanie’s been home three weeks and we’ve been easing into some light academics for all the PrairieFrogs.   In the orphanage, she was accostomed to sleep and meals on a schedule, but much of her time was relatively  free of constraints, so she’s learning to stretch her attention span.  (I’m impressed she has as much attention span as she does!  She’ll eagerly enjoy my reading two or three picture books to her at a time–I had thought even one might be a leap!)  She’s doing an amazing job adjusting to the changes, astounding all of us.

Kendra and Keianna finished their core academics before Ken left for Congo.  Kaira’s just finishing her final exams this week. (Come on, Kaira–you can do it!)  With many core subjects cinched up for the moment, we are focusing on fine tuning handwriting, and catching up on spelling–areas they all struggle more.  For handwriting, the four eldest are writing out the Westminster Shorter Catechism.  Keegan especially is making notable progress in his legibility already!   The girls will all be doing a bit of supplemental math to keep their brains sharp–Mostly Life of Fred and Khan academy.  Reading is leisure to all of them, so they’ll enjoy the extra reading time the lighter summer schedule affords too.

We’ve resumed music lessons (practice never really ended, but lessons halted for a month), and now also have art lessons!  The children had been wanting art class for years, but I could only find “arts and crafts” classes for their age range.  They weren’t as interested in tissue paper or egg carton crafts, and wanted to learn to draw in perspective and such.  I had good intentions for teaching it myself but finally realized it just wasn’t going  to happen, so at just the right time, God provided a teacher who comes to our home!  The children are beyond excited, and jabbered away about the color wheel all week after their first class!

Kieran and Kiffanie have been doing some light Kindergarten–Kieran reading easy readers and working on his enunciation, Kiffanie working through some eclectic resources I’ve gathered just for her.  Everyone’s been enjoying lots of play and opportunities to explore a variety of interests–woodworking, knitting, origami, doll play and making pretend foo-foo fill their days.  In the evenings Ken entertains us with read-alouds.

We could have taken the summer off school entirely, but it seems that we are all more content if we keep a little bit of academic structure in our days.

Flashing back to the Congo: I loved all the responses to the poll (Wow!  Over 60 votes!  Thanks!)  I’ll be posting Ken’s Congo photos later this week–(starting tomorrow, I hope.  If I don’t get derailed.  Perhaps you’ve noticed I get derailed sometimes…)  You’ve all voted, and they votes are in favor of posting them as new posts, which will appear as the most recent posts at the top of the blog (well, until I post more after them, that is).  Per one friend’s suggestion, after a few weeks time, I’ll go back and edit the date so that they’ll be in sequence with his trip, but for now, they’ll be a glimpse back in time, posted as new posts at the top of the blog!

Light Schoolishness

Light Schoolishness

Kiffanie Coloring

Kiffanie Coloring


3 thoughts on “Gentle Summer School

  1. We find a light school schedule essential to summer as well. Discontent and bickering seem to happen if they have too much unstructured time.

  2. I love seeing how other home schooling families work! We school year round, both for routine and contentment and to ensure we’re getting in all the school we need. We go to “school lite” for a few weeks in fall (when the weather is perfect) and we lose days here and there during basketball season. When we’re on top of our game, we also take a few weeks off in December.

    It will be so exciting to watch Kiffanie’s progress!

    • We take off weeks and days here and there quite often too, it’s months off that tend to really throw us off kilter, so I avoid that when possible–like you, we often go lighter in fall–I love autumn weather! And like you we tend to take a few weeks in December… or a week here or there for travel or a trek to the mountains…

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