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A Last Minute Kindergarten Plan

When we packed our house to move last spring, Lucie wasn't participating in school at all.  On top of that, I was pretty certain that I wouldn't be homeschooling her even this fall so I packed our Montessori materials with that in mind.

Then surprise!  We had that amazing visit with her new nuero-psychologist who thinks that homeschool and Montessori are just what she needs to maximize her potential this year.

Enter homeschool mom research mom-mode!  You know that one?  Thanks to lots of experience and some good old fashioned tenacity, I think we have a plan that will work.

This post contains affiliate links.  By purchasing through these links, I may receive a referral fee which supports the continued work of this blog.  Thank you.

Materials

Materials is a big issue this year.  Our new house isn't quite finished, which means I don't have any materials storage or display space.   They are in buckets in the garage until further notice.

The Solution

I've made room for …
Recent posts

Robotics & Electronics for Homeschool

Have you ever had a kid really interested in something you know almost nothing about?  Who hasn't, right?!

That was me when it came to teaching electronics and coding to Caleb (12).

42 Electronics reached out earlier this year and offered us a copy of their Introduction to Robotics Curriculum and I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to collaborate with Caleb while boosting his knowledge and skills for something he is very interested in.

This post contains affiliate links.  I was provided with a free copy of the curriculum, all opinions are my own (and Caleb's).


What is 42 Electronics?

42 Electronics sells curriculum kits for teaching introductory robotics to middle school aged kids and up.  Each lesson has an in depth reading assignment, hands on activities, follow up questions, and more.  They build on each other to introduce students to the use of a breadboard and Raspberry Pi.

What worked for us?

I thought the curriculum was a bit more textbook-like than we usually us…

Yes. My Life is Hard- And Yours is Too.

You know the saying, If I had a quarter for every time....?

Well if I had a quarter for every time someone diminished their own challenging circumstances because they "aren't what you deal with".
I mean, seriously, give me a quarter because I could pay some bills with that!
My life as a medical special needs mom is hard.  Most of the time I am too busy to really think about that truth, but lately I've been realizing that I need to be a little more honest about it both for my readers (friends, family, etc) and for myself.
First off, I want to apologize to anyone that has the impression that we have it all together.  We don't. My kids are piano lesson drop outs, not because they don't like playing or because I don't think music is important, but I flat out don't have time to drive to lessons.  That's the only reason.  We eat really great, except when we eat pizza...and some weeks that's like a 50/50 situation.  I have totally flaked on the pare…

Oh, You Magical Montessori

Montessori is an important part of the fabric of me.  Many things I do as a parent are influenced by the internalization of Montessori beliefs about childhood.  That said, I know that occasionally children with certain temperaments, needs, developmental issues, or more may NOT do best in a pure Montessori setting.  Not that Montessori can't be used to meet them where they are, but that the methods as written are not in line with that child.

For a child with manual dexterity (fine motor) issues, for example, the golden bead materials can be very cumbersome.  They might do better with a different material, a helper to work with the materials, or even no materials.  On the other hand, the same limited motor skills would be supported in maximizing the child's capacities through the sensorial and practical life activities that strengthen the hand.  These are all things a trained and experienced Montessori classroom guide would automatically work through, but something that is a l…

The End of a Year Long Study in Radically Following the Child.

A child changes a lot in one year.  No more so than the first year of life, of which Sarah's is rapidly drawing to a close.  During her pregnancy, I discovered natural motor skills development.  The idea of no tummy time, no swaddles, no bouncy chairs or swings, no propped sitting, no walkers or hand holding adult-led steps appealed to something deep within me.

After 19 months of fighting for every milestone with Tomas, I just felt tired.  In honesty, I think there may have been a streak of laziness that made freedom of movement sound like a good plan.

But mostly I just felt there had to be a better way.

Eventually I discovered that better way for Tomas, when I returned to my Montessori roots to observe him and discover where he was and work from there rather than applying him to a set of arbitrary guidelines.  I was determined to do better this time.

And so began my year of radically following Sarah.




So what went well?

In the beginning I was very diligent about setting up our mo…