A Complete Three-Sixty

I started this new blog to talk about a whole new outlook on our education and what it was going to look like.  When I started this blog I had no idea where our path would lead us.  In all honestly I had the idea of being very relaxed.  Of being very unschoolish (I know this isn't a word, but you catch my drift).

I spent all last year agonizing over our school  Burned out beyond all hope, I was completely unable to do anything.  I started listening to advice from people who claimed to be experts and told me that it was ok to do nothing.  It lead me to feel like if our school was not a party everyday, it was not an adventure every day I failed.

I seriously thought about giving up all hope of homeschooling.  I knew deep in my heart that I was called to this vocation but was feeling lost and alone.

I spent a lot of time in the last few months in prayer.  I looked into all the curriculum again, trying to discern what God was calling me to do.  I planned an entire Charlotte Mason education for all the five kids from 8th grade to Kindergarten for this year, but when it came to implementing it  became overwhelmed and unable to see it through.  I came to the ultimate conclusion that if I could not do as good of a job, if not better, than the public schools I had no right to homeschool.  In fact, I owed it to my kids to send them, even though my heart ached with the thought.

It came to me that I needed something manageable.  Not easy.  Not a party everyday.  I needed something that I could put into place for all 5 of my school age children that would not leave me unable to function and constantly playing catch up.  And that was when I did something I thought I would never do again as a homeschool mom...

I bought workbooks.

Wait!! Stop screaming and running away... hear me out.  It is ok.  Really, it is!  Workbooks have become a dirty word among many homeschoolers.  I can recall scrunching my face up tight in disgust at the very idea for several years.  We aren't only doing workbooks, mind you, but letting them back into our lives has been a Godsend to our family and our homeschool.

When I started homeschooling that was exactly what I did.  We did Seton and actually liked it.  I learned a lot too!  Back then I only had three kids I was schooling at home and we were able to get all our school done at a reasonable hour and have plenty of time for more fun and engaging activities.

So here we are again.  Seton materials were ordered and affordable.  I will add my own literature selections for the kids and I also cut back on our morning time.  I think the long morning time really made the kids restless.  So we are doing prayer, short saint story, and a read aloud.  I decided that since most of the kids are doing American history we would listen to the Little House books again.  They are such a treasure and it has been long enough that they will be fresh and new to this crew.

Our first week went beautifully.  There were challenges but they were manageable and we worked through them.  I made brownies on Friday to celebrate our first week of school complete and the consensus was all positive.  In fact, the older kids told me plainly they liked this much better than what we were doing before.

For the first time in a long time, I feel on top of our homeschool and our home.  I feel like I can do this and do it well.  I am so glad that we made this decision to be ourselves and do what works for our family.  What more could you ask for?

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