Wednesday, August 26, 2015

And We're Back

It's been a long while since I wrote a post. Life put a lot on my plate, and I needed a break from blogging to work through it all.

The good news is that homeschooling, at least, is still going strong.

We are "back to school" as of Monday and winding up slowly. First Sprout is in 2nd grade this year, and Second Sprout is a Kindergartner-- whoa! It's a little daunting to be teaching both of bigger sprouts this year, but I am excited to be getting more face-to-face time with my middle child.

One thing I want to do differently this year is spend more time noticing and encouraging certain dispositions in my children. These are the qualities that I think will be helpful no matter where they are or what they are learning or who they are learning from. I spent a lot of time this summer mulling over what qualities I want to cultivate in my sprouts, and I came up with this list:

1) Focus: The ability to attend to a specific task without giving into distraction
2) Persistence: Trying a task repeatedly even when it is difficult or the outcome is unexpected
3) Asking Questions: Thinking critically about a situation, identifying gaps in your own knowledge or understanding, and then figuring out where to get that information
4) Self-Motivation: Learning because you want to and not because you have to
5) Problem Solving: Identifying problems and thinking about how to handle them in a productive way

Since I needed a nice way to post these characteristics for personal reference, I created a simple little poster to hang in our school area. I am hoping that this will help keep the qualities at the front of my mind so that I can reinforce them when I see them. The sprouts already think of themselves as problem solvers because of this strategy, so I know that pointing out the characteristics as they naturally occur will reinforce and strengthen these abilities.

If you'd like a copy of this PDF, I have made it available (for free) here.

Hopefully, things will be calming down for the foreseeable future as we get back into our school routine. I don't want to make any promises regarding a blogging schedule though, because, life. Until next time (whenever that may be),

Happy Learning!