Monday marked a big day in this frugal household. We started school. Not public school. Home school. I promised to periodically update on our progress, so here’s the first update.

Monday morning we got up, ate breakfast, did morning chores, and headed outside to take the mandatory first day of school pictures. Then we headed back into the house to start school.

For the most part, the day went smoothly. We chose to do a slow start, meaning we aren’t covering all subjects yet. We’ll add math, grammar, and spelling next week, and we’ll add electives the week after. But this week we managed to cover social studies, language arts, Bible, and science.

My biggest problem so far has been that there is only one of me, and there are two kids who need my help frequently. Still, we’ve managed to deal with it so far. And I anticipate my daughter will get more independent as she learns the ropes.

We’ve managed to cover quite a bit of information in our first three days of homeschooling.

My first grade son has covered:

  • Dinosaurs
  • Early Man, including tools they used, clothing they made, and shelter
  • How the sun and earth interact to make day, night, and seasons
  • Adam & Eve and the first sin
  • 4 chapters of The Boxcar Children
  • Lots of writing practice

And my sixth grade daughter is studying:

  • The human body…cells, DNA, organs, and other body systems.
  • Pacific Islands…yesterday she learned about Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia. She’s also planning a luau to show her friends all she’s learning.
  • The ministry of John Dekker
  • The 10/40 window
  • Seabird by Holling C. Holling
  • Ancient ships
  • Henry Reed by Keith Robertson

We’re using a lot of Usborne books, which are great, because they provide lots of illustrations to go with the text…perfect for visual learners.

So far my son isn’t thrilled about homeschooling, but he’s not thrilled with school in general. He has a hard time sitting still, so I’ve been giving him lots of breaks to run outside with the dog. I also give him something to do with his hands while we read. And when asked, he says he prefers homeschooling to public school, because “it’s shorter.”

My daughter is loving homeschooling, which is ironic, because she was against it at first. She says she likes not having the distraction of other kids, because it’s easier for her to work. She also doesn’t miss the teasing she used to get in the classroom. And she’s pretty excited about the luau that she’s planning.

In the fall when public school starts, my daughter will be adding children’s choir, public school band, and 4-H to her schooling mix. In 4-H she’s going to be learning how to train our dog, which is a win for the whole family!

My son will start soccer in the fall, and both kids will do AWANA at church. And if it looks like my son needs another activity, we’ll look for one for him.

Our first field trip will be Sunday after church. We’re going to go to the local railroad park, so my son can see the inside of a boxcar and imagine what it would have been like for the Boxcar Children to live in one.

Even though I’m feeling more tired and busy than ever, I can see that homeschooling was a good decision for our family. I’m excited about the things I’m learning right along with the kids, and I love reading with them so much every day. I’m sure there will be harder days ahead, but if this week has been any indication of the rest of the year, I’m going to love homeschooling!