art table

Okay, I’ve been thinking a lot about how we are going to approach things. I’m not really for curriculum since I’m working with just Alder. But I need a structure for myself. So I think the Reggio Emelia approach is the direction we are going to go with some math and language arts added in. This way, A will be doing what he loves, and I’ll be able to help him express it.

My hope is as Alder gets further along in project learning that we will find other kids to do some with. I envision the projects being something that they might work on together two days a week and then on their own keeping the others up to date with email and pictures. This way he will get the working together aspect that learning at home as an only child would be missing.

For now I just want to work with him on the joy of learning. Like today we went to the library and after a few puzzles he turned to me and said “I want bee books and more science books”. Also yesterday at Target we were at the back to school sale (despite my dislike of crayons we did end up with 4 boxes, oh well they can always become stain glass or candles). We were talking the cashier about what we would do with the supplies, after she established that we didn’t have a list from a school. As we left she called to Alder “Have fun with your school work!” Alder looked a little confused and asked me “Mama why did she call it work?”

Now that’s the attitude I want to instill in him. To find joy in learning things deeply and being able to share what he learns.
The other thing about his learning I am noticing is that he really does know best how he learns. The other day he told me that he wanted to know what the letters were (the symbols). Being me I stressed for days over what sort of method could we do that he would enjoy and learn from. Then a few days ago he picked up the box of letter stamps and started singing the alphabet and pointing to each letter across the row as he sung, we’ve done it every day now for a while.
I understand that right now most of what Alder should be doing is playing, that we should fill our days with play and stories and more play and arts and seeing friends and all the things that make up a home life, but he is the one asking for these things so I am willing to help him reach for them. They aren’t all that he wants. We spent an hour this morning with him playing kitchen and making different meals for me and giraffe. And lets not forget all the time constructing train tracks and roads. Our days are filled with lots of different things.
My final thoughts on learning are really about food and eating. Because of the heat lately we haven’t been feeling hungry, but I am starting to notice that if we don’t eat by around one or seven arguments seem to start. In general things fall apart a little leaving all the good feelings of working together behind and making everything a confrontation. If we want this home to be a good learning environment part of that will be having us all well fed three times a day plus a few snacks. Like I mentioned before, I don’t separate life from learning rethinking our grocery list is part of this process.
Here are some links to things that have been inspiring me lately.
This journal idea.
Some simple ways to add beauty to our environment.
A mama who shares their life in a way that reminds me what to look for in each day of ours.
This friend and this friend who are realizing their dreams. Although I know one of you will protest this fact.
This science page, even though the top of it is badly laid out if you scroll down they have a great list of what to have around.
I’m reading this book too!