I came home from the homeschool conference refreshed and ready to start our new school year! But first we have to end THIS school year. I have moved our ending date to May 23! Then we are going to spend Memorial Day weekend with my parents. Jimmy has to work all weekend.
I really enjoyed hearing Jeannie Fulbright, author of the Apologia elementary science curriculum. She was a delightful speaker, full of wisdom. She stressed the importance of identifying each child's "bent" and focusing on that as you choose their education path. She also stressed the importance of our children becoming independent learners. My older girls are about 99% independent learners, and I was feeling a little guilty about that...but now I feel great! I plan to work with Clay becoming more independent next year.
I also attended a workshop on occupying preschoolers while homeschooling. I must admit that I thought there was nothing new I could learn in this department! I have always had preschoolers and/or babies since I began homeschooling. But, I was pleasantly surprised! I learned some new creative, low cost activities to prepare for my preschoolers, and I was really convicted by his remarks about treating each of your preschoolers like you did your first-born when he was a preschooler. Preschoolers desire the same kinds of school supplies that you give your "school age" children. They like to be included in group lessons and read alouds. They also like to have their own special school time with Mama. I bought some new Lauri products to use in our preschool next year, but I am so excited about them, I plan to use one of them this morning in during our preschool time--the stacking pegs with number boards.
I purchased most of our curriculum for next year. The rest I plan to order online in the next week or two. We take off June and July for summer break, but I spend a good portion of that time preparing for the next school year. Planning is fun for me.