Thursday, February 19, 2009

A day in the life...

This is poorly written and fragmented... I must apologise! I am feeling sleepy and don't want to edit and fix my poor writing style, so bear with me! lol

I have had lots of people ask me what a day in the life of us looks like.
I keep a daily note journal type of page to record what we do every day for home learning purposes. Here in B.C. we need to register with some sort of program. You can register with your local school as a home learner and pretty much do your own thing completely and your school system gets the funding as if you were another student there. You also have the option of a distance learning program where you use their curriculum and have a teacher assigned. We are with a private partially ministry funded program that works a little bit differently. We are able to unschool exclusively if we would like. I send in a version of my daily observation log to our learning consultant and he or she helps to fit what we do into the ministry guidelines. Sort of the opposite of creating a curriculum that would fit the guidelines and following that! What we do with our day typically changes with the seasons, and moods and health and coping ability! Just thought that I would put a little example up of what our day might be like.

The boys started off with a breakfast of scones. Papa gets up early for work every day before we are all up to meditate, do a bit of writing and he always makes brekkie for himself and the boys. I don't really enjoy gluten free baking because I can't even taste what I make , being intolerant to all grains. Papa takes over this part of the day anyhow. Yesterday eldest son asked for a length of nice rope from the neighbours who gave him some. He started off his morning searching for the knot tying section in the dangerous book for boys and trying out the instructions. After I was awake and had my coffee the boys and I played some K'naan videos on YouTube. He has been a favourite of ours for a long time and we got to see him live in our village last summer. In one of the videos there are images of Somali war and famine which got us talking about those topics. My son brought out the world map and showed me where Somalia is. He sucks up geographical knowledge. It was the first time that he had really listened to the lyrics of the songs. I showed him how to search for the song lyrics and we read them for quite a while and got into a discussion about hip hop, rhyming and poetry. Both boys were playing around free styling for a bit and I uploaded a series of five beat boxing lessons. Perfect for the vocal stimmer! The boys played around with that for a good hour while I did some dishes and laundry. My littlest guy helped me fold the laundry while eldest son played around taking photos for a while. Somehow he ended up directing a video of his little brother teaching a " how to fold laundry tutorial". While we ate lunch together we had CBC radio on and listened so the coverage on Obamas first visit to Canada. The neighbours called to propose a job offer of helping with dog care while one parent is away abroad. They are always excited to make money. I was kind of happy that it will partially involve poop scooping... as that gives a good sense of the reality of dog ownership. Of course what every little kid wants, but something that we don't have the financial means to pull off responsibly. After lunch we did our daily 3 km walk to the post office. We spent about 1 hr at the library where my oldest read Tin Tin and my little guy drew a picture package for his papa. On the way home we visited our friend who owns the local antique store. She saves me the vintage kitchen ware that needs cleaning up and that she knows I love and sells them to me for extremely low prices. The kids always ask a million questions and today got to see how the old tin laundry plunger thingy works. When we got home the boys snuggled on the couch while my oldest read the entire Tin Tin book out loud to his little brother. Then my oldest read a bunch of a novel to himself while the little guy made a book. I was making dinner, plus I made some fermented carrots, pickled beets and mango salsa. Eldest son got onto the computer to check his photo blog and his reader meter which shows where his readers come from. He was SOOO excite that he had a reader from Australia. The meter shows a world map for one option so that you can see visually where all of your readers are from in the world. I think that someone had read his from Germany as well. When I was finished cooking we played around on Stumble Upon. This is a really cool random search engine which lets you put in your interests and randomly leads you to great pages on the web. Purely entertainment for us. We looked at great photos of Thai veggie and fruit carving, explored the website of David Chiluly hand blown glass work and his glass botanical garden. We also watched a short animated film called EX-ET. .The boys cleaned the playroom before dinner and while cleaning the eldest found his journal that he was writing in at the beginning of the year. He decided that he really wanted to write in it again and found it super interesting to read back over what and how he wrote 6 months ago. He really thinks that he would be better at it now. After dinner we all snuggled and continued a series that we borrowed from the library. Good old Dr Quinn! So funny and dorky but it has the perfect amount of adventure. It always gives us great things to talk about. Now the boys are ready for bed. ( I can hear them in there debating the necessity of gun ownership!)They get about 45 min of bedtime story time with their dad. I am going to do some cleanup and maybe get in a workout.
So that is our typical style of a day. Of course it changes! I was kind of surprised at how much media we use in our day. I have one child that is a complete hands on learner. He loves to build and make things for the majority of the day. My eldest son really loves to TALK and debate and discuss everything. People all joke that he is going to be the prime minister or some sort of world leader one day. I really never thought that we would use so much media, but it naturally just happens that way. It is really neat to be able to use it well, really! So some days we have more interaction with other people ( my son said that he was tired from just being a guest yesterday and just didn't feel like having anyone else around today) and once the spring comes we spend a ton more time outdoors in the natural world.
There is a little glimpse of what our life looks like. Kind of cool really see how we meet the ministry guidelines just by living day to day. I had always heard that unschoolers could learn most of what they needed to know naturally and it is really cool to be part of a sort of social experiment to see that in action. The boys don't have any involvement whatsoever with the school program other than discussing ideas about what they would like to learn more about or experience. Our learning consultant lives on our street , so is just a really handy neighbour full of good resources to them! I hope this huge rambling deal is somewhat interesting to somebody!

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