Monday, September 20, 2010

First day of "School" 2010

"Walking to school"

Today was the official first day of school! Mason really wanted to wait until the first day of Autumn to start school. "I want to enjoy the whole summer Mama!"-M.
Alas he has a dentist appointment that day (so no school), So we agreed on the week of the first day of Autumn.
People always ask "If he is home schooled what grade is he in?" Lets see......if he were to go to "school" he would have just started Kindergarten since he missed the cut off last year by 2 days!  We are using the Montessori method this year, and since he is not used to this kind of "prepared environment, structured freedom" kind of learning we are going through the whole 3-6 year old curriculum this year and then we will move right into the 6-9 as soon as he is ready. (he is right in the middle)

Anyway today was allot of fun!  We followed the schedule I made up school-schedule-2010-2011, This has been such a great way to get Mason focused on the idea of school work! It has also been key to keeping ME on track...I could easily sit down and read all the great blogs out there and before you know it its 10:00!

So this morning I had a little fun playing "school"....I had them put on their shoes, back packs and  empty lunch boxes and we went out the back door, walked around the house to the front door where I said to them. "Wow this looks like a great school! go ring the door bell!" (I went inside) they giggling the whole time, rand the bell.  "OH look who is here!  Is Mason and James, welcome to the Cummins School. please come in.  You can hang your backpacks on the hooks and put your shoes on the shoe rug." OH MY GOODNESS the looks on their darling faces was priceless, it was a mix of has my mom gone nuts, and confusion! they loved it.  Mason kept saying " Your funny Mama."

"In front of The Cummins School"

I had them sit on the floor and continuing with the silly teacher act, introduced my self and had them do the same. Then I showed them the little table lamps (one in each of their areas). I said when these lights are on it is school time.  This actually worked for today! I thought it would help differentiate between school time and oh this is my living room!
I then introduced them to the school motto...."I love to learn,and I learn to love." Mason then respond with.
" Oh the motto on PBS Sprout is "If you want to know ask why its so!"  We will use that to I told him.
So far so good, they are engaged and happy...this is good......
I gave Mason a quick tour of his area and what was on his shelves to work with, he then had 1 hr to explore and work on what he chose while I worked with James in his area, where there are cubbies for him to pick from.  I really wanted 1hr each day to spend with James and it gives Mason time to work independently.

The hour flew by and before we knew it Mason had done....

Language= wrote "H" words in his word book from last year, practiced cursive for the first time ever,
Geography=  put together a geography puzzle,
Science= worked with a life cycle of a Caterpillar puzzle,
Ecology= used pollution 3 part cards
All on his own!!! (I love Montessori!)

did a number puzzle, placed acorns on number card 1-3, worked with 1 to 1 correspondence moving acorns from a wooden box with a slide top to a bowl., read many books with me, and stacked blocks.

Then we had a snack, where they counted out 10 pretzels and poured their own apple cider.

James went into for a nap and I continued to work with Mason...

Geography tray, we learning what geography is and the tools used to study it (map,compass and the earth.)

History tray , learning what history is and the tools use to keep track of time.(clock, hour glass,timer,watch, & calender)

We took milk weed seeds we had on our nature tray outside and let them fly away in the wind! We also noticed that our caterpillar we had in a jar is in its chrysalis!

For math we did the Teens Board with beads, he used the beads to show all the way up to 30 and then got tired of it.

I also showed him the Practical life area (small table in the kitchen) where is picked folding napkins and putting them into rings

James woke up, then the day was over and we had the most special thing happen, my mom and dad aka...Ammy & Papa  (who live with us in their own in-law apartment) came over and "picked them up from school"  They go their shoes and back packs and went out the front door, and in their house door.

  When Mason came into the kitchen of our house I pretended I had not seem him all morning and said...
"Your home! How was school?" and he was so excited he actually told me all about everything he did and learned!!! Then we had lunch with my parents and he told them all about History and Geography!
I would say it was a great first day of school!


  1. Wonderful! Your first day of school with James and Mason looks like a whole lot of fun. Your prepared enviroment looks great.

  2. They look like they're having a blast. My kids want to say hi to James and Mason!

  3. I love it! I will have to research something interesting and maybe i can be a "special guest" during school and teach them something.:)

  4. P.S Anonymous is Lisa!

  5. Your so funny, why are you anonymous? I would love it is you did that! You could teach them about dental hygine!

  6. Heather- they are really having fun! Tell your kids that my kids said "Hi"!