River's Edge Urban Academy

Homeschooling 4 kids ages 9, 6, 4 and baby while working as a postpartum nurse and lactation counselor.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Okay, note to self: I no longer live by the river, therefore our school needs a new name. Maybe the kids can pick. But I definitely get veto power. Because my two boys can outvote my one (non-infant) daughter and I will not be headmistress at Lego Star Wars Academy! Nor Halo 3 Homeschool! My boys like xbox. Go to bed, Katy. Stop typing and go to bed.
Wow, only 3.5 months since my last post! I'm becoming quite the frequent blogger. Well, quick update: we had our baby! We had a little girl named Soleil Rain, born three days after her due date. We had a fabulous home/water birth and she has been a wonderful baby.* The kids love her, though you can tell Keian gets a little jealous and sad sometimes. He really likes HER, he's just upset with ME for paying so much attention to her!
I went back to work two weeks ago and have worked about five shifts so far. It is great being back. I just did lactation tonight and it was so fun working with such sweet families. It's nice having the little baby thing in common with them again, like I did when I first worked there and had Keian.
I am typing this in the middle of the night (almost 0300!) when I should be sleeping but I can't. It is funny, but this is exactly when some of my early posts on this blog were written, when K was my tiny baby and I had just gone back to work.
The other thing that is new is that we are "homeschooling" through a virtual school this year, so technically my oldest is a public schooler, though I provide all the instruction. The school district that we go through provides the curriculum and equipment, including a computer. The curse/benefit of this is that we are doing lots more school than we used to.
In some respects it has been totally wonderful: J was asking for this type of structure and was expressing a desire to learn what kids in school learn, vs the more relaxed unschoolingish style she had experienced so far. This is JUST what she considers "real school" and she LOVES the idea of it. Sometimes the actual HOURS of hard work she has to put into it every day is hard for her, but even on those tough afternoons she still says she likes this type of school and wants to continue.
So that is the plus: she is super self-motivated to do this program (not that she is super self-motivated for every individual assignment!) The other plus is I no longer worry if I am teaching her "enough". When I look at the hours we have logged and see how much J is learning, I know that I have acheived that magical, indefinable "enough" as measured by my irrational gut-feelings. This kind of enough does not come from self-motivation on my part, however. When I want to sleep in and let the kids make themselves cereal and watch PBS, I get out of bed, because she is now a public schooler and thus we must log sufficient hours of school or be deemed to be, "not making progress". And that is not good, although they don't say what happens if you are "not making progress".
So, mix the hugely time-intensive, high-stress-for-mama new school for the oldest, a new baby, 4&6 year old boys, laundry that does not do itself and going back to work together...you get me up at 0311 writing incoherent blogpost on my almost-but-not-quite-defunct blog.
*Maybe next time I will post the birth story.