Our weekly recap of schoolhouse happenings
I am so excited to share with you our weekly schoolhouse rhythm and the nine lessons I have learned this week. It would be a lie if I said everything went smoothly the first week of A One-Room Schoolhouse, but we got into a rhythm that, I believe, will carry us far. I hope these nine lessons can help you or validate your learning journey. (Don’t know our schedule, click here to check it out.)
We have grown together, made mistakes, learned a lot, and came out just a little bit better after our first week of this hybrid homeschool adventure. I am so grateful to the families that have joined our adventure. Not to skip to the end, but, here is a hint: the community that has begun to form is amazing!
So, without further ado… the nine lessons learned from our first week at A One-Room Schoolhouse.
Nine Lessons Learned
1. It is okay to learn at your own rate.
We have seven different grades represented at A One-Room Schoolhouse. Together, we study levels K through 5 of The Good and the Beautiful language arts. We have the same variation in math, handwriting, science, and history. Some of the time those levels match up to grade levels and some of them do not. And that’s okay. A multi-age classroom model makes that kind of learning okay. And, let me tell you, it is wonderful!
2. It is more fun when we ALL play together.
Look carefully at the picture below and what is going on here… a 6-year-old girl is playing 4 square with 12 and 13-year-old boys. Why is this so cool? She had been sizing up the game for a few days, finally, she got brave and asked to join in. The boys said yes and taught her how to play. They went easy on her for a bit and she got to the top spot! Then, when she had the game down, they all played together.
This is why a one-room model is so cool! At any time in your adult life have you been told to socialize with people with birthdays within twelve months of your own? NO. Same-age grouping is not real life. Multi-age learning and socializing is real life.
3. Art, nature, and music are not subjects to be left behind.
So many of our older students have STRUGGLED this week with slowing down to do art, nature, and music. They want to rush to get to the “required” stuff.
Homeschoolers often talk about “deschooling” and many would say what we are doing here is a lot like traditional school. I will not argue this point as much of what we are doing is pretty school-like. BUT… these students have had the art, nature, and music CRUSHED out of them.
It has been an interesting process to guide, especially the older students, to slow down and enjoy the process of art and nature.
4. Music appreciation after lunch and nature study before lunch is the wrong order and may cause young students to fall asleep.
This one is a bit funny. As we listened to our SQUILT music lesson on Canon in D, so many sleepy eyes drooped across the schoolroom. By Friday afternoon we had worn those poor kiddos out! Next week, we will do music before lunch and do nature study after lunch! Lesson learned.
5. Teach language arts and math by level and everything else as a group.
We love The Good and the Beautiful here at A One-Room Schoolhouse. You can read all about why here. One of the biggest reasons we love it is that language arts and math are taught individually or in small groups by level and the rest of the subjects are taught to the whole group with individualized assignments based on age and ability. This has worked out SOOOOO well this week.
Some things that have helped this process is engaging the older student to mentor the younger students. At the beginning of our language arts block we have buddy time. During this time, just 15 minutes, our older students help our younger students with sight words, phonics cards, and reading aloud. I feel like this is the most productive 15 minutes of our day. Everyone learning, everyone engaged.
6. Directly teach the habits students need for real-life success.
If you have been around awhile you know all about Habits of Learning and Habits of Friendship! I am happy to say that we started Habits of Learning: Responsibility this week. Did I get a picture… NOOOOO. Sigh. It’s hard to take a picture of yourself teaching. But, I am excited to start next week: Habits of Learning: Respect!
These lessons are great for the home or school. They are almost no -prep, scripted, and written in the Charlotte Mason style.
(Side Note: Yes, yes, I know, I need to write and post the last two habits for Habits of Friendship. Give me some grace. Things have been a bit busy. Sigh.)
7. “Never be within doors when you can rightly be without.” — Charlotte Mason
Need I say more? Really. We are believers in the value of time outside. We are actively participating in the #1000houroustide challenge. As a matter of fact, our homework every day is to play outside. In addition, we have an hour-and-a-half of outside time every schoolhouse day!
8. Success is more than learning it read, it can also be mastering the monkey bars or learning to skip rope.
Yes, learning to read, write, and do math is very important. But, let’s not downplay other life accomplaishments like nailing the monkey bars for the first time or skipping rope three times in the row.
Secret: All of those things happened this week at A One-Room Schoolhouse!
9. Teachers, parents, and students working together in education create a powerful team that enhances everyone’s learning.
Building a community of learners. That is what it’s all about. I am so glad all these families have joined our amazing journey!
And you can join us too!
Follow along by joining our email list and following us on Facebook and Instagram. Be the first to know when registration opens for our next school year, keep up to date on our journey, and watch us grow!