Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Outdoor School Week

This week has been one of those weeks. One of those I-am-not-wanting-to-sit-down-to-schoolwork weeks and quite frankly, neither do the kids.

Do you ever have those weeks? Just those days when school seems to be the last thing on the list.

However, this is the job. So I got up Monday and pushed through,not yet hearing my instincts to change things up. I can be slow that way. I was pulling teeth all around the table, my own included. Tuesday started the same way. I let up mid-school and finally shifted gears to be the teacher I want to be.

So I dug through some old books and pulled out new material. Then I took school outside. The best move I've made in awhile.

With a lot of encouragement from a blogging friend Barb, I've been teaching my boys just about enjoying nature through observation and art. So I was thrilled today, the boys and I took a hike into the canyon. Every few minutes the boys were excitedly calling out "Mom! Look, it's yellow lichen! And red!" They identified dandelions by their leaves alone and we observed that the dandy's we saw in the canyon weren't blooming, in fact there weren't flowers at all, just leaves. We looked for wildflowers (tough to come by in the desert) and treasured each tiny bloom.

So we'll get past this funk (would-rather-do-anything-but-paper-school) yet. In the meantime we'll hike, we'll read, we'll play games and learn...away from the desk.

And I really, really want to hear....what do you do when you just don't want to do paper school? School proper?


Debi said...

No kidding - spring is calling us out of doors. Great idea!

Hazel said...

Listening to our intuition helps. You were good to switch instead of being a grumpy teacher mom.:)

Idea for busy kids on a yucky day--how about some experiments with paper airplanes? There are some great origami/paper airplane sites online. Print out the directions for several styles of planes, come up with some predictions (which will fly farthest/shortest, etc.) and note all this. You can use a string to measure a length for the course, too, and measuring tapes, etc. They can use a protractor and measure which angles are most optimal for flight...And then have more origami paper on hand to keep the fun going.