So here we are near the end of the first semester with Connections Academy. In some ways it seems like the year is going very slow and in others it seems it's flying by.
I'll admit there have been moments that I've wondered why we were doing this. Mostly it was the struggle to find our grove. I think we are there now and it's made all the difference. Most days go rather smoothly.
I had some little pangs of sadness when I though of the girls missing out on things like putting on school programs. Well they dispelled that one for me. Here they are putting on a Thanksgiving program for our extended family. They wrote it themselves and practiced in secret so that it would be a surprise to their dad and I as well.
They even got my niece, Violet, in on the action. Jade taught her some of the songs while my mother and I were preparing dinner.
Finally near the end Braden got the courage to join his sisters for a song or two. Best of all, they had fun.
Our special Christmas project was to make a gift for the wild birds. We strung popcorn, fruit rings and cranberries to hang in a tree. Then we took large pretzels and smeared the with peanut butter and rolled them in bird seed.
We hung this all in one of the maple trees in the front yard. While some of it's gotten eaten, I think next hear we need to do it a little different. Some of the birds seem to have trouble eating the goodies that are strung and draped between branches. We realize now we should have wrapped them tighter to the branch, or used a pine tree.
The one concern I think almost all parents who homeschool in any way is about socialization. It's as if people sometimes forget good manners and social boundaries over this issue at times. I actually had a young 20ish cashier practically sneer at me that "the only problem with that is that your kids only social interaction is with you." the very second she heard me say that I school my kids from home. Rest assured I set her straight in no uncertain terms.
In fact, both girls are very active with 4H and Girl Scouts. They also have friends they visit or have over fairly regularly. Not to mention that they have pen pals and we've even developed a friendship with another family that is a part of Connections Academy as well.
Here's Jade and her friend from school when we were able to meet up at the mall just after Christmas. We had a great time.
While there were moments that I wondered about this school, they were mostly due to finding the routines and schedule that works best for us. Now that we seem to have found that, we are doing great.
I still think the Kindergarten lessons could be a bit more advanced, but it could be that I just feel that way due to Meg being an advanced learner. We just work with it and I supplement with other worksheets or lessons I come up with on my own. Over all even this has turned out alright for us.
I would most certainly recommend this type of schooling to anyone who wants to homeschool their children but has concerns about getting everything in. Also, if you are in a state that offers Connections Academy as a public school it also cuts down the cost because you don't have to buy the curriculum.
If you're interested in more information about the school, you can visit their web site at www.connectionsacademy.com.