Our 1st Day…officially!

Today was the day. I was prepared. Because I was prepared I can say the day was a success. We successfully had crying, complaining, throwing, time-outs, and a little bit of school work. That’s what I was prepared for, so the day was a success.

Had I prepared for the day I wished we could have I would have been highly disappointed. I have learned in 2 short years of homeschooling to expect the worst and hope for the best. If we get a good day…YAY!!! If we have a day like today, that’s OK, it’s not the end of the world.

Our day began like this…all happy at the breakfast table together, don’t they look sweet…

Then we moved into the school room where I had All About Me books for both of them. K’s BookP’s Book (thanks to Brenda for the heads up on this one)I am glad I got these photos when I did because K only colored on his for about 1 minute and before long P’s looked like this…Yup, he threw it, along with his markers on the floor in an outrage over the fact that he actually had to write the words all by himself…oh my- am I horrible or what???!!

After some time in his room, and a little talk with Daddy (who just happened to drop by the house for something right after P had come downstairs), he was able to move on. He learned VERY quickly that there is no negotiating and he better get used to it.

Finally, he completed the writing on his book and realized that it wasn’t so bad after all…imagine that!We got through the rest of the day successfully and happily with no new problems. He wasn’t entirely thrilled with the amount of work but he did it all and we are done for the day.

How was your first (or 2nd, 3rd…) day?

Tot School

Here’s the rest of tot school that you haven’t seen this week on the blog yet! :) It was a fun transition week as we eased into our back to school schedule.

Krash wasn’t too impressed with these new rings with streamers, I was sorta sad. He did jump over them a few times though! Maybe next week!
Stacker Pegs were much more his thing, he did this for a LONG time by himself.
We had outside *recess* consistently this week and the weather was great! The boys made a ball pit again…
There was lots of reading, especially by Pac-Man to Krash (here they are reading one of our favorite books, To Market, To Market)…

K enjoyed coloring some on his Rr sheet from his ABC notebook. His cousin Riley is on the sheet, he was very happy to *see* him!

The boys enjoyed Mega Blocks one day…
We practiced counting with K’s cars…
Krash worked some on his A to Z Lower Case PuzzleK’s friend Daniel gave him this cool toy (Melissa and Doug See & Spell) as a belated birthday gift, K loves it!AND, we painted…really painted–look at that mess!Krash was very into it and I got a few masterpieces for the fridge out of this little session! And I just happened to catch this at just the right moment…
Yes, he’s painting his hair!

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot–he learned how to walk in his brother’s big froggy rain boots. Certainly a skill all tots should master..
If you missed our Minute-By-Minute Tot School post this week, be sure to check it out so you can see that our Tot School probably looks a lot like yours :), screaming kids and all!

  • Want to see more Tot School posts? Click HERE!
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  • Find our Tot Books HERE
  • See our new Tot School Squidoo Lens HERE

If you have a tot (approximately ages 1-3) at home, join in the fun and share what you’re doing with your tot! Here’s how to get started if you’re new…

You can read this post for more details if you’d like, or if you have any ideas you’d like to share, link up your exact post to Mr Linky (if you have questions about how to do that, let me know in a comment or email). Provide a link back somewhere in your post to this post so your readers can see other ideas too!

Minute-by-Minute Tot School

I finally did something I have had as an idea in my head for a long time now. I get asked a lot what our actual tot school time looks like and there’s no way of really explaining it other than to *record* it. So, I set myself up in the school room and blogged as we went (writing quick notes to be edited later-now). Here is a minute-by-minute account of our Tot School hour on Wednesday, for those of you who are interested in seeing this many details! I took as many picture as I could to give you an idea of exactly what it looks like. Thankfully what I recorded is actually a very typical Tot School time for us!!

Table Tot School (set to begin at 9, we begin a little late today, so what’s new?)

9:13-Dot Paintingbegins(both boys)


9:18-Krash whines about sharing the paints.
9:21-Pac-Man gets them back and makes a triangle out of them, K names it and is pleased!
9:22-K stacks the dot paints, not much actual painting has occurred in the past few minutes.

9:23-K actually hands P some of the paints–he’s sharing intentionally!!!

9:24-sharing is over.
9:26 I make his name on another sheet, he happily identifies some letters.

9:28-he claims he is all done. Climbs out of seat


9:30-he sits back down, we switch to Counting Bears. He’s happy. P continues to Dot Paint.
9:31-P begins to stack the tops of the dot paint. K becomes interested and quickly switches from bears to tops.
9:32-I count the tops with Krash, he happily joins me.
9:34-he begins counting them on his own, I stay quiet, hoping he will just enjoy his accomplishments (even though he’s not counting correctly : )

9:37-still stacking tops, quietly and intently. They fall, he laughs, he stacks again. I try to name colors with him, he’s not interested so I just let him play quietly. He stacks, they fall, he’s mad now.

9:41-he gets irritated, it’s time to move on, he crawls onto the table to help us clean up.
9:42-teamwork.
9:43-I move him onto cleaning up the bears. He does it happily.
Floor Tot School

9:44-we get out our Candy Land DVD Game color mats, the boys set them up.
9:46-color stomping begins (notice he didn’t want to take his paint shirt off :)

9:47 I hold a color up over my head and say go grab a green. Krash says “uh-uh” so we don’t do that :)

9:48- Pac-Man gets mad that Krash is messing up his layout. We work on character issues.

9:50-”I wanna watch a show”
9:51-I bring out a Melissa and Doug Beginner Pattern Blocks, he grabs a clock. He claims “I don’t like it.” Meanwhile Pac-Man gets a grumpy attitude and stomps over to the couch.
9:52-K changes his mind and begins happily doing the puzzles.
9:53-P joins back in with a decent attitude.

9:55 P invents a race game and we get very loud-K loves it, we work on counting 123.
9:57-shapes between toes. I certainly can’t think of a better way to learn shapes!
9:58-he’s done. Announces he’d like to watch/play Catch You (a song on our We are . . . The Laurie Berkner Band DVD)

9:59-forced him to clean up, he was ready to run and catch you. I caught him and made him clean with me.
10:02-begin Laurie Berkner DVD
10:05-P is sent to time out for a bad attitude. He soon comes back with a better one.

10:06-K kicks me out-invites Kirsten (the teen who is living with us right now) in. He grabbed my hand and led me into the kitchen and went and got Kirsten and said, “catch you” and gave her a little shove to get going on the catch you part.
10:08-2nd song on, 2nd song off, he requests Catch You (#1) again.

10:12-Catch you, again.

10:17-Tot School is over, Krash settles in to watch God Rocks! Bibletoons
Pac-Man and I go into the schoolroom to work.

For those of you wondering, yes it was difficult to jot notes, take pictures, and be engaged in Tot School! I will probably not be doing this again anytime soon but I am glad I did it! It has also taken me a few days to get this post done with all of the editing to do and photos to add. I hope it helps someone, I know I am a detailed learner myself so maybe there is someone else out there that will be interested in seeing this! I don’t think that what we do is fabulous or anything, I am just trying to be the best mom I can be to my tot.

My other job

My readers here know me as homeschooling mom, but elsewhere I take on a different role in life! Up until 1 year ago I was the Children’s Ministries Director at our church where we are staff missionaries (meaning the church itself can’t afford to pay us). I passed this official title on last year after MUCH prayer and a very hard year of realizing I can’t do it all. I decided to put my family and homeschooling first and see where everything else fell. It has fallen in place nicely now that I have stopped trying to do it all. Praise God for helping me realize this.

There is one thing I still do and am in charge of at our church and it just wrapped up last night! Each summer I, along with a team of a few other wonderful women, lead a summer reading program called Reading Rocks. We developed this program at Cornerstone 4 years ago and it has been a highlight of the summer for our inner city kids ever since! This year was no exception, I feel it was our best year yet!

Last night was our finale party where each child got to choose a brand new backpack, new socks, new underwear, and a BIG bag of school supplies.

The party was a lot of work, it always is. But it is SO worth it. A bonus is that Pac-Man gets to participate and loves it so very much. AND it has him reading TONS in the summer months!Even Krash got a little backpack last night…he was SO proud of his red bag that he picked out himself!!! As fun as it is and was, I am glad it is over so I can go back to my #1 role as wife, mom and homeschool teacher!

New Tot Books!

I got 2 of the new Tot Books up on the site! We aren’t using these personally, yet, but I made them up so I could take photos! If you make these, be sure to send me your blog link, I’d love to see them in action!!! I made these both from email requests I received from the site, thanks for the great suggestions!

My personal fav is Chicka Chicka, I can’t wait until it’s time to use this one with K–he’s just not ready yet!