Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Setting up the general plan

Esme is working up the plan with us... she had a few things she wanted to do and I had some limits or expansions on it.

School name : Mixie Engineering Primary School (tentative)
She suggested the name - wanted something that didn't sound silly.  She said it had to be serious.
I added the Mixie to make it unique so we could register it.

Esme's requests:  model building times (LEGO and other project based things), lots of physical exercise and nature stuff, books about outer space and science, finding friends on town trips, art stuff

kind of in between : 
---She likes the idea of more math... better math, have to find our way on that.  I'm starting a bit on Khan academy - she dislikes the hard and easy mixed together, but got her to do quite a bit.
---She wants to play with the billiards table more, making up her own games - I want her to learn a bit of physics and math about it while she does it.
---I hope she will get back into her Minecraft, she hasn't spent anywhere near the time she used to for at least a month.. she used to build whole 'worlds' and projects, the Test house, the school practice etc.
---Correcting language in place, especially 'slang' and 'idioms'...there are a lot of things I know other kids must have made fun of her with - or told her was 'ok' to say, jokes on her etc.. I'm hearing more of them, trying to kindly but firmly set them straight.

Social :
Reduce anxiety and 'fear of failure' that has increased sharply since August.
Work on better behaviors for sitting and waiting in line -
----'What are you thinking?  Can you think that without moving your foot/head/arm/body?'
((I got a hug today because I asked her that gently in her ear instead of being harsh or laughing).
Dealing with disappointment and frustration in constructive ways.(trouble at school, underchallenged)
Working on compromises and interjecting ideas in a constructive manner.(trouble at school, underchallenged)
Using proper tone of voice and attention to facial expressions, body posture.(had worsened at school)
Meeting real adults (with us), asking appropriate questions, finding out about their past or work in ways they want to share, being polite and waiting her turn in conversations etc.
Meeting children in environments like library, community center, park, home-ed meetups etc...

Mom's educational add-ons :

Math and science - STEM activities, following her interests and helping her learn to research.

Writing, spelling, new vocab : Using a journal to record what we have done.  She has always been a reluctant writer, but her fear of failure had made this worse the past few months.  Starting small with two to three sentences and notes where appropriate.

Continue with advanced reading, work on comprehension. Do some poetry, fables and myths beyond ordinary library books. Work on nature science and flora/fauna while looking at geography and history combined.  Find out about local events and plan on a calendar things we are going to do.

Dad's educational add-ons :

Building projects, technology lessons, forest and nature lessons
Use of audio and photographic equipment, technology.
Music and expanding her tolerance of some sounds through audio equipment, recording etc.
Speech 'playback' - so she can hear how shes sounds saying things, reading etc..
Thoughts to build more exercise equipment.
Build a larger and more specified desk area for her things and supplies.
Rerun through all of Electric Company and our 'History' cartoons as educational choices
She has access to a large compilation of 'antique' cartoons on her DVD player while riding bike.
Daily responsibilities, chickens, mail, cleaning up after herself, helping with tasks and projects in a constructive way (like when we set up the new printer today).

//Today// (left house at 9:45 am, returned at 2 pm)
We went to my workplace and asked several coworkers questions. We went to the library. She wrote in her journal a date and time of an event, and we wrote down lists of words based on something she had trouble spelling....She worked on a typing program through the first two modules, and saved her progress.  She had been 'eh' on picking any books for herself the last two times (a very bad sign) and today she picked three for herself.  She built with blocks, and put them away.  We discussed where to find a certain type of book with the librarian.  We went to the secondhand bookstore and she bought a how-to drawing book for a quarter.  She went to the thrift store with me and purchased a small toy for a quarter.

We planned lunch, and she played with two homeschool children for about an hour while I read.  Then I insisted we come home and we helped Dad set up the printer, drew a picture and then learned how to use the scanner.  We also did some math on Khan and she put together her new LEGO set I had not given her until today.  She walked to the mailbox and to the lake with us, brought up some sand in a bucket from the lake (which was heavy, but she was stubborn and relentless), dumped it at the base of a tree and played archaeologist for a while.  Now she is pedaling her bike and watching an old cartoon again before we discuss dinner and what book we will read.  I will have her write in her journal again before bed.

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