Late in the week, A and I had a hard time of it. I guess that on Facebook and many Home Ed group, there are so many very vocal unschooling evangelists that when I try to apply those to A, we fumble because I get the sense that he looks to me for guidance on what to do for filling his hours. Indeed, if I leave it to him, A would watch Toy Story 3 on repeat while standing on his head on the couch, still feeling bored and unfulfilled and irritating us both. Maybe it works better for older kids or something. I’ll certainly support A if he wants to expound upon a subject and go at his own pace, but I’m thinking he needs more leadership from me at this stage. He definitely seems to need more opportunities for praise for his self-esteem– something he learned in nursery was the phrase, “I can’t do it!”, which drives me crazy. I want nothing more than to eliminate that phrase from his language and help boost his confidence and grit a bit.
To that end, I made up a routine– more or less based off of what’s grown up organically anyways. While there are time slots for activities, it’s not set in stone. But it acts as a guide for me to guide him. It’s also designed so that I have something more work-like followed by something more fun-like so that I have the fun-like to leverage to help get him through the work-like thing, reminding him, “Oh we got [this fun-like thing] to do when we’re finished with this!”
We started with this routine on Saturday with my husband’s help. So far overall, it’s not too bad. A seems to do better when he knows what’s coming and what to expect, plus loads of opportunities for praise which he simply glows from. Lots of learning and laughter happened on Saturday, some I needed hubby’s help with because there are some times when I tell something to A and can’t get through to him, but then hubby will say the same thing and he’ll respond. Hopefully A and I will be able to work through any differences so that he’ll take instruction from me as he does from my husband. But then I also have my husband as back up on the weekends.
Well, the above was written this morning and its now late afternoon, moving towards evening and we ended up having a very good day. So, the routine seems to be working! I started A on the Hey Duggee badge system and he earned his first badge this morning. Chores went pretty well. I managed to bake some apple pie bites. We washed the dog and then A had a long play with the dog before shower and nap time. Then in the afternoon, we went to the park and got ice cream.