|The dining room is sometimes a good place for "table work."`|
|At Battlefield Park learning about the Revolutionary War|
Another big change I have made is to become more intentionally interest-led. In other words, I let the kids' interest direct what we will be learning that day. We are not exactly unschoolers because I do use a curriculum (Sonlight) and I follow it, although not to-the-letter. We also have tutors for both math and Chinese for the three oldest kids, and Olivia takes a co-op writing class. John, is a much more structured teacher than I am, also, and really likes to sit and work with the kids with workbooks and such. But, I have purposed to using the time I have with the kids to follow their interests and their passions. Because, I have found, real learning does not truly take place when I am forcing them to do something that I deem important. I read somewhere that forcing someone to learn something is like throwing marshmallows at someone's head and calling that feeding. Only when the student wants to learn, and sees a purpose for that knowledge, that real learning can occur.
|Peter's fascination with magnets|
So, I do read aloud history books and novels. I do ask the boys to do handwriting practice and reading and math. Olivia does that at a more intense level, too. But, if they are resistant, I back off. And if they are interested and engaged, we go beyond what I had planned for that day.
|Ellie is really into painting right now|
We spend a lot more time drawing U-boats, reading Captain Underpants, and writing up pretend legal documents for an All-Girls Art Gallery (AGAG?) than we do filling in workbooks.