Monday, March 11, 2013

Day 1: Z is for Zoology (5 days of Teaching Creatively)

Z is for Zoology

On this first day of our series, 5 Days of Teaching Creatively, our theme is "Delight Directed Teaching." This was a tough one for me, at first, since I think of myself as a pretty concrete-sequential type teacher... and while we use a eclectic mix of books, we work from front to back, and usually finish it all. But I've always said I was open to trying new things, and signing up for the Review Crew has really put that to the test!

We have turned over the second half of this school year to trying new things, and being open to following our excitement. It all began when we received our first book for review, the Apologia Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day. :) The kids were more excited than I was to set aside our regular science and pursue this new adventure, but soon we were wrapped up in fun new experiments and I was seeing a new side of homeschooling.

As book after book came rolling in, we have gradually altered our schedule to include these new options, and I'm seeing my kids excited to do school every day. It's an adventure into what we will learn! I still have my master plan of where we are going and the goals I've set for each grade... but I have really relaxed as I enjoy the journey of getting there. There may be a few detours, but we are loving the journey  This is one road trip where we won't be asking "Are we there yet?"

Some of the fun products we have gotten to try so far are:

I think this is my favorite part of homeschooling...being surprised with where it takes us! The most important part of this homeschool journey is teaching my kids that learning is an adventure, and a lifelong one at that. I believe there will be a day when traditional education/college will be less valued than a person with a resume of chasing knowledge! Proving that you can sit through hours of classes will be less important than someone who can think outside the box, learn from mistakes, and love a challenge. Self motivation is a premium quality that can't be spoonfed!

“Learning can only happen when a child is interested. If he’s not interested, it’s like throwing marshmallows at his head and calling it eating.” ~ Katrina Gutleben

As I experience the journey of learning with my children, I find that chasing the delight of learning for one hour is much more productive than drilling anything for 5 hours. So here we go, as we try and break free from the mold of normal school expectations, and open the doors on unfettered learning. I don't think that means fewer standards, but truly higher, harder, more creative ones. This is going to be quite an adventure!

How are other homeschool families directed by delight? Join us on a Blog Hop! Check back every day this week too!

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