May 2, 2013

How we do school

This year with the birth of our sweet baby Hope the dynamics and intricacies of our team life have changed, of course all for the way-better, but equally for the way-crazier. One thing that has stayed the same and consistent for my two big boys is their school time routine. For the last 2 years Matt and I have chosen to put the boys in a Montessori school. Before I go on to explain how much I love the Montessori approach, it must be said that in my heart of hearts I am a homeschooling mom wannabe. But when being completely honest with myself, I am just not wired for being full time teacher as well as mom at this point in my mommy-hood. Babies= no sleep + toddlers= headaches and tantrums + homeschooling= no can do.  With that being said, the next best option (or better option however you want to look at it) for my boys has been the Montessori approach for their preschool and kindergarten age levels. In my humble opinion it has given them a huge love of learning and sense of community within their classroom and school as a whole.

One of the reasons we chose their specific Montessori school is because the principal has allowed us to send the boys 3 days a week, which I absolutely love (well in the spirit of honesty, I should say most days I love, because some of those non school days you can find me hiding in my closet with a bag of M&M's pulling my hair out wondering why the heck they aren't at school everyday).

But really, it has given us the best of both worlds. Tuesdays and Thursdays are full of "home school" and play at the parks, museum and zoo with all 4 kids in tow. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday the boys are off to school out of my hair learning away, while the girls and I take time to play girly princess tea parties, grocery store shopping, and bible story time.

Grace teaching Hope how to be a princess warrior. 
One of the reasons that I especially love having my kindergartner Isaiah home more days of the week than not, is because it has given him and Isaac this unbreakable bond. On the days that they don't have school from the moment they wake til they go to bed they are playing. Yes, sometimes there are tears involved in their play, but I feel so blessed that God has given them each other as built in playmates. They often times walk, run, and play in sinc, which is so fun to witness. I mean how can you play football by yourself and isn't it always more fun to have a bike riding partner. Gracie girl just seems to tag along always a couple of feet behind with her purse and baby doll in tow. And Hope always gets plenty of undivided lovin' for all her siblings throughout the day.

The Montessori approach to schooling has affected our entire way of life and play at home. We turned our dinning room into to a school room, where the boys can pick out their activities and learning tools for the day. At times I will leave new random lessons (this weekend puzzles) and I will let them discover them for themselves so that their work is self initiated.
Puzzles have taken over our school room for this week. 
Grace was in on the action too. 
Next year will change, as each new year will, but hopefully my kiddos will always know how much I truly love spending time with them. Of course I also hope they will forget the times they catch me hiding in the closet with a half eaten bag of M&M's rocking back and forth.
Isaac and I start most of our mornings off  with a friendly game of checkers. 
Isaac doing his work of choice.
Isaiah with his "work" of choice. 
Park fun 
Isaac working on his letters at school. 
Another Montessori lesson.  
Isaiah showing me a lesson about biomes. And yes, I could not remember ever learning what a biome was before he told me. I felt extremely smart.  
Some sort of marble, building lesson. 


  1. That school sounds great for your family - I know a lot of kids (boys especially) who benefit from the Montessori approach. They look so cute in their matching polos in that first picture!

  2. You are such an awesome mom for playing checkers with your son every morning!!!

    That's awesome they let Isiah (or is it Isaac...sorry I get them confused) go only 3 days a week for kindy!! Can he continue that next year for 1st, or do they make him go full-time.

    I'm kinda fascinated by the Monetssori approach...I never had any experience with it until this year when we put John in the Cathechisis of the Good Shephard class at St. John's...which apparently is very Montessori. I observed the class one day and it was really interesting. I'm not quite sure how what they call "work" differs from just playing though..but anyway, John really liked it.


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