Wednesday, August 22, 2012

It's that most wonderful time of the year...

....The time when kids start back at school and once again the library, park and beach are ours once more! It's great when friends who attend school are more available for play dates without the constraints of homework and early bedtimes but it's hard to share our spaces which are so quiet the rest of the year. Despite my intentions of continuing school throughout the summer, other than nudging the kids to learn without them realizing it, we did nothing more than read. Most afternoons I read T2 a chapter book in it's entirety which was strangely quite exhausting considering it requires very little effort on my part but the unnatural breathing pattern which accompanies reading aloud sends me yawning and longing for a nice nap in a shady corner of the back yard. In the Spring T2 was diagnosed with Dyslexia. This came as no surprise to us for this bright little book loving girl was no closer to reading than at 4 when she was in public school. At that point she was one of the top beginner readers but sadly she never really progressed. She has an amazing imagination and vocabulary so when it finally happens for her, I think she will run with it but I have had to come to terms with the possibility that she may never enjoy reading the way I have always done. As a child I knew I always had a book to keep me company when friends were busy or late at night when I was unable to sleep. Books were always on my Christmas wish list as a child, a teen and still are now. The tough part about her diagnosis is that she has several different types of Dyslexia and where one method of learning might help one type, she has several problems battling away at one another making most approaches unlikely to be successful. I can't possibly read to her more than I do now and we play lots of word games but this school year we will work harder than ever before and see what happens. Of course it will be fun as much as is possible. We have gently eased back into school this month and I am learning loads!! Grade 7 means world wars 1 and 2 and I am finding it so interesting. T1 does too but not as much as me. T2 isn't directly involved but is picking up information along the way while crafting nearby. We have read War Horse which was really good. I read it in one day to T1 (he does not like reading chapter books at all). I had to break it into two sittings because it is longer than the chapter books I read to T2. I think it took about 3 hours or so and it was exhausting but it was good and I think we learned a lot. We like to use the British Horrible Histories books because they are quite funny but full of facts and lots of gruesome stuff which of course appeals to my 12.5 year old.I also like the Dear America books which are written in journal format and again contain lots of facts and show a personal view of events. T2 started horse riding lessons this week at a cute farm near our home. She has been horse crazy for over a year so we decided we would let her follow her passion and see where it takes her. Her first lesson went very well and she seems naturally at ease around these huge powerful animals and seemed very comfortable in the saddle with perfect horse riding posture. Her excitement was so fun to observe and G was able to duck out of work for an extended lunch so he could come and watch. As she will be riding in the daytime she gets the luxury of private lessons at the same price as group ones where she would be one of three. I love these added little perks of home school life. We found out there is another 7 year old local homeschooled girl who rides there so we hope to connect with her at some point. I am excited to see what this year holds for us and also for the clearance sales on back to school items once our little public school friends head back on September 4!! Anyone know why my draft shows paragraph breaks but not when it publishes?

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