How in the WORLD do you homeschool FOUR children while telecommuting? Love, patience and a TON of coffee... Just in case you wanted it, here's a glimpse inside Mrs. Kastner's Klass.

Monday, September 13, 2010

First day of school... a Kastner holiday

Well this was our third "First Day of School" as homeschoolers.  The First Day of School has been a bit of an enigma for me.  All of my life I have gotten teary eyed when the school supply displays went up at Target.  In fact, the first year we were married was the first year EVER that I didn't have a First Day of School.  We were living in Denver, and I had NOT gotten a teaching job as we had hoped.  I remember calling John from the Back-to-School aisle at Target.  I was BAWLING because I didn't have a class to teach that year.  But try as I may, I had thus far been unsuccessful at instilling that same excitement in the Kastner Kids.  They just were NOT enthused about the First Day of School.

See it is a bit hard to get excited about "going back to school" when you homeschool.  First of all the Kastners homeschool nearly year round.  So summer break for us is only about 3 or 4 weeks long each year.  This year the kids were barely used to sleeping in and lounging around when school time returned.  Second of all, when you homeschool you don't get the excitement of getting to "see your friends again."  You live with your classmates, and their newness has LONG worn off.  There are no new school clothes or lunch boxes, and not even that many new school supplies in our homeschool.  (Now lest you start to mourn too much for the Kastners, let me assure you that there are MANY benefits to homeschooling that they take FULL advantage of... but that is for another blog.)  It is just the First Day of School can be a bit run of the mill when you're a homeschooler.

So I finally did it!  This year I figured out a way to bring a little excitement to it, and while no one was exactly doing cartwheels, there was MUCH more enthusiasm and FAR less whining than in previous years.  Wanna know what we did?

1st Day of School fireworks
We turned the First Day of School into a holiday for the Kastners.  Breakfast was a special treat:  toaster waffles; lunch too:  TV dinners.  There were prizes for good attitudes, and a special kids' choice dinner.  I baked a cake.  They even got presents!  (a brand new bag of socks each)  Finally, we ended the day with fireworks!  It was definitely a GREAT day, and this year FINALLY mom's enthusiasm was contagious.


Five great moments in homeschooling today:
1.  Jeremiah uttering, "I can't believe I'm starting 4th grade math."  "I can't believe I'm starting 4th grade language."  "I can't believe I'm starting 4th grade (every single subject)."
2.  The sweet cadence of the rhythm of our routine.
3.  Hannah finished an ENTIRE worksheet INDEPENDENTLY!
4.  Elijah FINALLY did his click n kids.
5.  Noah did not whine once about school and only complained when writing his blog, and in his defense I told him to be HONEST about the first day of school.

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