First Day of (Home) School

Today, August 15 is our first official day of home school, and there were grand plans in the works that didn’t go off without a hitch. The facade of the home, home school and home school teacher which all run like well oiled machines bit the dust today- and hard.

It all started with the summer Olympics, which should have been an indicator to push school off for another week. We always stay up late watching them and allow the kids to do so as well. This led to the children sleeping in a little later than I had accounted for on my very tight and detailed schedule.

However, for reasons I still can’t articulate if I tried, I was determined to start school the same week as the traditional schools (both private and public) in our area. Yes. I know this violates one the supreme benefits of home schooling in the first place. Didn’t I just tell you that I don’t know why I did it this way?

In any event, despite the hour and a half delay, things did get started, topics were tackled, fun was had, and learning took place. The house? That’s another matter so I need to wrap this up and get to the laundry. But first, a few book notes.

This time of year usually opens the door for me to read more adult books that I had been putting off due to summer travel and activities, but not this fall. In addition to my own children, I am also teaching a literature based homeschool co-op class built around exploring Florida and its history. This means I’ll be reading more children’s books than is  typical for me read in late summer or early fall.

The great thing about building  a reading list for this type of class is this wonderful Florida based publishing house, which is a wealth of resources on the best books, both new and old, written about Florida, by Florida authors, and containing Florida history. Depending on where you are, you might want to see if your state has a similar unknown gem.

My list of books in anticipation of fall co-op is as follows:

  • The Lion’s Paw, by Robb White: First published in 1946, this book was the only *must read* book listed on every site I researched for good children’s books set in or based on Florida history.
  • The Missing Gator of Gumbo Limbo, by Jean Craighead George: Originally published in 1992, set in the Florida Everglades and categorized as an eco-mystery.
  • No Good, by John Hope: Originally published n 2014, a novel set in 1940’s Central Florida and chronicles the story a boy -can you imagine answering to “No good”?- and his foster brother. This one is too intense for 4/5 graders, but I’m reading it for my own enjoyment while hoping that this author will be a resource to draw on for our students later in the school year.

How are you guys preparing for the new school year? What are you reading? You know I’m always looking for book suggestions to add to the pile I hope to finish before I die.






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