The first day of spring brought wonderful sunshine, and warm weather to us this year. I have been feeling the blahs over the last few weeks, and instead of schooling the kids, we slept in, and I took them outside to soak up the sunshine with bike riding and gardening prep work. I trimmed roses, bushes, and looked longingly at my garden beds. I plan on doubling my space this year, and I am debating on adding a good layer of dirt over my existing beds or not. The next day, well, it got colder. And Friday was a day I had planned on doing a homeschool conference.
My friend Laura likes to call the early spring conferences a good pick me up and motivation for the end of winter and early spring time blues, and this year she is right! I have found a grove in getting information into the kids in a measurable manner, but now that I have found what works, I am bored with it myself. I know, it sounds like I am about to shoot myself in the foot by abandoning what works for something that may not work! So, after attending some of the presentations, I feel refreshed and ready to complete this year and start planning for next year!
Some of the speakers that inspired me are:
- David Polak and his presentation on “science experiments on a shoe string, for $10 or less.” In class he taught us how to build a hot air balloon, but more importantly, he showed the parents how to make relational science observations with this project, such as air pressure, temperature, volume, and mass. Then he lit things on fire, and we all got a kick out of the kids trying to rush to the front to play with it.
- Julie Bogart, from Brave Writer, who spoke on how to be a Partner for your child, and not a critic! This was the most influential presentations on how I could improve my school environment, and it really helped me believe that what I wanted to achieve in my home can happen, I just need the right “coaching” to do it. 🙂
And of course there were some awesome venders there as well!
- Demetria Clark autographed her books on 475 Herbal and Aromatherapy Recipes and Herbal Healing for children! This is a gal you could go out and have a really good conversation with!
- The Seton Testing services booth had a nice woman who I wanted to pull into a hug! She had the unfortunate job of explaining why Seton could not give out the 1st grade CAT5 or 6 anymore, because the lawyers and the printers decided not to renew contract, and no more new ones were being printed this year. Worried parents cycled through her table asking and worried about the new test and what that changed for them. She handled it like a pro, and I almost lent her my helmet and body armor for the job!
And there were so many things for the kids to do as well! They handled snakes, watched puppets and opera, did Mad Science lab experiments, watched a talent show, had an ice cream social! It was a blast for them!
So, in all, I feel that Ostara was celebrated by renewing my homeschool enthusiasm, and brought me a better understanding on how to teach in a way that was fun and memerable.