Homeschool Journey: The First Week Back

Well, we made it through our first week back! Wyatt had a fantastic week. We had our moments where we struggled, both of us, but overall this was a great first few days back!

The first day I got up way too early and got started. I tried to make a special back to school breakfast of french toast but, I totally screwed it up somehow. Lol. I wasn’t awake enough maybe? So we had just a breakfast of buttered toast and we were happy because Wyatt and I are superfans of toast, which I know sounds funny. I gave him his little bin of supplies, some that he had chosen and some that were surprises, and he ate breakfast while exploring them.

After breakfast, we got ready and took back to school photos. He opted for his new lizard shirt – and told me that he was looking forward to learning about geckos. I guess I need to get a unit study together!

I can’t get over how much he has grown since even last year. Where did my baby go?

Then we headed in and got straight to work. I had a week that was structured to let us ease back in. We only tackled reading and language arts, social studies, music, and art last week. Next week we will add math and science back in. We need to form our new routine, get used to the new schedule, figure out how to work around therapy, all that good stuff.

And in the middle of our first day, I discovered we had a runaway caterpillar! I was crawling around the office looking for it everywhere! I finally found it on the baseboard behind my desk. (This is a giant swallowtail caterpillar)

When we finished up our work for the first day, we went outside for a much needed break. Wyatt played and played while I sat in my new yard chairs by the zinnias, enjoying the cool of the day and listening to Wyatt playing. It was a tiring but wonderful day.

What We Learned:

Our week was all about Johnny Appleseed, the state of Michigan, and the artist Thomas Cole.

Our Language Arts curriculum is one that I designed so I was excited to try it out! I need to fluff it out more with some projects that correlate with the book, etc but the actual work and how it went made me very happy.

We are learning about the states this year using a program from The Waldock Way, and we had a blast with it last week! I added in some Motown music, of course, and I had found the book Voices Across the Lakes on Amazon for $6, when other copies are selling for $40! It is described as “Beautifully told and illustrated stories about the Great Lakes region. Historical content, written around 10 authentic songs.” It is really cool, and we are probably going to use it with music class for a few more weeks.

I was also really excited to start our art program. I am not using anything formal, but I have a list of artists I want us to learn about this year and I am sort of making it up as we go along. This week we learned about Thomas Cole. I found an awesome picture book called Picturing America: Thomas Cole and the Birth of American Art, which we read together. I also visited the Thomas Cole National Historic Site website and they had some wonderful free downloads available to use. It would be an excellent field trip for anyone living in that area too, with free outdoor explore kits for students to use while visiting. Plus that view from the porch!! We are going to complete our art project later this afternoon as a family, by sketching the view from our porch. Not quite as scenic, not by a long shot, but it will be fun to do.

What We Used:

(contains Amazon Affiliate Links)

S is for Sleeping Bear Dunes // M is for Mitten // Voices Across the Lakes // Picturing America // Seed by Seed

For a look at what we are using for our curriculum this year, check out my post here.

We ended the week with a crazy road trip – but that is a story for another day!


18 thoughts on “Homeschool Journey: The First Week Back

  1. You always give me new ideas for how to do things. Today Little Miss and I were chasing grasshoppers after gymnastics and I decided I need to do a week about grasshoppers and get books, etc like you do with Wyatt.

    Glad you had a good first week! Hoping that rubs off on us this week.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: My Sunday-Monday Post – Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs..

  3. That picture on the end of the three pictures!!! I love that one so much.

    Glad to hear you had a good first week back and don’t worry about the French Toast. It will just be a comic memory one day.

    I want to know WHY we all learn about Johnny Appleseed. I mean why, of all the billions of things that happened in the history of the USA is Johnny Appleseed so dang important? LOL I mean, we learned about him when *I* was a kid in public school, but all I remember is he went around planting apple trees. I guess all the apple trees in the USA originated from his first tree or something? I don’t even know. Let me Google.

    Ok, no, that wasn’t the reason. According to my research, although his story was embellished, “it served as a great lesson on selflessness, respect for nature, humility, faith, self-reliance, and good character.” Fair enough! We could all use a world where kids are taught all those things!” 🙂

    Looking forward to the crazy road trip story!


    1. Lol!!! That face he is making he actually calls his “cute face”! He is so funny. And cute. 🙂

      I have no idea how I screwed up French toast but I did! It smelled so good then went so sideways.

      Johnny Appleseed is so cool! Lol. We talked about the five sort of creeds he lived his life by, which focused on nature, and sharing, etc. like you mentioned. The book Seed by Seed states them as : Use what you have, share what you have, respect nature, try to make peace where there is war, and you can reach your destination by taking small steps. We focused on that quite a bit. 🙂 But also talked about how he planted apple trees that pretty much all apples that we eat today are descended from. I didn’t realize all of that about him either! I did read some sort of weird stuff about him though too. Lol. We left that out. Lol.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. We used to have a Johnny Appleseed day at school. He is buried about 25 miles from where I used to teach. If you are in the mood to travel, the Johnny Appleseed Festival is next weekend in Fort Wayne, Indiana (here’s some info: It’s full of artisanal foods and goods, wonderful people, and lots of fall smells!

    Looks like you’re off to a wonderful year, Wyatt and Erin!


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