Homeschool Journey: Easing back into our routine

Hello everyone! So as we recover from Wyatt’s surgeries, I thought we would start back to our homeschool routine focusing only on his favorites – so social studies, art, and science. We are probably going to add math and reading back in this week starting Tuesday. (We had a neurosurgery appt this morning as well as physical therapy)

Our pared down schedule worked well. It got Wyatt back into the swing of school again, and also made room for him to rest when he became tired.

For science, Wyatt learned about the difference between coniferous trees and deciduous trees. We opted for the table crowd activity this time (his curriculum has three different approaches to labs – outdoors, tabletop, arts and crafts ) It was the right choice for his first day back! Just look at this face. Lol.

For social studies, we visited Massachusetts! Well not really obviously. Wyatt loves learning about the states way more than I expected him to honestly, especially learning the state symbols and seeing the flags for each state. I am happy he loves it like he does though! I always loved social studies too. We learned that the Boston Marathon has a wheelchair division! I had no idea so that was a neat fact to learn. We also learned that Dr. Seuss, Theodore Geisel, was from Massachusetts which is neat because Wyatt shares a birthday with Dr. Seuss – March 2! Wyatt loved how I told him to identify the state on the map too – I told him the little hook that comes off and branches into the ocean looks like a strong arm flexing, and that is how to find it. He thought that was hilarious.

But what Wyatt loved the best was art. Of course. He has been asking to paint for weeks now, and I just didn’t think it was a good idea until he was more healed up. However, he was cleared for physical therapy so I figured it was time to paint as well!

Instead of focusing on a particular artist over the next few weeks, I am mixing it up a bit. We are focusing instead on a poet, and then painting a picture that is inspired by a poem that poet wrote. This week we did Emily Dickinson, naturally, as she was from Amherst – plus I love her.

We talked a bit about Dickinson as a person, read a few poems, read a picture book, then we focused on the poem Make Me a Picture of the Sun. We talked about the imagery, what it could mean, and how it made us feel. Then I had Wyatt watercolor a painting that correlated with this. He loved it.

I also love that he felt his picture needed two suns. I get it, I miss the sunshine too!

Now, what we used – not much this week!

This section contains Amazon Affiliate links. In addition to the curriculum I am creating for him, we also use curriculum from The Good and the Beautiful, The Waldock Way, and Blossom and Root for phonics, reading, science, and social studies.

M is for Mayflower || Emily Writes

This week we move on to New Hampshire and Robert Frost!


A Poem for Everyone

I fell in love with poetry on the laps of my mom and dad, snuggled up close, as they sang nursery rhymes to me, and then later on, Shel Silverstein and Jack Prelutsky and yes, Dr. Seuss too. Poems like Ickle Me Pickle Me Tickle Me Too tripped across the room, enchanting me with their rhythms and of course humor; my dad read The Owl and the Pussycat to me every single night before bed. And who, old or young, doesn’t love Listen to the Musn’ts. Even after my parents stopped reading Silverstein to me, my cousin and I used to spend family holidays curled up in a corner, reading Where the Sidewalk Ends and A Light in the Attic together, and we still talk about these poems sometimes.

As I got older, I didn’t read as much poetry anymore. Then my senior year of high school I took an Advanced English class where we spent a whole semester on poetry, and I fell in love all over again. I was introduced to Emily Dickinson, Edward Arlington Robinson, T.S. Eliot, Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, and Dorothy Parker, who I discovered on my own that year. I wanted to be Dorothy Parker, with her sharp. clever wit. I wanted to be a big time journalist, and sit at the Algonquin Round Table. (Ok, I still want to do that) I started smoking – yeah, I started smoking not due to peer pressure or anything, but because all my favorite writers and authors did it- and she even influences me a bit now. A craft cocktail bar opened up in Detroit about 8 or so years ago, and what did I order? A whiskey sour, like my old idol Dorothy Parker. I no longer smoke, but I do still enjoy a whiskey sour every now and again.

Last Friday my husband, Wyatt, and I stumbled into an art show celebrating the beauty of the spoken and written word, titled Pose and Poetry. For the entire month of April, works of art inspired by poems are on display, as well as a night of open mic spoken word. We had attended a Free Spirit Fair in the same building, and saw the exhibit going on, and decided to check it out too. I am so glad that we did. I loved it. There was this beautiful, delicate piece of artwork, a sculpture of glass shaped into a little nest, with strips of Dickinson poems tucked throughout. It was exquisite and lovely and I adored it. I can’t stop thinking about it really. Dickinson is a favorite of mine, and this piece was really a gorgeous tribute to her work.

Patrons were encouraged to participate as well, by writing a line from a favorite poem and sticking it to the window. I of course had to do this too. The problem was, which of my favorites would I leave a line from? Degrees of Grey in Phillipsburg flitted through my mind, and I considered Hope is the thing with feathers by Dickinson but she was already so beautifully represented. But in the end there was no other poem I could have chosen besides The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, my very favorite of them all.

These days I read a lot of Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry; different poets affect us at different points in our lives, and right now, Oliver and Berry hit me where I am. I think there is a poet or two out there for all of us, even in some of us. Or maybe just a singular poem that calls to us, even just a line that sings to our soul. What do you think? Is there a poet or poem that you love? Feel free to drop a line in the comments! I would love to read who or what speaks to you.