Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Rockland and Mommy School

Oh Hazel’s birthday both Hazel and Charlie went to non-joy-school-school for the first time. I have been super psyched about sending them into someone else's care… I was quite surprised when I found it was me in tears a few minutes before packing them up to go. We read “The Kissing Hand”(a great children’s book) together, thinking it would ease Charlie’s anxiety. In stead it left me in tears. They both gave me a “kissing hand” before we left for school. By the time we got there, the table’s had turned and they were both a bit anxious. I reassured them that they had my love wrapped up in their little hands and pried Charlie from my leg and left with only baby Emmeline…..i have to say, it felt pretty darn cool. -2032 -2029 This is Charlie after school…..he didn’t look quite this confident as he walked up those steps. I think they’re both most excited that they get to bring a “lunch box” with a snack…..I’m pretty bad at buying snack foods for these guys, so this is all new and super exciting for them. -2030

I’m pretty excited about The Rockland Nursery School. It’s a Montessori school in a cute little house not too far from us. I’ve heard so many great things about what they do there, and it seems so friendly and natural and like a good place to introduce these two to the world of school.

Hazel is going three afternoons, Charlie two. They’re both liking it a lot.

Hazel missed the deadline for kindergarten by 9 days. I’ve been obsessed about what to do since she was born….I was young in my grade, and think it can be a good thing for a girl (especially one with tall genes) to be young in her grade. Now we find ourselves in a pretty mediocre school district and Hazel is pretty into learning……soaking things up like a sponge….I don’t want her to be old and tall and board at school. So, after much deliberation and deciding that it really would be horribly dishonest (and illegal) to mess around with her birth certificate, we decided to send her to the Rockland three days a week and then “home school” her for kindergarten. I submitted an official home school application so that she is “enrolled” in what we’re calling “Mommy School.” Aside from paying ridiculous money for private kindergarten, this is the only way for her to be young in her class.

I was feeling a bit sheepish about Mommy School at first, as I’ve never seen myself as a “homeschooler.” But, I have to say, I am now totally psyched about this plan. I am LOVING thinking so much about what I want to teach my kids. I’ve decided that teaching is the part of motherhood I enjoy most. I’ve never been the type of mom who’s really good at playing with my kids, I can’t get down on my hands an knees pretending I’m a dog or a monster or a car for too long. But, I LOVE teaching them…..reading with them, exploring the world with them. There is so much out there to do, so many cool ways of introducing this amazing world to their supple minds. And homeschooling for kindergarten is totally doable for me: no real parameters, pretty much anything I know they don’t know. I feel so smart!

I’m dying to find all the best resources and coolest things to do for them during our year of Mommy School. I want to really take advantage of this time, it won’t ever be the same. If you have any great teaching ideas or resources, would you please share them with me?


  1. Mommy School? Very Cool! The Museum of Science has some really interesting educational opportunities that your children might enjoy -- including live animal presentations and gobs of volunteers (many retired physicians, engineers, scientists) who demonstrate how our bodies work, how lightening is formed, etc. If you ever want to make a trip to MOS - let me know. I'll gladly get you settled in and show you around.

  2. is a fun place for children to visit online.

    My preschool children like to do things like use pointers (chopsticks)to read things around the room. They point to what they know or want to know - we have a few posters up around the house.

    There are some great kindergarten art ideas at deepspacesparkle online.

    My children have liked the beginning readers written by Nora Gaydos and illustrated by B.B. Sams.

    If you have a small whiteboard, write a word like "hat," then erase the h and write an s, so the word reads "sat." Kids seem to like things like that - where you change the word a letter at a time. Also, they love to write and erase words that way.

    I make up story problems for my children to learn math concepts. I think they like the stories as much as they like the math. My children are often characters in the stories.

  3. Cami's Birthday is August 30th (which is the deadline in Utah) so she WILL be the youngest in her grade. I have also obsessed about this and we decided to send her next year. After weighing the options I think it is best they are younger- good decision!

    That preschool has got to be one of the cutest I have ever seen. It looks like a little cottage stashed away just waiting for the skipping children to come sit in the perfect little desks. How sweet.

    We also love the Kissing hand- one of my favorites!

    Will we be seeing you all for new years- I hope so! xoxox

  4. Saydi - I was young for my grade (Oct bday), because my parents basically did the same thing (a local pre-school + home schooling) and then fought the good fight to get me slotted into public school first grade when I was still 5 years old. It all worked out...and I think is a perfect plan for Hazel! The only downside for me was not getting a driver's license until fall of my junior year of HS. :) xobarb



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