Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Gearing up for our school year

I am soooo excited to start our first registered year as Beginning of Wisdom Academy. I've spent the past week or so culling books, curriculum, etc., that I can't use (note to self: Ebay that stuff!) and organizing our school room. (Which is actually our dining room, but we usually eat in the kitchen anyway.) I've printed forms I needed from the state, organized a really efficient binder for lesson plans, and sorted all our art supplies.
Here's the time where I REALLY out myself as a total dork. Because everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) is labeled. My friend Neil got me a label-maker for my birthday (this is the same guy who bought me a clothes-steamer for Christmas. He SO knows me. Better than my husband.) and I've just gone totally nuts with it. I heart my label-maker.
I also love school supplies. I'm sure that's a memory from my elementary school years. Which, for the most part, were pretty good. (Not like middle school. Dear God, let's just not even GO there.)
There's a verse from a Carolyn Arends song that I love:

Riding along on a big yellow school bus, Elmer's Glue and a brand-new lunchbox
Writing my name for the very first time with a pencil that was bigger than me
From jumping rope and skipping school to doing things that grown-ups do
Life goes by like a big old bus, if you miss it, it's history
Paper dolls and paperweights, scraped-up knees and hearts that break
Dreams to dream, plans to make, love to give and love to take
This is the stuff (the smallest moments)
This is the stuff (I need to notice)
This is the is made of.

The line about "if you miss it, it's history" really spoke to me. I have been so guilty of trying to get so much "done" (the house, the laundry, my job, my laziness -haha) that my kids are often left to entertain themselves. Not that I think that self-entertaining kids are a bad thing, but really, this IS the stuff life is made of. Spending time getting to know my kids and how they learn and what they dream of is one of the reasons WHY I homeschool. My former pastor's wife once gave me some GREAT advice when I was post-partum and weepy about everything and getting upset that my house was a wreck and the laundry wasn't folded and the dogs have fleas get the picture. She said to me, "Sweetie, when your girls [she has 3 girls] get older, they're not going to remember if your house was always clean. They'll remember that you stopped doing what you're doing RIGHT NOW to have a tea party with them."
So we start school August 25th. I will be drastically cutting down on my computer time. And if you call between 9 AM and lunchtime, I won't answer the phone. I'm going to be teaching little brains to read, little fingers to write, little voices to sing, little minds to know the awesomeness of our Father God, and little hearts to praise.
Wow. I'm a little nervous now!


shelley said... of my favorite movie lines is from You've Got Mail when Tom Hanks character writes to Meg Ryan's and says...

"Don't you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly-sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address......."

kris said...

Gretchen, If it's okay with you, I'd like to steal the song and few of your thoughts for my blog.

Melody Strayer said...

You make me excited for back-to-homeschool... And I'm not even in homeschool. And Evie's only 1... so it's gonna be a while (although she is performing pre-algebraic equations already, of course).

Connie Garlick said...

I love getting ready for the school year, even though I'm not in school anymore. Happy to have a church that collects school supplies for the local families that are less able to buy for their own children - I get to buy school supplies for SOMEBODY's little ones.

Gretchen said...

Kris, of course it's OK.
Melody- what is she, slow? PRE-algebraic? Katie did trig and calculus at that age.

Jen said...

Awww...I'm all teary eyed now. beautiful words, Gretch. Thanks for sharing!!

Anonymous said...

so tell me...was your house always a mess and your mom played with you or don't you remember