Thursday, March 12, 2009

Home School Hits The Road

Traveling around China this semester is our number one mission. In fact, it is the main reason we decided to home school the kids. For the next few days, we will be testing out the flexibility of the Seton program by bringing our materials with us on our journey to Chongqing.

For starters, we decided that carrying the full load of books with us would be a bit too much to handle (imagine eight classes worth of textbooks, notebooks, and accompanying workbooks), so we chose four subjects and will be doing a kind of "block schedule." Since it didn't really matter which subjects the kids brought, as long as they chose a couple of "tough" ones, they were able to pick the ones they wanted. For Julie, history, math, religion, and vocabulary went into the bag. For Z, it was reading, spelling, math, and religion.

Our first class took place in the Beijing airport. Julie worked on religion and Z worked on math. Second period occurred on the plane from Beijing to Xi'an. Subjects? Religion for Julie and reading for Z. No problem having a three-hour layover in Xi'an...The kids filled the time with periods three and four. More math for Z, math for Julie as well. Period five occurred on the flight from Xi'an to Chongqing. Julie finished up her math, Z did spelling.

You get the idea.

For us, this program is just what we need. The benefits? Number one...A one-to-two teacher-student ratio. (Sometimes two-two when Steve joins the fun.) Number two...I get to see exactly what the kids are learning in every subject, as well as how they learn (this may come in handy in the future). Number three...Their education really does venture outside the classroom, as the in-between time is filled with the sights, sounds, language, and culture of a foreign land. It is times like these (being "on the road") that I have a deeper appreciation for this course of study. No doubt, the workload is heavy, but the classroom flexibility can't be beat.

~Desi

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