Barefoot in Suburbia

Homeschooling & Special Needs, Inspired by the Montessori Way

A new school year! June 13, 2011

We’re finally back in the school room this week.  The last of the construction to repair the basement (including the school room) after the major flooding that happened in a bathroom was finally finished Friday afternoon, and we spend the entire weekend setting everything back up.  It’s now almost 11 PM and the last of the finishing touches was done to the room to get it all ready to start tomorrow.

This year, things are a bit different.  We are still doing tot school with Bug and Montessori-inspired preschool with Monkey.  New this year is that we will begin homeschooling Jedi for 2nd grade.  He was previously at a Montessori school, but due to several factors (including the teaching style at the school no longer working with our son due to his having autism), and now we are giving homeschooling a trial run.  We always have agreed to continue a particular educational style only as long as it was in the best interest of the child, so when Jedi really started struggling and falling behind at school, we had to make a change.  This change might be permanent or temporary, depending on whether it is still in Jedi’s best interest.  Right now, he’s very excited to get started!

So, next week we will be back with our regular weekly review posts.  Today, I leave you with the updated tour of our school room.  Most of it will look familiar to those who have been here for awhile, but there are a few updates…mainly our 2nd grade learning shelves.

The sensory table, maps, and science/nature items

Jedi's work shelf. The top shelves are storage. The little trays have his work for the day (each tray is a different subject). There is also a bin of books related to his work for the week that he can use for silent reading (in addition to the recreation books he wants to read). Near the bottom are the encyclopedias, dictionary, and other resource books.

The culture studies/geography shelf. We are using Expedition Earth (from Confessions of a Homeschooler) and are extending each country into a 2 week period of time. This session is China. We also have our seasonal tree on the shelf (we need to add the summer leaves to it soon!)

Here is the toddler shelf (although she's free to choose any work, I wanted all of the toddler aged things in one place)

The calendar, schedule board, and language shelf.

The math, science, and practical life shelves

More practical life, and the sensorial material

The toddler & preschool reading materials

The toddler/preschool area

The sensory bin and older kid work area


Montessori Monday, plus a big kid! March 28, 2011

Monkey is 4 years 1 month old

This week has been really busy for us in terms of homeschooling, but not so much with Monkey.  We have begun the first steps to pulling Jedi out of his school and homeschooling him.   With him, it’s a bit more complicated because he’s on an IEP and the Ohio Autism Scholarship Program.  But, it became clear in the past couple months that his current placement at the Montessori school just was no longer working for him.  We’ll have him finish up the year at his current school, and then beginning in June, he’ll start full year homeschooling for 2nd grade.  So, last week was a blur of paperwork, planning, ordering curriculum, and revamping our school room so that we have a place to homeschool someone who is far above the preschool level.  This week gets to be a test week since he’s home on spring break, so he’ll get a whole week to “practice” homeschooling with the girls.  So, soon, I’ll start a new weekly post with our curriculum choices for Jedi (and then in June, his weekly recaps).

As for Monkey, she did have a busy week, but no busier than usual.  We did a unit on worms (which unfortunately, I didn’t keep my camera near by to document.  But, it was really cool, and she really loved touching the worms…and apparently we discovered that you can make a composting worm dance by putting it on the table’s surface.  LOL!!  It was rather funny to watch!

She also had another belt test in her Tang Soo Do class, and did really well!  She’s now a white belt with gold stripe. 🙂

Here’s a little recap from our unit on turtles that we’re working on…

A large turtle shell I put on the shelf, and the parts of a turtle puzzle.

Turtles of Ohio 3 part cards

A close-up of the cards

Turtle stenciling with dot painting

Turtle books

Monkey working with the stencil

Working with the metal insets

Jedi helping Monkey make a maze

Walking the maze

Monkey doing her balance beam walk from gymnastics through the maze

One of the Bob books I have out for Monkey

Our schedule board for today

Our "Ohio" wall!

The school room all dressed up for spring 🙂


Montessori Monday/Toddler Tuesday February 8, 2011

 Tot School

Bitty Bug is 24 months old, Monkey is 4 years 0 months old

First off, the big news of the week is Monkey turned 4 years old this past week!  I can’t believe she’s already 4 years old…three was a pretty big year for her.  It was the year she started finally speaking, and she’s also grown so much…socially, emotionally, and physically.  She’s so proud to be a “big girl”!

I am doing another combined post this week because last week was another busy week outside of the school room.  Actually, the school room was being used as a storage room for a few days as we were rearranging furniture in various rooms so we could open up our office and turn it into a nursery for our future little one.  In the process, we decided to finally remove the temporary shelving we had in there (we had large metal shelves in there because I had them on hand).  This week we replaced them all with smaller bookshelves, which both look nicer and are easier for Bug & Monkey to work with!  I love them, and they were only $15 a piece at W*lmart (which is a store I don’t often shop at, but for such a big project, I needed a lot of shelves). 

Our new and improved school room!

The rest of the room (that one corner is going to have some book shelves over there for their books...we just don't have them up yet)

The shoe tying puzzle I put on the shelves this week

A Valentine's Day spooning exercise--red & white glass beads and heart shaped ice cube tray

Stars & tongs

Dry pouring glass beads and dishes

Bug working with the screwdriver work

Pin punching with the geometric cabinet


Welcome back! January 11, 2011

Welcome back to the new Barefoot in Suburbia montessori homeschooling blog!  It might take me awhile to archive some of the most popular posts, but my old site is still online.  So, until then, here are a few of the most popular posts!

A tour of our Montessori Homeschooling room as of 6/2010
Our Montessori Peace Table to help curb the fighting among the children
Our (successful) attempt at cooking cookies & hotdogs using solar power on a hot summer day.
Holy Family & Advent downloads
Homemade geo board
Cooking with Tots!
Snack Table

Click to go back to the original Barefoot in Suburbia Montessori blog