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On Planning

New PencilsI had a professor in college who believed that your essays wrote themselves in your head while you went about your days.  I can believe that--for me, it worked.  She always gave me good marks, almost too good (I would have valued a little criticism).  Anyway, I've been planning kindergarten and second grade in my head for awhile now.  And then I chuckle.

First grade meant learning a lot of new things--the pattern to the days, the learning cycles of practice and sleep, new kinds of materials, and doing deliberate academics.  Part of the Enki way of doing things means that each grade sets itself up for the one before.  Now, I know this is the plan for school, in general, but Enki sort of pencils in routines and activities so that they are nothing new when the time comes to really jump in.  First grade involved some short afternoon practice time and second grade will build on that.  First grade introduced many concepts--word families, four math processes, working with stories over a period of weeks--and second grade will use that to its full advantage.

There will be the addition of multicultural dances and songs particular to the sage and trickster tales used in the humanities and language arts blocks.  This is the developmental immersion mastery at work.  I'm a little nervous about this, wanting to give Roan his full kindergarten experience.  The Enki materials mention two circle times in (I think) Waldorf schools for second grade, and I am considering this idea.  It could be a part of our afternoon practice work or other gap in rhythm during the day.  There are suggestions for working the movement needs into a day without a circle and this may well be how we work it out.  A kindergarten circle, to me, is non-negotiable.  It is our time to come together and work from where each of us is.

Speaking of kindergarten, today I wrote down my official statement saying that Roan is not ready to be called a student legally.  He will be having his first year of kindergarten this year, yes, but I do not know if first grade will be the next step.  Maybe, it will be another year of kindergarten with some letter stories in the Spring months or, maybe not.  Comparing his development with Willow's when she began kindergarten, there are some differences--very early counting, no writing, though story recall does seem to be easier.  With his birth just following Easter 2011, things could really go either way.  All the same, we are going through kindergarten as though this year really counts.  It is clear, if nothing else is, that he is needing to find his place in the school rhythm.

I used the Magic Hollow planner from Christopherus last year.  While I really loved it, I know that I didn't use it to its full extent.  So, I'm going with a blank book this year, one that I got as a red surprise from Gudrun Sjoden.  I'm not one to paper journal these days, so this is a good use!  I've pretty much mapped out Willow's year, choosing her sages and their trickster tales, and mapping out practice work for each month.  The simple act of writing it down is helping a lot.  Roan's year of stories is all planned, Circle movement work will be chosen from the Wynstones books and the Enki materials.  I do want to have those chosen in advance, so that's probably the next step for me.  Part of something that Enki does is to swap things out so that circles change more gradually.  I haven't done this before, but it seems possible now, and many of the materials are "old friends."

I suppse I should wrap it up now, go make a few selections and put them together, somehow.  We've added in a morning circle and games to our days for late July and August.  I finally got around to that goal!  I can see it making a real difference. 


( 4 trees — Plant a Forest )
Jul. 31st, 2016 10:23 pm (UTC)
I'm rather envious of how Enki encourages structuring the entire life. I think that's really neat, and useful.

I also need to sit down and write this stuff down.
Aug. 1st, 2016 09:38 am (UTC)
It is! It's a high ideal to live up to, sometimes, but it's all very thoughtful and it does work. :-)

I hope you can find a clear moment to do your planning. It feels very hard to find the time, you know?
Aug. 14th, 2016 05:35 am (UTC)
Sounds like your planning is coming along really well. I believe our state offers that not ready for kindergarten option (at least they used to) and I think that is very nice to have as a choice. I understand what you mean about wanting to give Roan a full kindergaren experience, while still wanting to give full attention to the older grade for Willow - that is always a concern for me, balancing two grades, but somehow it always works out. I'm sure you will do great. :) - Stacey
Aug. 14th, 2016 04:07 pm (UTC)
It is a very nice choice. :-) I wonder how many requests my local office gets, though.
( 4 trees — Plant a Forest )

A Blessed Wilderness

It was just like being in heaven, being in there. In those days there was no road. The park was all a blessed wilderness. I have often thought what a wonderful people we would have been if we had wanted to keep it that way.

~Adolph Murie, biologist, on Denali


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