Do you co-op? What’s your co-op experience?
We joined a preschool co-op 2 years ago when we were first contemplating homeschool. At first, it was a great experience. A great group of moms. Great kids. Fun environment. It really encouraged me that this could be the right path for us!!
And then about halfway through the year, families started dropping like flies. Families with older kids who had been homeschooling for years were now making the decision to put their kids in public school. I realize that that decision is intensely personal and specific to each family, at that specific point in life. HOWEVER, as a newbie who was just barely considering homeschooling, it was incredibly discouraging to see long time homeschoolers change paths and go to pubic school. I felt like maybe those families had discovered something that I didn’t yet know which led them away from homeschooling. It definitely had me questioning what was the right decision for us.
Low and behold, two years later and I know that this is the right decision for our family, right now. I have always been very upfront about the fact that while it is the right decision right now, maybe it won’t be the right decision next year or the year after that. We are absolutely taking it one year at a time. And that’s okay. If I decide to put the girls into public school at some point in the future, it won’t mean that I failed at homeschooling…it will only mean that at that moment, there is a better way for our family.
Anyyyywayyyyyy, back to co-ops.
We have found a new co-op for this year about which I am very excited and encouraged! I have met the moms and we have a family playdate scheduled before we start classes. We’ll have class once a week but I’m most excited about all of the events and field trips that are scheduled. It seems like a true community. A really great community. And I am so excited to be a part of it!
TAG, You’re It!! What’s your co-op experience?
We have started our official curriculum but still need something more fun for science. Our science curriculum has started off a little slow and science experiments are a favorite in our house so we’re adding in extra fun! I’m hoping that our curriculum picks up but in the meantime, we have plenty of really fun experiment books to work through.
Today, we played with oil and water. We saw how they don’t mix, talked about why they don’t mix, and finally added a magic ingredient to make them mix. The girls loved it and really get into their experiments, as you can see with their safety goggles and “studious glasses”, lol! These girls crack me up daily and I am so thankful to spend my days with them!
One of the reasons we picked Timberdoodle curriculum was because we loved the focus on thinking skills, STEM, and hands-on activities. ThinkPlay Junior fits right in with that and we’re loving it! We love building blocks and Legos so I was pretty sure that this would be a great fit for our curriculum. The best part is that I do not have to work these into our daily schedule, my girls choose this as a free time activity and just as regular play.
ThinkPlay Junior is included in Timberdoodle’s preK curriculum kit but the recommended ages are 4-8. I was actually looking at getting the ThinkPlay Advanced because we’re doing K-1st with Avery this year but Junior was on sale during the damaged/closeout sale so we went with that (and no damage that I can see on ours!). I figured that if it was too easy for Avery, we could use it for Kaylee’s preschool.
As it turns out, its great for both girls! The pieces are interlocking and can be stacked as well. This set includes 400 pieces…blocks, wheels, different connectors, etc. The blocks are brightly colored and different shapes. It comes in a great tub with a locking lid (which is great if your kiddos also have a tendency to knock it off the shelf). There is a spiral bound idea book and also some bigger poster-size idea pages. There are different levels of difficulty in the book too, Avery can do a lot on her own but the bigger projects are great for all of us to do together. Kaylee (3 yrs) sometimes has a hard time interlocking the pieces by herself but she’s getting the hang of it. Last night, we built a whole scene….the sun, 2 different flowers, a butterfly, and a bug. Fun for the whole family!
We will definitely get a lot of use out of this set and I am so glad we decided to add it! The possibilities are endless and the possibilities can expand as their little minds do too.
*I was not paid or solicited to review this item and I paid the normal (sale!!) price for it. Just sharing a product that we love!
Today is the day!
Today is our first day of school for the 2016-2017 school year.
Today is our first official day of homeschooling.
Today is Avery’s first day as a kindergartener (and first grader too, lol).
Today is Kaylee’s first day as a preschooler.
We’ve got our curriculum, I’ve got the first week planned out by page number (and all subjects loosely planned out for the first 4-6 weeks), I’ve got my coffee, and we are ready to dive in…
Here we go!!
Photo credit: Oh Snap Photography