An Update on Preschooling and Two Requests for Advice

First: We are on week 4 of preschooling, far enough along to have figured out a rhythm and an early opinion of how it's going. I was uncharacteristically doubtful on whether this was a good idea or not, if it was too early, ect. I think I've been reading too many contradicting theories on early childhood. Or maybe just plain reading too much.

If you think that isn't possible, then you haven't seen my stack (in the end I read all those books this summer, excepting Shogun which I put off yet again, and adding instead the first 9 of the Sword of Truth Series, plus The Charlotte Mason Companion, plus 2 of Phylis Tickle's Farm in Lucy Trilogy).

I am happy with preschooling, however, though it isn't panning out the way I planned. In my mind it was all very official, us filing into the school room at some point after breakfast on Monday morning, with a fairly reliable and concrete "start" and "end", even if we left certain things for later in the week.

After the first week we did nothing of the sort.

Instead it's become a rather organic addition to our week. An art project here, baking there, activities available that weekly change, singing songs in the car and when we are bored, and of course books, books, books sprinkled into every spare moment. I think in the end its much more appropriate to Zeke's age, and more realistic for our family (especially adding Mal to the mix). The only difference between now and before we were doing "school" is that I am consciously preparing most of the activities to relate to a central weekly theme...or shall I say letter?

In September we did D is for Dinosaur, Z is for Zoo, and A is for Apple. Up for October is L is for Leaf, I is for Instrument, P is for Pumpkin, and B is for Bug.

The central weekly theme was a great idea; it's really helped Zeke make connections when we're doing paint stamps with apples, and going to the apple orchard, and making apple pie, and have a small stack of books about apples, all in the same week. But the letters? Probably shouldn't have bothered. We aren't even learning letters yet, Zeke is too little. So all it's accomplished is the necessity to think of something that starts with X.

We live and learn I suppose.

Second: I'm teaching myself to knit, continental style. I was informed this would be easier to learn then English knitting as I am not only left handed, but a crocheter. Also, it's supposed to be faster. So far, I have no evidence to make me believe otherwise on either account.

But then again, I have also only learned to cast on so far.

So if anyone has any 1. Opinions on continental vs english knitting; 2. Thoughts on knitting as a left-handed person; 3. Recommendations of how-to-knit websites or videos for continental or left handed knitting; 4. Offers to teach me to knit; or 5. general advice/comments then let me know.

I've come to realize that while I love to know new things, I pretty much despise learning new things. About 3 times now I've thrown my knitting needles to the ground in disgust at my confusion of yarn and fingers and vowed to never pick them up again. My husband, who was there, reminds me that I did the same with my crochet hook more times then either one of us cares to count, and now I am rather proficient.

Everyone should learn something new from time to time, if only because its so easy to forget how hard it is.

Third: I've been playing around with the look of this blog for a few weeks now. I really really love the simplicity of it, especially compared to my old and rather cluttered look. What do you think?

I'm also really fond of the "Stuff I'm Pondering" links at the right. So often I come by interesting blogs, opinion pieces, DIY articles, and the like that I would like to share, but I feel uncomfortable constantly spamming people via facebook "Look! I found this INTERESTING!" and don't have the time or inclination to blog all the time about other blogs for gracious sake. This feels a lot less intrusive then either option. It's there if you have the time and interest in it, but if you don't it's not in your face.

I do want to say, however, that it is Stuff I'm Pondering, not necessarily Stuff I Agree 100% With. It isn't some crazy Courtney's-Seal-Of-Approval, as if anyone would care. I am, however, ripe for discussion on any of them, so e-mail me if you want.

I'm not as sure that I'm fond of the "My Favorite Posts" button. Originally it was "Top Posts" because I realized that a good 1/4 of my traffic was going to a key dozen or so posts, and thought it would be convenient to highlight them. Then I decided to use a few of those, as well as a few of my personal favs for a list of favorite posts. But now I'm thinking I might get rid of it altogether.

Is there anything you think I should get rid of? Anything you think I need to add?

This is probably adieu until we get back in town next week. So have a good week!


Holly said...

I am a knitter first and foremost. Last year I taught myself to crochet. I like that I knit first because it is harder and it made learning to crochet rather easy. The thing is...I, too, am left handed. I would be happy to show you how I knit. I hold my needles unique to myself but the stitches end up being correct. It took me a LONG time to figure knitting out because everyone I knew was right handed. But, I did it!

Anyway, let me know if you can't find anyone else.

Rachel said... has excellent continental videos. That site is how I learned to knit. :-)
I have only ever done continental, but I think it's faster Why? Because it requires less motion.

I still need to learn how to crochet…

Passed you downtown tonight, on Howard, as I zoomed by on my bike.

The new layout is nice, and it loads MUCH better on iPhobe. ;-)