So, it just so happened that Snowpocalypse 2015 hit about the same time our first real colds started.
Yeah… ^^^ This picture kinda sums it all up.
We were stuck in the house in a sleep-deprived, snot-filled, teary haze. The Little Man, who was grumpy and clingy, not to mention throwing up started the whole event. Then the Baby, who has sleep issues on a normal day, came down with it, and her inability to breathe severely exacerbated her sleep issues. Plus, because of all of the cold I had all 3 kids in bed with me so getting comfortable to sleep even when I could sleep was impossible… king-sized bed or not.
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It’s hard sometimes to enjoy the homeschool journey when life throws obstacles at you like this. Too much together time. Too little energy to function, let alone be productive. How am I supposed to educate Sophia and nurse 2 sick babies and be stuck home, cooped up in the house with everyone?
I was barely hanging on to my sanity.
The good news is that homeschooling is a journey. It’s a lifelong journey of discovering how to function in a very dysfunctional situation. Homeschooling is getting creative both in how you learn and how you view learning.
For us, our snow days mean:
I pulled out chairs, beanbags, foam blocks, and anything else I could think of and made a path through the playroom, into the kitchen, down the hall, and back into the playroom. We started with one course and kept changing things up as the kids went through trying new things to make it better.
This experience was a perfect time to make this a direct learning experience for the Little Man as we stressed OVER, UNDER, AROUND, IN, OUT, and THROUGH. Plus, we worked on our gross motor skills as we hopped, jumped, climbed, crawled, skipped, walked backward, etc. Sometimes as adults we forget that we had to learn these things that seem so basic to us.
What I really like about an obstacle course is that it doesn’t take any extra things. No stash of craft supplies, ingredients, or ingenuity needed!
After the kids had gone through a few times, they started creating more and different challenges. They spread the pads apart and pushed them closer together. Sophia brought over the Lego table so they could climb through it. They moved things around so it was in a different order. The stool swiveled so sometimes they would sit and swivel and sometimes they would just climb over. At one point, they were jumping off the couch, which probably wasn’t a great idea, but they were having so much fun I overlooked it. (Hopefully, they aren’t learning that couch-jumping is a good idea.) We had a large bucket that became all kinds of different obstacles- climbing in and out, climbing over, climbing under.
I also love that it was an activity that all of the kids could do. The Baby wanted to do everything big sister and brother did so we had to make sure she could. But even in areas she couldn’t quite navigate, she found her own way around.
I read the book Going on a Bear Hunt by Little Simon after the obstacle course became uninteresting to the kids just to repeat a lot of the directional concepts (over, under, around) we learned through the obstacle course. We finished up our lesson with a Going on a Bear Hunt craft and a snack.
All of this crazy did make the house a mess! But I think it was worth it. At the end of the day, we had used up some energy and had a lot of fun.
What did you do during Snowpocalypse 2015? For that matter, what do you do during snow days period?