We are following the Montessori philosophy at home right now. My kindergartner is working through a set of primary albums (we use a combination of KHT Montessori and Keys of the World) rather than a traditional curriculum. She is so curious, and very vocal, and so far she has had no trouble letting me know what she wants to learn about! Another mom once told me to "organize your things, not your people." I love that creating Montessori trays allow me to channel my energy to organize and create fun and attractive activities, but at the same time, I can sit back and allow my daughter to choose whatever activities she is most interested in at the moment.
This nontraditional method of schooling makes some people (including me!) a little nervous.... Is she learning everything she needs? Is she making progress? How does she compare to other kids her age? These are questions I know I will get (and ask myself). I'm trying to help myself to feel more secure by keeping track of the activities we are doing together, and categorizing them by subject. Since I'm focusing on Montessori-style activities, I group the activities based on those categories: Practical Life, Sensorial, Language, Mathematics, and Science/Cultural Studies.
I also take lots of pictures of the activities we are doing and the projects M completes. This allows me to see and track her progress over time. I hope to make a "yearbook" at the end of each year with pictures and descriptions of our adventures.
I am very much a planner. Planning was one of my favorite parts of being a teacher. I love to make lists, do research, read books, and make schedules. I am trying very hard to be flexible and to allow M to take the lead in what we learn about. I'm hoping that this blog will give me the outlet I need to plan and organize, and allow me to relax and be more flexible as we move through our journey together.