Last year this time, we were preparing to take a trip (as well as our classroom!) around the world. Forty two days later, we were home with armloads of stories and pictures. This summer, however, it will be VERY different!
It’s time for students in my Eagle Hill Academy classes to spread their wings and FLY! The kids are more independent but still need me once in a while. At least I still have a job!
This summer’s plans will see us mostly HOME in the United States. Yeah! As much as we savored our travels last year, our plans are here.
Jonathan just enrolled at Quinebaug Valley Community College. He is taking a precalculus class as we speak, for his high school year. He has been tutored by Colton Alexander, a recent grad from ECSU whose expertise is in math.
Jonathan has also completed his chemistry book, thanks to UConn. PhD. Alyssa Weer. I don’t do chemistry, nor do I do the level math he can, so I have found tutors to take care of these things. When the kids were younger, I could do the teaching but now, things are different.
And since Jonathan LOVES photography, he’ll get to spend time with some of the best locally, including The Chronicle photographers Marie Brennan and Al Malpa.
His passion for fencing is also occupying his time as he studies the rules so he can take a test, referee, AND get paid for doing it. He’ll also have his class two times a week in June and July.
Jonathan is also on track to begin Driver’s Education, which will mean getting more hours of freelance work and paying for HIS car insurance. Soon, he’ll be taking Rosie to her classes, as well as getting the groceries. I’m dreaming of that even now!
And Rosie is on track to complete ALL of her academic work so she can repaint her bedroom. She is working extra hard on her academics so she can get to her painting job before the weather gets so hot.
She has done the research at local stores, chose her paint, knows what she needs and is ready to get going on her project. She’ll do much of it herself. “Independence” is the name of the game!
She can pay for her materials, since she recently landed a 10-hour a week job.
She walked into the University Club in Windham and asked to be a caddie, but was told they don’t have them. Instead, she was offered a chance to landscape and work on the grounds of the club. So, Rosie has been a working girl AND going to school for over a month now.
She’s learning how to manage her time, talents, and bucks so she can have an idea of how to do this in the future as she becomes more mature.
Since Rosie likes Shakespeare, she has signed up to be in a Backyard Shakespeare production that requires a month-plus of daily, lengthy rehearsals that will culminate in a performance in Bolton. She’ll be either in “Twelfth Night” or “Henry 5th.”
We are grateful for our neighbor, Susan Johnson, who graciously gave us permission to swim in her pool these past few summers! We’ll be there at least four times this summer, since I promised the kids we’d go swimming 100 percent more than we did last summer.
As a family “unit study,” we hope and plan to replace a shed in our backyard by building it ourselves. My husband would take time off of work so we could do this project together and hopefully learn about construction and the like.
There is lots to learn when we work together! Math, science, geography, budgeting, design, etc. It’s all there in the backyard.
The summer is full of activity – much of it will require me to just get children from point “A” to point “B.”
We’ve had some great preliminary discussions about jobs, work, leisure and spending hard-earned money. It’s all a part of the nest getting closer to being emptied and training our children in the skills and values we feel are important as they enter adulthood.
These are exciting times. But they are scary, too!
I manage my own business, participate in town events, provide cooking support and suggestions to two cooking magazines, and am involved in a couple of ministry organizations!
We are embarking on a Google program that will help us synch our schedules and keep us organized. And while I rely on my paper month-at-a-glance calendar, I am demonstrating to my kids that I, too, can learn new things and enter into the world they live in.
There’s always something new to learn when you home school! And this summer, my “eagles” will be learning how to fly!
– Ruth Hartunian Alumbaugh
Most people throttle down in the summer, but my summers are almost as hectic, if not more sometimes, than the school year. Last year was really busy, because we went on a really long trip. Hopefully, this year will be a bit more relaxing, as we won’t be going anywhere to far from home.
When I was 6 or 7 years younger, we had to school in the summer as well. Just the two “main” subjects – English and math – but I didn’t appreciate it then. I always thought it was a waste of time, boring, etc… But now I won’t go through summer without doing math or English.
I’m not that good at math, and I figure that I need all the help I can get with it. I do well in English, but there’s always room for improvement.
Math is the main problem I have; I forget a lot of it fast, if I’m not using it every day to triangulate the height of a building or something interesting. So I’ll be taking a pre-calculus course this year at QVCC.
Originally, I was going to take intermediate algebra just to brush up, but I was told by the instructor of the class that it’d be boring for me (according to the “basic skills assessment”). That was enough to convince my mom, since she’s the one paying for the class, to put me in precalc. So I’m a bit scared about that, and hope that it won’t be too hard.
When the school year starts again, I’ll be doing math and English at QVCC for college and high school credit. I wish I could do some science/chemistry there, but a three-credit class costs about $400.
If I could advise myself a year ago, I’d tell myself to start taking college credit classes at the beginning of my junior year. It’s a great way to knock out some required classes, learn more, get ahead, and look good to colleges. Hopefully, doing this will allow me more time for the things that I’ll be majoring in, in college.
As far as jobs go this year, I’m going to be ramping up my “ad campaign” and marketing myself more. If anyone needs someone with basic HTML4/CSS3 skills for cheap (compared to the “pros”) I’m your guy.
I’ll also be trying to get more graphic design/Photoshop gigs (i.e.; photo restoration, retouching and altering, business card design, photo shoots, logo creation, etc.) I’m putting in my shameless plug – if you’re interested in anything graphics/photo/web related, even if it’s not listed here, email me at email@example.com
You can see some of my best work and photos here https://picasaweb.google.com/109706361318407685038/AllTimeFavorites
My goal is at least 10 hours of work a week, I’ll be taking on as many temporary and longer-lived jobs as I possibly can.
The main reason I’m looking for more work is that I’m going to need money in the near future, for college, insurance, driver’s education, some form of transportation, maybe a new computer. It’s all going to take a load of cash.
Qwerty vs Dvorak
A couple of the other projects that I’ll be working on this summer (and will detail in later paragraphs) are modifying my Qwerty keyboard to a Dvorak layout and learning to touch type again, building a new shed, renovating the bathroom ceiling, and trying to run at least 2 miles more than twice a week.
I’m going to take apart one of my keyboards that I have laying around and reposition the keys so that it will be laid out like a Dvorak keyboard. I just thought it’d be kind of fun to know.
I can already touch type on Qwerty, and at about 80 words per minute I can go along at a decent clip as long as my brain can keep up.
I have heard of people getting up to 330 wpm on a Dvorak layout, so I figure that if I can get touch typing down with Dvorak, I could probably get at least a 20 wpm boost.
Qwerty was created to put most commonly-used letters farther apart from each other back when people used typewriters, so that there wouldn’t be so many jams.
Dvorak was created with modern computers in mind, and is supposed to help avoid computer-use related injuries. It is alleged that the keys are placed in more logical places. We’ll see if my brain doesn’t kill me in the first week.
I and my family will be working on a new shed this summer because the current one is falling down. Pretty self-explanatory.
The bathroom ceiling has been a problem for a while. Since that’s the only bathroom with a shower in it, and some of us like to take long, hot showers, it gets pretty steamy. The steam creates mold on the ceiling, and we have one of those lovely old popcorn ceilings. If you have one you know what I’m talking about, especially if you’re tall, like me.
I can’t stretch, take off my shirt, or put my hands up in the bathroom, because I’ll scrape my knuckles. It’s worse than falling off your bike or something, because it happens way more often.
So, we’ll scrape that junk off and repaint the ceiling and that’ll take care of that.
One mile in 5
On the physical front, I’ll be trying to run at least 2 miles twice or more a week. I’m 6’1” or 6’2” so people expect that I can run pretty fast, and I can, but I’m more of a sprinter than a distance runner.
My goal in running regularly will be to do 2 miles in 13 minutes. I’m at something like 2 miles in 16 minutes right now, so it’ll probably be forever until I reach my goal.
I’m also trying to reach 1 mile in 5 minutes… If you run often and have any tips for me, tell me, because I know next to nothing.
Running is probably one of the toughest exercises for me because it’s so boring. It takes an incredible amount of will power to run just for the sake of running.
I find it incredibly boring to run by myself. I’m extremely competitive, so it’s much easier me to run with someone.
It’s going to be a busy summer, and it already is (hence the somewhat hastily written article), with sports (fencing), a job, working on a lot of projects, trying to building a new computer, and getting into college… It’s not going to be the most relaxing summer ever.
From here on out, life will probably just get more busy until college is done in another 4 or so years. So I’ll be savoring my free time…
Well, to start things, there is no way to top last summer. It’s one that I will always remember. That and the summer I lost 5 teeth.
This summer will be exceptionally exciting, with all the excitement to ensue! I am going to try new things and with that, will come new experiences!
This year, I have a job landscaping at a golf course. Although it may not seem exciting, it sure is when elderly gentlemen compliment me on what I’m doing even though it may just be weeding.
Also this summer, I decided the “White Duck” color in my room is a bit boring, so I’ll be painting my room a light blue.
I’ve been blessed enough that my dad offered to pay up to half of what I need for paint supplies! The fact that I have a few things already planned makes it easier. I hope that I can get a paint that has a lifetime warranty.
At the end of July, and almost halfway through August, I will be have a role in William Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” but I’m not sure what part I am playing yet. I’m excited that I will be doing this with some friends, which will be fun.
I think Shakespeare is hilarious, witty, and able to engage the reader or watcher with his wordplay! I recently read “As You Like It” by Shakespeare and it was hilarious. It would be fun to play Rosalind/Ganymede someday in a production.
These are the highlighted plans for my summer. I’m so excited for all the new things!
And this year, I’ll be around for corn and tomato season.
I’ll be happy to be staying close to home – no packing for 42 days!
I will love to hang out with some friends, and just have fun.
I hope you have a wonderful summer! I can’t wait to get out of school!
My family has supported my interests in all sorts of things like
- My job; my mom comes and helps me a lot,
- Music; I get to play guitar like an hour and a half each day,
- Acting; I’m doing Shakespeare!
- Painting; my dad is offering to pay for half of the supplies,
- And most of all, my pursuit to be a honorable human that sets a good example.
Posted June 9, 2012
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