I wrote in a previous post about the beginnings of our journey as homeschoolers. Here is another glimpse as we embark. Several aspects of Maria Montessori's philosophy appeal to us, and thanks to Barbara Curtis's book Mommy Teach Me and her fabulous websites I have been working with DS on some "small beginnings." We are not true Montessori practitioners in that while DS often chooses his "work" and how long to focus on it, at times the activity is much more parent directed.
I did some rearranging in my kitchen to accommodate DS's "work." My cookbooks have a new home in the pantry and I replaced my three-shelf bookcase with an empty five-shelf. (As an aside, can you believe I had an empty shelf around??) I moved all of our art supplies to the top two shelves and then set up two shelves worth of small beginnings/practical life exercises for DS. These will rotate as needed. Right now I have bean spooning, rice pouring, sponges, and small tongs in place. I also have the supplies on the shelf below for basting, funnels, clothespins, and...some others that escape me. His lockbox is also there for practice (a lot of fun when river rocks or spools are hidden inside!) and in the playroom our version of the pink tower is on a shelf (with Waldorf-inspired toys).
I also moved our child-sized table and chairs into the kitchen to accommodate DS's work and more messy art projects.