Wednesday, August 12, 2009

When does school start?

We have school throughout the summer, though I have to admit that its a lot more casual than the rest of the year (and we're pretty casual to begin with). Having a baby that has just learned to crawl has made the usual annual planning more difficult that usual (I haven't exactly gotten around to it yet...). So, for the most part we've been doing book reports and reviewing math. If I have our real curriculum planned out by the time public school starts, then I'm "ok".

Since we started homeschooling, we've practiced dialogues that come up at this time of year. Well-meaning adults at grocery stores and in the neighborhood are always interested in talking to her about "back to school". At first, she didn't know how to answer their questions, which tended to make it kind of awkward. So, we practice. I ask things like, "Are you excited for school to start?" or "Do you like your new teacher?" so she has a chance practicing how to respond. These days, she has figured out that she can answer just about every question with "I'm homeschooled" (and then no further explaination, so I feel obligated to jump in with a cheerful "Ya, we have school all year round, but she's excited to start a new grade" or whatever is appropriate).

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

$9.00 worth of school supplies?

I've seen some Wal-Mart commercials that advertise school supplies and claim that you can get all of the school supplies you need for $9.00. Now wait a minute Wal-Mart - all the supplies for just $9.00? I've seen the school supply lists the school put out. $9.00? Is that for one day's worth of supplies? Well, I've seen those commercials dozens of times, but apparently didn't read between the lines well enough to understand that they mean "$9.00 each", as in each item. $9.00 back-packs, $9.00 t-shirts, $9.00 lunch-boxes, etc. I haven't been over to their school supply section yet, so I had to figure this out for myself on their website.

Some "factoids" I found on when searching for info on the average back-t0-school costs for students:

Factoids: Back to School Costs

(It ain't cheap!)

Factoids: Back to School Costs $483 The average amount of money families with school aged children will spend on back to school items
$219 on clothes
$90 on shoes
$73 on school supplies
$101 on electronic/computer equipment

$14,790,000,000 The total amount parents/guardians will spend sending elementary and high school students back to school

I also found some "average" amounts that were even higher. Again, YIKES!