Saturday, January 30, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
Posted by Lisa at 5:33 PM
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Okay, I am pretty much the worst blogger. I haven't posted in over a month. But, I guess it probably doesn't matter too much since I'm pretty sure no one really reads my posts anyways. :D I actually wrote a post in December but I wrote it in Word thinking I would copy and paste it into Blogger. But when I tried to do that I couldn't find how to paste what I had written and just gave up. I really didn't feel like writing it all over again either. I will just consider it the "Lost Post".
So I guess this is really a mid-month update. We celebrated two birthdays. Tyler turned 13 (uh-oh teenager in da' house) and Ashley turned 7. We didn't start back to school until Jan 7. Tyler's b-day is on the 6th so we just decided to stay on break until then. Oh, the joys of homeschooling!
The first week went great but this past week things slowly fell apart. Things run much better around here when we go to bed early and get up early, starting school by at least 8:30. The problem is that the girls of the household (me included) are late night owls who enjoy staying up until we can no longer keep our lids open. Then come morning we prefer to stay huddled up under our covers way too long. Result: we feel like our whole day is shot.
I have changed a few things since we started back. Tyler hated Wordsmith. It just wasn't working for him. I also needed to work with him on it quite a bit. Because of this we would just skip doing it which isn't good because this boy needs to learn to write. I looked around and decided on Jump In which is sold by the Apologia people. So far it has been going well. He says he likes it better and there is minimal work for me to do with him excep t check his work and provide feedback when necessary. I also dropped the Apples Spelling books and Ashley's Horizon's Spelling. Apples just seemed too redundant for us. And Ashley's book was too hard for her. Ashley reads wonderfully but she is a terrible speller. So, I have started Spelling Power with them and again so far so good.
Some friends and I have started a once a month co-op. We started it mainly for celebrating the holidays but on months where there isn't a huge holiday we will still meet or have a field trip. Right now, we have 7 moms involved and 13 kids. We want to grow it slowly inviting those we know to join in each time we get together. I'm really excited about it and hope that it will bring some fun and fellowship to our children. Here is 2 pics from our very first co-op meeting, the big kids and the little kids. It was a Christmas breakfast. We had a couple of games, exchanged $1 store gifts and made mini gingerbread houses (glued together graham crackers).
For more weekly wrap-ups please visit Kris at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.
Friday, December 4, 2009
I haven't done a weekly wrap up in a long while. I guess I was bogged down with getting our taxes done for the year ('08) - and then we had house guests, and then we had a wonderful wedding to attend in New Orleans and then it was Thanksgiving.
My kids with their cousins enjoying New Orleans
My brother and his beautiful bride
Well, finally things have calmed down and are a little bit back to normal or at least normal for us. Anyways, this school week started on Tuesday. I decided to give the kids an extra day off. This is definitely a wonderful perk of homeschooling. We stuck with the basics this week and all went pretty smooth. I decided to rearrange our schedule (a never-ending endeavor!). We are now doing math, science, grammar and reading (for Ashley, my 1st grader) first thing in the morning. They are the most important subjects and if we can get them accomplished first thing then the rest of the day is cake. Doing things this way made the week run much smoother and we accomplished a lot each day before noon. It also helped that we all got up fairly early (for us) and began school by 8:30.
We were able to get in a nature study this week. I really love the challenges posted on the Handbook of Nature Study blog. We are way behind on our challenges. We completed the Autumn Series: Weather Study. We took a nature walk around our neighborhood but I would really like to find a place close by that is more wooded and more condusive to seeing more nature.
We have been trying to play a game about 3x's a week called Rummy Roots. This is a card game that introduces Latin/Greek roots. It is a fun and fast-paced, challenging game that is a great way to build vocabulary, and alphabetical skills by exploring the Greek and Latin roots of our English language. Not sure why but we have such a riot playing it. We are all pretty goofy so maybe that is why we are having fun but it was definitely a highlight of our week. We are only just beginning (we started the week before Thanksgiving) so we have only been playing with one deck but we have been keeping a running total of our points. When one person reaches one hundred which will be next week then we will add a new deck. By the way, I was in the lead but Tyler pulled ahead today and Samantha doesn't have a chance!
This week Tyler has just finished studying about the Vikings, Samantha is in the midsts of the early 1800's studyiong the growth of America and Ashley just read about the very first Thanksgiving. I will be so thankful when we start doing history together next year because this year has been pretty crazy. If anyone out there has a recommendation for a history curriculum that I can use for a 13, 11 and 7 year old please let me know all about it!
We got our tree up this week and our nativity but I have a few things still to do. This weekend I hope to set out our Christmas village and put out my snowman collection (something a yankee girl living in the south cannot do without! lol). Plus, I want to put away all the plastic tubs that hold all the decorations back up in the attic. We have a second tree we usually put out but I am just not in the mood this year so I've decide not to. Also, I have been going through my decorations and getting rid of the items I really do not care for.
Tonight, Jeff and I were able to go to our favorite Chinese restaurant and enjoy an evening out together. Our church had a parent's night out and I am very grateful to our pastor and his wife for this wonderful gift. We rarely get a night out together. Tyler is almost 13 so he is old enough to babysit but my next kid is 10 and they fight like a cat and dog. So parent's night out at church was definitely peace of mind. Plus I have an unnatural fear that someone might choke and so they are not allowed to eat while we are gone. I know, I am crazy. I will probably have Tyler go to a babysitting course sometime this year even though he thinks it is just for girls.
Also, good news, Jeff got a night job working at a local grocery store. It definitely is not replacing the income he normaly makes building houses but it will help slow the drain on our savings and since it is a night job he can still be available during the day when some jobs (praying) come in next year.
Please visit Kris at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers to view more weekly wrap-ups.
Friday, September 11, 2009
Check out more weekly wrap-ups with Kris at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.
Posted by Lisa at 9:24 PM
Sunday, September 6, 2009
This week was pretty uneventful. We did get to use our new schoolroom this week and it went pretty good. It was nice having everything we needed all in one place. Tyler went to his room a couple of times to read but for the most part we all spent the day together. We also have a reading area in the dining room so they can go there or up to their rooms or outside.
We did add in music and typing this week. Our music curriculum is very simple. We use a book/cd called Stories of the Great Composers. For each composer you learn some facts and read a story to help reveal his character. Finally there is a puzzle or short question and answer page. The cd has a composition for each composer. I have also been trying to put on classical music throughout the day. Our typing program is Typing Instructor Deluxe. The kids enjoy this.
I hope to start our nature studies next week. I think we will be kicking them off with a field trip to the 10th Annual Hummingbird Migration Celebration in MS on Friday.
I signed up for our area homeschool association. They seem to have a lot to offer including sports teams, debate, spelling bees etc. Tyler decided to join the bowling team so starting next week we will be headed to the bowling alley every Wednesday afternoon.
Tyler has been reading a fun book: Archers, Alchemists, and 98 Other Medieval Jobs You Might Have Loved or Loathed and his assignment last week was to list some jobs from the Middle Ages that interested him and tell why he thought they were interesting. After that he went here and took a short quiz to find out what career would have been his medieval "dream job". He got Shepard and wasn't very happy about that. Then he was completely appalled when I took the quiz and got Black Knight! Hahaha! The quiz is really for adults so some questions weren't really fair for a child to answer but it was fun none the less.
Check out more Weekly Wrap-ups at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
I now have a schoolroom! Last year, when we started homeschooling, I had set up a schoolroom in the playroom upstairs. After a couple of weeks, of spending the day upstairs, we felt really confined. There is only one window in the playroom and the ceiling is low so we felt like we were spending our day in a cave. We made the decision to move downstairs. I have a second walk-in pantry in our kitchen so we used that to store all our books and supplies and basically did school at the kitchen table or in the livingroom. It worked out ok but invariable come dinner time the kitchen table would be piled high with books and stuff. Also, since the kids were working everywhere including their bedrooms, books and papers would become misplaced and we would end up spending precious time looking for things and becoming frustrated.
We are beginning our 5th week of school come Monday. Yesterday we finished up school and there were books, papers and projects from one end of the house to the other. I decided it was time to take over the front room and turn it into our new schoolroom. First I had to convince my husband since the front room had become his "man cave". He, along with the kids, used that room to play the PS3 too. He said he didn't care as long as he didn't have to move anything. That was fine with me and I got to work... 7 hours later and I have it pretty much put together. I still need to organize 2 of the bookshelves, put up the USA map and hang a couple of cork boards for displaying work.
I wish I could move that couch up to the playroom and get rid of the one up there but this one has a hide-a-bed and is heavy and Jeff said no way would we be bringing it upstairs. I still need to bring the kids desk chairs in,