Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Lazy.. Vacation Time

So we are on Christmas vacation until the monday after New Years. So I'm doing a little cleaning, rearranging, getting rid of stuff, re-prioritizing stuff, and prepping for the next part
of school! Busy work really.

Found an old blog of mine so if you want to read more go check it out. Plus it is easier for
me to keep up with if I have it all on one blog.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A Day in the Life of.. US!

Well it has turned cold.. And winter hasn't arrived yet. Bam Humbug! My son is finishing up his reading which happens to be the last homeschool assignment he has today. The girls are watching tv after tearing up my room playing with playdough, crayons, scissors and paper. Cleanup time will happen as soon as Momma gets her blog finished! My friend A, was asking me today about homeschooling. She just started this year and is having a bit of trouble finding her groove! So I thought I would do a post about what a typical day is like at our house.

Warning: I'm not perfect. My family is not perfect. What works for us may not for you. Schedule changes to suit our needs!

We are not morning people but we are usually all up and running by about 10 am. Sounds late huh but its perfect for us. Everyone gets the needed sleep (and sometimes a little extra). Everyone has a different schedule that works for them. We get up and do breakfast. Some mornings my son makes pancakes. Some mornings I make bacon and eggs. Some mornings its cereal and pop tarts. :) Then we start school. When we first started schooling I made a list of the subjects we needed to do and the assignment next to it. Example...

1. Math.. page 8-9 all problems... Remember to show work..
2. Reading Comprehension workbook - page 5-6 .. Remember to write in cursive
and so on.

Now that we are halfway in the school year he pretty much knows what is expected and just comes down and choses what he wants to start. Today he started with Social Studies I believe. Yesterday he started with math. I don't mind as long as everything gets done.

Normally we do science which is Apologia Botany twice a week since its a mom guided lesson. Today we made a clay flower with all the right parts as part of our lesson. It was pretty cool. Mom made one too! Art is also something we don't do everyday but only because I have two little ones running around. We save it for nap time or try to do things that can be simplified for them too. Such as the painting we did in the previous post. I have the finished pictures of those too! We loved the way they turnedout.

We break for about an hour for lunch. Then back to finish up any remaining school work and for mom to do some checking and grading. I don't do grade averages or anything like that. If it is good I check mark the page. If it needs work, he and I discuss what is wrong and what to do to fix it. Then he makes the changes needed. Some days I don't get to the grading and checking. Then it piles up until the weekend and I end up sitting here for an hour with the answer sheets and my brain. I hate doing that. Procrastinating gets you in trouble. lol Okay so we normally are finished up by 2 or 2:30 and that is the 4 hours our state requires for homeschooling. :)

I admit there are some days where he doesn't seem to want to work or his mind wonders. Having ADHD does make it hard for him sometimes to stay and work. Things we have tried.

Music. Amazingly listening to music while doing work (or even audio books) helps him. I like classical music while doing school work. That isn't always possible with the girls but we try! lol Other things include moving the tv to another smaller room with a door. We actually moved the tv, entertainment center and couch to the homeschool room and moved all the homeschool room stuff to the bigger room! Now he has more room and less distractions! Breaks are also necessary! Snacks can be good. Who can think with a rumbly tummy! Its important (for us) that he gets small healthy snacks through out the day. Because of his high energy and constant mood swings, he burns up calories quickly. If you know him, he is skinny as can be without looking starved. Doc said he's a good weight though! Go figure.

Okay. Here is a list of work for a typical day:

Math-u-see - Delta (working on Division)
McGraw-Hill Reading Comprehension Grade 4 workbook
Success in Spelling 4
United States and its Neighbors textbook
Apologia Botany
weekly - Music - listening to various genres and exploring famous classical composers
weekly - Art - exploring different periods and art styles... making our own versions too
Reading - 30 minutes a day required.
Not limited to just these. Some times we do copywork to work on his cursive and supplement with documentaries and blips on u tube. Yesterday we were working on greenhouse effect and global warming. We watched a few things on utube and looked it up online and in the Encyclopedia. Next we will watch the movie Al Gore did about Global Warming once I find it!

Well hope you enjoyed a glimpse of our homeschooling!
Time to go clean up and finish our day! Hope you have a good one!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Gallon man project

Soooo we have been doing Math-u-See for 2 years now. This year we are on the Delta book!
It is introducing alot of concepts that require him to memorize. Such as area, cups, gallons, miles, yards, and feet. The gallons, cups, pints and such have given him a bit of a fit. He has
a bit of trouble keeping things in his mind like this. But I remember a while back I had come across a teacher's blog or website that had mentioned her class making a "gallon man" so I went on a search and found a printable one! You can find it here if you want the pdf of it. I did edit it so that I didn't use color ink to print it. I printed it on construction paper and card stock. He enjoyed putting it together and now he has a visual aid to remind him.

Watercolor painting and "sunnyday"

Yesterday I stumbled across a blog with watercolor lessons.
I thought that would be a good addition to our homeschooling
(and add a little something fun for my son). So of course I lost
the blog link! But I started googling and found THIS link instead.
It inspired me and the kiddos to try our hand at it!

Quickdrawl's artwork

My son is off to a good start!

This is my attempt.

Quickdrawl has a very unique way of telling whether it is day
or night time. The funny thing is she knew what it was way
before I knew she knew! Shes been saying sunnytime or
moontime for weeks when I finally caught on to what she is
saying. So sunnytime is daylight and moontime is nighttime!
Smart girl!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Homeschool Room and Pet Pictures!

The completed kitchen! YEAH

My son requested I put up a picture of our lazy cat. lol So here he is.

My homeschool room turned library.

More things to come.

Monday, September 7, 2009

New Kitchen Floor

So... We've been rolling nicely on school (yeah) and still working on the remodeling of the house. Its been stressful but nice to see the finished product. School is similiar to remodeling. You may struggle and erase and fix and reread but its great when you get it right! So far we've been working hard on the Apologia Botany. DS was soooooo proud of his experiment. We did a lesson on seeds and how they germinate. He had to place three seeds in baggies with a wet paper towel. One in the fridge, one in the closet, and one taped to the window. In just five days the one taped up grew over four inches long! I took him to Walmart and bought a big bag of veggie dirt so he could plant it. I'm not sure how it will fair yet. I need to look up when planting season is for beans but he's happy and it looks healthy! Amazing what kids can do!

While this was going on, our kitchen floor has been installed. Its in now but still needs to dry tonight then cleaned up tomorrow! I'm soooo glad to have a floor again! Oh and for a house warming present (a bit late but none the less appreciated!) we got a ........................... NEW Black Samsung Double door fridge. Its supposed to be delivered tomorrow. I'm so excited. I think the fridge excites me more than the floor! lol Now I can cook AND have leftovers!

I'll have to get some pictures up tomorrow!
Good night

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A New School Year

We are about three weeks into the new school year. Summer was a bit stressful with all the work going on with the house. Bad thing is its still going on. But me and the kids are staying downstairs and trying our best to see how much we can learn while still having some fun.

So here is the things I am using or plan to use. Subject to change at a moments notice.. lol

Story of the World Vol 1 (History)
Apologia - Botany (Science)
Math u see - Delta
Copywork is poems
English workbooks.. various ones from Brighter Child and McGraw
These include grammar wbs and reading comprehension wbs
Success in Spelling 4th
Required reading - 30 minutes a day

I am using a couple different book lists for his reading lists along with books he takes an interest in. Currently he has discovered the Captain Underpants series.
While I dislike the stories, he adores them and has read 4 in one week. Anything that can keep his attention like that (and isn't uhm.. illegal or just horrible) is okay with me. Besides at this rate we should be over this by next week! lol

AHHHH.. I know I am leaving out some vital thing that he NEEDS to know but I can never put my finger on it. But he's smart and creative so I think we will figure it out as we go!

I am having him re-evaluated for his ADHD at a nice place. They are taking time to do testing. Two days worth actually. Then they will give me a report. Haven't had a counselor do that yet. So it will be interesting to see what they say. Maybe I can get something who can help me figure out how to calm him down and work on his anger issues! Wow. Can you imagine a day of peacefulness!!!

Not with toddlers! My two girls are wanting to "school" too. It involves crayons, flashcards, educational toys, mommy's scissors and lots of other brightly colored objects. Its actually fun working with my girls on their colors and shapes. My oldest is really into dot-to-dots right now. I have a notepad full of shapes I've drawn for her to do. lol She keeps me busy. We are still working on potty training. My youngest actually is doing well in this area! I hope she keeps it up. I'm a proud mommy!

I love my kids!
But I better get in bed so I can get up early to do some school and go pick up some newly made stairs for the house!

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Remodeling Homeschooling Frustrated Mom!

As this is my first post, you may want to know a quick bit about my family. There is me and my other half plus three kids. My other half has three other children too though they do not live with us. We recently moved into our first house together and have been slowly redoing things to make our home ours. My oldest is 9 and he is homeschooled. He has been diagnosed with ADHD but I am still trying to find a better counselor who can work with us to make sure of this. My other two are girls and are age 2 and age 3. I don't work. Unless you count teaching and taking care of three very active kids! Its doesn't end at 3 or 5 pm like it would if I worked. Eventually I do plan to go back to work but with the economy being what it is, I'm sure it would be hard to find one anyway right now.

We have started the remodeling process in our kitchen. It is the worst room you can remodel with kids EVER. We are being rushed! Everything seems to be done now or yesterday yet my other half still has to work. We have removed most of the wall dividing our kitchen and living room to make a more open floor plan. Five different contractors have assured us that it is not a load bearing wall. If the beams in the attic run the opposite way as the wall, it is not a load bearing wall. But today we took out stud number 7 and the ceiling sagged a quarter of an inch. Scared me to death but after a panicked call to our contractor, he said it was common to do that but recommended that if we needed peace of mind they could install more support!
Unfortunately that will have to wait until the cabinets, counter tops, and floor get put in. That is happening this weekend. I'm excited to see my new kitchen but not happy with the rush and inability to get everything in place. We haven't even had time to get the electrical moved. Grr.
No time to paint the walls either. The list of things that need to be done seems to get longer not shorter. Breath in and Breath out.

This is our last week of homeschooling before summer officially begins. But I do plan to slowly work our way through the Spectrum Gr 3 Review Book to make sure we covered the basics before we move on to "4th" grade next year. All the while getting work picked out and a course of study lined up for next year. This has been our second year at home. Each summer I vow that we will be more organized and learning will be more fun. I vow that now. But reality gets in the way. We learn and have fun. We lapbook and we take field trips. We read and we make up stories. Some days are planned to a T and other days are more spontaneous. I am as ready for this break as he is.

I need to put some time and attention in potty training my girls. I was told (haha) that girls are supposed to be easier to potty train. My girls have decided that the norm is too boring and they wanna be outside that box. Unfortunately it means they totally dislike all potties and I mean ALL. We have three different potties here and that isn't even including the two normal toilets in the bathrooms. No way. My 3 year old is nicknamed Quickdrawl and she wears pull ups but will not sit on a potty without a fight! My 2 year old who is nicknamed Angeleyes won't even let you put a pullup on her but will sit on the potty sometimes. Its frustrated and I need to focus more on potty training with them. But I'm running out of ideas on what to try. We've did the potty training DVDS. Even tried the girl potty training movie with cartoon characters. They just turned the TV off and walked away. We have potty books that make flushing sounds. Quickdrawl has a potty in her room. I have even tried letting her wear underwear. She wouldn't even tell me when we wet her pants. Sigh. I guess when they are ready they will but I really am over paying 20 bucks for a box of 70 diapers and 15 dollars for a bag of 30 pullups.

Okay I've vented and now I better get to bed. Tomorrow is homeschool and karate practice plus contractor calls! Yeah!