Friday, September 28, 2012

Indians, Tornadoes, and Volcanoes....Oh My!

We had a good week, for the most part.  School at home went great, however we have some changes coming.  We received an email this week from our School partner, stating that starting in October homeschoolers will need to submit year long lesson plans for Science, Math, and English for each of their children.  In addition to that, our children would need to take monthly "quizzes" on those subjects to determine if they are "learning enough."  On top of that, every quarter we would be required to submit work samples for those subjects as well.  Needless to say, the cons outweighed the pros for staying in the program so we are pulling out.  Unfortunately, it means the girls will no longer get their once a week "fun classes."  They were involved in the decision and decided on their own that they would rather drop out than complete the new requirements.  It was a sad day, but after much thought, discussion, and prayers we have decided that dropping out is what is best for our family at this time.  Hopefully we will be able to fill the void with homeschool field trips, a recreational class for each child, and a smattering of all the other wonderful homeschool activities and groups going on in our conmmunity.  Enough of that now.....on to happier things!!!
This week we studied all of our basics (reading, writing, math, english, ect.).  May I just say that I am very proud of my girls right now.  They each have a challenge to read 100 books (picture books on appropriate levels for each of them) or chapters from an approved book to earn a reward.  Audrey is currently up to 60 books and Marissa is at 51!!!!  This plan is working AMAZINGLY.  Audrey's reading has improved greatly in the last few months.
We also had a wonderful time doing our science and history this week.  In History we learned more about Pocahontas and made Indian headdresses.  We also read the book "Sam the Minuteman."  Audrey was enjoying it so much that she took it off on her own on Thursday and read the entire book to herself. 

The kids with their Indian Headdresses....I may have cut them a little too small.
 In Science we learned about tornadoes and volcanoes.  We had a great time building our own tornado, swirling it around, and watching it go.  We also began construction on our volcano.  More to come with the volcano next week. 

Our Tornado.  If you look closely at the top water you can see it swirling.
It was a good week overall.  We are excited to make our changes and start with our new plan.  And I promise that my children do not look like such ragamuffins in the mornings.  I don't know what happens to them at lunch time!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

What I learned this week

Homeschooling my kids gives me the opportunity to resdiscover lost interests, revel in things I loved as a child (and some that I still science experiments), re-do those subjects I struggled with or did not like as a child, and learn new things alongside my kids.  Here are 3 things I learned this week while teaching my children:
1. The Americas were named after Amerigo Vespucci who was the first person to realize that this mass of land Columbus had found was not Asia, but a completely seperate continent. 
2.  The first hamburger in America was served in Connecticut. 
3.  Coca-cola and Peanut butter were invented in Georgia. 

Did you learn anything new this week?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Weekly Wrap up

Yet another week of school has come to an end.  I am enjoying this year of homeschool SO much.  I think the kids are too. 
This week.....
Breanne created havoc, played some with her busy bags, screamed a lot, learned how to say  or rather YELL "OP!" (Stop), napped, made a lot of messes, and ate snacks.  Pretty normal week for our little toddler.

Trent worked on the letter Cc.  We reinforced the letter name and sound, worked on some worksheets (rhyming, beginning sounds, and abc order), did math (Trent's favorite), and a couple of reading lessons from Teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons. 

Marissa read a lot of books (she is determined to finish her 100 books before Audrey does), passed off the last of her "black key" piano songs, worked on adding and subtracting (single digits with double digits), learned about reading map keys, and worked on her handwriting.

Audrey read a lot of books (she is determined to finish her 100 books because she REALLY wants fake nails), took her first Math test of the year and (after a few corrections) passed with an 85%, finally passed off the word "giraffe" in spelling, learned how to read a map grid, learned about asking - exclaiming - and commanding sentences, and read from her Book of Mormon reader daily.

In Sciene we learned about the seasons and what causes them.  Each child made a seasons book.  We learned about the water cycle.  We also began talking about weather and made a rain guage.  Both girls predicted that we will have 0cm of rain this coming week.  They will continue to predict and chart our rainfall for the next 4 weeks.   

In History we finished learning about Columbus and learned about Ponce de Leon and how he discovered and named Florida.  Did you know that Florida means "flowers"?  I didn't.  We made old style maps charting Columbus's journey from Europe to America.  Our state for this week was New Jersey.  Did you know that New Jersey is called the garden state because more than half the state is still farms, woods, marshes, beaches and other undeveloped land?  New Jersey also grows 2/3rds of the world's eggplant!!!! 

We had a good week.  3 more weeks to go before our first break!  What did you do this week?

Friday, September 7, 2012

Labor Day Week

This week started off with lots of fun. 
Sunday brought Ben's parents to celebrate Audrey's 9th birthday. 
Monday brought a BBQ with some friends. 
Tuesday brought a homeschool holiday for us, as we celebrated Audrey's 9th Birthday.  My parents came up to join us.
Audrey at her Birthday Party with one of her presents.
Wednesday - Friday brought us back to schooling where we learned about Columbus, made Telescopes, did science experiments, and painted our own planets in addition to math, reading, and writing. 
Trent and his Telescope

Marissa's planet earth

What did you do this week?