Monday, August 27, 2012

Okay, so homeschool...  We are now starting our second week.  I've discovered a few things. 
1.  The writing curriculum I bought for D. is way too hard for him right now.
2.  The math curriculum that came with it has a lot of writing involved.
So, back to the drawing board.  I think we will try and stick with the phonics portion of it.  It's "American Language Series."  I've been impressed with the Saxton math so far.  I know that no one likes Saxton math after kindergarten, but I like that the kindergarten curriculum uses all manipulatives.  D. responds well to hands on, and badly to coloring. 

I thought it was interesting how my lesson plan compared with what we actually did today.  I just thought I'd share.  It was a very "unschooling" day :-)

My lesson plan
for D.  - math, read the pictograph we did on Friday
                    and give him a handful of counting frogs and pattern blocks to play with together.
                   (he made a "family boat" out of the pattern blocks for all of the frogs to be on)
             - phonics sheet
             - write the letters, l, o, i, and d on the white board
             - unit study, decorate the cover of the lapbook we're making and look at body part cards
               (he pretty much refused to color it.  he hates coloring.  I made him color one letter.  but, unprompted, he tried to write "by (his name)" on the bottom of it.  He wrote "Bi (his name)"  I was really impressed!)
             - a math game with beads and pipe cleaners
             - theraputty.  i just had him pull and push it a while to strengthen his fingers

H is doing the letter of the week curriculum.  You can find it here.
We finished up the letter A and started the letter E.  Just as with D, he hates to color; wouldn't do it.  But, he pasted A's on a tree, matching them to capital or lowercase.  We made an A aligator for his letter book.  He matched the letters of the word elephant with the word elephant, capital and lowercase.  He played with stickers:  his favorite thing in the world.  And, something else I can't remember.

All of the above only took about 30 minutes.  Our calendar time before that, took 30 minutes.

So, I know you're wondering what we did the rest of the day.

These are the things not on my lesson plan that we learned/did today:  all before naptime at 2.
 (breakfast, lunch, a snack, morning chores)
- did a puppet show to the song "Manah Manah" by the Muppets
- the next song on D's ipod was "The Fox," by Nickel Creek.  So, he made a fox puppet from a paper bag.
-did a puppet show with his fox puppet to "The Fox."  Then, we wrote the word "fox" on the puppet.  He sounded the letters out for me.
- all 3 kids played pretend in the kitchen area.  I "ate" lots of soup and ice cream.
- created a train track that spanned the length of the house and played with the plastic thomas trains.
- I read books aloud:  "I Wanna Iguana," "My Friend , the Monster," and "Support Systems:  How the Bones and Muscles Work Together."
- The last book led to an explanation of joints using playdough and popsicle sticks.  Then, they played with that for about 10 minutes.
- D. looked at "The Interrupting Chicken" book and H. listened to Wee Sing Dinosaurs, Bugs, and ABCs.
- Oh, and after H and E went down for their nap, D listened to me read 3 chapters of "The Bobbsey Twins' Wonderful Secret."

After naps, we have snack, more read alouds, afternoon chores, and then the boys will watch "The Magic Schoolbus:  The Human Body."

Whew.  I sure am worn out from sitting around all day eating bon bons ;-)


Friday, March 9, 2012

The Alphabet Game

I tried an alphabet game with the boys that I found on pinterest.

They had to find things that started with each letter and place it on the correct card.

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D decided that he needed to be on the letter D, seeing that his name starts with D.

We discovered that most of the things in our house start with the letters, B, D, E, and H.  Overall, I think the game went pretty well.  D liked it.

Some thoughts.

I had a realization this week.  Well, it's been coming on for a while, but I think it just clicked this week.  Guess what?!?  No one is perfect.  I mean, that "all have sinned" thing is true!!  Yeah, yeah, I've always known that.  But, I didn't know that it applied to moms too.  I have this tendency to think that I'm the only one struggling and that everyone else has it all together.  I'm the only one who yells.  I'm the only one who loses it.  I'm the only one who wants to hide in the closet.  I'm the only one who feels inadequate.  I think that we, as Southerners, sometimes do each other a disservice putting on a "I have it all together" mask.  Because, guess what, people believe it!! 
I am doing a Bible study, through BSF(Bible Study Fellowship), on the acts of the apostles.  One of the things my lecturer said, is to ask God to help you see yourself as He does.  She said "you are more deeply flawed, but you are also more deeply loved."  So, I did.  I asked God to show me how He and other people see me.  Guys, don't ask God for that unless you are ready to see it.  Seriously!!  You might not want to know.  I won't go into everything I saw, because oh my goodness, no one will want to hang out with me. 
And, it has also helped me see that other people are struggling too. 
Okay, this has been stream of consciousness, and I don't know what point I was trying to make.
How about, moms (and dads), God has placed your children with the perfect parents for them.  Give yourselves a break.  Pray; read your Bible; have your quiet time with God; trust God; trust yourself.  Then, love your children the best way you know how. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Trial and Error

Today I let D and H use our new "Do A Dot" painters on the letter B. It had the circles on it, so it was supposed to teach one to one correspondence. I had to go and change E's diaper while they did some of this. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that H (the 2 year old) had done pretty good with the dots. I have discovered that he won't do an art project longer than 15 minutes at the most, though. (Sometimes 2 minutes) I will need two projects for him in the future. I was frustrated that D(the 4 yr old) wasn't filling in his paper when I got back. But, I soon discovered that he was mixing his colors. He was putting a blue dot down, and then a yellow dot on top of it to get a green dot. He explained to me that he had all of the primary colors and was seeing what colors they made when you put them together. (What!? I didn't know he knew what those were.) So, I showed him that the other three colors we had were called secondary colors. So, my plan did not go as planned, but learning took place. So, success!
I also introduced my idea for a new discipline plan to them. I'm going to use a discipline ladder along with reward bucks. So, I let D and H help me make a list of things that would make them go down the ladder and a list of things that will make them go up the ladder. We also made a list of things that we would like to buy with our reward bucks. D was soooooooooooo excited. I mean, like dancing around the house, excited. I need to make the ladder now, and decide the "prices" for the prizes. to come.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

More of the school room

Here is the sweet little one who I will be homeschooling next year. Who wouldn't want to wake up to that face every day? I'll be "teaching" my middle child, who will be 3, as well. But, that will mostly be games and play.

This will be the preschool shelf. At least, the bottom of the shelf will be. I saw this cool idea on pinterest, I think. You put individual activities on fast food trays. They get to choose what they want to do and then put it back and get a new one when they're tired of it. (Which, for Harrison, is about 2 minutes right now.) The tray lets them see each activity and keeps it all in one place. I haven't found a good deal on trays yet. Right now, the shelf houses our play kitchen stuff. So, that stuff will need to find a new home.

This year, I have been teaching my eldest using the "My Father's World" curriculum. It comes with letter cards, which I half traced/half drew, so that I could hang them on the wall and still be able to teach with them. Some came out better than others.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Two posts in one day!!!

I'm doing Game On with my mom, cousin, and sister in law. But, I'm using weight watchers for my food plan. I'm still trying to remember all the rules. I'm fairly certain that leave the jar of peanut butter beside the couch to tempt you after you finish the wii fit is not one of them. Note to self: hide peanut butter. Leave out carrots.

A New Year, and a New Post!!!!

I have a tendency to think that no one wants to hear what I have to say or that everyone already knows the things that I know. I forget that I have figured alot of this stuff out along the way, and that I got my information from other people. So, partly inspired by my cousin's super duper inspiring blog, I want to try and blog about the things that I do. I'll be focusing on organization, parenting, and maybe some cooking. I will not be giving you advice on cleaning :-) Maybe, in the future. But, I do not excel in cleaning right now.

I am terrified and excited to say that John and I have decided that I will be homeschooling David next year in kindergarten. I've been teaching him this year, but this will be the first year that is state mandated. I took some pictures of our "school room." It's really messy right now, so we'll call these the "before" pictures.

I decided a while back that I wanted to get a pocket chart holder. Boy, are those things expensive. I found a deal on this calendar pocket chart online for 6 dollars. So, I set out to look for a pocket chart holder. Later, I was trying to figure out what I was going to do with the clothes hanging rod that I bought for my maternity clothes. It was way too flimsy to hold up more than like one dress. So, I thought it might make a great pocket chart holder if it was shorter. My greatly talented husband agreed to cut the poles shorter for me, and ta da: instant pocket chart! I'm really excited with how it turned out.

This is our craft closet. It used to be organized until we got more stuff for Christmas which I haven't found a home for yet.

This is our school supply closet. Same thing goes here. It was organized until we got more stuff.

This is our school table. I kinda wish I had a kidney table, but this works.

Okay, it's time to get the kids up, so that it all for today.