Sunday, January 15, 2017

3rd and 5th Grade: Post #2

Thanksgiving this year consisted of traveling to Illinois to celebrate Thanksgiving AND Christmas with Ryan's family and then down to Missouri to spend time with some of my family and friends. We had just arrived into town and went straight to the festivities at their great grandma and grandpa's house - the kids had lots of energy and jumped on the bed with their cousins...shh, don't tell Great Grandma. :)

Neighborhood Friends
This is a typical scene on our street.
Best place we could have moved for Dash. What a dream.
Crystal Springs Preserve
more fun on one of our monthly Crystal Springs Preserve field trips

finding as many different critters as they can to look at and share data

Home "School"
The kids loved the weekends that we got to take care of Tornado's class pet (and later pets).

It's a great responsibility activity - and I love how careful and sweet they are with them.

team work
He and I read and did a study on Red Badge of Courage during our Civil War unit.
Waldorf Holiday Faire
We love visiting the Waldorf School, especially the holiday faire in December.

Sister made this lovely headband.
Despite being out for a month, Dash had a fun basketball season.

Besides attending camps and team lessons twice a week, he participated in a couple of Saturday tennis tournaments.

We love watching him play!

 Seasonal Celebrating
Our neighborhood has a Christmas parade every year. Kids line up wherever they live and wait for Santa to stop by on the golf cart. :)

We also got to experience a little snow at a snow festival. They got to sled and make snowballs, among many other activities. And had lots of fun, even if it was warm enough to wear shorts.
This was the trip we took to Missouri in December. The kids love playing with my friend's daughter in their great yard. They are playing "house" outside and making soup.

sweet E's new tree house

I think this was the first photo we took with my new selfie stick.

eating lunch at Mama Jean's
The kids and I drove to MO, and after a few days, Ryan flew in to meet us.
We went back to my hometown to watch a girls' basketball game. This is another one of my friend's little girls, and Sis loves playing with her.

Finally -
cousin time at Googie and Papaw's!

basketball with cousins

The girls and Tornado set up an art gallery and worked hard at creating pieces for it.

We were given invitations to attend.

Each piece of art had a price, and the adults paid real money to snatch up these lovelies.

Sister's best friend came over to exchange gifts. Her friend got her a matching jean jacket.

They also tried out the art supplies gift that Sis had given her.

I put up an advent string with number cards every year at Christmas. The kids look forward to looking behind the cards every morning to see watch book we are reading, what new gift we are receiving, what service project we are participating in, what craft we are doing, or what movie we are watching, etc. This night we watched Elf.

Christmas spaghetti!
The favorite Christmas activity is our Christmas Eve scavenger hunt. I've done this every year (except maybe one) since Tornado was little.

We usually do it after we get home from Christmas Eve service at church. There are a series (20-25) clues, one that leads to the next. The final clue leads to a gift and the baby Jesus that needs to be put in our nativity scene. When they were younger, the gift was new pajamas. Lately, I've been giving them new special ornaments especially for each of them.
 Day Trip
We attended Space Coast Veg Fest that fall. It took place in Cocoa Beach, which was a new location for us to visit. We had a nice meal on a second floor restaurant overlooking the street. We checked out the cute downtown, a little park, a health food store, and the beach. Before it began pouring rain, we had a very nice day.

Friday, October 7, 2016

3rd and 5th grade Post #1

After two years in Florida public school, our family made the decision to give homeschooling another try with Dash. It was a good decision for him. Again, it's more difficult to blog details about events a year after they happened, but I will do my best! I'm grateful for the year that my kids were in 3rd and 5th grade, and I want to give them this "yearbook" reminder of their experience. I wish I had photos of everything, and I wish my photos were more organized so I could find them all. This begins September 2015.
This is one of the times Sis and Dash decorated the table for dinner and even printed off a menu. Sometimes they work so well together!

A few of Sister's cooking creations:
berry cupcakes

marshmallow covered brownies

 apple pies (the one on the right was Dash's)

Aquarium Field Trip
We met a few friends, old and new, from our homeschool group, at the Florida Aquarium in Tampa.

Homeschool Co-op
This semester I taught two classes at our homeschool . One was a Nature Book Club for younger kids. During that period, Sis and Dash took the class, Human Body Investigations, which was great. They were also in my Careers Class. Each week focused on a different career. We would talk about what that job entails, how to reach the goal of obtaining the position, learned new vocabulary words, and did experiments and projects related to the career or subject. The kids had to match up these Forestry/Aborist type jobs with their descriptions during Arborist week.
One of our weeks we talked about different careers involving weather.

One of our experiments was blowing up paper bags, then popping them. It took a little practice to get them to pop. We talked about how your hand smashing into the bag causes the space inside the bag to get smaller. The air molecules become crowded, and the bag can't hold the air due to the increasing pressure. The air must escape.
 Flight Week: we tested Bernoulli’s Principle with the floating ping pong ball over the hair dryer. The kids loved taking their turn with this one.
 We also made different types of paper airplanes and tested them.
We devoted two class periods on Acting, which covered different jobs a person can have as an actor or in film or theater, including ones behind the scenes. The first class we used this book as a reference. We also chose parts for short skits and monologues they would perform the next week. They created and painted their sets and planned their costumes.  
These were pretty popular classes, and the kids did an awesome job, after also preparing and practicing at home that week. Sister was an owl in their modified version of the skit, The Owl, The Bull, and the Forest. Dash performed a Big Bad Wolf monologue, and they both also provided some other small parts and sounds in the other skits. I'm always impressed with their abilities to stand up and perform.
One week we talked about different careers in science. The kids rotated working on these science file folder games, which encompass a wide range of scientific topics.
It was during this time that a rather traumatic event occurred in Dash's life. He broke his collarbone at basketball practice. I think he ended up being out of tennis and basketball for a month. We had to look everywhere for a child size sling. Well, the only one we found was Charlie Brown themed. He wasn't impressed, and it was a constant battle trying to wrap this bandana around his sling to hide the "baby" print. 
Toward the end of the semester, the kids had to choose a career they might be interested in one day. Sis chose Chef. She decorated her board with photos of some of the dishes she has made, clip art and the names of some of her favorite cooking shows, and a couple of her favorite recipes. She demonstrated how to cook cookie dough balls and let her classmates participate.
They also participated in food art crafts - fish made with oranges and blueberries...
and turtles using kiwi fruit and grapes.
Dash chose to do his presentation on youtubing. He made a poster with information on his desired career and named a couple of his favorite youtubers.
part of his poster
During Police/Detective week, the kids played Hot Potato with a stick of dynamite (made from a paper towel roll, beans, and construction paper).
Cracker Country Field Trip
On September 18, we took a field trip to Cracker Country, an open air living history village. It was Homeschool Day.

post office
standing in for mules
sampling sugar cane
doing laundry

 dipping candles
MOSI Field Trip
MOSI is the Museum of Science and Industry.

Road Trip
At the end of September/beginning of October we took a trip to Missouri.

playing Monopoly with my my niece and nephew
 Gasp! It was a big day in our family. I let the kids get Icee's for the first time. Haha.
From Missouri, we headed down to Texas to visit my mom's sister who was in the hospital. She had been unconscious, and they really hadn't expected her to recover. But she woke up, and I knew I wanted to see her again. (I'm so glad I did because she passed away soon after.) I really enjoyed hanging out with my cousins at the hospital, as well. All of this might not sound like a fun kid trip, but my kids love to travel. And it's so important to me for them to visit their relatives and get to know them. I talk to them openly about life and death because I think I felt a little unprepared in dealing with death when I was younger. Tornado wasn't able to take this trip, unfortunately, because he couldn't miss that much school. But he has fond memories of visiting Kat a few times when he was young.

We had to drive through Louisiana on the way back to Florida. The kids were able to add a new state to their "Visited" list. And we had a great playlist as we drove through the state: (Louisiana Woman/Mississipi Man, Calling Baton Rouge, Jambalaya (On the Bayou),  Born on the Bayou, etc.) There's just something about Texas and Louisiana that I really enjoy.

Our favorite part of our New Orleans trip: vegan beignets (our first ever)!!!
Oh, how we can't wait to return to Seed. In fact, we couldn't help ourselves from going back the next morning for breakfast.

It was so fun exploring New Orleans, even if only for a night and a day. I had driven through Louisiana when I was young, but I had never been to New Orleans.
We mostly drove around the French Quarter and took a long walk along the water.
We also took a trolley ride!
Day Date
trying out the Kombucha on tap at Daya restaurant in Orlando

It think this was our first visit to Daya, and we loved it...

especially the cauliflower wings!

We also tried the new doughnut place we had hurt about, Valhalla Bakery, which is located inside Market on South, a place we have now come to love. I think we also stopped by Artichoke Red, an all vegan grocery store. Why are all the best vegan places in Orlando instead of Tampa??
 Park Day Playdate
We met a new friend I had made on facebook through a mutual friend. She has a young daughter and son.

We met her at our favorite spot, downtown - the park and spray fountains outside the children's museum.

This year, Sis was a female Robin Hood.

Dash was a werewolf.

Baby Brother was Wolverine.

And Tornado was a gorilla!

We also celebrated the fall season by attending biggest brother's school fall festival. This girl loves her some cotton candy any chance she gets.
 face painting

 Veg Fest
One of the things we love about living in Tampa are the vegan festivals and activities. We met my friend and her daughter at Tampa Bay's Veg Fest, which always takes place at Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park downtown.

Crystal Springs Preserve
We signed up for Crystal Springs field trips again this year.

Each class is different and focuses on another aspect of Florida habitat, streams, plants, animals, biomes, etc.

This was a GPS/latitude-longitude activity. It was fun roaming around the land with our GPS device, finding the hidden boxes.

the beautiful clear water

I wish I lived here!
 Enrichment Day

Our wonderful co-op leader regularly hosts enrichment days for the kids to make special projects. We have some really sweet kids in our co-op.
I did really enjoy having my middle kiddos together this year.

 During this enrichment days, they made a nativity scene decoration.