Friday, August 26, 2011

Homeschool Journal

In my life this week (actually the past 2 weeks)...
In general, the past 2 weeks have been going pretty well. I've been going, going, going, and my brain is forced to shut down by 8:00 p.m. every night (or usually sooner than that!). I wish I could make myself blog after the kids go to bed, but I can't summon the energy. I want to start blogging more, though, because it's good accountability for me. I like to go back to see what we've worked on and accomplished.

In our homeschool the past 2 weeks...
We got back into full-time school mode. We didn't take a full vacation from schooling this summer, although we did cut way back. Tornado worked part way through a Saxon Math book and practiced reading aloud to me. He also worked on many other workbooks just because he enjoys doing that.

With Dash, we focused on reading aloud and his Flash Kids Sight Words workbook, which he actually finished today. The kids also did lessons almost daily on Time4Learning. We really think a lot of this online program (which costs us about $15 per child, although it looks like it has gone up in price a little). It provides a lot of instruction for the boys who love being on the computer. Many times the kids will repeat back something to me, and I'll ask WHERE they learned that because I didn't remember teaching it to them. They'll tell me it was on Time4Learning.

Helpful homeschooling tips or advice to share...
This isn't tips or advice. I'm just going to share what we are doing this school year. Some of the curriculum was chosen by their homeschool co-op, where they are taking classes and I am teaching. So far, I'm happy with everything we're doing.

Tornado, my 11 year old: From co-op: Abeka American History, Apologia Science: Flying Creatures, TouchMath, Barton Reading & Spelling, and Abeka Phonics & Spelling/Poetry. He is also taking p.e. and thinking skills classes at our co-op (changing to art and Spanish next semester). In addition at home: MindWare Analogy Challenges, Saxon Math, Spectrum Grade 4 Language Arts, Making Sense of Your Senses, and Time4Learning.

Dash, my 6 year old: From co-op: Saxon Math and Abeka Phonics & Spelling/Poetry. His other co-op classes include: Spanish, thinking skills, p.e., math club, storytime, and art. In addition at home: Time4Learning, Let's Learn How to Read and Understand, and Abeka Science. He also started taking piano lessons two weeks ago.

Sissy will be attending preschool full time this year! Ah! I'll miss my sweet little girl (who declared yesterday, "I just love you so much; I don't want to go downstairs without you," when I told her to go on down 5 minutes ahead of me. She is my literal shadow and the narrator of our lives. We definitely don't want her to be away everyday, BUT she is going to have the best time. It's going to be so good for her, and I will be able to focus on the boys' education. (I've warned her that she's going to have to expect lots of Mommy cuddle time when she gets home every afternoon.)

My favorite thing this week...
There were just some special moments I experienced at homeschool co-op this week. Moments when I was able to take a deep breath and sigh with relief and happiness.

A special party we had with the kids. I'll try to post pictures this weekend.

I enjoyed talking to an old friend from college (who was a groomsman in our wedding) on the phone. That rarely happens. He has been going through the same experience I did nine years ago (thyroid cancer). We were also able to talk about a situation we have in common with our oldest sons. It was nice to converse with someone who not only knew Ryan and me "back then," but who can also relate to us now.

Tornado has been HILARIOUS lately. He has been cracking us up. He's been (unintentionally, I think) throwing around little figures of speech or funny slang in normal conversation. I laugh so hard.

Places we're going and people we're seeing...
This weekend we hope to go swimming at least once since there aren't going to be too many more opportunities this year.

I'm having a terrible care of the travel bug lately. Must go on trip soon.

We actually went to a flea market this week. This was Tornado's special treat for doing so well in school. Seriously, it's what he wanted to do more than anything.

Questions/thoughts I have:
I'm looking around for the best typing instruction/program for my 11 year old who has certain fine motor issues/handwriting issues. Does anyone have any recommendations? Or maybe this is too soon for him. I don't know.

I've also considered ordering one of the Brain Therapy type computer programs (like Brain Builder) for him. Anyone have any thoughts or knowledge on these?

I'm grateful for...(#376-380 on my Gratitude List)
good news I received this week, my husband helping to keep things running around here, the special situation we have with our wonderful homeschool co-op, how close (!!!) the school is to our house, and our dogs. (Seriously, because one of them has been a little annoying lately. But THEN...the other night, Ghetti was slumped over on their bed next to Roni. Ryan and I were watching t.v. on the couch in the dark, so I could barely see them. I asked, "Is she okay?" He got up to check on her, and she wasn't moving. He freaked out, and I jumped up and freaked out. He shook her with his hand, and FINALLY she moved. We think she was just in such a deep sleep. Regardless, we cuddled with them for the rest of the evening. FREAKED us out.)

A photo, video, link, or quote to share...

First day of homeschool co-op last week! The boys were both ready to go. And little Orca attended with Tornado to keep him company.

Our first full day back with our Workbox System was the next day (and as you can see they are still wearing the same shirts). We will do two days workboxes, two days homeschool co-op, plus Fridays for catch-up (Tornado will be having lots of homework this year.) and cleaning. I was so happy when I woke up to find the boys were already busy working through their drawers! (Here, Tornado had to complete certain Time4Learning lessons as one of his assignments.)

Bed head and all.

Linkin' Up:

Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers: Weekly Wrap-Up


MissMOE said...

Looks like a great week. You certainly manage to fit a lot in. I love the title of your blog as well.

Sarah said...

We're doing Apologia Flying Creatures this year too. Looks like your year is off to a good start.

Our Side of the Mountain said...

Definitely looks like a nice start to your school year! Thanks for stopping by my blog!