Tuesday, August 16, 2016

The start of a new school year!

**Disclaimer--every child learns at their own pace...and each homeschool or child's education is VERY different! Just because my kids are doing something does not mean your kids should be doing the same. A few friends have asked what we do in our homeschool...so here it is.**

I love summer! Love it! But all good things must come to an end....just kidding! I also love teaching and I love being able to homeschool our kiddos! Do not get me wrong...our kids sometimes drive me nuts. A little extra free time for just me would be nice. Our house is a bit messier on days that we school. I am pretty much always with our kids. I don't get to take the going off to school pictures with me jumping up leaping for excitement that my kids are out of my hair and my sanity can return.

We are on day two of our official homeschool year. Granted, it seems like we are always learning something new, but I like to have an official start and end date. I am now teaching a 6th grader, 4th grader, 2nd grader, and a kindergartener. I also have a little tike running around and getting into everything...thank goodness for naps in the morning and afternoon!

My two oldest girls do the exact same thing as each other everyday. You can call it sixth grade you can call it preschool. Haha. We keep grades for activity purposes, but we just go with the flow at their learning abilitiies. Thank gooness we do not have to teach towards a test. I am sure our kids would be ahead in some areas and behind in others as I tend to stagger some subjects on a yearly basis.

I decided over the summer that we needed to have a more relaxed schedule and get out more. I don't want to stress about getting thru a book, but dive deeper into the books that we do use. What is the point at skimming the surface if they aren't retaining it?

I am using a rotating type schedule where we do some of the same subjects everyday and then others we do every 4th day of school. No days are attached as we do take a lot of time off for other things such as field trips, co-ops, and various other classes and activities.

My girls have the same schedule. Easton our 2nd grader and Weston our Kindergartner, do a few things with us like Bible time, prayer, working out, some Science, and writing. Easton is doing cursive with the girls and Weston is just continuing to practice his writing of letters and words from his reading.

What curriculum do I use?

For the girls' Science we use 6th Grade Abeka. Math we use 6th grade Bob Jones. The girls have no Spelling curriculum as we are pulling words from their writing. For writing we are using Write Source. We are using Story of the World 2 for History.

For the girls Math, I plan on teaching them one lesson on Monday and have them write their weekly assignments down. They will have to pace themselves to get their assignments completed by a deadline.

For Easton, I use 3rd grade Math from Bob Jones, Geography from Evan Moore, and the Bible reader from Abeka.

Weston's reading and spelling comes from Hooked on Phonics and he does the same Geography as Easton. I do my own math and he is just adding, subtracting, and doing easy things.

My goal this year is to go outside for school more and get out of the house more. So we shall see!

We are reading more as a group. I am going through the book "Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends." Sometimes my kids fight like cats and dogs...so maybe this will help as it is given from a Biblical perspective. We are also reading in the afternoon together.

Some fun things planned for this week such as doing Science in the woods and heading to the lake one afternoon for school...and to Omaha to see my parents!!

Here are a few pics from our first two days!

Starting off with prayer because it works!
All smiles! My kids even said they were excited to start back!
Cursive! Fun times!
And this is snack??
The girls were supposed to make Roman Pillars...but apparently they missed that part in the directions....
Day 2!
We made it thru the 1st day!
Our rotations




Sunday, August 14, 2016

Jocelyn is 11 today!

Jocelyn Rene turned 11 today! She is my easy going, extremely helpful little, big girl. Yikes! She is a few years away from being a teenager! She loves anything that has to do with art, archery, dancing, gymnastics, friends, and her American Girl dolls.

We aren't doing parties for the kids this year, because we are hoping to have a big one for Landon when he turns one, so her birthday was low key. This past week we met a few friends at the pool and I took her out to lunch with my sister. Sean took both of the girls out to a hibachi grill for lunch for a nicer combo lunch.

She decorated her own birthday cake with a few friends and got her dream gift--a retired Kanani American Girl doll. This hopefully completes their collection of recent girl of the years....ugh.

On her actual birthday (today) we are shooting in an archery tournament and going to a back to school picnic with ohr homeschool group! Can't wait to see her continue to grow!

She had a few friends from church come over.



Friday, July 22, 2016

My baby girl turned 9 today!

My Katelyn Rose turned 9 today! She has been counting down this day for the past year...so I am relieved the day is finally here...even though I know the countdown just starts over tomorrow. Oh well! It is her favorite day of the year.

We aren't doing birthday parties this year and instead having a "special" one one one day. Trying something new, so we will see how this goes.

Katelyn loves getting mail via snail mail, text, or e-mail. So if you need her info, let me know. It would totally make her day even special!

Here are few pics of my baby girl from birth to 9 years!



Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Fair time!

Last week was our county fair! My kids work all year making different 4-H projects to submit for our fair. We do not have animals to show (besides our dogs), so the crafty stuff is what our kids do. When they are a bit older...or my sewing machine gets fixed, they will do more challenging projects. The projects that some kids submit are quiet amazing! My focus was a little off this year because of having Landon, but I am proud of my kids for taking initiative on their own for coming up with their own ideas!

The boys are still in clover kids, so their projects are easier. Our boys both made tie-die t-shirts, airplanes, boats, and bird houses. Easton also painted a lighthouse.

Katelyn submitted a pin cushion, a few paintings, a clay bowl, a recycled bowl, a few rainbow loom key chains, homemade dog treats, a scrapbook page, nail art, and two baked items.

Jocelyn submitted a painting, a magazine bowl, two baked items, a few rainbow loom items, nail art, a bird feeder, and a school supply holder.

Since the boys are in Clover kids, their items are "judged" with comments, but the ribbons are all the same. No premium ($) awards are given.

The girls did quiet well. They received a few purple (1st place ribbons), blue, and red ribbons. They even have 3 items that are moving onto the state fair, so they are excited!

Back in June the girls competed in the Hall County 4-H archery and did not know the results until they were posted at the fair. Jocelyn could hardly stand the wait of finding out. She said she wasn't going to accept anything less than first place. I told her it was ok if she didn't get first, because she has only been shooting since November and has many more tournaments to go! She was still pretty sure she was going to place first. Anyways...there it is on the poster--she got Grand Champion in the junior Freestyle division.

She was soooo excited!

Katelyn isn't into archery as much as Jocelyn. She wants to be, but doesn't want to put in the practice that it takes to get better. She is coming around, but you really can't force someone to like bugs and the outdoors. Let's just say she can't wait for our indoor range to be our primary practice place! She ended up getting a blue ribbon...so not bad!

They had a little awards ceremony for the shooters. Jocelyn was announced as Grand Champion and then there was a little mix up with the trophies. When we went to correct it, they then said sorry she didn't get grand champion and the poster was wrong. But alas...we have friends in high places and everything is getting straightened out! She should be getting her trophy next week.

We also enjoyed a few activities as the fair like BINGO, some of the exhibits, and the rides (thanks my friend Kellie)


So on to State we go with the girls projects! Let's just say I am just as excited for the State Fair as my kids are...they talk about it pretty much every day!