Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Just a Typical Snow Day...

The rest of our county is closed for a snow day (the 8th consecutive day, to be exact), but as a homeschooling family, we just PLOW on through since we are stuck inside due to freezing temps and ice-covered driveways.

This week, we moved to the kitchen table because our classroom has been so cold as the exterior room in our house. Plus, the flexibility and change are so nice.

Daniel (Age 5, Kindergarten) is busy learning to read. He is amazing me with how quickly he is catching on. Some days he gets frustrated easily, but other days, like today, he was determined to read. He sounded out his 9 sentences with such joy, and I was incredibly happy for him! He's working on sight words and focusing on phonics.

Samuel (Age 4, Pre-K) is reviewing/learning phonetic sounds of the alphabet, pre-primer sight words, and sounding out the beginning and ending sounds of cvc words. He loves to work and work!

Elias (Age 2) is busy cutting, gluing, making messes, and being made to clean them up. Such was today.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Lunch Lines

Lunch with three boys is... well,  entertaining. Here are just a few things I overheard today while trying to enjoy my leftovers:


Do not put it in the macaroni water.
(Referring to the chicken and dressing touching the macaroni and cheese)

What if a dinosaur burped really loud?

After a certain toddler was told not to stand in his chair:
What if he fell through the window?
Birds would fly in.
Oh, bears would get in too!
We could stack blankets over the window to stay warm.
What about rain?
That would be bad!

He just spit in his plate.
I don't even want to eat with him anymore!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

We've Only Just Begun (Curriculum and Choices)

The first week of homeschooling was probably the most rewarding thing I have ever done. No, really. It was extremely challenging and I wanted to raise my voice numerous times, but God supplied grace for my every need. I watched my children as they settled into our new environment, and they smiled each morning when it was time to go to the classroom.

Each boy has his own curriculum or set schedule to do each day, and although they range in age, we are at a point where some subjects can be learned together. I love sitting in the floor with them and helping sound out words or count out manipulatives and coins.

Daniel (Age 5, Kindergarten):

Daniel is a little over halfway through his Kindergarten year. At age 5, choosing curriculum for him was not difficult because after attending public school for 6 months I realized what might help him learn more efficiently. He is a kinesthetic, creative, hands-on learner who needs the opportunity to move, build, and touch almost everything. We are using lots of manipulatives  (magnets, tiles, dry erase boards, etc.) in addition to his curriculum.

Bible: The Interactive Story Bible
Math: Saxon K
Reading: The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading
Phonics: Explode the Code 1
Handwriting: A Reason for Handwriting

Samuel (Age 4, Pre-K):

I wasn't as prepared for Samuel as I should have been because at age 4, he has an abundant love for learning. He would sit in our classroom all day! He is a visual learner and needs lots of pictures, graphics, art, and videos to help him grow. He thrives on drawing and writing in journals and loves to do pages in workbooks... page after page after page. However, I didn't realize that and didn't have enough! We're starting where we left off at Mother's Day Out and continuing the alphabet, phonics, handwriting, and math.

Bible: The Interactive Story Bible
Math: Evan Moor Pre-K Math Skills and SOME Saxon K
Phonics: Get Ready for the Code A
Alphabet/Handwriting: "My Self Made Curriculum" that focuses on the letter of the week

Elias (Age 2, Tot School):

Now, this little buddy threw me for a loop the first day because he didn't really care a thing about the busy bags I had made (spent hours, lost sleep) for him. I knew I needed a new plan, but it had to keep him occupied and be beneficial and safe. That's when Elias kept mentioning glue sticks to me. I handed him one on the 2nd day with a piece of construction paper and a bowl of construction paper cut into 1 inch squares. He spent 1 hour gluing. He was happy, quiet, AND using his fine motor skills.

Bible: The Interactive Story Bible
Skills: Fine Motor (cutting, gluing, etc.), Behavior (sitting, obeying, kindness), and Identifying (colors, counting, saying ABCs)

I realize the newness will wear off in time, and they might not be as overjoyed as they get older. However, in this moment, I feel as though I am where God called me.