After visiting family last week and this past weekend, we spent a quiet week at home. We got out of the house two days so I could teach at the college and the girls could attend their homeschool classes like choir, sign language, and theater but that was all. The rest of the week we were home. Ah...home days are the best days. The girls have plenty of time throughout the day to get involved in big projects, craft all afternoon, get lost in a book, or just play outside. Just one of the many blessings of our relaxed homeschool...uninterrupted time to pursue passions:) Our passions this week-
DK Eyewitness book- Space Exploration
(M.) Trading Faces
, by Julia de Villers and Jennifer Roy (A.)
2013 SEC Gymnastics Championship- last weekend with Mimi:) Lots of gymnastics practice outside in the beautiful spring weather Olga Korbut- a gymnast from the 1970's; M. found this amazing video of her performance in the 1972 Olympics
...watch it- you won't be disappointed;)
Episodes of Fetch Mr. Z.'s science class
Practice standardized tests- their idea, not mine!! I guess when you don't have textbooks, tests, or grades, this seems kind of fun so I went with it and downloaded practice tests for reading and math. Exploring Careers: A Young Person's Guide to 1,000 Jobs
book The Space Shuttle
, by Gregory Vougt (M.)
Baking- blueberry muffins, no bake cookies (boiled cookies)
Board games- Yamodo, Bubble Talk, Scattergories
New apps- Minecraft, 94 seconds (this one's my fave)
Little House on the Prairie movie (mini-series from 2005...love it!) It follows the book fairly well, if you haven't seen it. U.S. Presidents trivia- A. loves to
quiz us...I think Daddy knows more than the rest of us on that subject!
Remodeling- we have a new bathroom upstairs:) Putting it in was a family affair for sure, though Hutch definitely did the majority of the work! Pictures later this week..promise:) Girls Who Rocked the World- a favorite book this week
; Thanks, Susan
for the idea!
Traveling Trio DVD Piano Photography and blog design (A.) Outside play- trampoline and balance beam Art, drawing, and lettering Seven Cool Homeschoolers video
- the girls are really enjoying this collaborative project! I am too. Check it out:)
Our read alouds- Adam of the Road, Caddie Woodlawn, and The Indian in the Cupboard
are taking forever but that's because we are reading all three at the same time I guess. We are enjoying all three:)
Sign language Egg business Caring for chicks
and rabbits Lots of babysitting this week
and A. volunteered at preschool
Art, choir, and theater classes
Dessert date with Daddy! Tonight's special?! Pie:)
1. The chicks are getting bigger but still have a long way to go before they are ready to be out in the yard.
2. Spring is here finally! We've some rain and everything is turning green:)
3. Watching over little ones is one of A.'s favorite things to do!
4.-8. What they do all day when the weather is nice...sometimes we get out there too;)
9. One fat bunny:)
10. Learning on the screened porch
11. Our oven is broken:( Hutch is waiting for a part so he can fix it, so it seemed like the perfect time to show the girl how to make no-bake cookies (boiled cookies) from my grandmother's recipe.
M. and her friends made fairy crafts one afternoon:)
I love history.
I know some people think it’s dry and boring,
And I guess it might be if all you ever do is read history from a textbook.
But that’s not how we do history;)
This is what works for us-
We read The Story of the World out loud, as a read aloud (when the mood strikes us). We simply enjoy the book together and if something sparks our interest, we pursue it in greater depth. No stress.
Together we read historical fiction and biographies, which often lead us to look into additional non-fiction resources (print and media) about a person, place, or event of interest.
We keep a timeline together too...well, more like a book of centuries. We’ve kept one going for several years. And every once in a while, we add new dates, names, drawings, or pictures to our book.
One thing we really enjoy is visiting historical places of interest every chance we get. We plan trips and vacations around places we would like to learn more about, like when we went on our Little House trip a few years ago.
And finally…my favorite…we participate in living history programs like Heritage School.
The reasons we absolutely love living history?
Here are ten:
- It’s hands-on, multisensory learning at its best!
- It’s also an opportunity for us to learn about the social history of our area (a different perspective than we would get from a text).
- There’s nothing mundane about living history. The presenters and interpreters are passionate about what they are sharing, and it shows (their passion is contagious:)
- Things come to life and move beyond just names and dates to be memorized. These are real people and real events we are learning about!!
- It’s a chance to immerse ourselves in a time period and study it with intensity.
- Demonstrations and teaching activities allow everyone to see actual historical artifacts being used. The artifacts become meaningful.
- Interacting with the presenter/interpreter is an important part of living history. Questions are encouraged!
- Many living history events provide learners with the opportunity to play a part and/or teach and share their knowledge with others.
- Living history makes us want to learn even more about people, places, and events from the past.
- And finally, wearing period dress is pretty awesome! I even have a costume this year:)
See?! I told you history wasn’t boring!
Linking up here today...come with me:)
It’s almost that time of the year again:) It’s time to start planning for the county fair!
We read Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Farmer Boy for the first time when my oldest daughter was five. It was just about time for our county’s fair when we read this chapter...
“Under the buggy-seat was the box of jellies and pickles and preserves that Eliza Jane and Alice had made to show at the Fair. Alice was taking her woolwork embroidery, too. But Amanzo’s milk-fed pumpkin had gone the day before. It was too big to go in the buggy.”
My daughter had just created a collage and really wanted to enter it in the competition. So, we took a trip to the fairgrounds to drop off her artwork and look at all the animals. Later, we found out that she won a first place ribbon for her collage (just like Almanzo did for his pumpkin:) We were hooked from that point on!
We’ve moved since then, but we still participate in the fair every year. In fact, the county fair here is even larger and more competitive than the little one back home. Usually just the three of us enter items to show, but last year we convinced my husband to enter a photo too;)
With just a little less than a month to go, the girls are working steadily on their fair entries. They seem to get a little more ambitious each year, and 2011 is no exception! So far, they plan to enter items in the following categories:
Junior Home Furnishings- Wall Art (string art, picture frame)
Junior Food Preparation- Cookies, apple pie, bread, and cake
Junior Creative Arts and Crafts- Jewelry/Accessories, origami, handmade soap, recycled art, decorated hat or visor, decorated rocks, and decorated flower pot
Junior Fine Arts- Watercolor painting, drawing (markers, crayons, colored pencils), clay sculptures, and collage
Junior Table Setting
One of the things I remember from reading the book Little House in the Big Woods is that each day Laura and Mary helped Ma with the daily chores around the house before beginning the specific tasks assigned to each day. Laura wrote that Ma would say,
“Wash on Monday,
Iron on Tuesday,
Mend on Wednesday,
Churn on Thursday,
Clean on Friday,
Bake on Saturday,
Rest on Sunday.”
I wonder if I would be more productive at home if I designated certain duties to specific days like Ma did? Obviously, we don’t need to dedicate an entire day to ironing, mending, or churning (thank goodness:) Though we do have to find some time each week for errands (like the library and post office), grocery shopping, washing, cleaning, and baking. Oh…and my job teaching at the college two mornings a week.
This summer, the girls and I have experimented with a weekly routine of sorts. We definitely haven’t kept to a tight schedule or anything but just tried to dedicate certain tasks to specific days like Ma did. We’ve found a nice rhythm in the predictability of a more organized week, so we’re going to try to keep it up this fall. When the new school year starts, we plan on Tuesdays/Thursdays being our busy, out-of-the-house days and Mondays/Wednesdays/Fridays being our more relaxed, stay-at-home days. Consolidating all of our errands, classes, and shopping into two days will hopefully cut down on the amount of time we spend running all over the place while allowing us plenty of time at home. I think it will be a nice change of pace for us this fall!
Horse Lapbooks complete!
I've got a really long to do list...I mean a really long list! I love it when we get things accomplished and I can cross something off the list:) Well, we finally finished the horse lapbooks after we got home from our trip, so I can cross that off the list (If you're interested in the contents, then check out the homeschool tab). I hung new curtains this weekend and a few pictures too. Cross that off the list! Put up a new hummingbird feeder. Yep.. cross that off too. Now I only have about 350 more things to do and the list will be finished. No problem! Right now, I'm in the process of posting about our journeys to the Laura Ingalls Wilder homesites. I've just added the little house in the big woods trip to the road trips page:) See you tomorrow for craft Monday!!
Well, two of us are having trouble getting up and out of our pajamas today. My youngest is sick, so I stayed home from church with her. It's cold and rainy again, so we are snuggled on the couch together which makes it hard to even think about getting up and dressed for the day! Since we are just being lazy around the house and it's quiet (for now), I decided to rearrange the site a little. We're watching Little House on the Prairie reruns so I feel inspired to create a new page and share a little about our travels to the Laura Ingalls Wilder homesites:) I hope you'll check it out!
Also, here's the cookie recipe I mentioned the other day- straight from my grandmother's recipe box. You really ought to try it. Enjoy!
Memaw's Chewy Chocolate Cookies
1 1/4 cups unsalted sweet cream butter, softened
2 cups sugar
2 t. vanilla
2 cups flour
3/4 cup cocoa
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
Cream butter and sugar in large bowl. Add eggs and vanilla. Combine flour, cocoa, salt, and baking soda;gradually blend into the creamed mixture. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-9 minutes (do not overbake). Cookies will be soft and flatten upon cooling. They are best served warm, but make yummy ice cream sandwiches later!!!