Life is running away with me because I have so many irons in the fire! I love it!!
So first off, about me and my new journey here at our new location: So just to fill in for those of you who are new readers… I’ve been blogging since my youngest was a baby (well actually since well before my oldest was even born, but that was a family blog to share pics with our family when we lived and traveled overseas. Hubby and I lived in Australia for 12 years and the kids were all born there.). Anyway, our first location for the homeschool den was at blogspot, then we joined the Parents.com umbrella for several years, and last month we moved to this new location. I’ve been working hard to see if I can make the blog a useful resource for educators out there… I’m just trying to do as much as I can while keeping everything in perspective and balancing all the work I’m doing behind the scenes with *ACTUALLY* homeschooling the kids!! The blog format doesn’t work quite as well for finding the units we’ve done of the worksheets we have available, so I hope to get some new pages made that will make it easier to find things on our blog. The blog/our worksheets have kind of taken a life of their own… I’ve had WAAaaay more hits on our materials than I ever dreamed. I’ve been trying to upgrade and purchase nice graphics and am in the midst of 4 or 5 different projects at once!! Fun! (But challenging!). Like what, you ask? Well, the kids are starting a new biology unit so I have some worksheets that’ll be coming out about cells… I’m working hard on a dinosaur packet (for ages 3 through 7 or 8 or so) that is already about 50 pages… plus I have first drafts of our muscular system and circulatory system packets which we’ll be working on this spring. Oh–and DD wants to do more about mammals, so I’m doing a more advanced packet about mammals.
We’re also busy with normal family things: ED turned seven last week… and we had a low-key pizza party/slumber party for a few of her friends. Here is her birthday cake… When I didn’t have any black fondant, I just grabbed a dark chocolate bar and used that!! Now you can see why I’m not a food blogger! Haha!! But seriously, the kids *really* love making the cake with me and then it seems more special to them – no matter what it looks like. 🙂 (Type in Minecraft in the SEARCH area to the left if your kids could use Minecraft related math sheets!!)
Activities: This is the busiest time of year for us. LD does boys gymnastics. He has several meets in the next few weeks, most of which entail traveling out of town. He does pretty well (he placed first All-Around at his last meet… Sorry, proud Mama talking!). Meanwhile DD moved up a level in aerials and she is working on a new routine for an exhibition/performance at the beginning of March. She’s hoping to use the Harry Potter music for her routine. Fun! Aerials is a type of gymnastics learning different maneuvers and moves using two silks.
ED does rhythmic gymnastics and ballet. And we’re very busy with Girl Scouts. I also enjoy singing (folk music mostly) and have been rehearsing for a performance on Friday. You’ll never see me on youtube, though! I’m more of a “play the guitar and sing around a camp fire” type of singer!! 😉
We’ve tried to add in a short walk in the neighborhood during the school day after reading that brain study (check out the really cool brain scan in the post I wrote about Homeschool Motivation)! While I know it’s good to get some exercise, we do wonder sometimes what the neighbors think as they drive by us out like this in the middle of the day. I mention that because DD brought that up this afternoon.
School Stuff: We’ve been moving ahead with our basic subjects.
The kids all switched to new workbooks for grammar practice (that’s why I haven’t shared any new practice grammar sheets lately). We use the Write Source Skills Book. ED started the 2nd grade book and the other two are using the same 6th grade skillsbook. DD loves all things writing related (including grammar)… LD not so much, so this works well for them to work on the same book now. Here’s the link to the Write Source Skillsbook Grade 2 that ED is using. We order this from Rainbow Resource; we are currently not affiliates, but they have *THE* most amazing thick homeschooling catalog you could ever want! It has everything homeschool-related! It’s thicker than a phone book!
Math: Not too much to be said about that. The kids are just moving ahead… ED started multiplication and still works on addition/subtraction facts. DD is still working on fractions. LD is working on exponents.
History: We started on our Middle Ages unit. I’ll be sharing a post about our Viking/Norsemen activities in the next few days.
Science: We started on our biology unit. We’re starting with cells… and the kids spent the last week learning about the functions of the cell organelles. We’ll move on to the difference between plant and animal cells.
Writing Workshop: We just finished a mini-unit on the literary element of conflict… You know, man vs. man, man vs. himself, man vs. nature, man vs. society. That was fun! I’ll share more about that and the books we used soon! 🙂
German: I wish I could say we’ve gotten tons done, but we haven’t touched it the last two weeks. Ack! Where does the time go?!! Next week I hope to just make some headway in the grammar book the older two are using even if we don’t read (German stories) together. We use this book: Practice Makes Perfect: Complete German Grammar (this is an affiliate link) in addition to lots of children’s stories (in German).
Reading: (Books mentioned here are affiliate links.) The kids still do independent reading. They are reading Newbery Award books. LD is currently reading It’s Like This, Cat while DD is reading A Single Shard. ED continues to read the Magic Tree House series and the Jenny and the Cat Club books. LD and DD read three chapters/day from Joy Hakim’s series: A History of US: The First Americans: Prehistory-1600 A History of US Book One. They’re half-way through their second book.
Computer Activities: LD is still using Khan Academy. The girls have regularly been using Timez Attack.
And, that’s about it! Life is moving along. Busy, but sure wonderful! I’m so grateful to be healthy this year!! 🙂 I hope life is going well for all of you too!
Happy Homeschooling! ~Liesl and the kids