Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Our last year in Florida, we attended a church that had Awana. Andrew loved it. He devoured the verses and loved hiding those scriptures in his heart. He also became fascinated with King David so we started reading 1 Samuel together. We've been slowly studying David's life, and I've learned so much in the process. Today we read 1 Samuel 24. You should really check that out, but I'll give you a brief description. Saul was trying to kill David, and David (who also had a group of followers) was hiding out in the wilderness. This one particular day the scripture says that David was hiding in a cave when Saul entered that very cave to "relieve" himself. Andrew and I giggled at the thoughts that must have been going through David's mind as Saul went to the bathroom right there in front of his troops. It says that David's men were encouraging him to kill Saul...but you know what David did...he went and cut off the hem of Saul's cloak. Remembering that David was human, we laughed about the possibility that may have gone through David's mind to cut off more than just the hem and then laugh as Saul went and exposed his behind (quite literally although he figuratively did that also) to the rest of his soldiers. After we got a good laugh, the scripture became more serious, and it turned out to be a loving story about forgiveness. David honored Saul as the king that the Lord had appointed, and Saul's heart was softened. I find myself more antsy to continue reading the story to find out what happens next. I have such a bad memory that I'm always relearning the story as if it were the first time I ever read it. Keeps the Bible really interesting...that's for sure!
Thursday, August 23, 2012
I am so frustrated with myself. I had it all together today. Things were rolling along smoothly. The kids even liked their lunches – which is a first since we took away all their little sugary snacks and sugar during their meals…oh and gluten. I was kinda feeling like a super hero when we left to embark on our walk to an appointment in the center of town. I was giddy about being a few minutes early – 10 to be exact. I opened the door to a room filled with people, and the lady at the front called my name. She started to tell me that I wasn’t 10 minutes early…”you’re appointment was 20 minutes ago, and this room is full of people for the 2:30 appointment.” Ugh! To top it off, both children started screaming in the very full room while the lady was telling me I was late, and totally shattered my happy bubble that I had been living in all day and just a few seconds before. The staff apologized to me, and I was “sure” that they were incorrect. I walked home upset and more anxious to see what time the appointment sheet said. With each step, I scolded myself knowing full well that out of all that had been going so well, I’m not good with the tiny details like noticing a slight difference to my normal appointment (which was normally 2:30 & supposedly 2:00 today). Sure enough, the appointment for this one day only read 2:00. I’ve sent the kids to their rooms for a little while so I could vent my frustration here rather than on their sweet little bottoms. I know it’s the little things that Satan uses to tear me down. He was successful for the walk home, but I’m not gonna let him steal the joy from the remainder of my day. Now, I’m off to go teach my children that even Momma makes mistakes. However, they have to learn to control themselves as I have to control myself when I mess up.
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
I now have two little learners in my house. I guess I’ve had 2 learners for a few years now, but one of them hasn’t been all that interested in learning until about a month ago when her switch flipped on. I literally saw the lightbulb flicker on, and now you can’t slow her down. She has a passion to learn like I didn’t expect from her. So when we started “school” officially 3 Mondays ago, you can imagine how hard my day was to teach 2 little ones especially with this preschooler who had so much zeal for learning. I couldn’t keep her occupied. She would finish an activity and then immediately say “what are we gonna learn next Momma?” into the wee hours of the night. And that’s how it’s been with her for 2 ½ weeks now. That first Monday, I knew I had to do something to make my life easier so I hopped on Pinterest and found some hands on center type activities that I could hand her to do independently. Here’s some of the things I found: http://sewfantastic.blogspot.ca/2012/05/rainy-day-fun.html pom pom games I printed out and laminated many of these math center activities http://www.geocities.com/thetoddlerhouse824/mathcenters.html I love this site http://first-grade-garden.blogspot.com/2011/09/math-stations-set-1.html I printed off a bunch of my favorite ones of these and put them in page protectors so I could use dry erase marker/crayon on the page protectors (and I didn’t want to use all of my laminate) Both Andrew and Eliz use this: http://mathwire.com/numbersense/domparklot.pdf I printed all of these out for Eliz: http://www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com/blog/2010/05/prek-numbers-shapes-colors-review.html Lizzy likes to do this with a friend: http://www.kidscount1234.com/shapefill.pdf Math: http://www.kidscount1234.com/onemore.pdf http://www.kidscount1234.com/moreorless.pdf both A & E http://www.kidscount1234.com/countcolor.pdf Kindergarten yatzee http://www.kidscount1234.com/yahtzee.pdf Both A & E give A two dice for addition and E gets a dice with 12 numbers on it http://www.kidscount1234.com/clear.pdf Money exchange http://www.kidscount1234.com/coinex.pdf Race to trace http://www.kidscount1234.com/racetotrace.pdf http://www.thestay-at-home-momsurvivalguide.blogspot.com/p/preschool-activities.html I didn’t print anything off, but I loved some of the activities on this page. We have since started a hand painted ABC book in addition to a craft with a different medium (like I let her tear up a piece of construction paper and use glue stick to place the glue on another piece of paper in the shape of letters for A, and for B, I gave her a toilet paper roll and washable paint and let her paint a B out of bubbles) This http://finallyinfirst.blogspot.com/2011/11/sight-word-fluency-romance-ruined.html is a super cute way to help your child learn to read the sight words. We’re not there yet with Eliz, but my Andrew will love this for the bigger words This is also another great idea for learning spelling, sight words, or even letters and numbers: http://www.jugglingwithkids.com/2011/10/sight-word-parking-lot.html?showComment=1319571243034#c5501857452008954589 I love the greater or less than game on this page and the number word match up with dots and the number under the greater and less than game: http://firstgradeschoolbox.blogspot.ca/search/label/Number%20Sense Number game where you put beads on a pipe cleaner: http://kidsactivitiesblog.com/preschool-math-with-beads/ I use #2 and #12 from here: http://secondstorywindow.typepad.com/home/2011/10/toddler-time-busy-bag-exchange-part-3-freebie.html I also found a great website where you can find additional worksheets to make sure your child has mastered a concept for any age: www.superteacherworksheets.com/ I love Mark Kistler: http://www.mkisdraw3d.com/public/p_mmval/ . He is an art teacher who gives you step by step tutorials on how to draw. He has lots of free things you can draw on his website, and both A and E LOVE to do this. You can also find a group deal to buy all access to his site through homeschool buy for $40 (instead of the $100) if you find that your kids really love this art program. We do, but I can’t currently justify the additional $40 after buying BrainPop and AtoZ learning group buys this year too. Maybe next year. Hope this post helps someone looking for fun activities for their young little homeschoolers. We have fun with all of this at our house.
Sunday morning, we woke up to a breezy beautiful day...Fall was definitely in the air(although we started singing "It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas" since the coolest days in Florida that even slightly resembled that feeling we felt on Sunday morning make us think it's Christmas - er at least that's how the kids feel). I, on the other hand, remember Fall quite well, and Oh how I have missed my favorite season! The cool breeze that brings with it a wonderful aroma. If I could make a candle that smelled like that, I'd be in heaven. There is nothing else on earth that resembles the smell of fall...only God can do that! The leaves are already starting to change colors here, and while I haven't seen any start falling yet, I'm sure that will happen soon enough. I can't wait to visit a corn maze and see the beautiful colors on the trees in the mountains. I think a trip to the Adirondacks is in order for my first Northern Fall. I'm most excited about my children learning about this most wonderful season. Ohh...I can't wait!
Thursday, August 16, 2012
Maybe living in a box would be easier? This summer has come at us hard and fast! Of course, when you move from one end of the country to the other, there will be challenges. We are settling in quite well, we've found great doctors, met great friends, have a great homeschool group, we found a wonderful church, we've unpacked (and it's *mostly* organized - though the clutter around this place still drives me crazy), and life is trucking along. School started for us last week. We enjoyed a nice long break that started with our move, and so it was some much needed routine to add to our daily life. I think we all needed that! Andrew is doing great. I've actually made real life lesson plans for him, and he enjoys checking off the completed work. I'm surprised that we didn't lose any ground with being out of school for several weeks...go Andrew! I'd love to figure out a way to get it all done faster so we can have more time for fun, but we'll get the kinks works out! Lizzy has flipped a switch, and all she wants to do is learn. She's really the one who started this fire for learning and pushed our start date up. She can now write most of her letters (with a smidge of prompting), and she loves to write the name of her new friend...over and over). She is also working on her numbers, but she isn't as excited about those pesky little details as she is about writing her friend's notes with real letters! She is such a girl! We're dealing with some issues recently that are no fun at all. There's no drama there - just a lot of unwanted responsibility that has surmounted into a great big ball of stress on our shoulders. Nothing that can't be cared for with a little bit of good ole fashioned hard work. It doesn't help that school started along with our crazy diet all at the same time. I really should have done a better job planning all this so it wouldn't come at once, but some of it really couldn't be scheduled. It's always the surprises that really add the stress anyway. So off to physical therapy I go to work on one of those issues right now! So that's why I think living in a box would be easier. There wouldn't be a need to worry about money, cleaning, or moving. It would just simplify so much. I'll try to post pics soon of my cutie pies learnin away! I'm so proud of those babies...who keep growing even though I've demanded that they stop :)