Winter Boost!

This weekend I worked on giving our homeschool days a boost, change, overhaul..whatever you want to call it! The past few weeks we were all dragging our feet, just not feeling it (even with our new books, they helped but, eh)

So, I put together a new outline to finish out the year, same subjects as before but more organized! I also put together a new daily routine for us.

Today went more smoothly, more fun and felt more”put together” if you will.. we really are almost to the end of our year- we tend to do “school” Aug. 1 through May, so not much longer really, and I wanted this year to flow into next and so on as my oldest hits middle school. Let’s end the year on a high note and complete what we’ve been focusing on all year!

Our Focus:

PreK/K-

Through Easy Peasy all in one Homeschool: Learn To Read & Getting Ready 2,

Math: Picture Stories, First Grade Math Book

Music: Geography and Cultures

Art: Artist Study

Grade 5:

Math- Decimals and Fractions, Review of all concepts thus far, Getting Ready for Middle School Step 1

History: Ancients

Health: Nutrition and Swimming/Par Core Class

Language Arts 5 and Middle Grades Language Arts Book

Science: Biology

Spanish: 6th Level

Music: Geography and Cultures

Art: Artist Study

Computer: Start and Maintain Blog

Health: Nutrition/ Spin Class/Swimming

Daily School Routine:

Read Together

Luke- 1st Lesson (LTR)/ Liam -Journal Prompt

Liam 1st Lessons (L.A., M) Luke-Journal prompt

Break for 45 min- free play and snack

Lessons together- (Music, Health, Art)

Lunch

Luke 2nd Lesson (G.R. 2) Liam Math

Liam 2nd Lessons (H. Sc. & Sp.) Luke-Math

Outside/Games/Swim/Free time etc.

Monday- Music and Computer

Tuesday- Health

Wednesday- Artist Study

Thursday-Workbooks and Nature

Friday- Wrap up/Field Trip/Family Day

Today Luke reviewed his new “at” family words and played a “at” family game on Starfall. He then watched and listened to 5 new words being introduced for this week.

His Journal Prompt for today was – What do you like best about being a kid? A:”I like being small and fitting into small places! Like Cabinets!”

He played an Orchestra game learning about the woodwind section and had fun controlling the pitch and seeing each instrument play!

We also did Art today, due to a field trip later this week, I moved things around. We are studying John James Audubon this month.  Today we all viewed his American Robin piece and discussed how his art pieces were to educate others. I asked each of them- What would you do as an artist to educate others?

Liam said he would draw pictures of sea animals and the pollution problem- referring back to our recent trip to the aquarium and the “trash models” they had on display.

Seal made from trash found in the ocean

Seal made from trash found in the ocean

Luke said his would be about Ice Cream and how the different flavors are made, and how you don’t want the ice cream to fall off onto your foot!! ūüėČ

We have many bird reference books, so each looked through and found a bird of choice to draw!

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“Snowy Owl outside the Audubon Door”

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“A Turkey that is a Male”

Liam started with reading a stanza excerpt and copying it down.

His Journal prompt for today was- If you could invite someone famous over for dinner who would it be and why?

Dan Reynolds from Imagine Dragons, because he makes awesome music! He’s my favorite person in the band.

Math was figuring our word problems- not so much fun ūüėČ

Music he learned about the Violin and “playing it” using the mouse and keyboard! Observing the notes and sounds as well as creating his own song.

Spanish looking at Latin words and related words. He watched a short video that had Latin words throughout the story and tomorrow he will write them down and figure out what he thinks they mean, by relating them to English words that sound similar!

Harvest Moon and Wheat Fields

Autumn is in the air! We are finishing up September discussing the Harvest Moon, Autumn Equinox, changing leaves and Wheat field farming! All things that say “Autumn!” Next week is celebrating Michaelmas, then on to a Botany Block and Measurement Block for Liam using Christopherus Math material, and Luke will continue on with Harvest Time¬† based on curriculum from WeeFolkArt.

This week we kicked it off with a documentary on Wheat Field Farming. We all really enjoyed it and Liam asked about the process we were watching compared with today’s technology as the film was from the 1960’s. Good question, so we researched and had a discussion and compared the amount of bushels per acre in each era that was harvested in time due to the machinery and hand work by the farmers.

Drawing in Main Math lesson book on BU/AC

Drawing in Main Math lesson book on BU/AC

Luke's Wheat Math

Luke’s Wheat Math- count and draw it out

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Diagram of Wheat in Botany MLB

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We are continuing to read My Side of the Mountain and using the companion book- Pocket guide to the outdoors. The boys enjoyed trying out some knot tying, hearing about the boy’s pet Falcon and lot’s of other outdoor survival tips throughout the story so far! Liam is making his own survival guide as we go along.

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drawing of the mountains and survival guide cover page

drawing of the mountains and survival guide cover page

Luke and I read many books about the leaves changing this week and here are some of his activities, and one they both enjoyed!

Leaf rubbings, and counting the points on each leaf

Leaf rubbings, and counting the points on each leaf

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Luke has been working on paper crafts and building a 500 piece bird puzzle with me this week as well as learning the letter R and counting to 25. We made an R alphabet card and hung it with the others.IMG_20140919_125916_502

Monster paper crafts

Monster paper crafts

Today they did¬† a drawing of one activity or time they enjoyed this week. Luke chose to trace a chameleon he found at the beach combined with a rocket. He narrated a short story about it and I wrote it down for him. Liam chose to create a drawing about saving the jellyfish this week- both boys ran up and down the beach throwing jelly’s back into the ocean!

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Then we finished up the day with math. Liam worked on Fractions- adding, subtracting, multiplying and reciprocals & dividing as well as adding and subtracting on a number line in his workbook and Luke created robots with base ten counters, ten rods and geometric shapes and we read a counting rhyme together. Liam also did a leaf form drawing this week for geometry, keeping a steady but changing shape as a leaf falling into water would.

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Counting and Reading Preschool Style

Trains! Trains! Trains! is pretty much all we hear lately at our house! Heading down into the basement this morning I went to search in my pile of recyclables for some sort of hand on math game I could make from odds and ends I’ve kept.¬† I found a great box for a base and then had the idea of making some sort of abacus for him using pipe cleaners and cereal or beads etc.¬† I began to make it using construction paper to cover the existing image, covered it entirely with contact paper and then used a push pin to make the initial hole where the pipe cleaners could be inserted.¬† I called my two year old over to check it out and he immediately started stringing the beads on to the pipe cleaners.

At first I was just going to use it for counting and for fine motor skills, patterns and such, but then I had another idea of adding trains to it! I drew trains next to each pipe cleaner and added a certain number of train cars for him to match the number of beads to.  I also thought at the same time it could easily be changed to color patterns, addition/subtraction etc. by use of the cars attached to it!

We had an exciting interruption during this activity as next door the garbage truck arrived! He yells out to me¬† “get my book mom!”¬† Following his train of thought, I knew he meant his truck book ūüėČ and grabbed it from the shelf for him. He kept yelling “hurry, hurry!” He ran over to the window and opened his book to the page with the garbage truck on it and said “yup, see mom!” I said “Do they match?” he shouts “whoo hoo!” So I’m guessing that was a yes! I love that he thought to “research” and looked in his book!!

-here’s more on early literacy skills!

Fun ideas for learning!

 

 

 

 

A simple math game I made up that can be applied to any subject such as language arts, history, science etc. or even a variety of all the above ( which is how we first played the game.)  This is how we use it for math lessons when we need a break from the same old, same old!

Materials:

Gym Parachute

Dice

Flashcards- Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Money

Clock

….and what ever you choose if anything- this game really can be done on the fly! Just ask questions verbally if you’d like.

First spread the parachute on the floor. Roll the dice and walk around the parachute that number of steps. The color you land on determines the category of questions.

Orange- Addition                                      Yellow- Money

Green- Subtraction                                   Red- Time

Blue-Multiplication                                  Purple- Players Choice

Answer correctly and you can advance your next turn, answer incorrectly and you must skip your next roll and answer the next card in play before proceeding with a roll of the dice. We don’t keep score in any way, we just go around until we feel the game is over. Just a fun way of reviewing the math skills and concepts.

Enjoy trying it out and let me know what other ideas you build upon this one!

 

 

NEXT UP! MAGNETIC BOWLS!!

 

 

 

I was so excited to find these magnetic bowls at the local store.¬† I wasn’t sure what I was going to use them for at first, but had to grab them anyway! Having a busy toddler, I love that these bowls stick right onto a cookie tray and away we go with sorting and stacking! AND NO SPILLS ;)!

First I set out our magnetic letter blocks, then some colorful paperclips- which he discovered really took a spin of it’s own on contact! Then I gave him an assortment of things to try out, some magnetic, some not.

The possibilities are endless being that they are magnets themselves, so we will continue to explore with them and share anything that’s super fun and creative with you.¬† He loves to collect rocks, so I’m thinking we will glue on some magnets and play around with positive and negative poles!

Have an idea? Please share!