Thursday, January 26, 2006

Not much blogging here...

It's been a busy week. Our third child had a birthday this week, followed by a Dr. visit and shots. I'm also getting ready for the knitting Olympics. We'll be on the road over the weekend to see family to celebrate the winter birthdays.

I've discovered the wonders of educational television coupled with the use of the dvr player. It's very easy to use. I was never one of those people that programmed a vcr. I already feel like I've gotten my money's worth for the extra 5$ for the family stations and the $8 for the dvr. I've been recording the Magic School Bus and now, I'm trying to record Zooboomafoo tonight. It's not one of my favorites, but the kids will zip through their school work tomorrow so that they can watch it.


Monday, January 23, 2006

I checked the HSLDA website

The story titled, "Illinois Homeschool Family Dragged Into Court" remains unchanged. I think they should update the story and make it a little more reflective of the case. If the word through the grapevine in Illinois homeschooling circles is correct, then this story is inaccurate. I responded to Mr. Somerville's comment on my previous post about this, however, he has not left any more information. I really wish someone from HSLDA would be tell interested parties what is really going on.


Thursday, January 19, 2006

I went shopping...

 at our local Barnes and Nobles and came home with these. It's a really fun way to work on fine motor skills. I love them all, but I'm particularly fond of the paper folding one. My little guy really looks forward to doing these. Of course there was the emergency trip to Target because I couldn't find any kid scissors. Never mind that we own more than 15 pair between Girl Scout activities and home school activities. I could write a book on disappearing school supplies. Posted by Picasa


Scissor skills

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Here's coloring...

it works on color names, coloring skills and our worst subject, following mom's instructions. Posted by Picasa


A book on paper folding for wee little people!

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How cool is that? Posted by Picasa


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Ah - hah

I received a google alert that led to the HSLDA website. The heading on the website was "Illinois Homeschool Family Dragged Into Court" and the article went on to describe the incident. The family was the Walters family from Joliet. I searched and could find no mention of the incident anywhere else. Without corroboration I was hesitant to blog about it. It was brought up on Illinois homeschool email groups/yahoo groups and no one really had any information other than what came from HSLDA.

Today I received an email from a yahoo group and someone reported meeting the mother. It was reported in that email that it was a complaint about homeschooling with a non-custodial mother to the school district. The person on the email reported that the incident was not over yet.

If this story is true, than HSLDA left an awful lot out in their little ditty on their website and caused a great deal of angst in the Illinois homeschool community. Of course, I am rooting for the family involved and am sorry they are going through this and hope it is resolved.

If anyone can verify what is going on in Joliet, please let us know. I think many Illinois homeschoolers are anxious to hear what is going on.


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Young Scientists

We're studying molecules this week and chemical reactions. So we got out the Test Tube Adventures kit and modified it to meet our needs. Posted by Picasa


Sunday, January 15, 2006

Homeschoolalong Blogspot

The blog is barely off the ground and the first topic is China/Chinese in honor of the Chinese New Year that is rapidly approaching.


Friday, January 13, 2006

A Homeschool Along???

In my other blog world (knitting), we have this really fun thing we do called a knitalong. People sign up and we all work on something related to a theme. My favorite last year was the Who Wouldn't Love a Handknitted Gift knitalong. I have found the coolest blogs and learned the neatest things doing knitalongs. This year I've already joined two. I think it would be really neat to have a homeschool along and I'm looking for ideas. I especially like the knitalongs that have prizes, so we'll have to see about prizes. I've never won a prize, but a girl can dream.

Here are some ideas, A Chronicles of Narnia along. The kids could read the books and do some sort of project. Then pictures, written things etc could be submitted.

Simple Machines along where the kids could build or design contraptions and send something in.

Self-portrait along where the kids could do their portraits in all different mediums and send them in.

So, how about some ideas and some people who would like to participate? Does anyone still read this after my extended hiatus?


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Catching Up

Where does the time go? I was hoping to participate in the Carnival of Homeschooling and then we all got sick. We were sick after Christmas so I decided we'd take an extra week off to enjoy ourselves. Then we were really sick and decided that we wouldn't survive another vacation week. Yesterday we jumped back in.

It's that time of year when I evaluate what is working and what is not. For my seventh grader I'm thrilled with Steps to Good Grammar by J. Weston Walch Publisher. We've tried it all and this is the first thing that has truly worked for her. Sequential Spelling is also working for her. I'm using the Story of the World with both the 7th grader and the 2nd grader. That was money well spent. I've learned so much that I didn't know or didn't remember. I use Singapore Math and I love it. We just finished primary with the 7th grader and are moving on. I took it slow and used tons of supplements that Singapore puts out.

In the second grade material class, I'm still happy with Miquon math. I also use Singapore Primary Math with it. I love First Language Lessons and I've read that there is a second book coming out. I was resistant to the format of that book for a long time. I finally bought it because nothing else was working and it has worked fantastic for my second homeschooler. We use a workbook from Sam's for Reading, I think it's the Complete Book of Reading.

Goals for 2006:
1. Work on writing
2. Do more formalized science
3. Try to keep better records (I fall off the bandwagon every year)

I'm going to try and post goal updates each month to keep myself honest.


Sunday, January 08, 2006

Still alive...

barely. After the holiday rush of finishing all the presents, wrapping and shopping we all got sick... twice. First we had something with a fever in the days after Christmas and then we had the worst flu that I have dealt with in 10 years. Four of us were sick at the same time. This has led to a few observations.
1. It was really smart to buy a window fan with an exhaust setting. I was able to air out the house without freezing out the occupants.
2. Always have a flu pack in a box ready to go. My husband and I were too sick to drive and we had gone through all the clear liquids and light foods with the first wave of sick children.
3. The best friend in the world is the one who will be late to her mother's birthday party to pick you up sprite, graham crackers, pedialyte etc.

I hope your year has started out a bit more smoothly than ours.

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