Thursday, August 30, 2012

Nesting Before School - update

My 13 yr old dd made this...I think the kids are anxious for school to start (not that they like school, just that they want to get done before June next year.)

I decided the storage room needed a major clean (well, I knew that before but life a way of providing other priorities).  So, some kids and I set to work on it this morning BEFORE bringing all those clothing bins back in.  It looks great!  My helpers did a wonderful job.  We found TWO MORE boxes of CLOTHES - as well as some miscellaneous clothing articles shoved in various areas - ahem!    So...sorted those....cleaned out the boys' closet of clothing that doesn't fit any of them....and returned most of the bins to the storage room.  (I have a few left out that I know will be added to when I go through the younger kids' drawers later this week.)  I delivered some items to Goodwill, some to my sister for my neice, and will have 3 more boxes ready for Goodwill after I have one of the kids take pictures of all our donations for tax purposes.

Now the main family room in the basement needs to be cleaned up.  And, my dh called today to ask if the drain tile company could come and redo their work next Tuesday.  This means everything in two "unused" bedrooms needs to come out and go in that main room.

AND...we will be doing MORE schoolwork next week.   A lot more!  After that...we need to be moving full force ahead, even with doc appts, etc.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Nesting (before school) in....feeling the need the get everything cleaned up and organized before we really hit school hard!    Funny, I never considered that nesting but read that at pinewood castle and it made sense.  So ,yes, I am nesting....though by the looks of my house you might think I took the month off of ALL CLEANING!

Something I've been wanting to get to since we moved last summer...go through the bins and boxes of clothes stored in our basement.   There were 5 boxes of clothes packed up just before we moved that were not organized by size/gender...what a mess.  The bins?   They were fairly well sorted.  I called my MIL for help.  This was going to be a big job.  Well, we did it.  Took a number of hours...but we did it.  Everything is sorted.   I have 3 boxes of items to donate, 1 box of "rags", and 1 box for my neice.  I got rid of all those clothes with elastic waistbands if the next recipient won't fit in them for another 4-5 years.   Someone else should get some use out of them instead of these items sitting in my basement only to have the elastic become crunchy.

What instigated this desire to do this NOW!?  School beginning? sorta  Almost fall?  sorts  11 year old boy needing new dress pants that I was sure we had in the bins?  Yep!  Did we have said pants?  Nope!  But, now I will feel better about spending my money on that one pair, and now I know for sure that he has a lot of "play" clothes!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Instead of planning for school we did this

Sorry -quite blury.  We picked all these apples for free (with a donation).  Our apple trees haven't really produced this year due to the early heat then frost.  These came from a farm 1.5 miles away.  Maybe different apples?  We don't know what we have.

It took ALL DAY.  Seriouly.  ALL DAY.  Started before everyone was awake and finished cleaning up after bedtime.  But we ended up with many jars of applesauce, apple butter, pickles, and eggs (refrigerated after the pic), and 10 bags of frozen apples.

Now...I am seriously planning school here.  I think I kept putting it off because we have WAY TOO MANY appointments during school hours the first few weeks.  I try to avoid those at all costs.  Nothing too serious but definitely necessary and unless I want to drive downtown for say a 3:00 appointment or something...I have to take what I can get when the specialists are out in this area.  So, I guess we plan school with 5 appts/wk for the first few weeks.  I am sooo thankful nothing is too serious. 
Though if you have moment to for few small prayers for our 9 mo Abigail.  That the brace she wears nightly for hip dysplasia starts having more of an impact before she hits 12 months  - when they consider the possibility of a more aggressive solution (and that if it reaches that point we can make a wise decision...her hips are so close to being normal - I'd hate to put her through surgery, casting, and more braces if it's just not necessary).  And that she is cleared by the opthalmologist (potential issues were discovered and 2 of our kids have issues with one eye each).  I already have a challenge getting our 7 yr old to wear her eye patch 4 hours per day (she has glasses to correct the vision in her weak eye to see the big E - so I am not surprised she challenges me in that area.) I don't even know what I would do with an infant.  Oh...there are more appointments....those are just the more stressful ones, the others are simply time consuming.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

What didn't work for me

Every year, without fail, when I plan my school schedule I start with the children's individual schedules.  I color code them (black - individual work, blue - group work, red - lessons with me).  Then I create a schedule trying to fit all this in in a day.  With 6 students plus...this can be a little challenging. 

This year I decided to do something different.  I started with a routine and then tried to individualize from there. 

But...I've given up.  It failed.  Time to throw in the towel.  I guess I just don't think that way.  I (at least with school planning) do not work well moving from the whole to the parts. 

Going back to parts and then making the whole.

Speaking of what didn't work.  Sometimes that becomes what will work.  Years ago, my oldest (who starts college in a couple weeks!) learned to read using Seton's readers.  It wasn't easy for her at all.  She really struggled.  She eventually caught on about third grade.  A few years later and she was reading well beyond her grade level...and is now looking for a third bookshelf to house her ever expanding library.  No one who knows her now doubts her love for books!  ahem...back to the subject here.  Next child comes along and is really struggling.  I finally switched to Little Angel Readers (orton gillingham approach for those interested in the phonetic aspect).  It worked.  I couldn't imagine why anyone would not use these books!  Children 3 and 4 used them. Child 5 is nearly done after a slight glitch.  Child 6....was going nowhere.  Now, it could have something to do with her needing glasses.  Not sure. But, even after glasses she was slowly plugging away through LAR.  She picked up Dick and Jane and loved it.  That's what she wanted to read every day.  So, at first I met her half way.  Some days LAR lessons and some days Dick and Jane.  She really liked them and then I remembered the old Seton readers I still had.  I pulled the first one out and she loved reading it.  If she can't sound out the new word(s) I tell them to her, she may need help a couple times, but then she gets it.  Wow.  I am finding it hard to wrap my head around the fact that I am going to switch her to these.  I loved the scope of LAR.  LAR ecompassed reading, phonics, and spelling.  Hmmm.....I have phonics workbooks for her, but I am seriously thinking about what to use for spelling now.  I might use All About Spelling (I have it!) or I might make it up as we go and she learns new things in her phonics book and add in the site words too.  She's 2nd grade.  It's easy to that in 2nd grade :)

Back to planning

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Homeschool Prep Update

  1. Books Ordered *check*
  2. Religion program purchased instead of making my own as planned. *check*
    1. I figured creating my own religion curriculum this year was not a good idea since it is mid August and I hadn't even had a chance to order my school books yet.  I still have scheduling and planning to do.  That will be done outside on a blanket.  Miss Abigail (8 months) loves being outside (um....she starts crying really hard if we walk toward the door and turn away) - just easier that way :)
    2. This is what I ordered if anyone is still looking for a curriculum to include their entire family.  It looks good - I've never tried it. 
      1. I ordered enough kits to cover my preschooler, 2nd, 3rd, 5th, and 8th.  Though my 8th grader will probably be the assistant teacher with this group and I will supplement hers with RACE for Heaven which will be considered part of her reading as well as religion.
      2. My 9th grader will be doing something different.  Don't know what yet.  I'm relying on St. Thomas Aquinas Academy for that one and I got my paperwork in very late this year.  (Another reason why designing my own religion program this year wouldn't work - besides - I do still intend to do that with spelling but really all I am doing is adding the rules to a book that doesn't teach them.) He will probably do either Church History or Apologetics or a mixture of both.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Homeschool Domination

I found this interesting...nothing new here...just an interesting way to present the information. Homeschool Domination
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