Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Unit 10- Water

After two weeks of company, then daddy being off to celebrate Christmas we are back at schooling! 
Living water to drink , sinking & floating and states of matter means it's water week! 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Unit 9- Octopus

Favorite thing about homeschooling this week? The flexibility 
Kids wanted school so.....
"Even the Octopus Praiaes the Lord" Psalm 145:21 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Advent 2014

We will spend December focusing on Advent. We'll continue MFW and ABCJLM in January. 

Our Advent Activities include daily Christ  centered Christmas books , the Jesse Tree, The Journey of the Magi, The Sparkle Box and Christmas Around the World. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Unit 8- Dinosaur

wasn't planning on this unit until after Thanksgiving , but decided to bump it forward rather than having a review week. We covered all of our material during the previous weeks and aren't needing any additional coverage this week. 

I went in to huge research mode(I enjoy this part of planning lessons) to find Intelligent Design resources regarding dinosaurs. Ken Ham from Answers in Genesis had a biblical viewpoint that was age appropriate for curious little boys. In learning quite a bit during this process as well. His was the only one I found, so glad it was meaty!

In case you are curious like me, the biggest difference is the young earth theory, weaving in the creation account in Gensis as well as the Ark, the flood, fossils, looking at Job 40 with new eyes where very large animals not describing any other existing animals we know are found .

A glimpse at all the Dino books we have. A couple do mention non-biblical ideas. At this stage for a 3 and 5 year old, we'll use the two books for reference on names, size and what they ate. 

Other fun during dinosaur week:

Posters :


Monday, November 10, 2014

Unit 7- Us

I actually downloaded all 1800 photos off my phone, so I'm blogging from my desktop today.

Weekly, I've been aiming to have a faith based, a fictional preschool and non fiction science book to learn more about each units letter, object and bible words. I had several books already about how God created each of us differently and uniquely special. I have 5 of these already and bought the other five since this idea is such a basic fundamental idea of our sense of self, how we carry ourselves and treat other people .

Letter U books:

Human Body

Us went in to more specifics of the 5 senses. This is the weekly letter card:

We watched several videos on the senses and read this book:

Munchkin has enjoyed discovering writing and drawing so much this year. He has surpassed my expectations and goals that I wrote out at the beginning of the year in this area.

Doodlebug matches up the letters very well with no help from me:

Highway letters:

Verse visuals I made using a family picture that a friend from church  did for us.

Munchkin wowed me with making up his own words to go with the vowel ladder.

Letter of the Week

I really enjoy and appreciate the value of
a unit study. I know educational approaches come and go, but this one may stick around here for a while longer . The letter of the week concept goes through one letter each week. Both MFW and ABCJLM curriculu uses the alphabet as a jumping off point for phonics , handwriting, science, history, faith, math, recess etc. 

Over the last 3 1/2 years of doing preschool at home, we've accumulated a selection of Alphabet books that we enjoy and I thought I'd share them here that ties in phonics, sharing the gospel, faith, character and Bible knowledge. 

Top row of books change out every week. First there is a series of the two smaller books each for each letter of the alphabet given to us by a friend by ElectricEducation . The book in between is My Sound Box series .

The other five books in the second and bottom row are all faith based and go through the entire alpabet within each book. We read just the portion that pertains to that week's letter. 
The middle row have poster visuals as part of our calendar wall time to review daily sharing God's word, growing in God's word and His character is so foundational . 

People who Need the Bible visual from :

ABC Bible Verses from 1+1+1:

I made these to go along with the ABCs of Character:

The bottom row has bible stories and concepts respectively. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Take -Alongs

There are several reasons I blog about our home school:
 1. To have a kind of a year book to look back on when the boys are older.
2.  To remember when I get to the younger boys what works and what I did with big brother(s) .
3. This process is new to our extended family and it's an easy way to let them know what we do
4.  I enjoy the research part of finding educational treasures almost as much as getting to see my favorite little people during the day. 
5. Since our oldest is not yet old enough to qualify us for co-op, this is a great outlet for nerdy home school talk. (We do play dates, etc with our good friends. It's just that everyone else in our close circles are just on different educational paths than we are)

So, I place a monthly order of home school supplies and get excited about some of my finds. On unit 3, I came access a Take-Along Guide for Leaves.

 For each unit, I've been looking for three living books. One fiction, that is usually covered with the literature package I bought from MFW. The other two I am looking for are a non-fiction, science book, preferably faith based, but I'll accept neutral non-evolution based and also a specifically faith base one usually having to do with the bible verse tie in. 

As I was researching for this week's Nest unit, I discovered the Take-Along books are a series of 14 books covering a wide range of nature topics . It's neither liberal or specifically faith based, just great information. I love the reference nature of these resources. They can be relative for several years, for all the boys and used for different angles of topics. Huge bonus, My Father's World has a few of them listed future years curriculum. So, I bought a few more this month.

Mail, a favorite site is seeing the Amazon smile on my porch :

Take along books so far:

9 of the 12 deliveries that came today for November learning. 

The main reason we opted out of more structured programs like a classical conversations group I was interested in, the University model for homeschooling or even our church's great preschool MDO is because I had to chose for financial reasons to be able to go with hand picked resources I wanted or someone else's program. My nerdy research side won :-)

Monday, October 13, 2014

Unit 4- Apple

Great faith tie in for apple between the garden for Adam and Eve for Doodlebug and Fruit of the Spirit for Munchkin . 

Munchkin has requested an apple pie, so I'll be learning something new this week too. I've never made one before , here goes life long learning for all of us :-)

Review Intro - Unit 3

Review weeks help us prevent burn out and also to avoid the socialization pitfall that stereotypes  homeschooling . We had a play date, went and saw family, had more outside time and the boys led the activities for the week. Munchkin likes to teach so it gives him a chance to teach me what he's learned. We reviewed and read weekly books, bible words and concepts for Creation, Sun, Moon and Leaf. For Doodlebug, we played games that incorporated his bible stories, shapes, colors and numbers. 

I also designed and began working on our end of the year quilt. Here's a preview of the squares. I used the same clip art from the weekly graphics for a consistent feel. I'll print these to photo paper, colorfast and sew together. 

Monday, September 29, 2014

Unit 3- Leaf

Just as a leaf will wilt and die once broken from a tree, so will our ability to bear fruit if we don't read God's word and talk with Him daily. God is our life source. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Picture AND words

Munchkin drew this today . First time he's done picture AND words all by himself . Up until the last month , he's done race car tracks (scribbles all over the page). Fav part of HS hands down , walking him through discoveries. He's been asking me to do it very time he has an idea to draw and I have been consistent in telling. him that if I draw it, it's my picture , not his.

My biggest goals for him academically for this year is handwriting and reading. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Unit 2- Moon

Here's our Intro to moon,. I really appreciate  how this program weaves science, bible knowledge, outreach, living a Godly life, character and the big picture of God's creation. 
The moon (us) does not give off any light of it's own. The moon only reflects the light off the Sun (God) , also referencing last week's unit and both are creations of God going back to the intro weeks on Creation. 

Top row: Books, letter match up
Middle: moon documentaryand chocolate sandwich cookie moon phase activity 
Bottom: flashlight and mirror concept activity & M lacing letters for fine motor

Here is attempt #1 of gluten free play doh. We are not a fan. We'll be trying one of the many other different recipes I found off Pinterest until we find one both kids will play with. 

This recipe left a very oily residue on our hands. My 3 year old wouldn't touch it after he realized that. 

They played ' Spaceship' with different size boxes including Lightning. We pretended we were going to the moon. 

Progress on our new checklist . It keeps mama on track . What ever doesn't get highlighted on that day, bumps to our review weeks. 

Weekly Routine

Here is my my new checklist for each week. I highlight as we complete each activity during the week. It's a four day week as we take Wednesday mornings  off for my Mom to Mom group. We have a review week after every 5 units and we'll cover anything missed or do fun additional activities to reinforce the bible verse and concept on those days. 

Reminders on our learning wall: 


Getting this area labeled at the end of last week REALLY helped make school much more efficient this morning. 

The top boxes are filled with the manipulatives we need for each corresponding day . 

Extras are now organized as well as my crafting supplies. 

Book basket, teachers manuals, activity box and check list for both curriculum. I also have a school supply box with crayons , scissor, glue stick , pencils etc.
I grab that week's file folder and books to add to my blue tote and I'm ready for our week