Slogging through..

September 11, 2015|5:08 pm

At this point in my homeschool year I am ALWAYS reading other blogs, books and articles on organization. Organization of my life. Organization of my day. Organization of our school. Organization of my organization tools.

Well guess what? I cannot find anything ANYWHERE that is equal to my life! I’ve tried and tried.

It just doesn’t appear to exist.

Maybe because every other mother of twelve is smarter than I am? They have recognized that it is impossible? NO, as much as I would like to believe that I’m pretty sure that is not the case. More likely, they just don’t have time to write about the systems they have created!

I am going to stay with what I know works for me. Doing the next thing and the next. Prioritizing each next thing. Being free to set free the vegies I should have been doing today {when in reality The Not Back to School campout we went on was far more memory making} so they can bless someone else!

Here is to all you other Mamas who just keep on keeping on!

Differences

May 30, 2012|8:41 am

 

I heard a statement from a couple of different homeschoolers recently….and I took it to heart and it has really been a source of frustration. The person said.. if you don’t know what your doing after a couple of years of homeschooling you never will.

I have been thinking and praying about this statement and God has shown me a few things..

Well I do know I am homeschooling.. and I do know I am called to do so.. but every year it looks somewhat different. Am I doing something wrong? NO!

Every year our homeschool is different.. we add a child or have one graduate.. every child is different.. one struggles  with differing abilities in reading and writing while one teaches him or herself because you never quite get to it at the end of the day of struggling with, and alongside, the children who work at it for a lengthy time.

Is it wrong to continuously look at new material or new styles of learning? Not if it is what God wants of you! If you are seeking His will and listening to His voice how can it be wrong?

Every curriculum can work IF the mama makes it work with a committed effort.. but will it work as well as something different? Will it work if God has made that child a wide mark off the * “normal” path? Not if God is using the struggles and strengths of that child to grow him and /  or you ! Trust God ! Trust yourself to know your child. Keep seeking answers through prayer and research. And in the interim.. just remember to enjoy your children and this path in life!

 

*normal.. a term I use reluctantly here as people understand what I am driving at. Normal is really a setting on a dryer and should really not be used in connection with people!

A Charlotte Mason Education

April 15, 2012|2:27 pm

I have longed to do a Charlotte mason education. I have made some attempt to use the CM style with my KONOS and Tapestry of Grace. I have played with the ideas of a living book education. Somewhere along the way this weekend, I realized I have never accomplished  what I intended to do.

 

I am currently watching an All Day Charlotte Mason seminar on DVD. I have just concluded the first session and I am excited to do the remaining ones. I am attempting to really give my full attention to the ideas and beliefs presented. I am trying to wipe my mind of any thoughts of curriculum. To be totally open to the idea of using the living books I have here and that are available for free on the internet. To look with an open mind and heart at every subject we want to have our children learn through the fully engaged lens of  a Charlotte Mason education.

 

Let the adventure begin!

Conventions

March 21, 2012|8:10 am

A decision has been made.

No trip to Cincinnati for us. While I was very excited about going to the big homeschool convention and taking the children to the Creation Museum other things take precedence over the trip this year. With my hubby just returning to work for the construction season it sounds like we will be travelling quite a bit to see him at his job sites. It appears most of the work for this year is a L-O-N-G way from home.

So what will we do instead? Well I am already registered for our state convention and will be attending that. Instead of the creation museum entrance fee we plan on buying a zoo membership. We haven’t had one for a couple of years so the children are looking forward to that.

I need to get busy and order a few things from homeschool publishers who will not be at our local convention so I can compare their products to ones I am interested in that will be at the convention. Anyone ever use any of Queens Homeschool Supplies? I am very interested in their nature Science programs.

Didn’t get many responses so I’ll ask again: Are you going to any homeschool conventions this year?

A new find..

March 19, 2012|9:28 pm

I have to share.. I have found a great new resource! A couple of weeks ago as I was blog hopping I happened upon a random button. It intrigued me so I went and looked. And here was an answer to my prayer.

I am currently teaching a Geography class for multi age children at my co-op. My desire is to have the children see the world as something they need to know in order to know how to reach out and share God’s love.

The class was actually looking like your typical.. where are the oceans?.. what countries are located on this continent?..how does the atmosphere affect us? .. how does…??? all good information but not the slant I wanted.

Enter the adventures of the Brinkman Family  a radio drama in several parts. I bought the first three episodes and then after talking to the family that created these shows and getting permission to use them in class… we were off! I expected to share 10 or maybe 15 minutes before the children got bored BUT no they loved them and listened quietly (my speakers on the laptop aren’t the greatest!) to the entire episode. Today we listened to the second one and I had to make them promise that if their parents bought the episodes that they would NOT listen to episode number three until next Monday!

Please take a minute to explore this new resource. I whole heartedly recommend them.

I was sort of waiting

March 16, 2012|7:24 am

to post again as I thought one of my at home computer specialists (read geek child) was going to SPRING my blog up. Since it is only the middle of March and we are forecast to be in the 80 degree range today I thought the lonely little snowman should go away! But times are flying by so I am going to go ahead and post and then make him a to do for mama list for today!

 

With the arrival of a very early spring here in MN we are waiting on the birth of some lambs ..planning a garden…. and getting ready for spring homeschool convention season.

My daughter gifted me with registration marked PAID to the local homeschool convention held here in MN. This year it is in the Twin Cities so it’s a very easy drive and is usually a great time of refreshment and incentive to carry on as a homeschool mama. I missed the last couple of conventions due to various more important things but am really needing to be refreshed and encouraged to carry on in this lifestyle we have chosen.

Fast forward a few weeks and now I have the opportunity to attend a second convention! The  Midwest Homeschool Convention is in April and is very reasonable. Of course gas money to get there will be a bit expensive with the prices getting close to $4 a gallon in the last few days but once we get there our intention is to camp. For the four or five nights we will stay out there the campsite is about the same as one night at a hotel. We are already planning on purchasing a new tent this year as we have two other trips where we need to have sleeping facilities for very little money and the younger boys have been begging to go camping as they have heard stories from when the older ones were little and camping was a regular part of our lives. My oldest children might even remember when family camping was the only kinds of trips we ever took. They so enjoyed trips to campgrounds here in MN and some even in Wisconsin!

We will also make it a point to stop at the Creation Museum while we are there. My nine year old has an unquenchable thirst for all things science and loves museums. We have looked forward to a trip to the Creation Museum since we first heard they were building it years ago.

Anyway I look forward to a fun spring and some real refreshment in our homeschool world. What do you do to keep yourself motivated to keep on keepin’ on?

Winter Formal

January 22, 2012|1:22 pm

Last night two of my children, Aimée and Jeffrey attended a winter formal dance in Mankato. It is held at the Verizon wireless center. I can remember when it was held at the  Kato Ballroom back in my day. It is an event that goes across the spectrum of schools. Public, private, Christian, homeschools, unschoolers all are welcome to attend as long as they fit the 10-12 grade category. They attended with a group of mostly homeschooled  -with- a –couple- of- public- schoolers thrown in for diversity bunch of friends.

I believe that Alex the beautiful instigated this group going to this particular event. Even if it was her the rest of the group jumped onto the idea quickly.

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Alex

While making plans for this event some of us mamas discovered that the day can get a bit spendy. Especially if you have more than one child at this age range. Fortunately for me Jeff fit into his dad’s suit and we actually found size 14 extra wide boats dress shoes in town. We are also blessed to have a Dané in our lives who runs her own business sewing . We actually went to the mall first to try and find a style of dress that Aim would be comfortable with but they all seemed to be missing large parts of the dress. if they had a top there was no bottom and if they had the long skirt there was no top. Aimée really wanted a dress that had a flowy skirt and sleeves. So off to the fabric store we went. Several hours of work later Aimée and Jeffrey looked like this:

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We all met at the home of Alex’s grandparents for a pre dance dinner served by the mamas.

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Note the gorgeous and formal dinner napkins otherwise known as bibs, that they are wearing. I had mental pictures of scrubbing applesauce or meat grease off of suits or a dress bodice before the dance and this was my solution. Some of the young ladies and gentlemen thought it was a great idea and the rest humored me!

While waiting for dinner there was a rousing sedate game of pinball. I don’t think they quite new what to do with all the fancy clothing they were wearing and the result was a very quiet group for the first part of the evening.

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Kim and Chris took great care to make a beautiful wrist corsage or boutinniere for each member of the group.

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We had fun setting the table nicely:

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An of course we had to take some fun group  and individual photos;

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This was one of my favorite shots of the evening!

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But this runs a close second!

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I love brother and sister photos. here is one of our Aimée and Jeffrey

and below is Lucas and Brooklyn:

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DRUM ROLL PLEASE!

January 18, 2012|2:30 pm

Announcement! Announcement!

We are officially a house of readers. As of this morning every single one of my children have been able to read at least sounded out short stories! I am so excited!

It is every mama’s delight when all of her children are reading. It is every homeschool mama’s secret fear that some of them may never read! I know it is a bit of hyperbole to think that, but really it is a deep down fear in most if not all homeschool mama’s hearts LOL!

More work is required to make sure everyone is fluently reading but that is just day in, day out, having fun with words and books.

Look out world! They can read!

Weekly wrap .. a little late

January 15, 2012|11:49 am

I meant to spend time on Thursdays or Fridays doing a wrap up of our KONOS units but this week got away fast.

I had a Pampered Chef party yesterday and Dané had a spin in so it was busy prepping for those. Pat finished the ceiling and floor at her house and my is it gorgeous! She was happy to have the company so she could show off the house!.

So back to our KONOS week. We are studying Inquisitiveness and Resourcefulness!

This first week was very light as it was meant to ease us back in to the routine of school and especially for us the routine of a KONOS week. It went so well. I couldn’t read out loud because of the cold I am still fighting but the children took turns reading My Side of the Mountain out loud. We are over half way through the book and will follow that with the original unabridged Swiss Family  Robinson.

We watched the movie and I and some of the older children made so many comments on the differences in the book we decided it needed to be read aloud.

Watching Rube Goldberg machines on youtube video was the highlight of the week for most of the children. All in all the switch back to KONOS has been an unqualified success after week 1! Now to finish planning week 2!

This and that January 7th

January 7, 2012|2:15 pm

Ok the to do list I published on Thursday was a total non starter. When mama gets sick she should be grateful that the house is picked up and that tummies get fed! And believe me as hard as this cold / flu hit me this week not once but in two separate increments I am one grateful mama for children who take charge and get things done. Hubby was an absolute blessing and made sure my water cup stayed full and I had kleenex in every spot of the house.

So today I will start on the lesson planning for Monday’s lessons. I am not going to over do and have a relapse. I cannot be sick tomorrow. Isaac actually qualified for the State tournament for bowling after only starting this fall. We were so surprised when he qualified for districts but finding out he placed 4th at his level at districts and that the top 5 got to on to the State finals in January was just plain FUN! So tomorrow he bowls three games in Eagan MN. Can’t wait to see what  this all involves.

Now I am back to work..heigh ho!  Heigh Ho!