Our Family

Our Family

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Homeschool Wrap Up Week 10

I know I lived the first 21 years of my life in Western New York and the weather here is no where near as cold as it was there, but I do not love cold weather.  Monday morning I had planned on taking the children to the park to walk the nature trail after we took care of our cat sitting chores, but it was only 39 degrees and I did not to be outside.  So we went to Walmart and bought some things I needed for Kid's Club instead. We did end up going to the trail later that afternoon the second time I had to be in town and it was much warmer then.

This school year has been so crazy, it has been very hard to be able to just sit back and enjoy any of our school year or to do any extra fun projects.  We rush from one thing to the next.  But, after this week it will slow down some and at the end of this semester things should get back to normal.

After we came home from our morning trip to town to take Nick we had to work on making some cookies for a community service project called Cookies for Cops.  As those were baking we got started on some school work.  We started with our Weave Your Word in Me Bible Study and then moved on to Geography from Let's Go Geography.  This week's country was Columbia.  By the time we finished that it was time for lunch.

After lunch each of the children did a math lesson in MLFLE.  The boys started working on Step 19 in AAS.  On Mondays I teach the lesson and introduce the words and then they write 4 sentences using the words that I dictate to them.  Lily worked on The Magic Stories.  I sat down with Emmie and did lessons 19 and 20 in AAR Level 1.  Reading Johnny Tremain is taking longer then I planned but it is a long book.  Christian and Anthony read a chapter of Johnny Tremain.

Then we headed back to town to deliver our cookies.  All of the officers were working at an accident when we delivered.

We walked the Nature Trail and played at the playground until it was time to pass Alex and Christian off to Art who was taking them to soccer practice.

Tuesday morning we did some yoga.  We worked on Bible study and then Lesson 10 in America's Story on George Washington and the French and Indian War.  I didn't think the lesson gave enough information so I dug out my Home School in the Woods American Revolution CD and read the lesson on the French and Indian War.  We also did a lesson in Thinking Like an Engineer on water purification. After lunch I dictated more sentences to the boys for spelling, Lily answered some questions for her Magic Story, the boys read Johnny Tremain, we did some Math flashcards and they all did a math lesson.  Emmie worked on Reading Eggs.

Mr Liam only slept 30 minutes....

We had gymnastics...

And the championship soccer game.  It was cold that night!  And windy.  The game did not go well.  One of our players got hurt, we were loosing 4-1 at the end of the third quarter so our coach forfeited the game.  They did not get to finish it.  It was Alex's last game at the park.  Next season he will be too old.

Wednesday we did our Bible lesson and watched an Engineering video on engineering challenges facing this generation.  My boys were especially interested in Virtual Reality.  We also started our science lesson on how plants transport water, but I completely forgot to do the experiment! In the afternoon we did math, dictated more spelling sentences, and the boys kept reading.  I did lesson 21 in AAR Level One with Emmie.

Then we headed to Kid's Club.

Thursday morning we did more yoga.  After our Bible lesson we did some of the activities for our history lesson.  They colored a map of the lands that were being disputed, drew George Washington's head, and answered some questions about the lesson. In the afternoon we had our spelling test for Step 19 in AAS, did a math lesson, and the boys kept reading. 

We got Liam ready to go get his pictures taken.

And then headed to music lessons.

Friday we ran errands, did our cat sitting chores for the last time, and then enjoyed an afternoon and evening at home!

We dropped to 28 degrees Friday nigh and 25 Saturday so I turned on the heater downstairs.

My children have been playing hockey together on the nights we have been home this week.  We only have two actual hockey sticks so the others play with sticks they found in the yard.  Lily and Christian play on skates.  We have to leave the dog in the house when they play or she barks at them and steals the ball.

Alex seems to have gotten into a better routine with his schoolwork.  Time management is going better and the work is getting completed.  Now that he has gotten past the introductory stuff I think the lessons have gotten a bit more interesting.  The science especially was pretty dry at the beginning of the year. 

Nick's robotics class at the school is going very well.  He got his first report card and has an A in the class.  The competition is this coming week.  We will go up and watch them compete.  I need to go through the rest of his work this afternoon and see how much he has gotten completed.  He did tell me that he has not enjoyed reading The Cat of Bubastes by G.A. Henty that was assigned to go along with his history lessons in Notgrass World History.

I hope you had a great week!

Happy Homeschooling!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Homeschool Crew Review: Kid Niche Christian Books

Kid Niche Christian Books

Kid Niche Christian Books produces family friendly biblical resources to help children understand who God is and to interact with Him in meaningful ways.  We have had a chance to use and review Weave Your Word in Me--Part 1, a Bible study geared for children in grades 4-6. 


Weave Your Word in Me--Part 1 is a Bible study and prayer study.  It contains 36  lessons that children can complete on their own or an adult can work on it and discuss the lessons with them.  The packet comes with 70 3-hole punched papers for children to be able to add into a 3 ring binder.  Each page is illustrated and in color and has different activities for the child to do including fill in the blank, true/false, matching and  multiple choice to complete after reading the Bible passages for the lesson.  . 

At the end of each lesson children fill in the blanks to complete the prayer called My Whole Self Before You which is modeled after the Lord's prayer. In addition to the student sheets the packet also contains an answer key for the sheets.  The answer key has answer in ESV, KJV, NABRE, NASB, NIV, and NKJV so you can choose your favorite translation to use with this Bible study.  You can purchase Weave Your Word in Me-- Part 1 for $20.00.

The website has additional activities to go along with each lesson.  You might find a video, an art lesson, crossword puzzles, word games, hands on activities and more.  You can find them all listed by lesson at http://kidniche.com/activities/. 

The lessons are very easy to complete.  All you need is your favorite Bible translation, a writing utensil, and possibly a dictionary for some of the lessons.  The child reads the assigned Scripture.  The lesson in my example is Luke 15:1-3.  There is a short explanation on the page talking about the Pharisees and how they criticized Jesus.  It tells children to pay attention to things that are repeated in the Bible, that they are important!  Then they read Luke 15:4-7 and are asked 2 questions about the first parable.  Then they are asked to number the events in order and there is an explanation of the parable.  Then they answer questions about the second parable in Luke 15:8-10 and number the events in order with an explanation.  For the third parable that they read in Luke 15:11-32 they fill in the blanks with the missing parts of the story.  There is an explanation and some true false questions to answer.  To finish off the lesson children fill in the blanks on the My Prayer section. 

In think the Weave Your Word in Me Bible study is appropriate and meaningful for the intended age range of 4th-6th grade.  The lessons are short and can be completed independently by children.  The pages themselves are interesting with different illustrations and activities for each lesson.  I like that there are additional activities should you choose to want more to go along with the lessons.

The second part of Weave of Your Word in Me is also available for purchase for $20. 

To see what my Crew Mates had to say, stop by the Crew Blog!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Homeschool Wrap Up Week 9

I've been thinking this week-end a lot about all of the different seasons in our lives and how much things change.  Change isn't a bad thing, just different.  Children are supposed to grow and change and when they do we do too. When all of my children were younger, my life was like a never ending daycare, or preschool. Now that they are older we have shifted from play dates at the playground being the most important thing in their week to concerts and football games.  It can be so hard when children are growing up.  How much should we let them do on their own?  How much responsibility do we trust them with?  What kinds of things should they decide for themselves?  We don't always know for sure that we are making the right decisions, so all we can do is hope and pray that we are. 

Our week started out at the Arkansas State Fair.  It was a good day and a good experience but I am always glad to be able to get back home and into my own bed!

I have worked out some different transportation arrangements for Nick on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  I just have to get him to school on those days and Chelsea picks him up and brings him home.  So instead of being out of the house for 2.5 hours, I am only gone for 40 minutes.  On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays we still have to stay in town the whole time. 

We had our Bible lesson from Kid Niche Weave Your Word in Me.  Then we started working on our new poem Jabberwocky by Lewis Carrol.  The children are not impressed with this poem.  We read our history lesson 9 in America's Story on William Wilberforce.  We watched an engineering lesson that gave the children another building challenge to use a sheet of paper and masking tape to try and support as much weight from books as you can.  Christian and Anthony worked on that while I made lunch.  In the afternoon we did math and started Step 18 in AAS.  They read a chapter in Johnny Tremain.  Emmie did some Reading Eggs and Lily read a story from The Magic Stories (upcoming review.)

The girls had gymnastics at 4:30.  The boys needed to be at the park at 5 and Parent/Teacher conferences at the school were from 3:30-7.  Art dropped the girls and I off at gymnastics, ran to the school to talk to Nick's teacher, dropped the boys off at the park and came back to get us.

Christian and Alex won their soccer game which meant that they had to play again on Thursday.  Alex was supposed to be going to a concert with the youth group that we had already bought tickets for.  He wasn't sure what to do.  I told him it was his decision.  He is the goalie for his team and without him they would not have a chance to win. He chose to not go to the concert.

Wednesday morning after we dropped Nick off at school we went to church to work on Kid's Club stuff until it was time to pick him up.  When we got home we did our Bible lesson and worked on the poem.  Then we did a science lesson on Anders Celsius.  We did an experiment showing that the boiling point of water can change.  After lunch we quickly did math, spelling, and reading.  Then it was time to leave for Kid's Club.

Thursday we did our Bible lesson and poetry.  Next up was geography (geography is usually on Mondays but we missed Monday.)  Our lesson this week was on Columbia.  Math, spelling test, and reading in the afternoon and we all had to load up to head to music lessons.

After music lessons we had to run to a house to take care of their cats while they are out of town.  Then we dropped Nick off to go to the concert and headed to the park for the soccer game.  They won which means they have to play one more championship game. 

Friday we ran errands and went grocery shopping.  That night Art took Nick and Alex to the football game.

Saturday I took the girls to the library for a Halloween event that had a craft, snacks, stories, and games.  We ran out to take care of the cats, then had a birthday party to go to.

Sunday was Chelsea and Cody's anniversary.  I picked up Liam and took him to church with us.  He did well until about halfway through when he started crying and I had to take him out. I took him in the back nursery room and got him to sleep.  He went home with us and stayed all afternoon until they got back from their lunch and movie.

Earlier this week Alex went to the attic and got out the exersaucer and cleaned it all up for Liam.  Definitely got my money's worth out of it!  We have had it for 15 years and it looks almost new.

I hope you had a great week!

Happy Homeschooling!

Friday, October 20, 2017

Arkansas State Fair

This year was our first time attending the Arkansas State Fair.  We weren't just going to check out the fair, Christian and Alex were showing their goats.  We planned it all out weeks in advance, which of course meant that plans were going to fall through at the last minute!

My husband is very thorough when it comes to maintenance and care on all of our vehicles.  A couple of weeks before the fair, my van had some parts replaced so it would be in great shape to take on a long drive and Art was checking out the camper too.  Unfortunately it needed some parts replaced that were wearing out.  The day before we were supposed to leave we still did not have the parts we needed, so we would not be able to take the camper with us.  That left us with two choices.  We could make the over 2 hour drive back and forth twice, or spend the night in a hotel.  If we chose the hotel we would have to make some arrangements for the dog since it was a Saturday and we could not board her.  We decided to stay in a hotel.  I was able to book 2 adjoining rooms at a hotel that was recommended to us (well I thought I did but actually I booked the hotel next door by mistake which meant no Continental Breakfast) and worked out some arrangements for the dog.

We left at 7:00 am on Sunday morning.  The day before we left, it was in the mid 90's, but a cold front was coming through.  It also brought some much needed rain.  Since we had never been to the fair before, our 4 h Ag Agent met us in Little Rock so we could follow her to the livestock gate and she could walk us through the process.  I was very thankful for that!

We arrived a little after 9 and got the goats and our stuff unloaded.  We did not think to unload our cooler or the clothes the boys needed to change into and did not realize how far away we would have to park once everything was unloaded.  After giving the goats a chance to eat, we walked them over to be processed.  First they had to be checked in and weighed. Alex's goat was 56 pounds and Christians was 67.  They had to be examined by a vet, and the weigh cards had to be signed by the exhibitor and a parent.  The boys also signed up to participate in the showmanship show.

We got the goats back to the pen.  It was still rainy and miserable outside.  We waited until 11 and then fed the always starving children.  We ate with the goats in the goat barn.  We were in stall 327 out of 329.  That's a lot of goats!

After we ate the boys washed and dried both of the goats.  Then we took the children to this really cool family farm/petting zoo that the FFA had set up.  Inside there were different type of educational farming exhibits: a combine simulator, a cow you could milk, stuffed chickens and eggs, a horse, corn, soybeans, and rice, and a fake apple tree.

The petting zoo had farm puppies. goats, turkeys, ducks, rabbits, pigs, camels, llamas, a miniature horse, 4 horned sheep, a zedonk (cross between a zebra and a donkey that is just crazy to me) a red kangaroo, and more that I am forgetting. We had a lot of fun in there!

Then the boys had to get ready for the show.  Showmanship is separated by age of the child.  All the 9 year olds, then 10 year olds, 11 year olds, etc... The top 5 get ribbons and the top two go on to complete in their division (9-13 year olds then 14-18 year olds.)  The showmanship was good practice for the boys.  We did not expect to win anything we were just going for the experience.

After the show it was time for rides and games.  The rain had stopped and the sun was out. I could not believe that my little girls went on such big rides!! To be honest I didn't want them to and couldn't watch when they did!  They even rode the roller coaster!  Some of the bigger rides Emmie was not tall enough to go on, so she did ride some of the smaller kiddie rides.  It is not easy to take photos of the children on rides so I didn't get very many.

By 8:00 we were exhausted and headed to the hotel.  We grabbed Subway for supper and turned on the end of The Peanuts movie while we ate and got everyone cleaned up and ready for bed.  I was thankful for comfy beds and that we were able to get some sleep because we had to get up bright and early the next morning to head back!

We were moving slower in the morning then I wanted to.  Since the hotel did not have breakfast, we were hoping to pass a McDonalds on the way but we didn't and did not have time to look for one.  Actually, we barely made it in time to get the goats fed and get Alex lined up for his class.  The classes were divided by weight of the goat with around 20 goats in each class (Alex's was smaller and only had 15.)  All of the exhibitors go in the ring and the judge chooses 10 to stay and the others are excused without a ribbon.  Then the bottom three were lined up while the other continued to be judged until decisions are made for 1st-7th.  Alex was shocked to be in the top 10 and earned a 10th place ribbon.  Christian did not earn a ribbon.

It was a good experience for the boys.  They had fun even though they were very nervous.  We learned a lot to keep in mind to improve for next year!