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August is not far.  August means getting down to business.  No more being lax.  No more being lazy.  No more excuses!  Ok, well, one more excuse –oldest does have a birthday in August so she gets the day off.  Other than that -we’re hunkering down and no more doing just a wee bit and off to play.

My oldest is not happy.  My youngest two are very happy.  The youngsters want to be like their big sister so they want to do ‘school’.

So here’s what we’ve got for the oldest who will be doing grade 5 and grade 6 work:

MATH: level 6 middle school math with ALEKS.com
LANGUAGE ARTS:  Level 5 Growing with Grammar and Level 6 for Soaring with Spelling
WRITING: Bravewriter’s Writer’s Jungle & Partnership Writing
SCIENCE:  Oh, how I really want to do Elemental Science Logic Stage Biology but due to finances it is on the back burner for now and we’re going to do RS4K Chemistry (purchased this used quite a while ago and never got around to it!).  Which works out rather well since we’ll be doing Chem lab at co-op.  Wish we had another family or two do ES Bio with!  Dissection/lab stuff is costly!  My goal is to do ES so hopefully we’ll be able to save enough, and hopefully I’ll be able to find used books for less.  I’ve been scouring the classifieds for the additional books that go with the ES Bio.
HISTORY:  Story of Us by Joy Hakim -supplementing with various other stuff, too.
EXTRAS: Practice typing with Mavis Beacon, Reading Comprehension with Reading Detective, Perplexors Logic practice, Art and PE with co-op

For the twins, we’ll be doing preschool stuff.  We’ve got them a Zoodles subscription, so they’ve been doing lots of matching games, ABC games, phonetics, art, and audio books on their tablet.

We’ve been practicing writing letters, connect the dots (my youngest twin has really mastered this nicely!), lots of cutting and pasting, helping mommy bake and cook.

We’ve been trying to learn how to read.  I pulled out my How to Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons and we’re doing that alongside the Alpha Phonics.  I put post-it notes inside each book indicating where each twin is at.  They are each learning at a different pace, which is totally fine.

My goal with them is to do a new theme each week.  I’d like to get books from the library on said theme, discuss and learn about the topic, and do some hands on crafts and projects on the topics.

I’ll take pics and post our progress on this!  Should be fun but will also be overwhelming teaching three.  This will be the first year I’ll be seriously teaching three kids so I am not sure yet how we’ll balance our time.  Hoping to give each kid a lot of one-on-one, though.

Weather has been cooler  here, which is nice!  Sad to see the summer end.  It really has flown by for us!  I know there’s still August, but August always feels like the start of a new school year for me.

Well, that’s all I’ve got for now.  I’m sure to update with pics and posts when I have more stuff to share :)

 

Update

Jun
2013
07

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We’re still going strong with schooling here!  Yes, we do school year round.  :)  It’s a must if we want to take some serious time off around Thanksgiving time and December.  Very much well worth it for our family!

We had some major hiccups occur so the last couple of weeks have been a wee bit crazy here so that meant schooling was put on the back burner.  My oldest was ecstatic, of course. lol

But now we’re back into the swing of things and finding ourselves wrapping some stuff.  One of those things is ALEKS math level 5.  Eeeek!  I cannot believe we’re ready to move on to level 6.  People, that is 6th grade math!  She is not even ten and she’s ready for 6th grade math!!  Insert Mom Fainting Here.

Well, to be fair, she is actually turning ten real soon, but yes, she is still a grade ahead in math.  I never pushed or pressured her.  Math just comes really easily to her although she’ll tell you clearly how much she hates that subject!  Go figure!

Because it freaks me out more than it freaks her out that she is done, I always take forever to change over from one level to the next.  She just keeps on doing the reviews and assessments until ALEKS sends me an email that pretty much states “She is ready for the next level, dummy!  Quit balking and make the change!”  Ok, they don’t actually say that but I do get several notifications stating she is ready to move on before I finally make the change.

We’re still trekking along with Elemental Science’s Zoology.  We once more altered the way in which we’re doing it.  She’s really into typing so she is now typing her work in the PDF on the computer and is enjoying this process so much more.  So the key is to be fluid and allow for change.  If it makes her more inclined to complete her work and doesn’t seem to be an issue, why make it an issue?  So typing it is! :)

My goal is to finish Zoology and move on to human anatomy.  We picked up a pretty awesome book with large posters and I’m excited to start this with her.  We’ll see how that goes!

She’s nearly done with Soaring with Spelling so I’m going to need to look into purchasing the next book.  She really loves using this for spelling so no reason to change something that is clearly working for her.

She’s trekking along in her Growing with Grammar book -slow going but progressing nicely.  No rush, of course :)

Winning with Writing is slow.  It’s great for the reluctant writer and really easy to follow.  I seriously have no complaints whatsoever but, well, I’m just not sure this is working for her.    I love Winning with Writing.  I love it because it teaches her and tells her how to write along with options on what to write about under each lesson.  And even though I personally love to write and know how to write, I’m afraid she isn’t writing up to par and I don’t know how to steer her better.  I think the problem is she is lazy about writing.  It’s not that she doesn’t know how, it’s that she doesn’t want to and won’t put forth the effort required to write.

I’ve actually purchased several books to teach me to teach her how to write.  From Writing Strands to I can’t even remember what else at this point.  I’m researching alternative options but honestly don’t know if I should spend any more money on this subject and just continue on with Winning with Writing.  Time will tell.  On the fence at the moment.

We’re still on Volume 1 on History of Us.  No complaints thusfar so I am happy with our choice to use Joy Hakim’s books.

As for the two little monsters munchkins.  =D  They are doing EZTales and Time4Learning from time to time but mostly they are just being kids and having fun.  We do board games, arts and crafts, go out and get dirty.  I’m trying to steer them back into using Alpha Phonics after they lost interest in it.  I really love that book but I also realize they are fairly young so I never pushed them to keep going with it.  I’m re-introducing it now that they are older and they are showing interest in reading and wanting to write.

I’ve actually started seeing LETTERS in their drawing.  Yes, purposeful letters that they wrote (or painted)!

I’m noticing distinct differences in their drawings and paintings.  One really likes to take her time and colors in the line or draws details on her ‘people’.  The other does more abstract work lol  It’s pretty neat seeing their uniqueness shine through.  :)

So I think that pretty much sums up what we’ve been up to.  :)  Enjoy your summer!  I know we will :)

Metamorphosis

May
2013
21

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We moved the chrysalides to the pavilion and pinned it to the side.  I put down some paper towel on the bottom -good thing, too!  You’ll see why soon…

And before long, we had five beautiful Painted Lady butterflies!!

What I didn’t expect was the mess these little ones can make!  They expel a red liquid called meconium right after they emerge.  Here, have a look:

We put bunched up tissue paper with sugar water, as Insect Lore recommended we do.  Also added some flowers and slices of oranges.  They really loved the oranges!

The girls absolutely loved watching the entire process!  They were also very good about releasing the butterflies.  We said good bye and waved (well, the little ones waved!) and the oldest helped get the butterflies out of the pavilion.  All in all this was an amazing experience!  I highly recommend doing this with your kids!

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posted by on Random Photos

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We had a beautiful Mother’s Day yesterday!  Started out with the girls preparing me a breakfast in bed and a trip to the botanical garden!

Hope you all had a wonderful Mother’s Day as well!