Saturday, March 5, 2011

Planning 2011-2012 Already??

Am I the only homeschooling mom who is *always* planning for next year? This time of year I seem to get the itch to start planning next year.  Some things I'm thinking about:
  • We have really enjoyed doing Galloping the Globe this year! My kids have learned so much, which I have to say I wasn't expecting from an "overview" type curriculum! It is very rewarding to hear the kids telling their dad about various things we've learned in school.
  • As much as I've enjoyed this year's lessons, I am really looking forward to doing a full Sonlight core next year. We are going to do a World History Overview next year. The reason we did Galloping the Globe this year was to give Ethan a year to get ready to do a full core with Aaron, and he is ready! It will be very nice to finally have them combined in so many subjects.  My plan right now is that they will be combined for history, read alouds, Bible, science, math, and electives.
  • Yes, we will be combining our 1st and 3rd grader for math! Aaron is right on target with math, but Ethan has the most amazing mathematical brain I've ever seen.  It has been a challenge this year to give him math that challenges him while giving his motor skills and writing a chance to catch up with him.  I am so thankful that Joanna introduced me to RightStart Math.  It is perfect for our family! We will be doing Level D next year.  This will require that we continue with Level C with Ethan throughout the summer, but he likes math so much, he doesn't mind; and it is worth it for me to have them doing the same math next year.  Math is SO time consuming, and it is one of my least favorite subjects to teach.  It will be nice to only have to teach it once a least until Drew starts school!
  • I am pretty sure I am going to join a co-op next year.  I have put it off so far because I didn't feel like my kids needed it, and I didn't want somewhere we *had* to be each week.  However, I have found that I have two subjects I HATE to teach: art and science.  I am fine with book science, but the hands on experiment things that kids love? I cannot stand making the mess and all the time it takes to be prepared.  I think it might be worth it to me to use a co-op setting to teach these two subjects.
  • Reading continues to be my challenge with Aaron.  The reader's that come with the core we are doing include 6 (out of 22) books that Aaron already read this year.  My fear is that he will be bored with the readers because they won't be much of a challenge.  I guess I will have to keep on top of what he gets from the library!
  • I need some good ideas for music.  You would think that as a former piano teacher I would have that covered, but we really don't do much with it.
So what are you thinking about for your next school year?

Friday, March 4, 2011

Zoo Day

Due to how sick I've been this school year, we haven't done as many fun activities as I like to do with our school days.  Fortunately, the surgery I had in January has helped me regain my health and slowly but surely, I am getting stronger and stronger each day.  So when we recently had a beautiful day, we took advantage of it and went to the zoo! The most exciting part of it for me was that I wore the kids out before I wore myself out! Woo-Hoo!

These birds are new to our zoo.  They were so fun to watch, but would not cooperate for the camera to get a good picture!

No matter how many times we go to the zoo, the boys both have to get a map and follow along on their maps each place we go. Too cute!

The birds weren't the only creatures not cooperating with the camera...

Can we do *anything* without involving sports?? Here the boys sit on a statue of a horned frog making the TCU "Go Horned Frog" sign!

How cool is it to see an albino alligator?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Thinking A Lot About

The Fruit of the Spirit


Praying that God will patiently instill these in me.

Miniature Golf

Jerry and I have never been big on celebrating Valentine's Day.  It seems like nothing more than a Hallmark holiday, thought up for nothing other than selling flowers, greeting cards, and candy.  Personally, I'd rather get flowers three or four times throughout the year, when they were really bought from the heart, than once on Valentine's day because "it is the right thing to do" - for the same price, too! I mean, we should show each other love all year long, not just on one day. So we really don't do much on February 14, but our children get so excited about it and want to do something special.  For them, we planned a fun family night out.  Jerry came home from work a bit early and we headed out to play some miniature golf and then went to Taco Bell for dinner.  Not the typical Valentine's Day celebration, but for us it was perfect!

Aaron lines up his first putt, only to realize he really needs a shorter putter!

Ethan has a bit more casual stance when playing miniature golf!

Andrew was the shock of the evening! Not only did he *love* playing, he was incredibly determined! We didn't know just how persistant he was before this night.  He WOULD NOT quit trying until he got his ball in the hole.  In fact, if he hit the ball too close to the hold the first time, he would pick the ball up and move it farther away from the hole so it wasn't "too easy" a shot!

Isn't he just incredibly cute???

We did have one casualty - Ethan fell, ripped his jean hole so large the jeans are no longer wearable, and skinned his whole knee.  Fortunately, the establishment had neosporin and bandaids. Whew! Crisis averted!

Due to Andrew's persistence, we were at the park until after 7:00! At least we got to see a beautiful sunset.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

On Humility

From Beth Moore's Esther study on Esther ch. 6:

"All will fall before God's throne.  Blessed is he - and blessed is she - who doesn't have far to go."

I sure hope I never become so much like Haman that even my friends and family realize there is no more hope for me!

"My salvation and my honor depend upon God; he is my mighty rock, my refuge." Ps. 62:7