Saturday, March 31, 2012

Lions, Tigers, and the Constitution...Oh my

We have made it back home after a few days out of town.  Mark had to go work in Kentucky, so we went with him. (love this kind of flexibility that comes with homeschooling) 

Even with air conditioner problems two different nights it was a great trip.  The kids had a good time swimming in the pool and going to the zoo and eating at Bob Evans.  Yep!  Eating at Bob Evans!  We ate there 3 times in 3 days.  These kids are crazy I say!  Just crazy!

The zoo in Louisville was a blast.  Except for that part where the mom forgot to give her sneezy, itchy eyed kid allergy meds in enough time for them to work before we got there!  Just FYI, if you have a kid with allergies and you are going to zoo in the Spring time give him allergy medicine much earlier than right before you get out of the car to walk in. 

Anyways, once we got the constant sneezing under control we really enjoyed seeing the animals that were WILD and OUTRAGEOUS for us.  Take a look:

                                                      This Gorilla was really showing off!

The lion in the back decided when we walked up that she would show off not her great "queen of the jungle" roar, but instead her totally awesome ability to roll over while bathing in the sun!

And then finally:

                                         The tiger must have stayed up too late the night before!  
                                          This sleeping trick is the best thing he could offer us! 

Now that you are completely overwhelmed with excitement from the awesome tricks of zoo friends...actually even though we didn't hear any great roars, or big time displays of toughness from Gorillas beating their chest, it was still a marvelous day.  Truly, seeing a tiger so close (he was only about 3 feet from us) is breath taking.  Not to mention, how cute the gorilla was holding his feet while he slept.  All in all a great day at the zoo!

For school this week we did something totally new for us.  We began working on a unit study.  Since I read about them in the Fall I have wanted to try one and see if it is something that would work for us.  I have to say that it has been great!  We still have a couple of days to do, but we have learned so much.  The kids have both said that they like it, which is great because I wasn't sure how they would like spending hours on the same subject everyday.  The study is about the Constitution and has so far been pretty thorough as far as people and places.  The last part of the study looks like we will be discussing some of the content of the Constitution, the government branches, and about the Bill of Rights.  I have really been pleased with it so far!

I'll post more on it next week when we have completed the study.  At the moment my coffee cup is empty and must be refilled! 


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Sunday, March 25, 2012

The week with testing...

Our week of testing is finally over! Yay!  Well, truthfully it was only 3 days!

I am relieved and the kids are relieved and I guess all is right in our homeschooling world again.

This being our 1st year to homeschool the testing has made me rethink the way we do some things. Don't get me wrong we are having a great year. But, there are a few things I will be changing up for next year. For instance, our math. Preparing for the tests I realized there were things in the practice tests we took that were not covered in their math curriculum. After doing some investigating, I realized that the material had not been covered YET. If we would have had another 3 or 4 weeks before testing one kid would have totally finished his math book and the other kid would have only been 5 or 6 lessons from the end of hers. So I am thinking that next year I want them to be finished with their math books for the year and all new material before testing. It will just take a little tweaking as far as scheduling goes, I hope! ;-) If anyone has any tips that I could implement for next year as far as testing I would love to hear them.

Since we were testing this week our other school work was minimal. We just worked on some math assignments and some MathWhizz. Other than that it was fun in the sun! Then fun in the rain and finally we ended our week with a trip to the bowling alley with friends. We had a park day during our unseasonably warm for East TN days. It is so nice to be able sit on the front porch and read again.

We are doing something totally new for school this week! We are going to do a unit study on the Constitution. Never done a unit study before, but I like the idea of it and have been wanting to try it out. The kids will be able to do a lot of it on their Ipads. I think that they really like that idea, and so do I since we are also heading out of town for a few days this week.

Have a great week!

Bienvenido a Mi vida loca

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Where did I put the carefully planned schedule?...

How in the world did a whole month pass since I last posted?

Well, let's see: a husband who was out of town for a couple of weeks in a row, a new extra curricular activity started, and trying to prepare the kids to take standardized tests.  Those kind of things will disrupt a carefully planned schedule...well and if you do not make a carefully planned schedule then you are really in for it.(Oops, did I just admit that I didn't have a plan?!  Hhmm I very well could have had a plan, but if I did I have no idea where I put it!)

The month of February was full of new adventures for us.  The boy child decided he wanted to try Karate and is now enrolled in a Tae Kwan Do class.  He is loving it!  I am very glad about it because he really needed to find his "thing"!  The school he takes classes at has a home school class during the day which works so great for us right now.  I am not sure I would have been able to get him anywhere in the afternoon or evening because of having to get the girl child to and from dance 4 days a week.

Speaking of dance, I am so proud of the girl!  This year she is doing so well in dance.  She is becoming a dancer instead of a little girl who takes dance.  It has been a fun transformation to watch.  I am very excited about recital coming up in May because I think she is just going to really shine this year.

Our school work for the last couple of weeks has been mostly "learning how to take a standardized test" stuff.  The girl has never taken one so I wanted to make sure that she knew some of the in and outs of the process. I found some practice material online and we have been working with that. 

One fun thing we have been doing for a couple of weeks is learning the Animaniac President's song.  It is a catchy tune that will get stuck in your head. 

Trust me, if you google it and listen to it right now, you will walk around for the rest of the day singing: 
"George Washington was the first you see he once chopped down a cherry tree. President #2 would be John Adams, and then #3, Tom Jefferson stayed up to write a declaration late at night..." 

Oh great! I have other things I need to be doing right now and I guess I will do them singing about the presidents! Ha!

Off to work on making a plan for this week. (hopefully, I will be able to remember where I put it when I am done!)  I want to add some really fun learning activities in with test prep.  Is that even possible?  I guess I will let know!

Bienvenido a Mi vida loca