Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Week . . .

Since the holiday this week made the learning week shorter, I decided that we would just forgo binder work and learn about Thanksgiving. I found some great information online including a brief description of where and why we have Thanksgiving. It included the original proclamation and one from George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. I was also able to find some word searches, cross word puzzles, coloring pages, etc.

C9 and C8 each wrote a letter a day, to someone that they were thankful for. We will deliver or mail them today! We watched a video about John Bradford and the first Thanksgiving by Living Scriptures that was fairly accurate. They read a nice poem about being thankful and then each of them wrote a poem of their own. In the spirit of the holiday, I wanted to share them. (everything is EXACTLY as they wrote, for C4, she narrated and I wrote for her)


I'm thankful for Mommy because I love her.
I'm thankful for Daddy because he's my Dad.
I'm thankful for food because it's good.
I'm thankful for my house because it's my house.
I'm thankful for books because I like to read them.
I'm thankful for drawing because it's fun.


Thanks for the birds which we love.
Thanks for the sun that shines up above.
Thanks for the garden which we shall feast.
Thanks for all Life and our trees that give least
Thanks for my family that takes care
And the world, We live there.


Thanks For Many Things

Thanks for the corn, Cobs all bundled up.
Thanks for water, That I sip from my cup.

Thanks for fire, To keep me warm.
Thanks for family, To keep me safe from harm.

Thanks for a bed, That keeps me asleep.
Thanks for a pillow, To rest my head while counting sheep.

Thanks for many things, and last but not least,
The turkey, We'll have at our feast.


I just want to add that I am very thankful to all those family and friends that help and show support for our home's school. Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Nature Study . . .

We have not done the next challenge yet, but are continuing to study mammals and our pine cone collection. Recently, the kids read and learned about wolves, goats, rabbits, sheep, and white-tailed deer. They have really enjoyed reading about these mammals in the Handbook of nature study and from information we have found online or in other books. They have made a few journal pages to go along with some of them also.

We have really enjoyed our pine cone collection. As strange as that may sound, we happened upon an unusual event with the pine cones. We first heard some popping or cracking noises coming from the box. When we looked at them, we noticed that one of the pine cones, was opening. It was a green one that looked more like a seed pod than pine cone.

We watched it over a week and a half open and transform into a pine cone.

The kids have really loved getting up each morning and looking at it to see the changes.

We were able to take some pictures of the changes to share.

As time goes on, it will be interesting to see how it progresses to look like the other cones in our collection.

We have so many questions that we hope will be answered. Will it turn completely brown? If so, how long will it take? And more . . .Nature is so amazing!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Home Education . . .

Opening: Read 3 Nephi 20-23, C9 Old Testament Scripture Reader, C8 New Testament Scripture Reader

Spelling: C9 just completed lesson 46 and C8 just completed lesson 9 in Word Lessons.

Reading: Both C9 and C8 have read through their readers to lessons 17. They finished their "Star Wars" books. C4 and I have been reading from Story Wagon. We have also been continuing to work on the sounds of letters and letter recognition.

Copy Work: They are continuing to copy the Articles of Faith with #6 last week, still working on spelling, punctuation, and capitalization.

Family Read: We read more of Arabian Nights and are going to start on The Song of Hiawatha.

Math: C9 did great with double digit multiplication. She continued with a review of that and did a worksheet of triple digit decimal addition and subtraction for my benefit. C8 also did a worksheet of decimal addition and subtraction. C4 is working on number recognition, but she has her counting down!

History: We read about the beginning of the colonies in our American History Stories. It introduced the kids to the story of Captain John Smith and the Jamestown colony. We found a book called Pocahontas and Captain John Smith by Marie Lawson, that we have been reading together. It has been very interesting to learn more about the early settlers and their experiences.

Take Five: I have forgotten to post on this the last few times. Both C9 and C8 have really enjoyed the last few assignments. They got to learn about maps and their legends, keys, and rose compass. They learned how to use a compass and how to tell directions and learn distances from maps. They also did one about secret codes and how they are used. They got to make a few codes of their own and decipher each others codes.

Other:The service project of raking leaves went well. Now C9 is focusing on the "t" party, getting all the details taken care of.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Nature Study, Outdoor Hour Challenge #6 . . .


Finally, after getting everyone over what fevers, stuffy noses, coughs, etc. that they had, we were able to get outside for a while. We decided to check out some of the parks in the area. Since we have only lived here for just over a year, we have only been to a few. The one we went to today is close to the hills and a couple nature trails. It was small, but had a lot of trees and that is exactly what we needed to look for items for our collection.

C8 already has an infatuation with rocks and has a substantial collection of those. It finally came to a point that I had to say NO to gravel or rocks that resembled gravel, because she would fill her pockets with it. She has collected quite a few and between grandparents, parents, and Christmas, she has gotten quite a collection.

C8's rock collection, also some from C9

Because she has already gone to rocks on her own, I wanted to start something new that the whole family could appreciate. So we decided on pine cones.

These are interesting and everyone, from Dad to C1 can appreciate them and collect them. While at the park, we were able to find a few different kinds, large and small, new and old. Staying true to collecting, we only took the ones that were already on the ground, none plucked from the trees.

C1 finding a great pine cone

We also saw a bird's nest that had some kind of blue string weaved into it. It was quite a ways up in a tree, but a bird landing on it and adding to it, confirmed our theory.

The kids played for a while in the leaves and even said that next time we should bring our own rake and make a big pile to jump in. It was nice to get out, but I think next time, we will try to find something a little more out of town and secluded. When we did our listening time, the noise of nearby equipment working drowned out anything possible to hear.

No one can resist throwing leaves

Monday, November 9, 2009

Home Education . . .

Opening: Read 3 Nephi 17-20, Article of Faith #10 song

Spelling: C9 just completed lesson 45 and C8 just completed lesson 8 in Word Lessons.

Reading: Both C9 and C8 have read through their readers to lessons 15. They finished Charlotte's Web and said that they did enjoy it. They said that since they had seen the movie that there were many things that were not surprising, so it got a little boring. They are now each reading "Star Wars" books that they got from the library.

Copy Work: They are continuing to copy the Articles of Faith with #5 last week. They do a good job at remembering the words, but need to be more vigilant at the spelling and punctuation. When they paid more attention to this, their dictation was much better.

Family Read: We were able to get Arabian Nights from the library and have been reading this together. I have, however, had to "edit" some of the stories because of some content I think is too old for them. Interesting that I got it from the children's section of the library.

Math: C9 started with double digit multiplication. It took her a few problems to understand the concept and when to multiply and when to add, but she picked up on it and will do one more worksheet just to solidify the method. C8 has been going over triple digit addition and subtraction. She has done a great job and we will start on multiplication soon.

I picked up a beginning math program for C4. I found it at a local store on clearance for $3! It is by DK and we are both excited to get started with it. I was going to make number and counting flash cards, but these are a little cheaper, so why not!

History: We finished reading about early explorers and will now move onto the colonies in our American History Stories.

Other: C9 is in charge of arranging activities for her Activity Day group for the month of November. She decided to do a service project, racking leaves, and a Manners "T" Party. She is very excited to plan and get all the details taken care of. I like that they get to do things like this. She should learn a lot about planning, preparation, and entertaining.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Arguement for Creativity . . .

I really enjoyed this article and talk. Please take the time to watch the talk, it is about 20 minutes long. This gentlemen makes such a great case for creativity. Bravo, Ken Robinson.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pumpkins . . .

We have been disappointed that there are not a lot of pumpkin patches in the area. A tradition of ours was to go to a patch as a family and enjoy all the fun that goes with it; hayrides, pumpkin picking, corn maze, etc. Since moving, it has proven hard to find such a place, so we had to get pumpkins at the local grocery store, definitely not as fun.

The girls did decide that this year they wanted to paint their pumpkins instead of carving them. So I found the paint and they got the table ready. They each did their own designs and had no help from me. Here they are:




The finished products!