Archive for the ‘homeschooling’ Category

The Four Facts

November 8, 2012

My littles have all been learning their multiplication facts, while the older children are working through drills.

This is another video Paul created to help them drill facts. They listen to one of them for a few minutes each day.

We’ve been doing this for right at a month. It’s funny to hear Meredith (age 3), trying to recite multiplication facts!

If you missed the other videos, you can find them here:

Three Facts

Two Facts


The Three Facts

November 8, 2012

Paul just finished our newest multiplication video! This one is for the 3 facts:

If you missed the last video, you can find the 2 facts HERE.

The Two Facts

October 23, 2012

Paul has been creating little videos for our children to learn their multiplication facts. They watch them each day during our school time.

We thought we would share with all of you! (Hopefully, we’ll have more soon. :D)

Teach Your Child to Read– Phonics/Reading

October 10, 2012

We are asked about the curriculum we use quite often.

Honestly, most things change from year to year, but we have managed to find a few “keepers”.

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons remains our main phonics curriculum.

Years ago, when we first started to think about homeschooling our children, this was suggested by my uncle (a veteran homeschooler). It was the first homeschool book we ever purchased.

We’ve used it for all of our children who are now reading (that would be seven, now finished). Jon and Emma are currently working through the book.

I’ll admit feeling frustrated when we first used this book. I didn’t feel like we were making good progress — but I decided to stick with it and over the years, it has proven itself again and again.

Through the years, we’ve developed a system of sorts, for using this book. I’m happy to share these ideas with you!

We don’t do any of the handwriting, rhyming, or touching assignments. I’m sure they are useful for some, but we just decided they didn’t really add anything substantial toward our goal of reading, so we just don’t do them.

Second, I try to work our way through all the letters and sounds in each lesson before we work on the words.

I know this is not how they have each lesson organized, but it works well for us.

To be more detailed, I actually ask my children to name all the letters first, and then we go back through the lesson for them to tell me the sound each letter makes.

This gives me a chance to remind them of long and short sounds for each letter.

Also, because I have them naming each letter (something the book doesn’t tell me to do), I’ve avoided the problem of having worked my way almost all the way through the book before my child can name each letter.

Some additional little details– we realized early on that this book was being used so much, it was falling apart.

When we purchased our second copy, I went ahead and ripped all the pages from the book and placed them into page protectors. Now our book is housed in a heavy binder (which after so much use is now also beginning to fall apart– anyone know where to find a heavy duty binder??).

We keep each child’s place with a bookmark I’ve made for that child. I just slide it into the page protector where I last left off with our lesson.

This seems insignificant to me, but our children LOVE their bookmarks. Most have them tucked away in their keepsake boxes.

It’s a BIG deal in our home when you are old enough for Mama to create your phonics bookmark.

The other thing I’ve done is initial and date each child’s progress through the book. It’s a growth chart, of sorts. I had never really thought about this being special until Courtney was glancing through it’s pages a couple of weeks ago, and mentioned how nice it was to see each of their initials and the date beside the lessons.

Admittedly, I’ve not been as consistent with initialing as I should have– now that I know it’s meaningful to them, I’ll definitely make more of an effort.

If you are using this curriculum, or think you might, OR if you have some ideas for making school memorable and fun, I would love to hear your ideas!

Homeschooling Updates…

October 9, 2012

A quick post this morning!

It’s fall….that means we’re reworking our homeschool day. We’ve thrown out the things that didn’t work to replace them with new ideas, projects, and supplies.

This year, I’ve found some great things at the Dollar Tree.

This little puzzle was one of several we picked up. I think Target normally has some really nice little puzzles for a dollar, as well.

This was a super cute, super frugal idea I found some place on the internet.

It’s a color matching game for the littles. (I’m going to have the paint chips laminated for long term use. We’re also assembling a set of these for Courtney. Should the Lord decide to bless her with children of her own, she’ll have a head start on creating homeschooling supplies for her litles.)

They store neatly in a zippered pouch and binder! (Walmart has these little pencil pouches for .75!)

These types of games have been great to use while we’re working on school with the older children orare just looking for something productive for a little one to do while everyone is busy during the day.

I also gathered supplies for making an inexpensive magnetic board:

I’m trying to find time to create some new file folder games for my children.

Do any of you have a favorite resource for this??

In addition to our normal school work, the children are always working on life skills. This week, Matthew has been learning to sharpen garden shears.

There were several pair left in this house by the previous owners. I couldn’t bear to throw them away so Matthew has a new afternoon project!

We’re using this You Tube video:

He’s excited to learn a new skill and we’re excited to have sharp shears to use in the yard (and just in time to clip herbs for the winter).

Jessica's 1st Art Class Drawing

April 23, 2012

Courtney has started taking Matthew and Jessica to art classes on Friday. They are having a great time! This is Jessica’s 1st drawing: