Tuesday, April 26, 2011

For the Birds

As part of handicrafts for school Samuel and Maxton built birdhouses ($1@Target).

As part of Science (nature study) Samuel observed the birds that visit our backyard.  During 20 minutes of observation he saw several cardinals, chickadees and house finches (spelling?).  Two days before he had spotted 2 barn swallows and a hummingbird.  He chose to add information about the chickadees to his notebook.

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Homeschool Mother's Journal

In my life this week…
Allergies! I have not slept well all week. Every morning I have a Benadryl hangover and I hate it. Time to stop eating again...
We also had a very bad storm blow through and knock down 5 or 6 of our trees.  It was a scary dark time taking shelter in the bathroom!
In our homeschool this week…
Samuel is really enjoying A Child's Geography: Explore the Holy Land. We are "visiting" Israel and it is fantastic. Another trip we need to save up for.
Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…
Last night we went to a live performance of "As You Like It", a play by William Shakespeare.  Samuel sat through it (2 hours) without a complaint.

In a few hours we are going camping!
My favorite thing this week was…
Seeing the bright blue, clear sky after the howling winds of a storm. I don't like storms....but it's Spring!
What’s working/not working for us…
Simply Charlotte Mason curriculum guide is working very well for us. I even added Spelling Wisdom, and Samuel and I both liked it very much.
Mythology is not working for me.  Actually, I have skipped it all together because I cannot find the right children's book for it.  I want one with appropriate illustrations and a short summary. No details, please.  We can learn details when he is older, or maybe never.  Studying Ancient Greece without it is OK.
Homeschool questions/thoughts I have…
Timez Attack is fantastic and I learned about it through connecting with moms through this journal!

Can someone help me with an appropriate ancient Greece book on mythology? My son will be 9 next month.
A photo, video, link, or quote to share…
Take a look at my Pre-piano 2 class - all 5 year olds learning to play the piano.  In this video they are playing the root melody while I play the song on the piano. Fun!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Music Study - Franz Schubert

Tuesdays is Music Study day at our school.
We are following Harmony Arts Mom spring nature study plans, which makes our schooling so much easier.
We have listened to Schubert's Piano sonata in B-flat major and many of his other compositions, even "dancing" to March Militaire in group piano class.

Today we will read his biography , listening to more music and completing a notebook page.

And even though this term our geography is centered around the Middle East (the book of Joshua) we will have to visit his birthplace (pictured above) and take a deep look at the map of Vienna, Austria and its neighbors.


Handicrafts for an 8 and 3 year old? Yes.  they need to learn to make things with their hands - it is a totally different skill than they way they use their hands for the Wii remote!

I can sew, cook, clean, crochet, etc. and Samuel will have to learn those things as part of his chores, so what should I do for handicrafts? Enter family...

A few weeks ago he received inspiration from Grandma for gardening.  And a couple of days later Samuel helped Jose, his Dad, put down grass around the pool.

Last week I found flower pots to paint at Target, for $1 - and they were excited to paint them and add them to the garden.  Then the twins showed up and handicrafts were taken to a new level (you know...paint on the floor, on shoes, in the sink, everyone wanting to take their shirt off, etc.)!

Nature Study - April 1, 2011

On our Spring/Summer schedule Science is scheduled for Fridays and it is a favorite. Even the twins come out to learn!

 Every season we study the same tree to observe and document the changes.  We chose a Post Oak in the front of our  house, observed the makings of an acorn and buds in the tree.

Inspection of the trunk was necessary in order to find if any insects were using it as a home or restaurant...

They chose Post Oak leaves and stamped them for the Nature Book - and picked up old acorns to compare with new.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Homeschool Mother's Journal 3

The Homeschool Mother's Journal

This is really a great way to review my week and share with other moms.  Too bad I don't have time to read everyones post!

In my life this week...
I really did not try hard enough to keep up with counting points and exercising every day last week.  I SO want get it together this coming week.

In our homeschool this week...
We will continue with the 2nd week of Term 1 of our Homeschool plan.  Guidance from Simply Charlotte Mason has been priceless, plus Samuel is loving the new plan.

Places we're going and people we're seeing...
Hmmmm.  I believe we only have a "trip" planned to IKEA to buy folding chairs!  IKEA is 1 hour away from our home but these folding chairs are the best, I need 30 and you cannot buy them online.

My favorite thing this week was...
Samuel loving school.

What's working/not working for us...
Everyone pitching in to do chores and keep the house looking good worked well last week.  We follow the Motivated Moms schedule and hope it works this coming week too!

Homeschool questions/thoughts I have...
What is the best way to learn multiplication tables? Rote memorization is not working!!!

A photo, video, link, or quote to share...

A link to my website help you find The Best Music Programs for Homeschoolers

Shakespeare anyone?

Have you included Shakespeare in your homeschool?

I am planning to start tomorrow.  I've pre-read William Shakespeare and the Globe and Bard of Avon, made a schedule and hope that everything runs smoothly!

Theses books about his life are delightlful and quite fascinating.  A subject I knew nothing about since Shakespeare was not deemed important in my high-school in Costa Rica.

Click on the schedule above and join me in learning about Shakespeare.  I know it will be a lot of fun!

The Best Music Programs For Homeschool Families

Not everyone wants to teach music at home.  Not everyone can teach music at home.  So here are 3 of my suggestions for the best music programs for you to be involved in.  From newborn to elementary age, these programs offer what you are looking for. Similar post on my website ttp://missdorla.com/category/homeschool/

Musikgarten -  has a very Charlotte Mason feel in that it offers a broad and generous curriculum spreading a musical feast for your family. It is based on understanding how children learn music and the best way to teach them. Movement, singing, listening, music theory, nature study, "living stories", composer study, music appreciation, poetry and even geography are a part of this program.   Your child's music education with Musikgarten may begin when he/she is a newborn and continue up to age 10 with their last piano book.  Musikgarten uses a variety of  acoustic and electronic instruments in superb musical arrangements (click and scroll down to hear a sample).  The children's creativity is carefully nurtured guiding them to even improvise a 12-bar blues! This is definitely my favorite program!

Music Together - strives to keep their classes focused on family and what families do together. Their songs are fun and lean more towards a folk style.  If you need a class where you can enroll several of your children at once, this is the one to try. You can also listen to their songs to get a better idea of the Music Together style.  The Music Together is non-sequential and each book or unit is characterized by its own instrument.

Kindermusik - a very popular music program that also offers classes for all ages and even offers specialty classes to enhance language development and other cognitive skills. Listen to their music here.  I have not taught the new program, so all I can do is refer you to their website, but I have seen the joy this music class brings to my nephew and niece and their family!