Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Homeschool Curriculum for 2013-2014

Hard to believe another year for home schooling is coming to a close!  Technically, we hit our mandated 180 days tomorrow, but we will be continuing on for the year until the end of June or until Aly is born - whichever comes first.  We will be taking off a few weeks after Aly is born, and then starting back up with the new school year on August 5th.  My 4 yo actually starts school this year in PreK4, so I will be planning for four kiddos, and adding the youngest boy into BFIAR with his sister.  So here are the curriculum choices for the upcoming year:

K will be in 5th grade:
Devotions: Train Up a Child Bible Curriculum, starting with "Choosing Obedience"
Geography: Up until the end of December we will be studying Asia and Africa, then starting the states
English: Shurley English Level 5 and starting 6, if needed
Bible: Studying the Gospels using Veritas Press curriculum
Spelling: All About Spelling Level 6 and starting 7 if needed
Handwriting: Handwriting Without Tears
Math: Math U See Delta
Science: Apologia Zoology 3
Reading: Prairie Primer (starting with On the Banks of Plum Creek) and American Girl (starting with Kirsten)
Other: Keepers at Home

L will be in 2nd grade:
Devotions: Same
Geography: Same
English: Shurley English Level 2
Bible: Veritas Press curriculum - Genesis-Joshua
Spelling: All About Spelling Level 3
Handwriting: Handwriting Without Tears
Math: Math U See Beta
Science: Same
Reading: FIAR and Readers
Other: Contenders

W will be in 1st grade:
Devotions: Same
Geography: Same
English: Shurley English Level 1
Spelling: All About Spelling Level 1
Handwriting: Handwriting Without Tears
Math: Math U See Alpha
Science: Same
Reading: FIAR and Readers
Other: Contenders

S will be in PreK4:
Devotions: Same
Geography: Same
Reading: BFIAR
Main Curriculum: PACEs from Accelerated Christian Education

B will be PreK2:
He will join S in BFIAR, and everyone for devotions and geography - other than that, he will be doing busy bags and such.

Fun fun :)

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

International Night

International Night was last night with our home school group.  What a fun time!  There were a number of countries represented, with traditional clothing, money, food, music, and so much more! Here are some pictures of some of the other displays.

My four oldest decided to work together to display the United Kingdom, which consists of Wales, Scotland, England, and Northern Ireland.  What a fun time!  Each of the children chose one of the four countries to work on in more depth than what we had previously done.  We had our general try-fold board with lots of information, our lap book, and a 3-D puzzle of the London Tower Bridge.  We also made some white chocolate mousse.  We basically found a recipe from the United Kingdom, and "Americanized" it with what ingredients we could find here and in measurements we use :)  Basically we brought 1.25 cups of heavy whipping cream to a boil, poured it over 12 oz broken up white chocolate and mixed until creamy.  Then we added a softened 8 oz block of cream cheese and thoroughly mixed.  We let it set over night.  Yummy!!!!

My youngest of the four chose Northern Ireland.  We brought the Titanic 3-D puzzle we had previously put together.  She also made a pearler bead celtic knot and a shamrock relief canvas.  The pearler bead craft was quite time consuming and frustrating for her at times (she is only four), so momma ended up helping some with it.  The relief project she loved!  I love that it is truly hers and she ended up basically doing a pattern, though she swears she didn't mean to :)  Basically, she put different size shamrock stickers on a white canvas.  She then took green paint and painted the entire canvas, including over the stickers.  After it dried over night, I helped her peel the stickers off.  The end result is a painted canvas project all of her own creating!

The next youngest of the four chose Scotland.  He had a blast working on his projects!  Two of the most famous things of Scotland are Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster, and bagpipes.  He was shocked to learn that a loch is basically a lake, so "Loch Ness" is actually the name of a lake :)  He decided to make his own replication of Nessie.  For somer reason (hey - who knows!), he decided Nessie is purple.  Then, since momma was not nice enough to buy him bagpipes (mean momma!), he decided to make his own of those as well.  It turned out really cute, and ummmmm, much quieter than the real thing :)

My second oldest took Wales.  For some reason, this country seemed more difficult.  There just didn't seem to be as much information or crafts that fit this country.  We finally settled on making a castle and a shield.  I think he much preferred making the shield, as he got to use paper mache and paint on that one :)

That left my oldest with England.  She took charge in an unbelievable manner!!!  She made over 100 pieces of sidewalk chalk to hand out and wrote a paragraph (with citations even!) explaining how the White Cliffs of Dover, England are made up of natural chalk.  She also did a gorgeous quilling project. While quilling is not thought to originate in England, it was there that it was first formerly a type of art (she also wrote a paragraph on that).

Overall, I think the kids learned a ton, from their own projects, each others, and from the other displays set up.  I'm sure they will be desiring to do something similar next year.  Next year our family will be focusing on Africa, Asia, and starting the United States for state studies, so we will see what they chose to do :)

Operation: Fencing the Garden

A couple days ago, I introduced you to Zoey... our cute, adorable, mischievous puppy!  As much as I love this dear sweet puppy, she can be a handful!  Last year, we had a nice size garden... that got eaten prior to being picked by tomato horn worms, squash borers, june bugs, and our children!  Does anyone else have the issue of having to look at your children and telling them to STOP eating your veggies so that you can cook with them?  Anyways, our plan for this year was to keep a better watch on the kiddos and to stress how important it is to leave the garden alone.  However, we quickly learned that Zoey thought the garden beds were her personal digging area, and the plants her own special chew toys!  Thus started Operation: Fencing the Garden!

Our garden consists of 4 raised 4' x 8' beds.  The last of these is home to our strawberry patch.  Around the boxes are cement pavers.  Behind the garden, in front of the privacy fence, is my herb garden.  We decided to construct a three foot tall fence around the entire garden!  Yup - my hubby with a hurt back, our 5 children, ages 9, 7, 5, 4, and almost 2, and my pregnant-self decided to take on this project.  And we did it!!!  Check out the before, during and after pictures!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Field Trip: Magnolia Plantation

There is something soothing about the smell of fresh flowers filling the Springtime air!  Even better is when these same flowers happen to be located on a historical landmark!  Our family got the the pleasure of going to Magnolia Plantation on a day that was heavily discounted for residents of South Carolina!  Wooohoooo!  Otherwise, our large family probably wouldn't have ever made it there.   The gardens and petting zoo area made it well worth the trip, though I must admit, without the discount, we probably won't be going again.  Numerous flowers were in full bloom.

The petting area had deer, pigs, chickens, other birds, goats, rabbits, and a small reptile house.

Along the many trails, we got to see some reptiles sunning themselves to warm up in the unusually cooler temperatures for the area.

This little fellow was maybe 5 feet from us on the other side of the grass.  Glad he stayed over there!

All in all, it was an enjoyable outing for our family and a great chance to spend the day together!