Our Journey

Archive for the ‘Homeschooling’ Category

Back 2 School 2014/2015

Today started our 2014/2015 school year!!!

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I had great plans, plans that we would awake early, have a wonderful breakfast. Sitting down together communicating and enjoying ourselves. I pictured us getting our books out and sitting down with the girls and diving into our new books!! I love starting with a brand new book!! I envisioned our day going smoothly and according to the plan!!

But that is not how it went! And I am happy to say it probably never will!!

Ok new homeschooling families out there, that little scenario while it might sound like a great day in reality it’s not fun, it’s not messy and its not real!

I posted on Facebook:

Day one did not go as planned!! So maybe someone forgot, (I’m not saying it was me) to print up all the sheets needed or make up all the binders!! Day one consisted of looking over the material, setting up binders, a little bit of writing, a bunch of reading and going through another ream of copy paper. The beauty of homeschooling is I get to do it all again tomorrow. ‪#‎HomeschoolLife‬

So I thought I was all ready for school to start, but then we overslept, ok so really as a homeschooler we can get up when we want and school when we want but I wanted us up by say 9am that’s not too much to ask, is it?? We finally awoke around 11 am, there goes that breakfast I was planning (French Toast, maybe tomorrow), especially that close to lunch time. Finally round up the books, and surprise I forgot to make some of the binders (shhh don’t tell FB). I figured I would be up early with Leddybug and go over her work with her and then when Amber rolled out of bed I could sit down with her and get her started on the new way of school this year.  But nope, we are all up at the same time and all trying to do school at the same time and I am running from the dining room table to the living room and back again, oh and did I mention Hubby was home today and it was raining most of the day so the dogs were all over the place too! Uggh! So today didn’t turn out the way I wanted it, but I am thankful that we were all home together. I am thankful that hubby was able to step in and help Amber with her Algebra while I was doing Latin with Leddybug.

10580048_272874462896741_6904205154160779681_nAnd then I look on Instagram and see this picture that Amber took and I realize that today was a great day!! Memories being made!!

 

So I told you that I would tell you about Amber’s schedule so here goes.

This year we were not able to get a Challenge B program for Amber and the closest program would have been a 2 hour drive each way so while we LOVE CC it is not possible for us to travel that much each week. So I have combined a little of Challenge A (we just did) and a few Challenge B items and joined a local co-op (a first for us).

Amber's ScheduleMath this year will be Saxon Algebra 1

Latin will follow Challenge B

English will be left over EIW work and Positive Action (co-op)

Science will be Apologia General Science (co-op)

Debate will be a review of Challenge A and adding in Current Events

Rhetoric we will be reading Fallacy Detective and reviewing the Catechism questions from Challenge A

 

Some might ask why I would review Challenge A? We plan to review because Lord willing next year we will have a Challenge B and I didn’t want next year to be a review for her. Also with keeping with the classical education model the first stage is being given the facts and the second stage is organizing those fact and the third stage is being able to express a conclusion, so by taking a second look at some of the work I am really helping her to know these facts and be able to express her thoughts.

We are excited to start with a semi local co-op that is for older students. Our main homeschool group is mainly younger kids and while the teens started getting together for group outing this year there is not as much interaction as I would like. We will also be doing 4H this year. So it looks like even though this was not the way I pictured this year going, the Lord has provided for our needs and wants!!

 

 

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

Good Bye Summer

July 31st already??? Wow! Where has the summer gone??

summer

Are you still in summer mode or are you vamping back up for school mode?

This week we have started the planning of our school year. Thankfully with doing Classical Conversations it makes my job super easy.

This year LeddyBug will be doing Foundations with a brand new community!!!

Being a part of CC is been such a blessing to this family. First of all it is super easy especially for an over planning mama like me. And the bonus, we get to hang out with our friends doing fun games and activities once a week (for school)!

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This past week I went on CC Connect, an online at home file sharing site, and started browsing what others have been sharing and trying to figure out what we would be incorporating into our day. Picture 1 is all the wonderful stuff I found and Picture 2 shows how simple our notebook looks like.

Last year I had divided our notebook by subject. It was easier for me to print everything and keep it organized, but we soon realized that the big binder intimidated LeddyBug. I had to take each week’s work out and put it into another folder for her and then transfer it back. Needless to say papers got lost, torn and crumpled. This year we decided to divide our notebook by weeks.

I searched for numbered tabs that go 1-24 and could not find them but I did find some that go 1-12 and since CC has 2 semesters I just divided it for Fall and Spring, like the Challenge program does. Now LeddyBug just has to open her notebook and look for the week number and do those sheet in that week. (I’ll let you know how this works for her)

CC Connected Users:

If you are on CC Connect or C3 as some call it, check out these users for great ideas!!

melodystroud – Small memory flip book

mrosser – Tri – board sheets

sheriellis – Notebooking pages

tara504 –English and Science worksheets and Blackline Maps

fidesformata – Science worksheets

 

Blogs that I follow for CC:

Half-a-Hundred-Acre Wood Brandy has tons of resources to help anyone looking to do CC.

Classical Conversation at Home – Beth has great resources too!!

There are tons of other blogs that have CC helps but these 2 are my main go to. Brandy also has a weekly link up on her page that others can chime in with ideas and helps. Go check them out!!

 

The question I get the most though is, What does your schedule look like?

schedule board This is LeddyBug’s Schedule (3rd grade)

 

As for Amber, well that will be another post. Hope I answered some of your questions. If not, leave a comment and I will answer!

 

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

At Home in Dogwood Mudhole ~ Review

 

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 This review was one of the easiest reads I have had all year. Normally the reviews I have done have been for the kids and while they have been fun, having something to read just for fun was well FUN! I received  Franklin Sander’s first book Nothing That Eats! in the three part series  At Home In Dogwood Mudhole! After reading this teaser I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this book.

Excerpt from the back of the book: When Y2K looms and modern life fails to satisfy, Franklin Sanders and wife Susan go from nuclear family to multigenerational farm. Despite Susan’s admonition that they acquire nothing that eats, they gain dogs, chickens, horses, cows, pigs, ducks and sheep. Their children move back in and bring their spouses, filling Dogwood Mudhole with grandchildren. It’s no Green Acres, but through sheer persistence and good humor, they learn to farm.  

 photo Franklin_Deal-300x451_zpsb3f59745.jpg  The biggest surprise for me was that Franklin Sander’s writes this book in a series of letters instead of in a storybook format. He tells us in the preface that He wrote these letters once a month for sixteen years recounting his family’s news for The Moneychanger, which is his monthly newsletter.    Another thing that I enjoyed about this book is that there are plenty of pictures and hand drawn maps to help you to relate to the family. Unfortunately some of the entries didn’t seem to flow just right for a book, while I’m sure they really worked for a monthly newspaper, reading them back to back in the book did confuse me sometimes. I also LOVED that he supported “roadside joints, mom-and-pop, family- and real people run businesses that he patronized” , he would give addresses and phone numbers that that readers can experience the charm of the south too!   We start this journey in June of 1995 and one of the last entries takes us to September 2002. We learn about his family and the family pets, we go on family vacations, see how they participate in civil war reenactments. After dealing with the IRS and Y2K looming right around the corner, what’s a family to do?  I hope you get your own copy of this book and see how the Sanders deal with Y2K and farming life!!   How did your family prepare for Y2K?  Nothing That Eats is available in paperback for $22.95 or $16.95 Kindle/ePUB/PDF

Volume Two: Best Thing We Ever Did is also available in paperback for $22.95 or $16.95 Kindle/ePUB/PDF

    I would recommend this book for teens and adults!     Check out what the Crew is saying!!Photobucket “Prices are accurate at the time of this review.”

 

 

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

Disclainer ©2011- 2013. Blessings from Homeschooling.

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

VocabularySpellingCity Premium Membership ~ Review

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Have you heard about VocabularySpellingCity? I’m sure you have! We have used the free version for many years but over the last couple of weeks we were given the opportunity to review VocabularySpellingCity’s Premium Membership! While we enjoyed the free version having the Premium is so much better!!!

After you purchase the Premium Membership you create a parent account and then you can add up to 5 students into your class, and they can be all in different grades.The Teaching Resources page has many great features for you to use to set your child’s account. There are Language Arts Lessons, Articles, Useful Word Lists, & Help & Information, with tons of how to videos and helpful resources. After you have created your account and added your students you need to make a list, there are how to videos to help you if you get stuck, there are also premade Word Lists that you can use or you can add any words you want. So if your science curriculum has vocab word, or your history lesson, or any other words that you feel your child needs to know you can manually add them to a list.

Since Leann and Bella are in 2nd grade and I wasn’t sure about which words to put in, so I decided to use the Summer Program – grade 2 list. Once the lists are made you can then assign activities with due dates, you can add as many or as few as you would like. The girl’s first week was a bit overloaded with assignments. All of the activities are really fun and I had a hard time choosing which ones they should do, but I realized that if I only assign 4-5 activities a week then typically they would play other games just because they were fun and not because they had to!

Here’s a peek at a few of the fun filled games that they get to play!!

Flash Card: gives the word and the meaning. Great study tool! photo flashcard_zps3b3e1de7.jpg

 

Word-O-Rama – Game show host asks the question and the student guesses!! FUN!! photo wordorama_zps693e47d4.jpg

 

Letter Fall – Student moves the mouse back and forth trying to catch the right letters! photo letterfall_zps87fc7ce0.jpg

   Another great option is the App!

Courtesy of VocabularySpellingCity: Both free and Premium Members can log in through the app for easy access to their lists! Students of Premium Members can complete their assignments and parents and teachers also have easy access to their student records through the app. Premium students assigned to multiple teachers’ classes have the option to select the teacher whose assignments they wish to complete through the app.

Games available through the App. spelling3 So how do you know if your child likes it?? When it’s time for bed and this is what she is doing: spelling4    

VocabularySpellingCity is for ages K-12th grade.

Price: Families with up to 5 students $29.99 or Classrooms with up to 25 students $49.99, they also have pricing options for schools.

Typically the girls would work on VocabularySpellingCity for about 30 minutes a day. The assignments only took a few minutes to complete but then they would play other games.

Bella’s view: I really like this program, I LOVED playing all the different games!

Leann’s view: I LOVE IT!!! I have so much fun playing the games on my phone and on the computer! The only thing is that I wish Word Search was on the phone app.

My view: This program is super easy to set up and to monitor the kids progress. Having the word lists also helped to take a bit of the burden off of my shoulders, since I didn’t have to look through the books and come up with words. I love the progress tracker, I can tell how long each of the girls took to complete an assignment, how long they played each game, each time they log into their account, it also grades the tests for me! No more hunting for loose papers, everything is neatly put onto a sheet that is printable for your records.

I would recommend this program for ALL students. Whither you are a homeschooler, public school or private these games are a fun a helpful tool for all kids to learn a better vocabulary and spelling skills. 

  Check out what the Crew is saying!!Photobucket

“Prices are accurate at the time of this review.”

 

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

image ©2011- 2013. Blessings from Homeschooling.

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

Teaching with Classical Conversations

This year we switched up our curriculum. We decided to go with Classical Conversations!! Last year we went to our first informational meeting and as soon as hubby and I left we were driving home and I asked hubby, “So what do you think?” I was so nervous that he wouldn’t like it, I had done so much research on CC before the meeting and after I just knew I wanted the girls to use CC. Thankfully he was on board too!! He loved what he had heard and the rest is our new journey!!

I believe so much in Classical Conversations approach to teaching that I decided to take the plunge and become the Challenge A Director!!

This week marks week 5 for our Challenge program and week 4 for our Foundations program. After a month of getting use to the schedule and becoming familiar with all the products, we have settled into a nice routine. The girls are enjoying CC so much, that they have even done school on weekends, just because they wanted to.

For fellow CCers I wanted to share what is helping us!!

IMG_1408 Here is our Weekly Timeline Board- We bought the board at Wal Mart and used double sided tape to attach the sheet protectors.  And of course we had to add a few flowers.  We got the idea from Brandy at Half-a-Hundred-Acre Wood.

We use this everyday for our review and it helps Leann to “see” what we are talking about! It folds up easily and goes behind the bookcase when we are not using it. We also made a binder with all weekly sheets divided into different subjects.

IMG_1383This is our Travel Memory Book – We printed up these weekly review sheet that we found on CC Connected! Search for user sarasmommy06. We then cut the sheet and put them into a cute photo album for light weight travel option! IMG_1384

We have used this while we are on the road for field  trips!!

IMG_1409We purchased these small binders and sheet proctors for our Timeline Cards.

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We put together this Notebook – filled with lots of goodies found on CC Connected! We got this cover and planner pages from Brandy also!CC Notbook 4These Skip Counting Sheets for Math we got from  CurrClick!ccnootbookWe added tabs for each subject. This is gonna come in really handy for evaluation time ;)

 CC Notebook 3 After a couple of weeks, I realized that the Binder was a bit overwhelming for Leann.  So instead I decided that each week, I would put all of her work for the upcoming week into her folder (She Loves Agent P) along with a sticky note with her other work that she has to do each day.

With the Foundations Program we have to add Math, Reading, Language Arts, Spelling. And then we add in Music, Crocheting, and Piano.

For the Challenge Program, since it is a complete program there isn’t very much to add. Amber does voice lessons, 4H, Crocheting and Piano also.

Since we have a smaller class we have introduced a few games for reviewing.

If you are interested in CC check out their website and find a local community to go check out. Local folks check out our CC Community – CC of Sebring!!

Hope to see you there!!

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

©2011- 2013. Blessings from Homeschooling.

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

Time4Learning ~ Review

Time4Learning

We had the pleasure of reviewing 2nd grade for Time4Learning. What is Time4Learing? Well I’m glad you asked, it is an online educational program that teaches preschool through high school! The cool thing about Time4Learning is that you can use it as a full curriculum, or as a supplement to your existing curriculum.  This program is not for only homeschooler, if your child is in public school or private school you can use this for extra help, after school fun or during the summer to keep them on track!

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For this review we received a 6 month subscription for Leann. Leann was excited to get to do school on the computer. Time4Learning allows the student to use one grade level below and one above, so if your child needs a little more help in a certain area, no problem or if they need more challenging work on a certain subject, no problem. Time4Learning covers spelling, phonics, reading comprehension, vocabulary, math, social studies, science.

Here is the lesson plans for each grade:

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As the parent I had to set up the accounts and answer a few question so they knew what assignments to assign to Leann. The student actually has their own account with a log in name and password, Leann had no problem logging in on her own. After setting up the program and adding it to her bookmark page (for easy access) I sat down with her and showed her each section. Leann had access to LA extensions, Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies. I even showed her the Playground. The Playground is filled with fun educational games that the kids get to play, but to enter the playground your child needs to do a minimum of 15 minutes of school work. As the parent, you can set up playground time, you can set up which subjects you want your child to do each day, you can even put a time limit on how long they can be on each subject.

In the Parent’s Area, there are many useful tools available. You have access to a forum where you can chat with other parents using Time4Learning. I did not set any timer on Leann’s work. I allowed her to pick and choose which subjects she wanted to learn and allowed her to work at her own pace.

Leann at first really enjoyed being a “big kid” and being able to work on the computer. But soon the novelty wore off and it became just school. Leann typically started her day with LA extensions, which works on vocabulary and facts on different subjects.  Activities include  a puzzle, a story; which has options for reading: Read to Me, Read Aloud, Read by Myself and I Can Read.Then the student takes a quiz to check their comprehension. After the quiz they move onto Sounds, Letter & Words and under each activity is a printable resource to complete later on right then. There is another quiz at the end of those activities.

Language Arts is up next, with help in the Phonics department!

Math has numerous areas to work in. Leann did not care for the format of the math program. It tends to follow a public school curriculum: Learn the concept, do a worksheet (see below), take a quiz. 

time4learningmath

Next up is Science then Social Studies and both follow the pattern of listen to the lesson, do a worksheet, take a quiz.

Overall Leann enjoys getting on the computer and listening to the lessons. She has found out some very interesting stuff, like earth worms are easily seen after the rain because the rain gets into their homes and will drown them if they stay underground. We will continue to use Time4Learning as a supplement to our day.

Prices:

PreK – 8th Grade

$19.95 / student per month  & $14.95 / month for each additional PreK – 8th student

High School

$30 / student per month; Includes 4 Courses Check out what the Crew is saying about Time4Learning!Photobucket “Prices are accurate at time of review”  

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

image ©2011- 2013. Blessings from Homeschooling.

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

Doorposts ~ Review

Doorposts Logo

We had the pleasure of reviewing Beauty in the Heart; A Study of Godly Beauty for Young Women from Doorposts. This 186 page study contains 86 days of study in addition to 45 extra studies given at the end of each study. It is recommended for girls ages 10-12 and up to use this study. While this study is primary written for young ladies it is also appropriate for young men too. In a few place you will see an * which indicates there are alternate questions in the back of the book for the boys.

Price: $14.00

Recommended materials include a Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, Nave’s Topical Bible and a King James translation Bible. Highlighters or colored pencils are needed for marking passages in the Bible.

This study includes 10 Chapter on Beauty:

  • Beauty in Submission
  • Beauty in the Heart
  • Beauty in Trusting God
  • Beauty in Humility
  • Beauty in Modesty
  • Beauty in Serving
  • Beauty without Discretion
  • Beauty in Crisis
  • Beauty in the Gates
  • Beauty in Review

Each chapter/study is set up for a 7 day week. In each study there are gray boxes in the side margin that give optional instructions. Each day’s study will take five to twenty minutes to complete. Younger students might need help with some of the lessons.

How we used this study: At first I gave Amber, age 12, the study to do independently, but by day three she had her first hiccup.  In the instructions it tells you to mark certain words in your Bible a with a certain color marker, Amber had some trouble locating the words because she was using a different Bible translation. Once we figured that out it was a bit easier for her. Since our weekends tend to be more hectic, Amber used this study Monday through Fridays in the beginning of her school day.

Amber’s thoughts: While she enjoyed this study and plans to finish the book, she did think some of the questions repeated themselves. Also some of the reading was a bit too much in one sitting, she tended to get a bit bored rereading the same passages over and over again.

My thoughts: I thought this study is awesome and while it might be a bit much for Amber alone it makes for a perfect Mother Daughter Study!! We have had many great discussion after reading each day’s study. Beauty in the Heart; has helped this Mama explain to my preteen what the Bible has to say on Beauty. During this critical time in a young girls life, learning to express themselves with outward adornments and how the world views beauty; this study helps them to keep it all in perspective.

I would recommend this study for young ladies and again I think this is a perfect Mother-Daughter Study!!

***SPECIAL OFFER***

You may pre-order your copy of Beauty in the Heart and it will ship on August 29th but if you order before August 31st you will also receive a FREE copy of the e-book. To redeem this great offer use the code “beautyshop”

Check out what the Crew is saying about Doorposts!Photobucket “Prices are accurate at the time of this review.”

 

Wishing you many Blessings Rainbow

 

image©2011- 2013. Blessings from Homeschooling.

All rights reserved. Ask before using my stuff. Contact me @ blessingsfromhomeschooling@gmail.com

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