Tuesday, March 8, 2011

End of February and into March



It's hard to believe we're in March now.  Most our snow has melted, and now we're dealing with mud and floods.  It took me an extra half an hour to get to the chiropractor last week because I had to find a road that wasn't flooded.  Fortunately, the house is on higher ground.

The weekends since my last update have been spent with illnesses. First, it was dh with the flu, then the following weekend I had a migraine that put me down for two days, and then this past weekend I had the flu. I miss church!!!! I was not able to do daily reading for my Bible in 90 Days, but I should still finish before the end of March if I get in daily reading now. I'm in Acts. I seriously never thought I'd make it this far! I can't wait until I can say that I have read the Bible completely through.

What is it about nearing the end of a school year that makes you try to cram more in??? Is it automatically a time of reflection and seeing that you didn't do all you wanted to? Sigh.... Well, dd13 has been asking to do Latin. This week we started William E. Linney's book, Getting Started with Latin (subtitled Beginning Latin for Homeschoolers and Self-Taught Students of Any Age). His website, GettingStartedWithLatin.com, is a treasure trove of free resources that go with the lessons in the book. It's a gentle introduction with short lessons. Very doable. We downloaded the mp3 files from the website and dd13 reads the lesson from the book, then listens to the audio file that contains that lesson's commentary. Then, if there's any written work in the book, she writes it in her Latin journal. We will also be doing Science Roots by Paula Hasseler. DD13 will be doing Marine Biology at co-op next year and Science Roots will help. She'll be making the cards as recommended, as well as making a ring of cards to flip through for review. (The card ring will contain the Science Roots and the words she learns from Getting Started With Latin and be used for review.)

Also, I will be adding in VocabAhead's SAT: Vocabulary Cartoons, Videos, and MP3s. We have done the Vocabulary Cartoon books by the Burchers before , but they always fall by the wayside. When you purchase the VocabAhead book, you are granted rights to download a 547M zipped file that contains videos and audios to go along with the lessons in the book. I plan on having DD13 read the lesson and then either watch the video or listen to the audio. Every 10 words I will give her the quiz that's in the book. Again, short lessons that are very doable.

ChicksLet's see...what else has been going on? Oh yeah, we got 16 new baby chicks!! They're adorable and about a week old now! Our other chickens are almost 2 years old and barely gave us any eggs this winter. They've started laying again some, but are destined to become "chicken pot pie"  soon.  Shhh...don't tell them!

Phoenix Stove


With our tax refund, we decided to invest in a Hearthstone Wood Stove.    I wanted something that I'd be able to cook on if our electric went out....which happens from time to time.  We found a used one for sale at a third the cost of a new one.  Getting a good fire going has been a learning curve, but I think we've got it now.  It has a soapstone top and sides to retain heat better.  We've been mesmerized each evening by its beautiful flames.  We boiled water on it and made a cup of tea this evening.


As for our homeschooling, we're still plugging along.  DD13 is on Module 13 of Apologia's General Science.  I saw that Knowledge Box Central has revised their lapbooks.   Overall,doing the study guide lapbook has been great.  However, a few of the components were not well thought out and obviously not put together before being released for sale.  I look forward to seeing the changes made to the General Science one.

DD13 is continuing her Art Fundamentals class at co-op again.   She continues to work on Saxon 8/7 and is almost finished with her fourth Life of Fred math book, Pre-Algebra with Economics.

DD10  is continuing the Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry at co-op again.  She also started crocheting and health classes there.   At home, she continues to work on Math-U-See Epsilon, which focuses on fractions.  She's having a tougher time with fractions.  Though she understands the concepts greats, she's rushing and making silly mistakes too often.

We continue to do Fix-It and It All Begins with Genesis, each once per week.  We should be finished with both of these in early May.  At that point, we'll pick back up with IEW's Student Writing Intensive-B and do Teaching the Classics.   I just can't seem to get everything in, so I'll wait until these other two items are finished.

We are continuing with with Mystery of History Volume 1.  Not sure how we got so far behind, but we just finished the first half of the book.  The girls are really enjoying it, and we will continue the series next school year.  (I've already purchased it!)     We finished Rise of the Golden Cobra, which became another book the girls begged me to read.   (FYI:  I did have to edit two or three minor things in the story.)   I have loved how the books I've chosen this year were mostly books they would have never picked up on their own, yet by the time we were done reading it, they were sad to see it end.

I did pre-read a couple other titles that I had hoped to use in our history.  Unfortunately, they have  language and/or unnecessarily detailed violence that I just didn't feel like trying to edit as I read.  It's a shame, because both books were an overall good read for the subject.  Here are the titles in case you'd like to see if they will work for your family:  Pankration:  The Ultimate Game by Dyan Blacklock (The pankration was a ruthless, bare-fisted event of the Olympic games.  The story is set in 430BC.) and To Ride the Gods' Own Stallion by Diane Lee Wilson (This takes place about 640BC in Ninevah and one of the main characters is the son of King Asherbanipal.)  Of the two, the second would require the least amount of  editing.  I don't know, we just did Ninevah today in history...maybe I will do the Stallion book....I don't think I have anything scheduled to read for a week or so......

Well, I guess that's about it, other than to say that I've been in planning mode lately, trying to figure out what all we're going to do in our own homeschool as well as our co-op next year.   A new program I plan to have DD13 do at home is Hewitt Homeschooling's Lightning Literature.  I opted to go with Grade 7 for next year (although she'll be 8th grade) because it has James Heriott's All Creatures Great and Small, which I think she'll enjoy.

OK, that's it for this update....Thanks for stopping by and have a SONshiney week!





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