Monday, August 10, 2015

PreK Curriculum Choices

This year I am moving on to PreK with my daughter.  I cannot believe how much she has learned last year.  She knows almost all of her letters and sounds.  She can color and count.  She loves books and can retell stories.  And she can memorize well.  We will be off to a great start in the fall.  We will be concentrating on her fine motor skills like cutting, writing and coloring.  She just loves school time.

Daily Learning Notebook for PreK- FREE from Confessions of a Homeschooler

Rod and Staff Books A-F
Preschool - Set of 7 ABC Series

Language Lessons for Little Ones Volume 1 from Queen Homeschool

Come and See Science from Queen Homeschool (with brother)

Bible Coloring Book from Rod and Staff with brother

Character Concepts Review

Raising Rock Stars Preschool Bible Verses

Other activities:
*Homeschool Co-op

Starting in January we will start Reading the Alphabet
Reading the Alphabet

Listen to her retell Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late by Mo Willems!  She's got it!

Monday, August 3, 2015

First Grade Curriculum Choices

I can't believe we are heading into First Grade next year!  It seemed like it took forever to get to Kindergarten (remember I taught K for 12 years before I had kids) and so this is NEW territory for me.  I thought and researched a lot and found what I think will work best for this coming year.  We are using the next volume in a few areas and trying a few new books.  I'm very excited.  I got my new planner and I'm starting to fill it out with important dates. 
The Well-Planned Day Homeschool Planner, July 2015-June 2016  -     By: Rebecca Scarlata Keliher

I will be sharing two curriculum posts- one for my son and one for my daughter.  So be looking out for my PreK choices coming up soon.

Daily Learning Notebook- FREE from Confessions of a Homeschooler
I usually add things like word search, some math printables and writing

Reading-  We will be using Learning Language Arts Through Literature starting with the Blue Book.
We will also keep working in The Reading Lesson

*Language Lessons for Little Ones Volume 3 from Queen Homeschool
*Learning to Spell Through Copywork A from Queen Homeschool
*Printing with Pictures Book C and D from Queen Homeschool
*Lessons in Manners for Copywork from Queen Homeschool

*We will use Math Lessons for a Living Education Volume 2 from JellyBean Jar Publications

*We will read from the following books from Queen Homeschool:
Log Cabin Days
American History for Little Folks
American History Storybook
Boys and Girls in American History
Short Stories in American History

*Rod and Staff Bible Pictures to Color (with sister)
*God is.... A to Z (copywork verses) (no longer available)
*Review Character Concepts from last year
*Lessons in Responsibility for Boys

 * Come and See from Queen Homeschool (with sister)

*Developing Motor Skills in Art from Rod and Staff

*Hoffman Academy piano lessons online (FREE!)
*Beginning in Music One from Rod and Staff (supplement)

*Typing Club
*Uncle Rick Audio Book Club
*Which Way USA from Highlight Magazine
*The Talk from Intoxicated on Life
*Mailbox Club
*LOTS of read alouds (see Read Aloud Revival)

*Volunteer at the Food Bank
*Homeschool Co-op

For PE we will try to go outside and do some running, play at parks, climbing, jumping, games with balls, riding bike and anything active.  We also do exercises in the house, run the stairs and some fun kids yoga videos. 

We also will be writing in our journals several times a week using ideas from This Reading Mama and The Measured Mom

This year I'm going to try a block schedule.  So basically I'm going to do split the year into 6 terms.  During each term I will do Language Arts, Math, Morning Time and 2 extra subjects.  If I don't get the extra subjects done, that's OK. 

So for my son the first term we will do Language Arts (Language Lessons, Handwriting, Reading), Math, Morning Time, Science and Music. 

I was trying to come up with something simple so I can fit the many things in, but not all at the same time.  I watched this webinar by Pam Barnhill and Sarah Mackenzie that inspired me greatly. 

I do a lot of learning things at meals like verbal math, Bible stories, read-alouds, questions and answers, memorizing.  I also do some of these things during Morning Time. 

First grade- here we come!!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Summer Fun: 4th of July, camping, VBS, Day Camp and more! (picture post)

We are trying to read one Bible verse a day starting in 1 John, but it's tough to keep up with.

Kids went camping with daddy overnight up at Mt. Rainier.

My dad came all the boys went camping.

4th of July at Lake Tapps- Mt. Rainier in the background.  They were really having fun!!

My son lost another tooth- front one!

My daughter still can claim the nickname Messi Jessi.

My son's "store."

A trip to the ER with high fever and not feeling good.

Blueberry picking at the free park just around the corner from our home.

Lots of yummy blueberries to pick and freeze.

Another year of VBS!

Found a bike for $5 at a yard sale.

My son's junk yard.

My daughter went to her first preschool day camp and loved it!

Mommy/son date at Panera Bread.

The last 5 weeks we have been getting up and leaving by 8 or 8:30 every morning.  This is not normal for us as we homeschool and don't usually go out until 12-1 in the afternoon for errands or library trips.  But that schedule is done and the kids had lots of fun, but now we will stay home a little bit more, go to parks, bowling, concerts and movies.  It's been a hot summer so we'll hit the spraygrounds too.  I have a lot to do here at home, but my homeschool is pretty much planned.  I bought all the school supplies and I have all the curriculum.  I found a great new way to schedule and I'm ready to go.  I will share what I have planned this month in two separate posts for First Grade and PreK. 
What fun things have you been doing this summer?
Hope you are enjoying the fun times you can have with your family.  Don't forget to take time for yourself as well.  Blessings, Shonda


Friday, July 3, 2015

Food Fun: Koolaid Playdough Recipe

Well, playdough is not technically a food, but it's a recipe so I'm sharing.  Last Fall we joined a homeschool co-op.  One of my jobs was to be a teacher assistant in one of the kids' classes.  The teacher and I clicked!  She had a lot of great ideas, and I really liked the playdough she made.  I asked her to share it with me. 

 RECIPE for Koolaid Playdough:
3.5 c. flour
1/2 c. salt
3 small packages unsweetened koolaid
3 T baby oil
2 c. HOT water

Mix first 3 ingredients in a large bowl. 
Add baby oil and hot water.
Mix well and knead when cool.
Add flour and oil as you need to acquire desired consistency.
Store in an airtight container.

I'm not sure how long it lasts, but it seemed like we used this for quite a few weeks (maybe a few months) because the teacher kept it airtight.

The kids played for about an hour and half!!
Jessna made grape.

Shrade made strawberry.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Summer Activites: Golfing Camp and Swimming and more!

Last week we started our 4 weeks of busyness!  My son had golf camp last week and we are in the middle of 2 weeks of swimming lessons.  Here are a few pictures and tips.

My son really enjoyed his week at golf camp.  He wants to go back again next year!

On one of the days my son had golf camp, I took my daughter on a Panera Bread date!  She thought that was fun!

This week the kids started swimming lessons. 
Last year I did 2 weeks for one kid and 2 weeks for another. 
This year I made their lessons back to back and next year they probably will be in the same class.
So while one child is in their lesson I am sitting on the bench with the other.  We just started receiving the magazines we got from Highlights Puzzle Club called Puzzlemania (for ages 7+) and Puzzle Buzz (for ages 4-7).  There are mazes, stickers, wordsearch, hidden pictures and more fun puzzles.  I like to see some of these thinking skills developed in my children in fun ways.


And on the way to and from all these outings we are listening to audio books on CD that we got at the library.  So far we have listened to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (good one!), The House on Pooh Corner and we just started Sarah Plain and Tall.  We don't seem to have as much time for reading at breakfast or lunch now that we are busier so I like this option.  I just started listening to this podcast- Read Aloud Revival- that is giving me some great new ideas! 

We also take little breaks and head out to the beach to dig and discover.  We are definitely enjoying this incredible weather this summer.  All too soon we are stuck indoors when Fall and Winter come around.  I have learned to pack bags with snacks and essentials pretty quick as we head off to new adventures. 

What are you up to this summer?

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Food Fun: Raspberry Chocolate Walnut Baked Oatmeal

A few years ago I found Lynn's Kitchen Adventures and she featured a baked oatmeal dish for breakfast and I have been making them ever since!  I really like baked oatmeal because as it cools, it is not mushy, but becomes more like a bar.  I then cut and put on a cookie sheet and flash freeze.  The next day I can put these frozen bars in a bag and then take them out to thaw and be ready for breakfast.  They are so yummy and you can put so many good things in them.  We like blueberries, peanut butter, cinnamon, apples and always the base includes bananas. 

This week Jessna and I made Raspberry Chocolate Walnut Baked Oatmeal.  I adapted this recipe from Lynn's basic oatmeal recipe.

You can find the recipe on Woman to Woman as I submitted it for being a winner on their blog for a cookbook.

Jessna is really good at oiling the pan we use for cooking!  She also helps with mashing bananas and stirring while I pour in the ingredients.  She is always eager to cook with mommy!

Oatmeal is ready to be cooked!
You can find the full recipe HERE
Let us know if you try this one!  We love it!
Blessings, Shonda

Friday, June 5, 2015

Food Fun for Kids: Make Your Own Fruit Pops

Hi Friends-  I often am found in the kitchen cooking or baking.  I invite my kids to help and my daughter has definitely decided that she wants to cook with mommy in the kitchen.  In fact, she is even finding recipes for us to try.  She picked this one out of the High Five magazine.  "Mommy, can we make this?"  If we have the ingredients I always say YES!!

Basically this one was putting a slice of banana at the bottom of a paper cup, stick a popsicle stick in it, cover with vanilla yogurt and freeze it.  To eat, just peel off the paper cup.  Pretty easy and yummy!
They are so fun!