Life these past few weeks:
It has been a rough 2 weeks. This week we had both computers acting up in different ways, making it hard and frustrating to get some school work done. The laptop was even unusable because water was spilt on the keyboard, so typing anything was interesting. Thankfully Hubby was able to replace the keyboard on it so it is now working again! We depend on computers daily for school and life, so having functional computers is a blessing.
But, what has made it really a hard few weeks is the fighting, bickering, and disobedience from the 3 little boys. Some days it really gets to me, and then I am so grumpy from it all. Overall though we have done okay over the last few weeks, and had some fun learning in between. So, writing these posts helps me to see the blessings in the last few weeks, and reminds me of the positive moments. So, even though I don't show a lot of the "bad moments", believe me, they're there. I just try to focus on the positive here.
Last week we went to the first homeschool skate at Oaks park for this school year. The kids hadn't done it all summer really, but they picked right back up and did really well. The little boys are getting better and actually getting some speed. I have no pictures because I was in such a frazzle that day I didn't grab the camera. I did take a few videos on the ipad, but they didn't turn out very good.
April has started up horse lessons again which means we have to kill about 45-50 minutes in Silverton each week. We did this for 2 years until she took a break last year. Well, now that she's back we decided to make one of our landing spots during that time... the library in Silver Falls. I don't know why we never went there during the 2 years, except maybe once. It's odd, I don't know why since we go to about every library we come in contact with.
Anyway, we stopped in and found some new books that we hadn't seen before. It was a pleasant experience, and I'm looking forward to another library to hang out at. Seriously, I realized this year that the library is one of our official "hangouts". We love books, and don't mind being there 2-3 times a week, but this is what our table looks like in the living room most of the time...
...I don't know, it drives me a little nuts sometimes. Books are always all over the place because the bookshelves are full. Our tiny living room can take no more shelves! Guess it's time to re-organize and make more room.
For art we started a Vermeer study. We studied "The Girl with a Pearl Earring" first. All the kids watercolored a coloring page except April, she did her own drawing by tracing it first.
Alex's preschool this week consisted of activities to go with the book Corduroy. I wanted to do a whole BFIAR week, but it just wasn't coming together. I was able to just read the book a lot to him though, and get a few activities together. We might come back to this book later, he is just very interested in reading Corduroy a lot right now, so I went with the flow.
I was able to pull out some preschool busy bags that sort of went along with Corduroy. I found this button matching game. He just loved it.
The boys started soccer 3 Saturday's ago, so just before this week started. They were so excited, and still are. Alex just loves his "team."
One of the books we found at the Silverton library was this Little Cowpokes cookbook. Just on a whim I pointed it out to Aric, and it was love at first sight. He took it, and immediately started talking about all the things he wanted to cook. That lead to him helping with 2 dinners this week. I loved how involved he got, even right down to the slimy uncooked chicken! I was amazed how into cooking he is. I think he has found his new favorite thing to do.
So, one of the dishes he wanted to make was this BBQ chicken on skewers. He did so good with this. He helped me plan the list for what we needed to buy, he chopped the chicken and prepared the marinade with me. Yes, that knife looks sharp, but I was there constantly with him, and he did great.
Honestly I was surprised he didn't care about handling the chicken.
I kept offering to help, and at first he didn't want my help, but after a little bit he realized it was a lot of work cutting all those chicken pieces. So, he cut and I skewered after a bit. I love cooking with my kids in the kitchen, but it takes a lot of patience on my part. Sometimes I just want to get it done, but they need to have the satisfaction of creating something yummy to eat. Unfortunately, he didn't like the end result. Everyone else thought it was tasty, but I'm not sure why he didn't like it. Must have been the sauce.
Aaron completed a zoob challenge this week. His challenge was to create each number out of zoobs, but he could only use that number of zoobs, or a multiple of it. He did really well figuring out the multiples! He totally gets the concept of multiplication, and I love that. The number 1 is easy. Number 2 he used 8 zoobs. Number 3 he used 18 zoobs, and so on.
This is his favorite kind of school. He is very hands on. I loved the satisfaction he had from completing this assignment.
We also did some pastel art this week. Pumpkins!
Some books we are reading...
I have been reading The Giver. This was a book April picked from a few choices I gave her for her reading. She read through it pretty fast, like usual. I however take longer reading, but I'm determined to read as many of her required books as I can. Even the free choice ones. I gave her a book list (3 pages long) at the beginning of this week for her 8th grade reading list, a list of books that I'd like her to get to. Some will be required, and some she can choose at her own leisure. Anyway, she thought it was Christmas (that's what she said), and was so excited to have a list! I realized that there were many on that list that I haven't even read, but I know are classics, and good choices. So that is my plan this year, to read as many as I can. I started with The Giver, and I am enjoying it.
She is now reading The Book Thief, and we are both reading The 7 habits of highly effective teens by Sean Covey. I think we are going to read it separately, and then come together and talk about it at certain points. We'll see how it goes. Aaron also finally finished and presented his book report about the Magic Tree house book #31, Summer of the Sea Serpent. That is the picture on the bottom right in the collage below. He did a bag report. These are good for him since writing is something he still struggles with. Aric, who also read this book, ended up joining and liking the Magic Tree house book club at currclick. He now wants to do it every month.
Back when school started I had kinda planned on this being a week off. I was thinking of starting the 6 weeks on, 1 week off schedule. And, though I really would love to have a break, I was feeling like it's not necessary, or even a good time right now. We are on a roll, and we need to stay on a roll. So, I have scrapped that plan and instead I think we will go with the 3 months on, 1 month off plan, but very loosely. I think during that 1 month will be a lot of unschooling type activities, just learning and doing activities that the kids really are interested in. That puts us off for the month of December which is usually when I like to have lots of days off. We'll see what happens when we get there...
So, I didn't get a lot of action from this week, but we had a little apple fun for preschool. We learned about Ireland at our homeschool group on Friday, which was awesome. April started her first colored pencil art class which is after horse lessons. We took a field trip to the zoo on Thursday, and a field trip to the LDS temple in Portland on Friday. We also made an apple pie to take to a funeral luncheon.
Alex decided to use wikki wax sticks to make the matches for his apple matching...
One day I was in a baking mood, and thought it would be fun to try out our donut pan that we found at a thrift store a long time ago. These chocolate donuts were scrumptuous!
For science we started learning about whales and dolphins which is one of the biggest reasons I took the kids to see Dolphin tale 2, that and they just loved the first movie. Anyway, we started reading this week, and the boys were excited to make their first creature for their ocean boxes out of clay. So, I got out some clay, and they began making some whales!
I found a tutorial on how to make a Beluga whale. I made one, then Aric wanted to model his after mine.
Aaron did his own whale design.
That about wraps up these two weeks in a nutshell!
I am linking this up to:
My week in review at Home to 4 kiddos
Weekly wrap-up at Weird unsocialized homeschoolers