Monday, November 24, 2014

Portland art museum

We finally made it to the Portland art museum last month!  I've only been telling April we would go "sometime" for the past 2 years.  I think part of that was that I just wasn't sure about taking my little guys there.  I'd never been there, so I didn't know what it would be like for them.  But, they went, and they made it a good portion of the way through. 

It was a fun experience.  April would like to go back, but we will have to go without the smaller crowd so we can look longer.  I don't regret taking them at all.  I wanted them to experience it, and I went in knowing that it might be short or it might be long.  I was ready to bail when we needed to.  But, we had to move at their pace which meant not a lot of lingering. 

Here are the 2 little boys at the Portland art museum...

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Aaron really enjoyed this trip.  He said he'd like to go back too.

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The little boys really liked the kids room.  I thought it was really well set up too.  I enjoyed the peace, and the many different art activities that could be played with.

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Making some foil creations in the kids art room...

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I think this was Aric's favorite...

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I liked this cute little village type scene...

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 These were Aaron's favorite...

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 It was a fun field trip!

Desiree

Sunday, November 23, 2014

My homeschool mother's journal: the week of no pictures

Life this week...this week was a pretty quiet week.  I didn't take any pictures.  I don't know why, probably the combination of not much to take pictures of and my lack of desire to take any.  I have been feeling rather unmotivated lately which also explains the lack of blog posts here too.  My motivation picked back up on Friday.  That got me thinking a lot about motivation, and how annoyed I am that I haven't had much lately.  What keeps a homeschool momma going when she doesn't feel like going?  I'm pondering that question, and hoping I don't fall into that unmotivated, and blah trap again.  One real answer I have come across as I have been trying to figure out how to keep myself going is that I can't stop learning myself, and remember to focus on myself more.  I need to keep reading, learning, searching, and doing good things so I can keep myself inspired and motivated.  I'm not necessarily talking about "me" time, but I am in a different sense.  I am talking about the me time that includes me reading a good book, learning something new, or anything that keeps my mind growing and my spirit renewed.  Does that make sense?  It is hard though when time seems to just disappear each day!

In our homeschool this week...Yeah, did I mention that I haven't been feeling too motivated?  I think homeschool this week included art, math, and other randoms.  This is one of those weeks where I'm a little embarrassed to say that I'm not really sure what we did this week.  We did math at least 3 days this week.  We played a lot of board games.  April is working on memorizing the Declaration of Independence I think she has the first part done), and she started on her 13 colonies presentation of Massachusettes for our co-op.  She also read the book Johan Adams in one week!

Something I worked on this week...I started wrapping Christmas presents!  I find myself every year on Christmas eve wrapping presents until past midnight.  Well, not this year!  I started on them this week, and I'm hoping to wrap as I get them so I don't have to worry about it come Christmas eve.

Helpful homeschool tips or advice...keep going!  Even when you don't feel like you can.  Don't give up, and pray!

My favorite thing this week...watching my children (and the other children) present a story at our homeschool group for the public speaking class.  They couldn't use hand gestures, and they had to use their voice to make it interesting.  I didn't really do any preparations with them.  I told them to think of a story, and they told me the story they thought of, but we didn't practice or anything.  It was fun to see what came out, and how well they did!

My kids' favorite thing this week...Going to dinner at a friends house.  They loved playing with friends.

Places we went...Monday evening is now our busy time of the week.  I'm so glad it's in the evening though. April has violin and horses back to back on that night.  She is loving her new horse hang out.  We have started going to our Life academy co-op on Wednesday's again.  It has been fun to get back to friends there too.  On Thursday Aaron had his cub scout Pack meeting, and he got his bobcat badge.  He was very happy to finally get that.  On Friday we also go to our local homeschool group at the library.  We love that one too.  Then April went and played piano with a homeschool friend at his house before dinner at our friends on Friday evening.  It all worked out so good.  Saturday and Sunday were spent at home.  April and Dad were sick on Saturday.  So, we just hung out at home all weekend!

I'm cooking...I was finally successful at making crepes this week! I've tried a few times before, but they never came out.  They would break, or burn.  For some reason I couldn't make them work, but Monday morning I decided to give it a try again.  They came out really good, except that the pan has a hump in it so the batter would run everywhere so they were odd shaped.  They tasted good though, and the boys even had fun helping me.  They each got to cook one, and flip it.

What I'm reading...I am currently reading Farmer boy, one of the Little house on the prairie series. It is my goal to start picking up more books.  That is one of the things I haven't been doing lately to keep myself motivated, and I'm needing to change that.

What my kids are reading...Aaron started a Magic treehouse book, Thanksgiving on Thursday, this week. My little boys enjoyed Fritz and the Beautiful Horses tonight at bedtime.  I am not sure what April is reading right now.  I know she just got a book that recently came out, but I can't remember what it is.  I'll let you know!

I'm thankful for...my wonderful family.  I am truly blessed to have all these people in my life!

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I guess there is at least 1 picture!  I had to include some of our really cute family pictures.  I'm thankful to have such great family pictures turn out this year. 

How was your week?

Desiree

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Math fun

I am trying to find new ways to make math more fun and interesting around here.  We have had a lot of grumbling and moaning lately about doing math, so I thought I'd share some ways I'm trying to make it more interesting. 

My most favorite thing, first of all, is to find fun hands on activities.  Recently, on veterans day, I decided we needed something fun.  I came across army men math at almost unschoolers which fit perfectly with my boys.  They were happy to see me bring out their collections of army men.

I told them what we were doing, and that they needed to start by counting how many army men they have.  I showed them how to put them in groups of 5 to count them easily. I think we came up with just over 200 between the 2 boys.

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Then they sorted them into matching groups.  It was fun to really look at the army men and see what they are really doing in their many different poses.  We tried some venn diagram stuff too.
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All the sorted army men.  Such a fun activity! This quickly morphed into them playing army men battle, so we didn't do much more than that.
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BedtimeMath1_coverI also recently discovered another way to do fun math everyday at Bedtime math.  We have been doing the daily math problem each day this week.  Some of them really get the kids thinking, and have really brought to my attention that my kids really struggle with word problems.  So, this has been great in that way too.  They have books in print too. I have them on hold from our library to try them out.  We do them anytime of the day, usually as a warm-up for math.

Well, that's all I have to say about that.  I'm on the lookout for more fun math opportunities.  I'd like to make this subject come alive for the kids, and I think this has been a good start!

Desiree
 
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