so. we are on day three of this home school biz and i am really, really loving it. what i love about it most is that it is making me a whole lot more intentional in my mothering. it is forcing me, yes, i guess i need to be forced, into doing and teaching the things that i want to do and teach them but am usually either too busy or too tired to actually do. to sum that up: basically, i needed the label i'm homeschooling my kids! to be slapped across my forehead so that i could become more engaged in their lives. i'll admit that truth.
we also attended our first, and last, day of the co-op that i was so excited about. my had high hopes that were let down a bit… okay, a lot. but you know what? it was a learning experience and i am really glad that we tried it. it wasn't for us and that's okay. i had a great mom moment where i felt a bit like wonder woman when i said to myself, i don't care that i am not going to get a refund! this is not a good fit for my family, i know in my heart that i have got to get the h out of this place. and so we did. i left feeling liberated with two screaming crying kids in the back of my mini van. i mean, it was great. it confirmed to me, a hundred times over, that the decision caleb and i made to homeschool this year was so right for our family right now. it confirmed to me that i, their mom, am responsible for the education - no matter what that might look like. i hightailed it to my sister's to pick up story and actually felt an ache in my heart to get back home the whole time i was driving. i just wanted to walk right through our front door, grab a book, and cuddle up with all three of my babies. and we did just that.
ahem. moving on…. i shall break down what this week looks like for us: we start off each morning with talking about how we're feeling today, what we're thankful for, any prayer requests we have, etc. then we pray together. which looks something like this: brody squints and begins focusing so hard on praying that he forgets he is supposed to be praying and just focuses on the focusing itself, and foster repeatedly mumbles dear Jesus, dear Jesus, dear Jesus the entire time i'm praying. then we continue on to do the calendar and weather for the day. then we might sing a couple songs, or do a couple finger plays, etc.
we open our bibles and find the verse that we are going to be memorizing and this week it is a soft answer tuns away wrath, proverbs 15:1. so we read that, and read it again, say it together, one more time now! and talk about what it means and how we can apply it to the endless wrath that happens amongst the brothers burkleo. in case you're wondering, they haven't grasped ahold of the soft answer gig yet.
our FIAR book that i chose to start off with is, How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World so each morning this week we will read this book. we also go back and re-read it later in the day, per the kids request. i love FIAR for many reasons, one of them being that it is establishing a love for reading (on their own, and being read to) at an early age. i planned out activities based off the FIAR curriculum for this book, and also used cohesive activities from creative resources for the early childhood classroom, and google. obviously google.
because foster isn't even three yet, and i have a six month old baby, i am really trying to keep my school goals as weekly goals for what to accomplish with brody. because that is a lot more realistic. and doesn't make me break out in hives like daily schedules not being completed do. mmkay?
okay here's the good stuff (a lot of the activities we are doing fall into a bunch of different subject areas and i am sure i am forgetting a lot too, so just go with it.)
reading: i read FIAR book every day, work with brody on mat and sam from the bob books set 1. start teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons this week. phonics flash cards - working on letter sounds, consonants, and vowels.
finger plays & songs: way up high in the apple tree, days of the week, etc.
social studies: use map to locate all the places that the character in how to make an apple pie.. visited to get her ingredients for her pie. brody and i both spend time together on the computer looking up facts about the different countries - compare and contrast them to where we live. talk about the different cultures.
writing: brody writes out his bible verse each day, writes his name on all his worksheets, works on letter and number formation, matching capital letters to lowercase letters, etc.
language: vocabulary words: FIAR curriculum offers new vocabulary from each book. discuss their meanings - use in sentences, etc.
bible: verse memorization and discussion, long story short activity and discussion a few nights a week as a family, bible reading every night.
field trip: apple orchard this weekend!
science: we discussed the terms spoiled food and freshest ingredients possible from our book this week. grabbed some spoiled milk from our fridge for brody to check out. just kidding. will be looking for fresh ingredients when grocery shopping this week. explore and explain evaporation activity: 1/4 cup salt and two cups water and let water evaporate. observe and discuss. our water would not evaporate…like ever... so i dumped it out when they weren't looking and told them it did. wow! look at that guys! evaporation! another activity: apples slices dipped in lemon vs not dipped in lemon juice.
cooking (the best one!): make apple crisp, applesauce, apple pie, apple anything! top it with vanilla ice cream or else…
math: read through math start books 1 & 2 and do corresponding activites. work with beads on sorting, counting, directions, shapes, left, right, etc. cutting up apples - counting the slices and different parts, etc. puzzles. measuring while cooking.
fine motor: work on cutting with scissors this week. writing.
gross motor: BIKES! soccer, kick ball, catch, running, etc.
art & music: made seed shakers: the boys painted and decorated to small paper plates each- then we cut up apples and got the seeds out of them (a lot of apples - used them for apple pie), placed seeds inside paper plates and staple plates together. boom. rock out. also drew pictures of apple orchard, painting with apples as "stamps", decorated paper apples with tissue paper and construction paper pieces, etc.
among all of that i also have a list of skills and concepts i want to work on when we have down time or i need a little extra something. i also have a whole folder full of worksheets that i pull out for brody to do when i need to do important things.. like write this blog post.