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Tuesday, 24 March 2009
February 2009 Newsletter

Newsletter 12: Weeks 19-21; Feb. 2009

~Valentine’s Day

Also:  Groundhog Day, President’s Day (Washington and Lincoln), Mardi Gras

Books: Valentine’s Day: “I Love You, Mommy and Daddy”, “The Night Before Valentine’s Day”, “Arthur’s Valentine”, “Kisses”

Groundhog Day: “Gregory’s Shadow”,  “Substitute Groundhog”, “Groundhog Day”

President’s Day: ‘Arthur Meets the President”, “The Story of Abraham Lincoln”, “Abe Lincoln-The Boy Who Loved Books”, “The Story of George Washington”

Mardi Gras: “Mardi Gras in new Orleans-An Alphabet Book”

Book Reference: “The Kissing Hand”  http://www.kinderthemes.com/thekissinghand.html

Resources: President’s Day Thematic Unit, “The Mailbox” mag., Mardi Gras-online (didn’t use these this year, next year, though).

http://familycrafts.about.com/od/mardigrasprojects/Mardi_Gras_Projects.htm

Fun facts: Groundhog Day: Groundhogs hibernate, burrow, their eating habits, etc.

Extra: *Valentine’s Day party and exchange of valentine’s with Homeschool Group CoOp.

*Made Valentines day cookies and cupcakes.*Taught them the real reason behind V Day *Google a link about the history

*Kate made a Mardi Gras painting with MG colors (purple, green and yellow) Daddy taught them the French for Mardi Gras: “Big Tuesday”.

*By the way: 6 more weeks of winter!! The groundhog saw his shadow.

 

 

 

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 7:11 PM EDT
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January 2009 Newsletter
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 11 ~ Jan. ‘09

Weeks 16-18

Themes: Winter, Arctic Animals, Martin Luther King, Jr., Birthdays (Mozart’s, too) and New Year’s (Chinese New Year, too)

 

Books: “Hedgie Loves to Read”, “The Animals’ Winter Sleep”, “Animals in Winter” (“Let’s Read and Find Out” Science series), “Winter on the Farm”, “Dance at Grandpa’s”, “Going West”, “Sugar Snow”, “A Little House Birthday” (All those from “My First Little House” series), “The Polar Bear Son-An Inuit Tale”, “Big Bear Little Bear”, “P. Bear’s New Year’s Party”, “New Year’s Day”, “The Story of Martin Luther King, Jr.”

Books Discussed and Referenced (Have read all before several times): “The Mitten”, “The Hat”, “And the Bear Snores On”

Resources: January “Mailbox” magazine

New this year: “Hooked on Phonics” for Dom; “Hooked on Math” for Grant; more Grammar, Reader’s Theater and Cursive for Kate (from her workbooks).  Also, we will focus on preparing for our Awana club meetings by practicing our verses, and Grant and I completing his brown section activities.  Also, we will continue to work on German language using, “Muzzy” DVD set.

Activities: CoOp, Awana, Kate-Daisy Scouts, allowance continued, etc.

 Learning right now with their activities:

*Awana-their Missionary is from India. They met her and learned about the Indian people and  culture. They learned the error of the locals’ ways in worshipping cows as gods.

*CoOp-Inuit people. Several Indian tribes (Kate), Artist s and techniques in Art (Kate); weather, seasons, winter, hearts and bodies (Dom and Grant)in Themed room.

*Daisy Scouts (Kate)-Made bird feeders from pine cones, peanut butter and bird seed to feed birds in winter (they are hunters and migrates in winter).

***********************************************

Bible devotion: Penguins in “5 Minute” (patience)

Computer: starfall.com  for: penguin story, build a snowman; Chinese fables; Mozart music

PBSkids.org (nutrition, science-excavation, word world, etc.)

Special science: We made homemade ice cream! 8See recipe in recipe files. Online, too.

Special vocabulary: hibernate, carnivore, camouflage, migrate, burrow, tundra

Fun animal facts learned:

*Animals in winter (NOT arctic animals) do one of four things for survival during winter months-

`migrate (birds)

`hunt (deer hunt for leaves, etc.)

`store (squirrels do this with nuts)

`hibernate (bears)

*Learned arctic animal tracks in “Diego” arctic animal book.

*Learned about the Inuit people in book: “The Polar Bear Son, An Inuit Tale” (folklore)

(hunting, fishing, igloos, etc.)

Fun History learning:

*After reading, “Winter on the Farm” from the “My First Little House” series (this one about Almonzo as a boy) the children learned about winter back in the  pioneer days: chores, dress, transportation, food)

Extra: *Kate put on a puppet show for us with a cat and a fox both waning to hunt a mouse. They all decided to be friends in the end.

*We had a Chinese New year party with shrimp chips, fortune cookies and (Japanese) pokey stick treats.  We listened to Chinese fables on starfall.com and looked at a Chinese New Year calendar.

*We made ice cream

*We listened to Mozart music and learned a bit about him on Starfall.com

Work: Kate wrote a polar postcard, Dom did polar word math problems, and Grant drew a penguin picture.

*What a month!!!!!!!!!!!

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 7:09 PM EDT
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Tuesday, 13 January 2009
December newsletter- Weeks 13-15
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

 

December Newsletter/Portfolio 2008

Newsletter 10 – Weeks 13-15

This month was sporadic as to when we did a formal day of school, and when we didn’t.  So, we put it all together into a monthly format for December.  We had so many fun outings and projects.  We surely stayed up on our Basic Skills, however. 

 

~Books used this month: “One Baby Jesus” (A Christian take on the “12 Days of Christmas”), “Christmas in the Big Woods”, “God Gave Us Christmas”, “Elmo’s Delicious Christmas” (For Grant), “Do You See What I See?” (An I Spy book with the famous poem, “The Night Before Christmas”, in the beginning pages), “A Christmas Carol” Charles Dickens, “Baby Jesus ABC Storybook”, “Christmas Around the World” book and workbook, “The 12 Days of Christmas-The Story Behind a Favorite Christmas Song”, “The Elves and the Shoemaker”

~My resources: “Christ in Christmas-A Family Advent Celebration” (By Focus on the Family), “Mailbox” magazine, “Devotions for Preschoolers”, the Bible, etc.

~Workbooks/Color Books: “Holiday Press Outs” activity book, “Festive Friends” Sesame Street Christmas activity book, “Christmas Fun” activity book

~Crafts/Projects: English Christmas crackers, Christmas cards written in Italian and German, making gingerbread houses with a homeschool friend, snowflakes (“Jesus loves you SNOW much!”), glitter on pinecones for mini Christmas trees, making Christmas cards, gluing and glittering our stockings, “reindeer food” for Santa’s reindeer (oats mixed with glitter),

~Journals/Writing this month: letters to Santa Clause (on pre-lined Christmas paper), made and wrote out Christmas cards, wrote and wishlist to Santa, traced our Bible verses for the month, Kate found as many words as she could in:”Merry Christmas”-cat, me, as, etc.

~Special: For Kate’s Birthday (Dec. 2nd): She completed a special Birthday worksheet in which she- wrote the date of her birthday on a birthday cake, drew the number of candles of her new age on the cake (7), and colored the cake.  Also, as writing practice (Consumer Education): She also wrote a postcard to the makers of her new Christmas dress, letting them know she was happy with the product (they had a postcard attached to the dress for this purpose).

~Special lessons:

*Advent lessons (Bible Study) *See book from Focus on the Family mentioned above

*We watched two versions of “A Christmas Carol” and compared and contrasted the two (The Barbie versions and the old school George C. Scott version-yes they sat through that!) (Literature, Language),

*We watched “Little House on the Prairie” Christmas episodes then read, “Little House Christmas” (History, Reading),

*We read and discussed the Candy Cane Legend (We decided who to give the poem). http://www.reasonfortheseason.com/candycanestory.html

http://www.homeschooled-kids.com/candycanelegend.html

 

 

The LEGEND of the Candy Cane

A Candymaker in Indiana wanted to make a candy that would help us remember who Christmas is really about. So he made a Christmas Candy Cane. He incorporated several symbols for the birth, ministry, and death of Jesus Christ.

He began with a stick of pure white, hard candy. White to symbolize the virgin birth and sinless nature of Jesus. Hard candy to symbolize the solid rock, the foundation of the Church, and firmness of the promises of God.

The candymaker made the candy in the form of a "J" to represent the name of Jesus. It also represented the staff of the "Good Shepherd".

The candymaker then included red stripes. He used three small stripes and a large red stripe to represent the suffering Christ endured at the end of his life.

The candy became known as a Candy Cane - a decoration seen at Christmas time. The meaning has faded, but still gives joy to children young and old, whom Jesus loves and treasures.

There are 2 versions I have come across, but both have the same end story.  One is a man in Indiana made up the meaning of the candy cane; and one says a candy maker in Europe in the 18th century made the meaning of the candy canes.  See above links.  Both are about how the candy cane represents Jesus and his love and sacrifice for us. J-is the shape of the J for Jesus and the staff he uses as our Shepherd, red striped for the lashes he received, etc. *Read from links above.

~Fun/educational outings: German Christmas Markets, French Christmas Market (Culture); At the French Christmas market, we heard and spoke a little of the French language; at the German markets we do the same. (Language).

~Bible this month: WOW! *Well, the whole Christmas celebration is our Bible theme for this month. 

*We worked in the Advent book mentioned above

*We read the Bible

*We read from our Preschool Devotions book learning value and moral lessons with a Christmas theme and Bible verses attached

*Read-“God Gave Us Christmas”

*We made snowflakes and wrote under them-“Jesus Loves You SNOW Much!!”

*We read and discussed the Candy Cane Legend. (See above)

*Verses: “God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7

*Legend of the Candy Cane (See above)

*We looked up and discussed Lottie Moon, the missionary; and why we recognize her at Christmas time

~Computer time: We read stories on the computer about penguins and we also did a math song with snowmen-all on Starfall.com

~Music: We sang LOTS and LOTS of Christmas songs!  We also listened to Christmas music almost every day of December in the van, in the room….

~Math: *We measured Christmas items. We took a ruler and measured in inches; a stoking, a candy cane, a read crayon, etc.  We recorded our findings on a worksheet.

*We played Christmas BINGO.  We used our number cards and used Hershey Kisses as markers. (Number recognition)

~Reading:*All the countless books we read, Kate read to us, or we listened to online.

*We also, played Christmas BINGO with our letter boards (letter recognition) and used Hershey Kisses as markers.

~Basic Skills Menu: 

`Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value, greater than less than; time, etc.; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition, counting by 10’s, adding money, time).

* Dom worked on the letter, R; he also worked in Math on counting by 10’s, he counted to 100!, adding using manipulatives, etc.

*Kate worked on vocabulary-matching words to the proper sentence; She worked in Math on-greater than/less than, equal to and not equal to, adding horizontally and vertically, etc.

`Kate’s First Grade Readers (Horizons and Christian stories.) Kate worked on vocabulary, filling in sentences with proper word, etc.

`Flashcards for Dominic: letters, numbers, sight words, phonics

`NEW: Sight word list (Dominic): (7) of, a, and, she, not, his, call – future words (13 more) for, what, it, I, did, out, on will, get, go, to, was, we.

`NEW: Grammar workbook for Kate and Cursive workbook for Kate.

`NEW: Preschool skill workbook for Grant (shapes, colors, numbers, letters, direction)

*In the New Year, Dom and I are going to start working on: “Hooked on Phonics” and Grant and I are going to start working on: “Hooked on Math”.  Kate and I are going to work on Grammar and Cursive from her workbooks, we will also do Reader’s Theater.

* 3 extension articles below. References:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home Schooling - A Christmas Story

Some children do well in public schools, and some just don't belong. My daughter was one of those that barely survived. She was gifted in some areas, but struggled in others. But that's normal. The academics wasn't the real problem. It was all the rest. She just didn't fit in with all the social pressures. Almost daily she was picked on, taunted, and tortured by the other students. Several times a week she would come home crying. We tried speaking with the teachers and counselors. But in the end, it was always the same. She just wasn't cutthroat tough enough to survive in that environment.

I knew for a couple years now what she wanted for Christmas. It was the same every holiday break. She didn't want to go back.

It was always the same. At the start of the holiday vacation she would be elated. Bright, cheery, happy. Then towards the end of the holiday when she knew she only had a few days before going back to school, I could see the change. Anyone could see it. It was like a dark cloak was draped over my bright and cheery daughter. Her eyes would sink, she wouldn't talk, just moped. Depression. It haunted all of us.

So one Christmas Eve (I couldn't wait until morning), we had a special gift for her. The depression had set in early for her that year. My husband and I knocked on her door, when she opened the door, her eyes had already sunk in. The dark cloak was already over her. I knew then, her special gift was the right decision.

We went into her room and told her we had a gift we wanted her to open early this year. She sat back on her bed, not excited at all. She peeled back a bit of the wrapping, just enough to see the words Homeschool Curriculum peek through. She didn't move. She just froze. Then she started to sob. She sat there just staring at those words and cried. For me it seemed like an eternity watching her cry. Then suddenly she jumped up and hugged us. She knew she was finally free, she didn't have to go back!

This Christmas would make it a year now. Homeschooling wasn't easy. There were challenges. But everything has challenges. In that year, academically she's done incredibly well. But more importantly, I've got my daughter back. My bright, cheery child. She's here now. And here to stay!

We've joined a couple of homeschool groups. She's met and made some great best friends.

Now every time I see it I'm always pleasantly shocked. At homeschool meetings and get-togethers, as soon as we arrive, she almost dances out of the car. She's so happy. She is open, outgoing, and can't wait to meet everyone.

I know in the years to come there will be lots of challenges. But you know what? I don't care! I have my daughter back. And we'll face those challenges together. That's the real world, and we're in it together!  -J.S.


 
The Twelve Days of Homeschool
(To the tune of The Twelve Days of Christmas.)

I thought this was a really cute way to celebrate the holidays - homeschool style. Sing along with me.

On the first day of homeschool, my neighbor said to me,
"Can you homeschool legally?"

On the second day of homeschool, the store clerk said to me,
"Are they socialized?"

On the third day of homeschool, a teacher said to me,
"Who will give them tests?"

On the fourth day of homeschool, my doctor said to me,
"What about P.E.?"

On the fifth day of homeschool, my sister said to me,
"YOU ARE SO STRANGE!"

On the sixth day of homeschool, my pastor said to me,
"Why do you do this?"

On the seventh day of homeschool, my best friend said to me,
"I could never do it!"

On the eighth day of homeschool, my mother said to me,
"How long will you do this?"

On the ninth day of homeschool, my in-laws said to me,
"Look at what they're missing!"

On the tenth day of homeschool, my florist said to me,
"What about the prom?"

On the eleventh day of homeschool, the librarian said to me,
"They'll miss graduation!"

On the twelfth day of homeschool, the reporter said to me,
"Can they go to college?"

On the thirteenth day of homeschool, my support group leader said to me. . .
"They can go to college,
They'll have graduation,
They won't miss the prom,
Look at what they're learning,
You can teach through high school,
You can really do this,
Love is why you do this,
YOU ARE NOT STRANGE!
They can have P.E.
You can give them tests,
They'll be socialized,
You can homeschool legally!"

Original author unknown

Okay, admit it. How many of you actually sung this song while you were reading it?

My free contribution to this week's e-Newsletter about Home Economics?
Order pizza tonight. You can even do it online. Hey - it's a life skill your kids need to learn how to master!

- Julie

 

Twas the Night Before Christmas Homeschool Style
>
www.sharonjay nes.com
>
> 'Twas the night before Christmas and all through the home,
>
> Children were still studying for their test on Rome.
>
> Mom was planning, she had just an hour,
>
> To teach 'one more lesson' before their night shower.
>
> A whole week of vacation, the children were thrilled,
>
> But Mom saw the lesson plans, and the blocks were still filled.
>
> "Can I stop for a day, much less a whole week?"
>
> Just the thought of time off made me shudder and shriek!
>
> Would they remember anything, would they fall behind?
> "Lord, I need your help, just give me a sign!!!"
>
> Then out on the sidewalk, I saw my four boys,
> And I heard them say, "it's not about toys."
>
> To the neighborhood kids, they explained Jesus' birth,
>
> And how through Jesus, not toys, we gain our worth.
>
> At that point, math and spelling and learning to write,
>
> Meant little to me as I had lost the sight
>
> Of what teaching at home was truly about.
>
> Then I sat at my desk and began to pout.
>
> The pouts turned to sobs, "Lord what have I done?
>
> It's not about grades, but to follow your Son!"
>
> "Please guide me and show me my job is to teach,
>
> and turn them to you, and of Jesus I'll preach."
>
> Now we'll put away books and not open them 'til later,
>
> We'll focus on Jesus, our Lord and Creator.
>
> It's His day and so we will all celebrate,
>
> I'll never mention the words "behind" or "we're late".
>
> So, Thank You, Lord, for blessing me,
>
> With such a great husband and family.
>
> Now homeschooling moms, TURN OUT THE SCHOOL LIGHT!
>
> And, "Happy Christmas To All And To All A Good Night!"
>
>

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 7:41 PM EST
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Wednesday, 10 December 2008
Newsletter 9-Week 12
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

 

Newsletter 9 – Week 12

Thanksgiving! ~ Native Americans, Turkeys and Pilgrims

*We are back at school after about 6 weeks off for the birth of our baby brother, Finn Nathaniel.  He was born in Oct, and we had Grandma in town AND we moved from Italy to Germany, so we took some time off from school.

We are back at it, doing school in our hotel suite in Germany (the hotel is home until Feb.) This was a three day school week due to Thanksgiving break. J

~Basic Skills Menu: 

`Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value, greater than less than; time, etc.; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition, counting by 10’s, adding money, time).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers (Horizons and Christian stories)/Reader’s theater

`Flashcards for Dominic: letters, numbers, sight words, phonics

`NEW: Sight word list (Dominic): (7) of, a, and, she, not, his, call – future words (13 more) for, what, it, I, did, out, on will, get, go, to, was, we.

~Read aloud: “Heidi”

~Books used this unit: “The Story of the Pilgrims”, “If You Lived with the Iroquois”, “The Goat in the Rug”, ‘The Deer in the Wood”, “10 Fat Turkeys”, “If You Sailed on the Mayflower”, “Little Two Feet and His Horse”, “Corn is Maize”, “How the Stars Fell Into the Sky”,

~Some of my resources this unit:  Teacher Created Resources- “Native Americans”; www.kindergartentreehouse.com/Thanksgiving

~Indian tribes covered this unit: Sioux and Shawnee (Plains), Iroquois (longhouses), and Navajo (weave rugs).

~Journals this week: “I am thankful for…”

~Bible verse/theme this week:  Thankfulness; Hebrews 12:28, “So let us be thankful…”

*Each week, we try to do 6 key aspects to our Bible Study: each week-theme and verse; each day-devotion; each week-missions focus; each week-country of the week; whenever we feel like it-thankfulness journal entries.  Some weeks we hit all these things, some weeks we do not.  Some weeks we make up for what we did not do previously.

Day 1:

~ Bible Study: We started with our devotion: “Right Choices” (a lesson on patience).  We then looked up, traced and/or wrote our verse for the week: Hebrews 12:28, “So let us be thankful…”  Out theme is thankfulness.

~Reading/Social Studies: We then moved on with our theme.  We talked about an overview of what Thanksgiving was about and why we celebrate: *Pilgrims sailed from England, on the mayflower, landed at Plymouth, the Indians helped them, Squanto taught them to farm and fish.

We read, “The Story of the Pilgrims”.  *Kate read most of it to us.

 We then did an Indian overview: *Homes: tepees and longhouses; jobs: men (hunt, fish, carve canoes), women (gather berries, tend to babies, farm, sew); food: hunt, fish, farm (corn/maize), gather (berries, nuts).

We read from my Thematic Materials, “Native Americans” to gain an overview.

Dominic matched houses in our Thematic Unit workbook; (tepees and longhouses).

~Singing: We sang two songs about Indian chores and houses, sung to the tune of: “Ten Little Indians” and “Are You Sleeping?” *See Thematic Unit page 68.  We did actions with our words as we sang about chores.

~Reading/Social Studies: We read, “If You Lived with the Iroquois”.  We discussed how they lived in longhouses. 

~Math/Art/Communication: Kate completed a page in our Thematic Unit workbook on numbers, creating Native American symbols.  We also discussed how the Indians communicated and told stories by using symbols and drawings.

~Art/Poetry: We made handprint turkeys.  We also wrote the Thanksgiving Poem: *”This isn’t just a turkey as anyone can see; I made it with my hand, which is a part of me.  It comes with lots of love, especially to say- I hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving Day!”  *See: www.kindergartentreehouse.com/Thanksgiving

~Writing: Kate wrote how many words she could find in, “Happy Thanksgiving”.

*The kids wanted Indian names this week. Kate was Kia Two Feet; Dom was Little Star, and Grant was Squanto.

~Reading: We read, “The Deer in the Wood” from the “My First Little House” series.

~Math: We read “10 Fat Turkeys”. By reading the book, the kids practiced counting backwards from 10. (Kate is way beyond that, but Dom needed practice).  *Kate read it to us.

Dominic created a Native American face by connecting the dots 1-10.  This was a page in our Thematic Unit workbook.

~Basic Skills: Dom practiced his sight words with me (listed above), and he and I also practiced identifying numbers and counting 0-30.  Kate read various books.

~Read Aloud: We read from, “Heidi”.

Day 2:

*We started by reviewing the facts about Pilgrims and Indians we learned on Mon.

~Bible study: We went over our verse for the week and read a devotion from, “Right Choices”.

~Reading/Science: We read, “Corn is Maize”.  It goes pretty in depth as to the growing process. We skimmed that part as it is really above the kids’ level at this point.  But then it discusses how the Indians planted corn (a dead fish under the stalk!), and what they used it for once it grew (popcorn, cornmeal, to burn for fire, cornhusk dolls, etc.)

~Extra: Kate did a page in our Thematic workbook on following directions (color the second Indian, blue; color the one to the left, red, etc.)  She also had to identify the parts of a corn stalk as she drew it. P. 66.

~Journal: The kids each had to journal what they were thankful for before they colored in the picture of the Indians and Pilgrims on their journal paper.

~Storytelling: We looked at a bird symbol the Indians may have used to tell stories. I had each kid tell us s story based off of that bird symbol (they had good imaginations!!).

~Music: We sang more songs from p. 68 in our Thematic unit workbook about Indian chores, food, etc.  We sang about weaving rugs and grinding corn to the tune of, “So Early in the Morning”. (“This is the way we weave the rug, weave the rug, weave the rug…”)

~Reading/Social Studies/Art: We read, “If You Sailed on the Mayflower” and reviewed facts about Pilgrims and their life.  *First Thanksgiving Facts: The first Thanksgiving ;lasted for three days in 1621, several (some say 90) Indians joined the Pilgrims for the feast, the Indians provided several deer to eat, Squanto taught the Pilgrims to plant (putting a dead fish under the corn stalk for soil nutrients), there were-veggies, turkeys, and seafood, etc. for the feast-even popcorn; Miles Standish had a parade, the boys and men played games and the Indians shot bows and arrows. 

Also, after reading, “The Goat in the Rug” (about Navajo rug weaving) we “wove” rugs/placemats with construction paper.

This also lead to a pattern lesson for the kids as they explored new ways to make patterns with their various weave colors.

Finally, we discussed the process of weaving as outlined in the book, “The Goat in the Rug”: *sheer (shave) the goat’s wool, wash the wool, dry the wool in the sun, comb the wool, spin wool into yarn, collect plants to dye the wool, weave the rug.

~Reading: We read, “How the Stars Fell into the Sky” and discussed how Indians had legends to explain things.  We also noted that the stars really got in to the sky because God put them there. 

~Extra: *In place of Basic Skills today, the kids worked on some German language with some German language cd’s and dvd’s we are borrowing.  We learned: good afternoon (guten tag), big (gross), small (klien), yes (ya), no (nine), please (bitte), thank you (danke), etc.  SO FAR!  And we reviewed words we learned while living in Italy: ciao (pronounced “chow”) (hello/goodbye), si (yes), grazie (thank you), prego (you’re welcome), etc.

~Read Aloud: We finished reading, “Heidi” today!

Day 3:

`Bible: We started by reviewing our Bible verse for the week.  We then read a devotion from, “Kids Praying for Kids”.  We read about kids in Honduras and then prayed for them. (Other country focus).  We also did our ministry focus today as we read from “Families on Mission” about giving and caring.  We made a thankfulness chain. (Wrote what we were thankful for on strips of paper; then made rings and then connected the rings to make our chain.

`Language/Poetry: We read through our Native American workbook and learned Indian sign language and how they used written and drawn symbols to communicate and tell stories at times.

-We also read some Indian poetry about the rain dance: “Five little Shawnees out on the Plains, the first one said, “We need some rain.” The second one said, “Let’s plant some corn.” The third one said, “But we need a storm.”  The fourth one said, “Let’s do a little dance.” The fifth one said, “Stomp your feet and prance.” Clap went the thunder and the rain came down; And the five little Shawnees danced all around.

`Reading/Phonics: Dom completed a workbook page in which he had to identify the starting letter of several Indian words: horse, corn, headdress, etc.

`Math: Dom did a workbook page on number identification (counting the dots on the Indians’ headdresses).

`Journal: The kids wrote in a journal entry about what they were Thankful for.

`Science: The kids identified the parts of a turkey and colored them in on a paper.

`Reading: We read, “The Night Before Thanksgiving” and reviewed the week.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

 

 

 

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 4:54 PM EST
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Saturday, 11 October 2008
Newsletter 8 - Week 11
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

 

Newsletter 8-Week 11  Happy Halloween Unit! -Halloween, Pumpkins and Scary Animals! (bats, owls, spiders, etc.)

*Over the weekend, we played a little catch up with our States and “Flat Stanley” Unit.  We made “Flat” Kate, Dominic and Grant.  We used a Flat Stanley cut out and put photos of each of the children’s’ faces on their “Flat”.  They are SO cute!

*I love that about homeschooling.  We did this project over the weekend.  There are no “in school” “out of school” rules with homeschooling! J 

Basic Skills Menu: `Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers (Horizons and Christian stories)/Reader’s theater

`Flashcards for Dominic: letters, numbers, sight words, phonics

Books used (some were evening bedtime books): States Review and catch up (Over weekend and first day of this week): “S is for Show Me-An Alphabet Book About Missouri” and “L is for Lincoln-An Alphabet Book about Illinois”; Halloween: “The Night Before Halloween”, “Too Many Pumpkins”, “Monster Math”, “Mouse’s First Halloween”, “The Very Busy Spider”, “On Halloween Night”, “The Pumpkin Gospel”, “Meanies”, “Where the Wild Things Are”, “Eye on Nature: Spiders”

Journals Week 11:  “I am going to be…for Halloween”

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity”

Verse and Bible: Psalm 107:1; Theme: Queen Esther

Spelling words: dark, trick, spider

Day 1:

*What a busy day!!

`We started the day by going over our October calendar (month and day of week) and marking of our countdown to Grandma’s visit, the baby and Halloween.

`Grant is reading out of his Animals workbook while we work today.

Bible Study: We did several things in Bible study today!  We finished up by way of review, our Noah theme from last week.  We colored a picture of the ark and then colored a picture of the rainbow of God’s promise not to flood the whole earth again.  The kids answered some review questions. 

`We did our weekly Missions focus (from last week)-“Caring”.  We discussed how it makes God happy when we care. We talked about ways that God cares for us and we listed ways we can show other we care: helping our brother/sister with chores, feeding our pets and writing our cousins letters.

`We did our devotions for the day: “Right Choices” (obeying parents) and “Five  Minute Devotions” (owls and how God helps us not be scared). 

`We prayed for our country of the week: Vietnam.  We talked about a child named, Dat, that works making sculptures to sell to feed he and his grandmother.  He can not hear or talk.  The kids each said a prayer for the kids of Vietnam.  From the booklet, “Kids Praying for Kids”.

`The kids wrote in their thankfulness journals (the second entry of the year!).  Kate wrote and Dom traced what I wrote for him as he dictated. 

`We introduced the theme and verse for this week: Queen Esther and Psalm 107:1.  I read the kids the story of Queen Esther as taken from the Bible and told in Usborne’s book of Bible stories for kids.  The, Kate wrote and Dom traced the verse: “The Lord is good, his love continues forever.: Psalm 107:1.

*Each week, we try to do 5 key aspects to our Bible Study: each week-theme and verse; each day-devotion; each week-missions focus; each week-country of the week; whenever we feel like it-thankfulness journal entries.  Some weeks we hit all these things, some weeks we do not.  Some weeks we make up for what we did not do previously, some weeks we do not. 

Extra: We made Christian pumpkins and wrote a pumpkin gospel poem.  We wrote: “A Christian Pumpkin”  “I am a Jack O’ Lantern my light will shine so bright.  I am a Christian pumpkin and Jesus is my light.”  I wrote this out for the kids, we read it together.  Then, on the back of this paper, they each drew a friendly jack o’ lantern.

Reading: We reviewed our theme from last week (States) by way of reading a book called-“L is for Lincoln-An Alphabet Book about Illinois.”  Why? Because the kids wanted to and we homeschool, so we can. J

Social Studies: More catch up from “States”.  We took outlined USA maps and the kids colored the states they have lived in one color and states they have been to in another color.  It was a fun way for them to get a visual of where they have been in the U.S.  Also, we worked together on one worksheet locating landmarks on a map: Grand Canyon, Statue of Liberty, etc.

Reading: We read a Halloween book/scary “animal” book called, “Eye on Nature: Spiders”. 

Music: We sang a Halloween song called, “Magalina Hagalina”. J

Math: Kate (over the weekend) read “Monster Math”, a book about telling time.  She then made her own time book!  She made a booklet with several clocks on each page. I drew the clocks for her and she told and wrote the time. J

Phonics: We played candy corn letter BINGO! J 

Writing-Journal:  We journaled: “I am going to be…for Halloween.”

Spelling: We introduced Kate’s spelling list this week-(3 words)-dark, spider, trick.  She wrote her words 5x a piece.  Tomorrow she will use these words in a sentence/or sentences.

Basic Skills: Kate-worked in her Horizons Phonics workbook on short vowel sounds.  Dom - and I worked in his Math Horizons workbook on teen numbers, filling in the missing number in a sequence, etc. 

Day 2:

*We started the day with our calendar work and Basic Skills.  (The kids worked in their Horizons workbooks all comfy on the couch.) J  Kate read to us from her First Grade Reader.

`We also started the day with something extra: We made pumpkin shaped cookies and iced and decorated them. J

Bible Study (and Science): We read our devotion from “Five Minute Devotions” about porcupines and not having a bad tempered spirit.

`We did more devotion as we read from “Right Choices”-2 stories/lessons: one on keeping down our temper and one about using kind words.

`We review the story of Queen Esther.

`We reviewed our Bible Verse for the week: Psalm 107:1

Reading: We read the book, “Pumpkin Gospel”; and Kate read to us: “Mouse’s First Halloween” and “Meanies”. 

Writing: Kate worked out how many words she could spell from “Happy Halloween” (we, low…) and all 3 kids traced and colored in a worksheet “C is for Candy Corn”.

Science: I introduced the kids to the Scientific Method today.  Using chocolate chips, we estimated how many we thought were in the cup, charted our guesses, then counted the chips.  We graphed who was correct.  Furthermore, we graphed whether or not we thought the chocolate chips would float in a cup of water, We did our experiment an then recorded the results (no, it won’t).

Spelling: Kate made words from her spelling words for the week.  We emphasized capitalization at the beginning of a sentence, and punctuation at the end.

Writing: Using story starters, the kids thought up stories for Halloween.  Kate wrote hers and Dom dictated his to me as I wrote.  We then edited and corrected Kate’s and had a rewrite with correct spelling, caps and punctuation.

Day 3: We started the day with calendar work.

Bible Study: We read from our devotion, “Right Choices” about taking care of our pets.

Reading and Science: We read a book called, “From Seed to Pumpkin” about the growing process of a pumpkin.

Basic Skills: Kate read from her reader to me; Dom worked in his Math Horizons book and then read his letter recognition cards to me.

Day 4: BIG Basic Skills Math day.  We did a lot of Math! 

*Even Grant got in on it today.

Grant: Did several pages identifying shapes in his shape workbook today.

Dominic: Worked in his Horizons Math workbook today on adding, number recognition and even counting by tens! *He can count by tens!

Kate: Did a ton; learned a lot of new material.  She worked in her Horizons Math workbook.  She learned the greater than and less than signs, counting by 2’s (we are working on it), adding using a number line, writing addition facts; and we reviewed counting by 5’s!

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 8:21 PM EDT
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Monday, 6 October 2008
Newsletter 7- Week 10
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 7 – Week 10

We will continue the States and “Flat Stanley” theme this week.

(With some Halloween thrown in for fun…)

*And a day of catch up thrown in there too…Basic Skills Menu: `Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers (Horizons and Christian stories)/Reader’s theater

`Flashcards for Dominic: letters, numbers, sight words, phonics

Books used (some were evening bedtime books): States: “Flat Stanley”, “Scrambled States of America”, “Smart About the Fifty States”, “S is for Show Me-An Alphabet Book About Missouri” and “L is for Lincoln-An Alphabet Book about Illinois”; Halloween: “The Night Before Halloween”, “Too Many Pumpkins”, “Monster Math”, “Mouse’s First Halloween”, “The Very Busy Spider”, “On Halloween Night”, “The Pumpkin Gospel”

Journals Week 10:  “My favorite state I have lived in…”

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity”

Special reading this week: “Aesop’s Fables” and Kids’ Social Studies magazine- “Faces”.

Verse and Bible: No verse introduced this week.  We focused on devotions (“Right Choices” and “Five Minute Devotions”; “Kids Praying for Kids”).  Theme- Noah’s Ark.  Our first Thankfulness Journal entry of the year!

Spelling Words: None introduced this week.  We focused on Basic Skills and Reading a lot this week.

 Day 1:

Reading and Social Studies: We read the book, “Smart About the Fifty States” and learned several facts about: Illinois (Abe Lincoln), Idaho (potatoes, hiking), Missouri (Mark Twain) and Louisiana (Mardi Gras, seafood).- We also learned the difference between country and state, how many states we have (50), the Pledge of Allegiance, some of our Presidents, the different stages our flag went through, and different sights in Washington D.C.

Math: Kate counted for us by 5’s from 5-50. 

Reading: We read some Halloween books for fun-“Mouse’s First Halloween”, “On Halloween Night”

Basic Skills: Kate worked on her vowels on the computer at Starfall.com and read to me from her first grade reader.  Dominic and I worked with is letter flashcards recognizing letters in random order, and the sounds they make.

Day 2:

Bible Study (and Science):  We read from our “Five Minute Devotions”- we read about bats and listening to God’s Word.

Reading and Social Studies: We reviewed what we learned yesterday about the States-Illinois (Abe Lincoln), Idaho (potatoes, hiking), Missouri (Mark Twain) and Louisiana (Mardi Gras, seafood).-We learned these things from the book, “Smart About the Fifty States”.  We reviewed that there are 50 States.  I then read from, “The Scrambled States of America”.

Reading: We read some Halloween stories: “The Very Busy Spider”

Basic Skills: Kate and I read from her first grade reader and Dom and I worked on his letter flash cards.

 

Day 3: *This was kind of an interesting day of catch up and tying up several loose ends.  We went back and tied up a couple things from out fall unit even-Kate’s spelling list, etc.

-We started the day with going over our October calendar (month and day of week) and marking off on our baby/Halloween countdown calendars.

Bible Study (and Music): We started the day with a new kind of Bible study devotion/method- we read from the booklet, “Kids Praying for Kids”.  We read about kids in Afghanistan and learned about their unique needs and prayer requests.  The kids were actually moved by these tales and had several questions about these kids affected by war.

`We then wrote our first entry in our Thankfulness Journals.  Kate wrote she was thankful the one little girl in Afg. survived even when the rest of her family did not. Dom was grateful he had lots of food to eat when those kids did not. Very thoughtful answers.

`Even thought the week is almost over, I introduced a Bible lesson theme of: Noah’s Ark to the children. I had wanted to do it all week, so we squeezed it in.  No Bible memorization verse this week, however.

`Kate made as many words as she could from:”Noah’s Ark” (shark, an, etc.) and Dom traced the letter “N”-“N” is for Noah.

`We sang, “Who Built the Ark” and “Rise and Shine”.

`We read the story of Noah from Kate’s Bible (Usborne Bible stories book).

Extra: Grant worked today on the phonics flash cards.

Spelling: Kate finally took her spelling test from about two weeks ago: apple, hero, plant, tree and money (words taken from Johnny Appleseed reading).  She did really well-needing a little help with only apple and money.

Writing (and Art): The kids colored a picture of Flat Stanley (remember our long lost theme…) and journaled on the back of it-“My favorite state to live in is…”  Kate answered-all; Dom answered-Idaho and Illinois.  *It took me a bit to have them realize I was not talking about a country-but state.  They kept answering-“England!” or “Italy!”  I had to remind them of state.

Reading: Finally, we read some Aesop’s Fables today. Why? Because we are playing catch up and I forgot to read them back in the Johnny Appleseed unit. He carried his Bible and a copy of Aesop’s Fables with him as he planted trees. I read 4 fables to the kids from, “What Your Kindergartener Needs to Know” written by Aesop.  They were taught: what a fable was (a story that tells a lesson or moral), who Aesop was (a man that lived long ago in Greece) and even helped figure out the moral to the story on the last fable.

Extra: At bedtime, Kate read us, “On Halloween Night” all by herself!!! She is so good. J

Day 4:

Bible Study (and Science): We read from, “Five Minute Devotions” on spiders and lies.  We learned how a spider spins a web and how it is like lies.

Social Studies: We reviewed what we learned about states form our reading in, “Smart About the Fifty States”. (50 states, what our flag looks like, Pledge of allegiance, etc.)

Reading and Social Studies: We read a book called-“S is for Show Me-An Alphabet Book About Missouri”.  It is an awesome book series that gives one fact of the state for each letter of the alphabet.  You can purchase this book for every state. We have-“S is for Show Me” for Missouri, “L is fir Lincoln” for Illinois, and “P is for Pelican” for Louisiana.

`Not only was it a fun read; it was educational on the social studies front, and also good for Dom to see the letters repeated. 

`We also read from a magazine on cultures, called-“Faces”.  It is a kids’ social studies magazine.  This particular edition was on “The South”.  We read a folktale from the South and discussed the states of the South; and compared and contrasted what we just read about Missouri, to what we read in the magazine about the South.

 

 

 


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Saturday, 27 September 2008
Newsletter 6 - Week 9
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 6 - Week 9

We started the theme: States and “Flat Stanley” this week

Basic Skills Menu: `Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers (Horizons and Christian stories)/Reader’s theater

`Flashcards for Dominic: letters, numbers, sight words, phonics

Books used: “Flat Stanley”

Journals Week 9: "If I were Flat Stanley, I would..."

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity”

Verse and Bible: None introduced this week.  We focused on devotions (“Right Choices” and “Five Minute Devotions”).

Spelling Words:  None introduced this week.  We focused on Basic Skills a lot this week

Day 1: Grant worked on sign language today on Starfall.com!

Bible (and Science): We did a devotion toady from “Five Minute Devotions” (Science and Bible themes and principles).  It was on wildcats, and taught us to keep our anger under control.  The passage taught us that it is ok to get angry, but not to sin when we are angry. 

Reading: We read half of, “Flat Stanley”.  It goes with our States unit, in that, when Stanley becomes flat, he is able to travel through the mail anywhere he wants!  He visits a friend in California, for example.

Writing: Journal- The kids journaled-“If I were Flat Stanley, I would…” 

Basic Skills: Kate-read from her reader and Dominic-worked with me on his letter flashcards.  We are practicing letter identification, and sounds.  We even tried to put some sounds together (word families: -at and –it)

Extra: Kate worked on calendar skills and Chinese Proverbs on Starfall.com

 

Day 2: Dom “read” a story to me by looking at the pictures and supplying his own words. J (“Monster Math”)

Bible (and Science): We did a devotion today from “Five Minute Devotions”.  It was about rattlesnakes and the Biblical lesson was on warnings, God’s warnings to us in the Bible to stay away from what is bad.

Reading: We finished reading “Flat Stanley”. 

Math-time: We read a book called, “Monster Math”.  It helps reinforce (and teach) telling time by taking each hour of about 8 hours and showing what the monsters do each hour.  Example: “At 8:00, the monsters eat breakfast.” And they show a clock with the time shown. 

Furthermore, Kate read the book to us.

Finally, Kate made her own time booklet!

Basic Skills: I let Kate have free reading with books of her choice, while Dom and I worked on his letter flashcards doing the same thing we did yesterday.  We practiced the sound families: -at, -it and –ad.

Day 3: The kids started the day with some good old fashioned yard work.  This to me qualifies as character education, P.E. and Math as they figure what they will earn in allowance for their work!! J 

Basic Skills: This was a big basic skills day.  Grant and Dom were interested in practicing their letter and number flashcards.  Kate practiced writing her teens and counting and writing by 5’s.  She also practiced her time.

Reading: The kids and I read, “Too Many Pumpkins”. 

Day 4: Basic Skills day

 

 

 


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Monday, 22 September 2008
Newsletter 5
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 5-Week 8

This is week is a continuation of our Fall/Fire Safety/Johnny Appleseed Unit.

Basic Skills Menu: (This week we will do lots of basic skills; here is the menu we choose from).

`Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers

Books used all week and last week: Fire Safety-“Stop, Drop and Roll” by, Margery Cuyler; “Arthur’s Fire Drill” (activities with this book)

Johnny Appleseed- “Johnny Appleseed”; and Apples-“ How Do Apples Grow?” (activities with this book)

Fall-“ I Am a Leaf”, “Why Do Leaves Change Color?”, “Country Fair” (“My First Little House” book series), “The Deer in the Wood” (“My First Little House” book series).

Journals Week 8 (5 of them): Wrote a story about fire safety, “Fall weather is…” “I like to play in fall leaves…”, My 5 senses in fall-“In fall I see…”, etc., My 5 senses with apples-“My apple looks…”, “My apple tastes…”, etc.

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity”

Verse and Bible Theme (continued from last week):  John 15:12, “This is my command, that you love one another as I have loved you.” Theme: Adam and Eve

Spelling Words (continued from last week): (Taken from our Johnny Appleseed reading): apple, plant, tree, hero, money (Kate wrote these words 5 times each and wrote a sentence for each one to gain a better understanding of their meaning. She will test on them on the last day this week.)(We bumped her spelling test to this week since we are making this unit a two week unit).

Day 1:

We started the day today with the kids having a picnic outside.  It was a beautiful Fall day out and the kids enjoyed sandwiches and grapes (prepared by Kate!) for lunch.   

Kate started the school day by playing a “vowels” game on Starfall.com

Bible Study: Our devotion for the day was taken from, “Right Choices”.  We read a story about being polite and using, “please” and “thank you”.

Reading: We read, “Arthur’s Fire Drill” and practiced-stop, drop and roll, discussed our escape route out of our house in the event of a fire.  Furthermore, we had to identify several key words in the book after we read the story and put a sticker with a picture of the word next to the corresponding word (Kate read them to us.)

Journal: Kate and Dominic had to write a story of their own on fire safety, after having read the “Arthur” fire safety story.  Dom told his by illustration, Kate wrote hers with phonetic spelling. 

Basic Skills: Kate-Kate worked on several pages in her Math Horizons workbook.  She had to write in missing numbers, count by 10’s and *this is new: work problems using the ones and tens columns in place value.  Then, she read from her First Grade Reader.  Dominic-Dom worked on several pages in his Phonics Horizons workbook practicing the letters “P” and “R”.  He also worked in his Math Horizons workbook and counted items, wrote numbers and did basic addition.

Day 2:

We started the day today by Kate practicing some vowel games on Starfall.com while I made an alphabet book with Dominic.  He and I made a page for each letter, and cut out magazine cut outs of pictures that started with each letter. For example, an apple is on our “A” page.  A cookie is on our “C” page, etc.  This is to reinforce to him the sound each letter makes.

Bible Study: Our devotion today was taken from a book we have on “Families on Mission”.  It is a book about how families with young children can do mission together. It takes simple concepts of missions (serving others) like: love, care, give, help- and gives Scripture to back up the concept and ideas to do the concept. For example, today was “love”.  So we were given ideas on how to show love-write letters to those we love, make heart shaped “leaves” with loved one’s names on it and make a “love” tree, etc.

`Then we sang, “Jesus Loves Me”.

`Also, the kids continued with our Bible theme for last week and this week: Adam and Eve, by coloring a mini book telling the story from Genesis.

`Finally, we reviewed our Bible verse from last week and this week-John 15:12.

-At this point we did our calendar work by going over the month and day of week; then we crossed off days on our “countdown to baby and Halloween” calendars.

Reading (and brainstorming) and Science: We read from “What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know”, about the seasons, specifically fall.  We brainstormed (again) things that come to mind when we think of the season fall.  We came up with-football, cold, windy, leaves falling, apples, Halloween, etc.

`Then, I read the kids a book called, “How Apples Are Made”.  This book is from a series of books called-“Let’s Read and Find Out”.  It couples a story with a science concept.  It was a higher level book (ages5-9), on the scientific process of how an apple is formed.  Despite some of the scientific concepts being a little over their heads, the kids got the basic idea that apples actually start as flowers!  It was a neat book.

`After reading that, I then read the kids the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”  We discussed what that means.

Journals: The kids journaled-“Fall weather is…” Kate and Dom answered the same: cold and windy and Halloween is in the Fall.

Basic Skills: Kate-Kate did a money review sheet, then worked from her Horizons Math workbook working on: place value and counting by 5’s and 10’s.  Finally, she read to me form her First Grade Reader.  Dominic- worked in his Math Horizons workbook on simple addition, number recognition, and tracing numbers.

Read Aloud: Finally today, we read a chapter from, “Meet Felicity”.

Day 3: A Reading and Basic Skills day today.

Bible Study: For our devotion today, we read from, “Right Choices”.  This lesson was on forgiving others.

Reading (brainstorm) and Science: We read lots of books today.  We read, “Why Do Leaves Change Colors?”  We brainstormed about the fun things we like to do in leaves: rake them, jump in them, throw them, etc.  I showed the kids a picture of them playing in the leaves in Germany, during the Fall of 2006 while on vacation.

`This book is in the same, “Let’s Read and Find Out” series of books (which yesterday’s book-“How Do Apples Grow” also comes from) that couples a science lesson with a story.  So again, the science concepts were a little over the kids’ heads (book for ages 5-9), but they got the basic idea and we had a good time reading and brainstorming.

`Next, we read, “Stop, Drop and Roll”, another book on fire safety.  We again, discussed our escape plan and stop, drop and roll. 

Basic Skills: This was a basic skills day. Dom focused heavily on his new flashcards-putting the sound of the letter to each letter.

Day 4: We started the day with a special-Kate read a book, “I Am a Leaf” to the boys and I and I videotaped it. J (Reading and Science).

Reading (and Social Studies):  I read the kids two stories from the “My First Little House Series” (The original Laura Ingles stories, just re written in ages 3-8 format)-“County Fair” and “The Deer in the Wood”. Both took place in the Fall.  I love these books, because they are also a bit of a history lesson.  The kids learn about the times in which Laura Ingles and her family lived: carts, buggies, wagons, making preserves, hunting, etc.

Art and Science: The kids did leaf rubbings.  We went out in the yard and found several leaves. We came inside and put a piece of paper over top of them.  Gently rubbing a crayon over the leaf brings about a leaf impression on the paper-leaf rubbings.  We rubbed several leaves in fall colors and made quite an art display.  In the process, we discussed that the “lines” in the leaves were called veins, etc.

-At this point we did our calendar work by going over the month and day of week; then we crossed off days on our “countdown to baby and Halloween” calendars.

Basic Skills: We did special activities for Basic Skills today, not picking from our usual menu (listed above).  Kate- `Made herself a worksheet on the computer. In her own phonetic (invented) spelling, she made a worksheet for herself with the instructions: Fill in the missing numbers to earn a sticker, then draw a picture using fall colors.  She had 0__23___56__8__10 and had herself fill in the missing numbers. J  She is hilarious making her own homework!!  `After she did that, she wrote a letter on the computer to her cousin in proper letter writing format.  `Kate had also written two pieces on the computer, one a letter to her Grandpa and the other a story entitled, “Daddy and the Cat”.  I let her use inventive spelling and didn’t bother her about capitalization and punctuation while she typed. I let her free flow ideas and just create the letter and story.  But after, we printed two copies of each; One to keep the same, and the other to proofread so I can start to show her proper form-capitals and punctuation marks.  We edited one copy of the letter and one copy of the story.  Dominic- `Kate also made a worksheet for her brother in which he had to follow the same directions above-fill in missing numbers and color a fall picture.  (She stressed to me, “Mommy, make sure he knows he HAS to use fall colors-red, yellow, orange, brown, NOT blue, ok?” J)  So, he did that and `he also practiced writing his ABC’s and 123’s while I worked with Kate on her projects listed above.

Journals: The kids journaled-“I play in fall leaves…” and they wrote sentences on what they do to play in the leaves-rake them up, jump in the piles, etc.  Kate wrote on her own; I wrote for Dom and he copied a few words. 

`The kids also journaled about their 5 senses applied to apples and their 5 senses applied to fall.  “In the fall, I see…”, “In the fall, I hear…”, etc.  AND “Apples taste…”, “Apples look…”, etc.

Extra and Art: We did some extra odds and end work in which Kate colored a coloring page in a “Sparky the Firedog” coloring book in honor of the fire safety we covered the last two weeks.  Dominic colored a picture of a firetruck.

Math: We did a worksheet in which the kids had to count the apples in a tree and write the number on the line.  This was too easy for Kate, but just right for Dom.  He did really well!  He counted the apples himself, wrote the numbers himself! When he was unsure of how to write a number, he looked at his number chart for reference-very resourceful!!

Bible: We simply reviewed our memory verse of the last two weeks together, John 15:12.

*We have some odds and ends from the Bible unit this last two weeks we still haven’t tied up, so we will finish that up early next week before moving on to a new Bible theme.

Extra and Poetry: We read from “Weekly Reader” magazine about apples.  After we read about apples, the kids had a small matching activity worksheet they completed about apples.  `We also read a poem about apples form the “Weekly Reader”.

*We still have some odds and ends from the fall/fire safety/Johnny Appleseed-apples unit we have yet to tie up (Kate’s spelling test, a few journals, etc.).  We will gather those loose ends early next week before moving on to our new theme for next week- “States” and “Flat Stanley”.

*I have, however, decided that I am going to continue allowing for fall related journals all throughout fall, regardless of the current theme.  The kids enjoy writing and coloring about fall, so even if our theme is Ancient Civilizations or States, we may still throw a fall themed journal entry in there, in addition to the current unit theme.

Next Week: States and “Flat Stanley”!! Bible themes: Noah and Samson.J

 

 


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Newsletter 4
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 4

Week 6: Catch up

Week 7: Fall! (also: Fire Safety and Johnny Appleseed)

Week 6:  We used this week to catch up on our family unit from last week.  We also took this opportunity to teach the kids a bit of the political process as we watched the Republican National Convention together and discussed the process.  It’s really cool that a 6 and 5 year old know the names of the major candidates and their running mates.  We also watched coverage of the hurricane and talked about what a hurricane was and what it might mean for families.  Sometimes homeschooling is about the beauty of not having to go along with any schedule and letting the kids learn by living and life experience.  We took such advantage this week.

No School on Monday, Labor Day

Day 1 (Tues.):  We just summarized week 5’s unit on families.  We had a few writing assignments to finish, so we did that today. 

We did:

Journal, “Thank you God for my family. I love my family because…” Kate answered-“Because Mommy plays with me sometimes.” Dom answered- “Because they give me legos.”

Writing practice pages to fill our Family Mini Book:  wrote and drew on our favorite family celebrations, family memories, completed an “All About Me” page for each child, among other smaller things

 

Week 7:

Basic Skills Menu: (This week we will do lots of basic skills; here is the menu we choose from).

`Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics and Math; Dom, Phonics and Math).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers

Books used all week and next week: Fire Safety-“Stop, Drop and Roll” by, Margery Cuyler; “Arthur’s Fire Drill” (activities with this book)

Johnny Appleseed- “Johnny Appleseed”; and Apples-“ How Do Apples Grow?” (activities with this book)

Fall-“ I Am a Leaf”, “Why Do Leaves Change Color?”, “Country Fair” (“My First Little House” book series), “The Deer in the Wood” (“My First Little House” book series).

Journals week 7 ( 3 ): “Johnny Appleseed planted…”, “I like football because…”, wrote a letter to Johnny Appleseed,

Read Aloud: The book is, “Meet Felicity” from the “American Girls” series. However, we did not read from it this week. We focused heavily on basic skills this week and the reading for our fall unit.

Verse and Bible Theme:  John 15:12, “This is my command, that you love one another as I have loved you.” Theme: Adam and Eve

Spelling Words: (Taken from our Johnny Appleseed reading): apple, plant, tree, hero, money (Kate wrote these words 5 times each and wrote a sentence for each one to gain a better understanding of their meaning. She will test on them on the last day this week.)(We bumped her spelling test to next week since we are making this unit a two week unit).

Notes-

Format Change This Week: We also are changing the format, again, a bit this week.  We have slowly but surely through July and August moved up to this point, of having a regular format and schedule.  We have had basic skills practice (including Kate’s 1st grade readers), calendar work, read alouds, journal writing and Bible study for the past several weeks.  In addition this week, we add to the format- A spelling list for Kate each week (5 words first semester), and a specific memory verse from Scripture for the kids to memorize each week. 

*This is such a packed unit, we have decided to take it into next week, as well.  So, we are going to be doing fall/fire safety/Johnny Appleseed weeks 7 and 8.

Notebooks/Binders used this week (and every week from here on out): Bible verse notebook, Journal binder and Kate’s spelling notebook.

 

 

Day 1:

-We went over our calendar (month and day of week) AND starting in Sept., we made a countdown calendar for the baby and Halloween.  The kids mark the day off each day until we reach our goal dates.

-We brainstormed the season, Fall. We talked about what it makes us think of: football, cold, Halloween, leaves falling, etc.

-I showed the kids our completed Family Mini Book we worked on week 5 and the beginning of this week.

-Bible Study:  

`Verse-John 15:12, “   “ (The kids wrote this in their Bible verse notebook; for Dom I wrote it and he traced it.

`Devotion-We read form a book called, “Right Choices”; It tells stories to help Preschoolers and Elementary kids make moral choices.  Today’s reading was on, fighting with other kids and siblings.

`Story-We took a look at Adam and Eve this week.  We are going in order of the Old Testament, and have already covered Creation this past summer. So, with Adam and Eve, we told the story from the Bible, and did several worksheets about the story: Kate did a dot to dot 1-45 that formed the animals in the Garden of Eden, when completed; Dominic colored a Tree of Knowledge picture and traced the letter “E” on a worksheet that said, “ E is for Eve”.

-Basic Skills (Math and Phonics):

`Both kids worked on their Horizons workbooks.  Kate worked on beginning consonant sounds and Dom traced his numbers 1-10.  We are working on proper form with him.

-Reading (and Social Studies):  We read from a book called, “What Your First Grader Needs to Know”, the story of Johnny Appleseed.  After, the kids completed a worksheet putting the sequence of events of the story in proper order.

-Writing:  The kids did two journal entries today: “Johnny Appleseed planted…” and, going with the Fall theme- “ I like football because…”  We added these journals to our journal binder.

*No read aloud this week.

Day 2: *Dom was sick today, so we had a short day.

-We started the day with our calendar work and our baby/Halloween countdown.

-Bible Study (and Science):

`Verse- We reviewed the weekly verse by reading it aloud.

`Devotion-We read from, “Five Minute Devotions” that combines a science principle with a Biblical principle.  We read on sea otters and how they work and play and how God wants us to balance between hard work and play.

`Story-Kate and Dom colored worksheets about Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden.

-Basic Skills (Phonics, Reading and Math):

`I worked with Dominic today on tracing and writing his numbers 1-10.  We practiced each number several times to ensure proper form.

`Kate and I read from her First Grade Reader.  We bought a book from the Horizons Christian publisher that specifically wrote stories for a First Grade level, and later, to challenge the First Grade level.  We read story 1. She is so strong in reading!

-Spelling:  I introduced Kate’s spelling list to her today. She wrote each word 5x in her spelling notebook. (*Taken from our Johnny Appleseed reading): apple, plant, tree, hero, money

She will test on them on the last day this week, after she also writes sentences using each word.

Day 3:

-We started the day with our calendar work and baby/Halloween countdown.

-Bible Study:

`Verse-We reviewed our weekly verse by reading it aloud.

`Devotion-We again read from “Right Choices”.  This lesson was on obeying your parents.

-Reading/poetry (and Social Studies): We read a book called, “Johnny Appleseed”, in poem form.

-Writing: We wrote a letter to Johnny Appleseed for our journal entry today.  Kate wrote telling him we read a book about him; and Dom wrote him telling him we eat the apples he planted. J  *P.S. I taught them John Chapman really did live long ago.  They wanted to know if we were writing these letters to send to Heaven for him, since he lived long ago and is long dead now.  I had to explain we were just writing pretend letters to him. 

-Basic Skills:

`Kate completed a worksheet for extra practice in which she had to look at Johnny Appleseed pictures and circle the items on the right (right from left review).  Then, she read to me from her First Grade reader.

`Dominic traced his numbers 1-10 with me, again.  Then, he did the same right vs. left worksheet as Kate did, and in addition-he did a worksheet in which several apples had either letters or numbers written in them.  He had to color letters read and numbers green.  *This was really good for him, as he still has a hard time differentiating between what is a letter and which is a number.  He was having a bit of difficulty until I gave him his number chart and alphabet flip book, both to use as references.  Using the references, he looked them up and did the whole worksheet on his own correctly!!

-Spelling: Kate wrote her 5 spelling words each in a sentence.  She had to underline the spelling word in each sentence and it gave me an opportunity to introduce proper punctuation and capitalization to her.

Day 4: Basic Skills day

Notes-

Fire Safety Unit Lessons: (Here is just a sampling of what we covered with fire safety this week, or will cover next week!)(Fire Safety is usually taught in Oct., but I did it early so I could do other things later.)

Main points we discussed-

Fire Safety- smoke alarms in homes (extra batteries, check batteries), sprinklers, escape plan, fire drills, never play with lighters or matches, keep electric heaters at least three feet from anything that can catch fire, extension cords away from doorways and not pinched behind furniture, have professional check chimneys and furnaces once a year

What to do- crawl under the smoke, cover mouth with wet towel if able, check the door by touching-if cool, open; if hot- do not-go to window and call for help; and stop, drop and roll if clothes catch fire

Escape Route

Fire Drill

Stop Drop and Roll

“Sparky” the Firedog-We checked out his website and worked through coloring and activity pages in a Sparky coloring book

`Sparky’s Top Ten Fire Safety Tips for Kids (on back cover of: “”Stop, Drop and Roll” by, Margery Cuyler):

1.    Every home should have working fire alarms on all floors and near all bedrooms

2.    A grown up should test each alarm very month

3.    Every family should practice fire drill at least twice a year

4.    Memorize your address and emergency numbers

5.    Matches, lighters and cigarettes are dangerous, do not play with them

6.    Kids should only cook with an adult

7.    Space heaters should stay at least three feet away from anything that will burn

8.    Candles should not be in children’s rooms, and only adults should light them

9.    If a fire happens, get out and stay out

10. Stop, drop and roll if your clothes catch on fire

 

 

 

 

 

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 8:11 PM EDT
Updated: Monday, 22 September 2008 8:23 PM EDT
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Newsletter 3
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 3

Week 5 (Week 4 we took a break)-Theme: Families!

 

Theme:  Families (our family, family make-ups, family celebrations, family memories, family vacations, God Made Families-Adam and Eve, Abraham and Sarah)

Journals ( 3 ):  Our last name…(write and draw picture)

“All kinds of weather-In the sunshine, I like to ____ with my family…In the windy weather, I like to ____with my family…”

“My favorite thing to do with my family is…”

Books:  “All Kinds of Families”, “Swimming with Dolphins” (about dolphin families), others- Bernstein Bears, Little House

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity” from the American Girls series of books.  Felicity is a young girl and the story takes place in 1774.

 

Day 1: Started the day by reading from, “All Kinds of Families” (to read the rest tomorrow, or day after).

*No calendar work today

Basic Skills: Grant-Animals workbook (read through and colored), Dominic-Horizons Math workbook (tracing and writing 1-10), Kate-“A Different Tune” book comprehension questions.

Writing: Journal: Our last name-wrote it and drew a picture of the family.

Bible: Talked a bit about Adam and Eve-God Made Families

Writing: Journal: “All kinds of weather-In the sunshine, I like to ____ with my family…In the windy weather, I like to ____with my family…”, etc.

AND we started a Family Mini Book: Pages 1-3- “There are ___members in my family”, drew pictures of each, “I like to ___with my father, I like to ___with my mother”, drew pictures of Mom and Dad.

Reading and Basic Skills: While I worked basic skills with Dom, Kate read aloud two books to herself with very few prompts: “I Like Bugs” and “Bears in the Night” Bernstein Bears.  Dominic and I worked in his Horizons Math workbook some more doing more of what is listed above.
*No read aloud today

Day 2: Tuesday we stuck to reading from “All Kinds of Families” and did basic skills work.

Day 3: Started the day by finishing the book, “All Kinds of Families” (long book!).

We looked over our calendar for the day (month and date, day of week).

Basic Skills: We worked heavily on basic skills today.  Kate-we finished her reading comprehension work in “A Different Tune” reader.  Then we did a big money worksheet adding different coins together. Kate did really well!  On the back of that sheet we also reviewed writing the teen numbers and writing numbers by 10’s to 100. (Kate was confusing 13 and 30). 

Dominic- Dominic worked from his Horizons Math workbook writing and tracing numbers 1-10.  *He loves to work in this book, often asking to do work in it at night and on his own.  For phonics, we made a “Chicka Chicka” alphabet mini book; Dom traced all letters. 

Bible and Writing: We stressed that God Made Families and again mentioned the first family-Adam and Eve.  We discussed the Bible verse, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9) and discussed what it meant to “keep” your brother (take care of).  We also discussed who else in our family we could care for; Also discussed who else in the world we could care for.  Then, we filled in information sheets on all of our family members to add to our Family Mini Book we are putting together-adding to the 3 pages we did Monday (see Day 1).  At the bottom of the pages we wrote-God Made Families.  The pages ask questions such as-name, birthday, favorite thing, brothers and sisters, favorite story.  We wrote one for each member of our family.

Computer time and Reading: We finished the day by listening to a story about families on Starfall.com-“My Family”.  Kate read the second half to us. 

*No read aloud today  *No journals today

Day 4: We started the day with reviewing our calendar work (month and day of week) and making a craft project.

Reading: We read 2 books today-one on animal families: “Swimming with Dolphins” and: “Bernstein Bears Lend a Helping Hand” about the B.B. kids doing a good deed for a neighbor.  We discussed good deeds we could do as a family.

Basic Skills: Kate-Kate created her own journal page. She drew stars and stripes and asked if she could journal about what we did for the Fourth of July. So, that is what she did.  She also worked on a money worksheet-adding combinations of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters.

Dominic- Dom practiced writing his letters using an “etch a sketch”.  Then he and I cut out letters and matched lower case letters to the upper case letter it belonged to. Kate helped with this. Dom was pretty good at identifying the upper case (he needed some help from his alphabet reference sheet).  He struggled with lower case.  *This taught me that we need to master the upper case identification more before we try to throw lower case into the mix. Then, we can move on to the sounds each letter makes and eventually, put them together and read.

Bible: We reviewed that God made families and that the first family was Adam and Eve.  We then discussed the family of Abraham and Sarah.  We read in Genesis how God told Abraham his descendants (I just said ‘family’ to the kids) would be as many as the stars in the sky.  I explained that Abraham believing God in this required ‘faith’ (trust) because Sarah could not have kids.  I explained that they eventually did have kids and now we refer to Abraham as “Father Abraham”. 

We sang the kids’ church song, “Father Abraham”.

Finally, as Abraham now has a lengthy family tree, we made our own family tree going back as far as the kids’ Grandparents on both sides.  It is going to be added as a page in our Family Mini Book (see Day 1).

Writing: We completed various writing activities with a family theme: `Dom completed a w.s. about all shapes and sizes of families.  He had 4 pictures of families and had to circle the largest family and put a square around the smallest.  `Kate had to do a dot to dot worksheet that drew a house as she connected 1-10.  `We filled in a sheet on “helping hands”.  It was a w.s. with a hand on it in which the kids drew what chores they do around the house and on the back wrote a list of chores they do.  This is a page in our Family Mini Book. `Finally, we did two pages on our family’s diet.-We wrote our family’s favorite food (the kids picked tacos) and we wrote the ingredients to it. (Page in Family Book).  Then, we made a week long dinner menu of family foods we like to eat. I had Dom draw these foods. (Another page in our Family Book).

Journal: The kids journaled: “My favorite thing to do with my family is…” (Kate said-play legos with Dominic; and Dominic said-play legos with Daddy and watch movies with Mommy.)

P.E.: We played “Mother May I”. (We put a twist on it and played it like “Simon Says”).

Read Aloud: We started reading from, “Meet Felicity”, from the American Girls series of books.  Felicity is a young girl and the story takes place in 1774.

Day 5: We concentrated on basic skills today.  Kate-worked on her First Grade ‘Horizons’ (a Christian homeschool curriculum company) workbooks for math and phonics.  We worked on phonics: Kate completed several pages on vowels.  *I have learned that working on vowels with Kate may be going backwards.  Since she is already a reader (and becoming a very strong reader just by practice), trying to break this up when she already knows how to put it together may be pointless.  Vowels seem to just confuse her a bit when she can already sound words out my context of the page and text.  I may suspend working on vowels, specifically.  Dominic- We worked in his ‘Horizons’ math workbook, continuing to write and trace numbers 0-10.  * With Dom, we have to specifically practice how to write each number. Dom writes the numbers, but in his own invented way.  I want him to know the standard way to form the numbers.  Example-he’s writing ‘2’ from the bottom up-I want him to know how to form the number form the top to bottom.  SO, we worked on the side on actually forming each number. 

*We have a few more family themed writing assignments we did not finish this week.  So, at the beginning of next week, we will take a few minutes to complete those writing projects (to add to our Family Mini Book); before we start next week’s theme-Fall/Fire Safety and Johnny Appleseed.

 

 

 

 


Posted by dskdgfamily at 8:09 PM EDT
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