Friday, December 3, 2010

a new path

We have been on a new unschooly path lately. Taking it easy more learning through play. Lucy was doing amazing still striving in the school room environment but as a stress reliefe for me instead of fighting sam to behave and taking our only free time whike he naps to rush our learning we are takingit easy and learning all day in a less intense atmosphere and things are going well! We are using pez for adding and subtracting, learning all about Hanukkah watching movies and doing our own celebrations. We learned oodles about Thanksgiving together so much i never knew and i loved it! Her reading is amazing she will sound out just about anything! We arent pressuring her she just reads to herself, her brother and her buddy all day and her choice for talking is now by spelling everything she says! So yeah we have been a bit mia but i hope to be back. We are doing well she is learning tons and we are doing it in an awesome way! I have always felt a bit unschooler at heart im excited to see where this takes us!
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Sunday, October 17, 2010

we are back

We are back from our trip to Wisconsin Dells. It was a blast! Lots of swimming sliding and other fun! We went to Ripleys and the Tommy Bartlet Exploritory. The Exploritory was great! Lots ot hands on science! The whole thing pooked a bit outdated but there were tons of really cool exibits a lot of which i have never seen at other museums of the sort. If you ever get the chance it is worth checking out! I will have to post pics of the trip next time because i am on my phone right now and in the car. I am hoping to get back to the regular grind this week!
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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Dialing it back a little

The past couple weeks we have been taking it a bit easy. As kind of a break to both of us.It is kinda making me feel like a slacker, but we are still learning just in a more relaxed way. There was no problem with how we were doing it before but if I want to have any sort of life out of the house at all I think we have to be a bit more relaxed sometimes. So we have been playing educational games, watching documentaries, doing some verbal spelling tests (which I must say I am super surprised what a good speller she is!) We are always learning about the world around us, adding in a bit of starfall and reading reading reading! The truth is I am pretty sure she is still learning the same amount! If not more! I apparently need to go easier on myself! Tomorrow we head out for our vacation we are all super excited! There are lots of lessons to be learned at the water park...Right?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Last week

Yes I am a bit behind I am ashamed to say. But don't you worry I am happy to report last weeks schooling :)
I feel like we learned quite a bit last week! Our water unit is moving right on along. we worked on the states of water with a fun little experiment. We put some ice in a pot on the stove watched it melt into a liquid and boil into a gas. Thanks again Lexi for the idea! This week we also learned about the water cycle with the help of The Magic School Bus! We read their water cycle book and watched the episode. We finished the week by Lucy creating a story board type water cycle herself. I just love how the hands on part of homeschool helps the learning become so much more clear!
The telling time is going alright. The first day I found myself a bit overwhelmed with all the information I was trying to spew out at her so we just called it a day at first and the next day I think I was better suited. I think she is picking it up fairly fast. She is great at knowing how to make it say whatever hour and she is also picking up _:30, but she needs more practice to understand each number means a different number. It will come. Honestly I am shocked by how much she is already grasping! She is only 4 for Petes sake! I am not trying to push her just moving along once she gets a concept, I feel like we have already gotten far in math and I am pretty sure so far math is her favorite.
This week for reading we didn't do too much exciting but Starfall did get a bit challenging for her so that is awesome! I am still shocked daily by her spelling skills and she has no fear to try and sound out any word. Go Lucy! She will be quite the reader I imagine!
We didnt do anything on the Kenosha unit this week we took our normal field trip day and went to Hobby Lobby for Halloween costume essentials. She decided last minute to switch from being a spider to the bride of Frankenstein to match her brother :) We came up with a really cute costume idea! So I guess we can call that home ec? LOL! Yesterday we also booked a mini vacation to the Wilderness in Wisconsin Dells, So she will e in a water unit wonderland! haha! We will be sure to take a gander at the Dam there in the Dells too. We are all quite excited! I am sure plenty of educational opportunities will present them selves!

Monday, September 27, 2010


While on the hunt for some help teaching how to tell time I came across the site They have a great section about telling time and when I look further there is so much more! They have all sorts of interactive activities through 5th grade! I am super excited to have found it! Another thing we are already loving on our quick glance is the interactive number chart where you can color each number. That is something I was having Lucy do already but I wrote out the numbers and while we were learning how to count by 2s 5s and such I had her color those specific numbers. Wish I knew about this then!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Feeling fallish

This was a busy week of field trips! Monday Sam was not feeling good so we ended up skipping school and taking him to the Dr. Lucy watched a couple of Animal Planet documentary just to squeeze in some educational value LOL. Tuesday we went and took a ride on the trolley as part of our tourist in our own town unit followed by a lunch at Trolley Dogs to continue the theme :) Wednesday was business as usual. Thursday in honor of the first day of fall we went to a really cool local park for the day for all sorts of fun. W=My friend who is also homeschooling joined us. We had a picnic. Read a couple of books about autumn and what changes happen and why. We also had a signs of fall scavenger hunt.
Which led to a hike in the woods. We also did some rubbings. We did leafs, sticks and all sorts of things we could find to check out the different textures they made. After a while at the playground I think we were all pooped after a long day!
Friday was another trip to the library for story time and picking out this weeks books.

This week Lucy got a great handle on counting by 5s so starting tomorrow we are going to attempt telling time! She also did 3 Starfall lessons and loves it! I am finding she is really getting it and zooming through it and it is making things much easier for me because it is the same kind of lessons I am trying to make for her but it takes me a lot more time to draw it all out! I am hoping after she gets through all of these easier lessons it will get a bit harder and challenge her! She reads the stories on there like nothing I am so proud of how well she is reading! I am hoping this coming week we will also get in a couple of good water lessons. She is still keeping an eye on her water slowly evaporating from the cup and I think she thinks that is really neat!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


i am finally on the school computer! It took a bit longer then expected but we finally have one down here in the school room! I am very excited about it and we are finally going to start starfall today!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Well I am happy to report that we have been able to introduce more then just reading writing and math without a problem! Last week I asked Lucy what she wanted to do for science and she put me on the assignment of finding material on water. I am excited at all of the possibilities! We are planning to take a road trip to see a waterfall and maybe a dam too! We started the unit with a easy reader book I had all about water which touched on evaporation and the solid liquid and gad forms of water. We filled a glass with water and set it out and are observing how long it takes for it all to evaporate. We also started our "Tourist in your own town" unit as we are calling it. We are very excited to learn all about the history and all of the things Kenosha has to offer! We went to the visitors center yesterday to get a good start. We got a map and booklets all about the attractions and sites to see! The list is growing everyday of the things we want to do for this! In other news Lucy has pretty much mastered even numbers and is also doing quite good on odds too!
This weeks Lego Quest was to make a playgroup I love it! She put so many features! It was hard to get a great pic but she has a slide,Teeter totter, tire climbing thing a couple poles to slide down, a pond, bouncy duck, sand box, grounds keeper, water fountain, flowers, a snake and more! I think of all of these this is the one she has gotten the most excited about! And journals you ask? Well she is breezing through them and actually starting to enjoy them too! I am so glad! I feel like that is touching on so many different areas I really wanted her to like it! Oh! And we also finished the first of the Boxcar Children books, Lucy made a little story board for it and we are now reading Matilda because well she thinks she is Matilda :) LOL alsright enough of this mish mash! I will be back to report how it is going again soon!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Busy Busy!

We are still going going going! This week journals are going much better! The ticket idea is working great too! We learned about short and long vowel sounds and made word webs for each. She is getting great at recognizing number 1-100 and we started working on counting by 2s also! We have been playing a lot of word games and she is getting so great at Boggle Jr!
We also pulled out her new balance. first I wrote two numbers on the board and she had to guess which one would weigh more then check them all. She got them all right after that we tested to see if the bears and Legos were equal and how many Legos it takes to equal a bear. I think she learned a lot during that quick lesson and I plan on doing more of it!
We also ordered ourselves a new updated computer (this one is very outdated!) My brother has it all put together now we just need to get windows 7 on it and then we will have a school computer! I am very excited!!! Starfall here we come! So hopefully next week we will be open to a bunch more possibilities! I am also very happy to report that my biggest worry keeping Sam entertained during school is not really being an issue!
Tomorrow story time at the Library! Also hunting for books on Autumn for our first day of Autumn celebration!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Week one under our belt!

Well week one is done and I am super pleased! Thursday we did a lot. Journal was a bit rough again. Other then that she read to me out of her easy reader book of choice, I made flashcards of 1-100 and she did great at those! Still having the most trouble with the teens. She also did the weekly lego quest. (link to that on the right sidebar)
She also did a search through a page out of a book to find all the vowels which she is doing great at too!
Today the journal went a lot smoother! We got our Rainbow Resource order yesterday so we had a bunch of new stuff to use today! We played with the counting bears I had her count and write the number on her little dry erase board and she is getting better at figuring out how to write the teen numbers so hopefully with a bit more practice she will have that down. We also took turns making and finishing patterns with them and she has that down too! I came up with an idea to create a way for her to hopefully focus better on her journal because she can do it just fine when she is focusing on it. So I let her decorate a box and now when she does good she can get a ticket to put into it and after 10 she can have some sort of reward.

So I would say this week was a success for sure! I introduced vowels and she has a great grasp on what they are. With the help of a "finger space" her writing is much easier to understand. She is showing improvement with writing 2 digit numbers. She also learned about when to capitalize letters!
Today her journal question was "what do you hope we do this weekend?" and her answer was "more school" so I guess that is a great sign!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

We had a great time at our little party today! We did end up doing the journal today before we left and it was a bit worse then yesterday... that situation may need some help. but other then that the party was a lot of fun and the kids did a lot of neat stuff!


They each made a flower.

and their own french bread pizza!

We also played alphabet Bingo and made Girl Gourmet cupcakes... and those were a disaster by no fault of the kids! a fun filled busy day and now i'm pooped!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day 2 under our belts and I am loving the routine of it! Today took her a while to do the journal. I am not sure yet if I will keep going at it the way I have and see if she just gets quicker at it the more practice she gets or maybe change it. I will reevaluate after this week is over. I think I need to give her a lesson on how a piece of paper works LOL Sounds strange, but so she knows about margins and things like that and where her letters are expected to be on the line. Her handwriting needs help... BAD! If I am not seeing this improving with the daily practice of her school work I may look into adding handwriting into our daily lessons.
Sam joined us again for part of it and that is working out surprisingly well! I was worried how he would do down there and if Lucy would be able to focus with him around. It was a bit of a distraction, but after a bit she was fine. He is happy too because there are toys down there that he doesn't have up here so it is great fun for him!
Tomorrow we are having a party at my friends house because she has decided to homeschool her kids too and it would have been their first day at public school tomorrow so in turn we celebrate that they are not :) This is so early into our routine I am not sure how I want to do it with Lucy if I want her to do some school before we go or after or just call the party school since we have a bunch of activities planned for them all of which can be considered educational. I am fine with calling it school, I just worry about giving myself too much leeway because my motivation is one of my big concerns with this working for us. Since that will only be day 3 I feel like I am setting myself up for slacking if we "skip" although maybe this will not be an issue at all because honestly I might be sad if we "skip" because I am loving this!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Day one!

Today was Lucy first official day of school! It is so bitter-sweet that my baby girl is doing school! It feels like that should be not even a thought at this point! Things went very good! I had no clue how long what I had planned would take and it turned out to be about an hour and a half of work. I feel happy with that as a starting point. I only planned reading writing and math stuff so once we start to add more I think we will be at a great point! So here is what we did today...

Journal- I gave her a journal topic (this will be daily) written on the board she copied the question and wrote her answer in sentence form and then drew a little picture. I figure when she is older making her copy the question will not be necessary but for now it is giving her extra writing practice. Today's question... How do you feel about starting school today?

Letter practice- we worked on writing lowercase letters. She can recognize them enough to read them, but usually chooses to write in uppercase. I explained when you capitalize a letter and we went through writing them all on her dry erase board. We will keep practicing these until she masters it.

Word practice- I made her a worksheet with blanks within words I made it so there was more then one right option to make a word and let her choose what sound she wanted to use to finish a word. example: H_T She felt a little confused in the beginning but understood it quickly.

Numbers- I made a worksheet with numbers 1-30 with blank spots she had to fill in. She is figuring out how you write numbers like 23 that it is a 2 and a 3. this needs a bit more practice and she also needs help to know that 30 comes after 29 not 20 10 lol

Story time- This will also happen daily, I plan on keeping an on going chapter book. Today we started the boxcar children series. I loved those as a child! Part of story time will be her telling me when there is a word she doesn't understand. The world will be put on the board as a vocab word to use through out the week or however long it takes to have a good grasp on. The word she needed help with today... cross. She is excited to use it!

Sam decided he was not ready for a nap and ended up joining us too he did alright played with the little people I have down there, but it did become hard to keep him out of the rest of the basement while I was reading to her. I am super excited for tomorrow to see how it goes!

Sunday, August 29, 2010


Yup! Tomorrow!!! There is still a little to be done in the school room and I hope that me starting now will not hinder my progress. Tonight hopefully Nick will get the new light put in. I made my lesson for tomorrow and figured out our journal topics for the week and I am super excited to go go go!!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

We are getting so close!!!

I feel like the rest of the world has already started the school year homeschooling or not, I am feeling a bit behind but we are planning on schooling year round so I am sure it really wont be an issue. Not to mention we technically don't have to be doing anything this year so we will be going above and beyond as it is! But both Lucy and I are super excited and I want to run with her love for learning!
The school room is all we are waiting on and I dont have any before pictures, but trust me you dont want to see it! Last week we started really getting down to business in there cleaning and organizing things! Some of our original plans are probably not going to happen for this year, but we did get some new carpet for down there. and nick is going to install some more lighting too. I am also hoping to put up some sort of curtain to hide the furnace and water heater but it is already feeling much more homey and inviting down there! I cannot wait to see it all done! I am sure I will post more pics soon! Hopefully we will be off to our start of school real soon!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Chugging along

We have made great progress on the school room this past week! It is really starting to take shape and adding to my excitement! I am working on a list of stuff from Rainbow Resource to order, and would love to pick up some basic little computer for down there just for school stuff! But we are defiantly just at the point of finish the room and go! I love it!
Lucy is still chugging along with her Scholastic ready readers picking them up and reading them on her own several times a day! I also got my "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy lessons" book yesterday and I am looking through that. It appears a bit strange to me but we are going to give it a whirl. I am just worried it may confuse her a bit since she has quite a grasp already, but I figure she still doesn't have any clue when a letter make a long or silent sound so this may help! Even I dont know a start date I think I want to make a list lesson plan type thing started for the beginning just so when day one starts I feel like I have a starting point.
There is tons more homeschool stuff running through my head at the moment but I guess that will be topic for another day :)

Monday, August 9, 2010

While we are busy planning other things... Learning happens!

This weekend Lucy completely assured me that homeschooling is by far the best decision for her! So far we don't have a date set to start school the space which we have decided to do it in is still in shambles and far from ready by I do have a delusional idea that it will only take a weekend to get set. Anyways Lucy hasn't really been taking the wait until we start school thing well she insists on learning she wants it so bad! So to keep her happy we bought a summer get ready for Kindergarten work book we have been doing tons of activities at the library and talking a little bit about the concept of putting the letter sounds together to make words.
She has been getting so frustrated when she picks up a book ( a chapter book at that) and cannot read it! She wants to read very bad! So when it came to read her a story I would try to pick one maybe she could help with but she would just look at the pictures and guess that just frustrated me and was not working! So to help with her desire to figure it out we decided to write words on a dry erase board and help her figure them out. And then it clicked! She can do it! She was reading cat hat pat and so on! We were so excited but I guess at that point I still did not feel like she could read just sound out words (ugh duh me!)
So last week I am searching out ways for me to help teach her how to know what sounds the blends make and such. Pretty much while I was in the process of doing that our room mate (my best friend) dug out these easy readers that we picked up (FOR FREE!!) at a rummage sale. They are Scholastic phonics ready readers if anyone wants to know. And now that I went to look at them to see what they are called I realize we have books 13-24 lol not even the easiest ones. Anyways she sat down with Lucy handed her a book she read it! Like no big deal just sat there and read it! So Beck hands her another she read that too! She sat there and read 7 books before she wanted to quit so she could go grill with daddy. When she woke up in the morning the first thing she does is pick up another and reads it! My baby can read!!! My four year old baby can read!!!! I am shocked! This kid should not be waiting another year to start school! She should be up and running as fast as she wants! I am so happy to be able to give her this! My main goal of this "school year" was to get her to this point that she already got her self... while waiting for me to teach her! This kid is amazing! I would hate to be holding her back so she could be at the same point of her classmates! Thanks Lucy for already proving this is the right thing... before we even started!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

My Newest School Find!

I am always on the hunt for a good deal I have no shame in saving things for years if I can buy it now cheap! This may be one of the contributors to the clutter I have! LOL but I cannot pass up a good deal! I have a feeling that this will be a common (as long as I have my way about it) Part of this blog!

This weeks awesome find was ...

At Goodwill for 6.99! Cant beat that as far as I am concerned! This is a foreign language program in German where the learning comes from watching movies in German. There are lessons and then some that are just like a cartoon. They make it really easy to pick up on! We have only watched some of it once and we all learned things! We never really decided to teach German but I guess Goodwill has for us LOL! Lucy likes it so that is good too! Hopefully soon I will do a full review after we use it some more, but so far so good! Hopefully it will accompany the Easy learning German book I picked up there last time!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Dear Rainbow Resource..

I requested your catalog what feels like ages ago... I hear so much about all of your wonderful pages if only I could see for myself! How am I supposed to start school without what is sure to be the mother load of all home school suppliers?
Please hurry! Waiting impatiently, Sara

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lucys Kindergarten plan

So here is our plan so far for this year. I am not going to be super strict to it or anything I just wanted to have something laid out so I had direction. I figure there will be some things we wont get to and somethings added based on her whims. Also some of this is just review or mastering the skill. I am super excited to have this all down where I can look at it and see the plan and also relieved that I don't really think I will need to buy any "curriculum" Just peace together different hands on activities.

• Master writing numbers
• Counting by 5s and 10s
• Patterns
• Time
• Money
• Addition
• Subtraction
Social Studies
• Study of Kenosha possibly Wisconsin too
• Study of history of holidays ie: Thanksgiving, St. patty’s day, Presidents day etc.
• How other people (cultures) celebrate holidays
• Simple maps
• Common local jobs
• Fire safety
• Stranger safety
• Emergency safety
• Work on ch, th, sh, oo, ee sounds
• Beginner readers
• Vocab words pulled from stories we’re reading
Language Arts
• Daily journal
• Spelling
• Senses
• Seasons
• Animal homes
• Weather/ climates
• Learn basic songs
• Basic arts and crafts holiday, season, etc.

What are your opinions? good? bad? needs more or less?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

An intro to us

I started this blog a couple weeks ago I guess it is time I actually write in it! We are about to embark on our home school journey and I thought a place to document our times would be a great idea! Who knows maybe someone else will actually read this and take something from it.
A bit about me. I am Sara. I am 24 years old and a mom to two wonderful kids that really are my world! We are not choosing to home school based on religious beliefs just on the belief in a good interest led education. Lucy my oldest is 4 years old. I know just about every parent thinks that their kid is the smartest thing ever and although I am particularly fond of her I know she is not the smartest... maybe the second smartest! LOL no I am kidding! But seriously she is ready to start school like yesterday! To make her wait another year to start I believe would not be good for her. She will either be bored out of her mind because she Kindergarten will all be review for her or we will have to tie her down meanwhile and make her stop learning!
We are super excited to get started! I cannot wait to write all of our adventures on here too! I am prepared that this takes a while to get used to but I know that if there is anything I can show determination for it is my kids!