Saturday, September 19, 2009

Ordinary Time

Choosing Thomas

Katherine posted this video a few weeks ago. It is a must see, but very difficult to watch.

Friday, September 18, 2009

"Mom, I made a rectangle and a triangle!"

A few weeks while cleaning in the bedroom and talking on the phone, M. kept running in and out telling me he was making a rectangle and a triangle. I'm ashamed to say I didn't pay him much attention just telling him, "That's good!" and just assumed he was playing with blocks.


When I walked into his room a bit later, I found he'd made a makeshift Geoboard out of his dresser! Guess it's time to pull out the real thing!

Quilt Square for a Grieving Mom

A local mother recently lost her toddler in a tragic accident, and the homeschooling moms on one of my boards (the members are scattered worldwide!) are working together to make a quilt for her. After many challenges (sick baby and faulty machine!) I mailed my square off today. I created the design myself and free-handed the lettering. I'm not 100% pleased, but it was created with love and many, many prayers for this grieving family.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Labor Day, "Lite" School

Our first day adding our next "layer" of school plans went awry yesterday. Real life reared its ugly side when I scratched my cornea over the weekend. I've been flying half blind since Sunday (typing with one closed now!) and I ditched our literature heavy plans yesterday. No reading for me, sadly!

M. still wanted to do "projects," however, so I pulled a few things out!

Cutting and pasting is an all-time favorite and this Kumon-like workbook from BJ's is darling!

We worked on patterns with these apple pattern cards from Spell Out Loud. We haven't worked on this all summer, but we got back in the groove quickly! I did discover that ABABAB is still best for M. He couldn't quite get the hang of ABCABCABC patterning yet.

Then, of course, drawing! We brought out our favorite crayons and went to town!

We had a great time, and today were able to do more of our normal routine.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

First Day of School and Morning Basket

Yesterday we started our new school year! I decided to ease us into our new routine over several weeks so we wouldn't feel overwhelmed and more likely to throw in the towel.

This week is part one of our day: the Morning Basket. Our Morning Basket is a combination of a Waldorf Circle Time and also inspired by this post at Wildflowers and Marbles. I really like this idea and think it will probably become a habit we continue throughout our childrearing and homeschooling years.

We have our morning basket time right after breakfast before starting on chores and other activities. This way, if we have appointments, playgroup, or another commitment we will still have covered what (at this point) is the most crucial part of our homeschool.

Here are the parts to our morning basket right now:
  • Light a Candle: We didn't do this yesterday since we were outside!
  • Morning Offering/Prayer to Your Guardian Angel: Our goal is to memorize these. We're working on the Guardian Angel Prayer first.
  • Calendar/Weather: We use this calendar from Learning Resources. This is already part of our morning. M. loves to check the weather each day and find the appropriate picture. He often changes it throughout the day as our weather evolves!
  • Joyful Heart Character Study: We are starting with Obedience. Yesterday we talked about Noah since the boys are so familiar with the story, then sang a song, and started a memory verse. I know he won't learn it through drills, but I expect it to become my mantra as we work on this habit and I know he'll pick it up quickly.
  • Seasonal/Liturgical/Character Book: This week we're rereading The Sunflower Parable. Our giant sunflowers have had a bumper year!
  • Fingerplay/Movement Game: To go along with our habit of obedience, we're playing Simon Says.
  • Devotion/Bible Story: We're using My Big Book of 5-Minute Devotions and/or a story from Tomie dePaola's Book of Bible Stories or the New Catholic Picture Bible.
  • Hymn: This week it's Jesus Loves Me which will be easy for M. to memorize.
  • Blow Out Candle

From there, our morning will continue with our daily housework (Monday is upstairs bathrooms and bedrooms), some free play then the rest of our activities! I'll post more on those when we start next week.