Category Archives: Lifelong Learning

No Summer Break for Me

As I’m surrounded by a computer, notebook and papers I look up, stretch my neck and wonder why the kids get summer breaks and I don’t. I’m sore from perusing over book lists, curriculum choices and excel spreadsheets so the natural thing to do was feel sorry for myself. Then I thought about doing year round school with the kids.  I’m thinking “that will teach them!”. What a pity party I was having, geesh. Has this happened to you?

Believe it or not, I actually do like to plan our children’s education(weird, huh). Planning, researching and scheduling comes naturally to me but every now and again I get caught up in myself and let it rain on my parade. I just need to back off for a while, maybe get some other projects done. Hmmm…what to start?

 

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Walking Down Mountains and Healthy Living

My daughter has always had a desire to be healthy and fit, taking walks and running just for fun. She would even include her brothers and set up races and obstacle courses. Kyra has a passion for cooking as well and her repertoire is getting bigger and better.
Today she came up with a plan for getting fit and healthy with her brothers. She says to me “I’m going to have the boys stretch with me and go for a walk to the mailbox twice a day. Once in the morning after Bible and again in the afternoon”. Bear in mind that we are near the top of a mountain and our mailbox is about 3 blocks DOWN the mountain. So I agreed and asked her how she plans on knowing what exercises to teach them. “Oh, I will just do the same ones that I used to do when I went to public school”, was what she replied.
So I’m alone in the house, waiting for them to get back and I start thinking. (I know! Scary right?) ;D If she wants to take this on, then she needs to do it the right way. I told her that I wanted this to be her project and that she needed to do some research. As she learns about living healthy, she is to share with her brothers what she has learned. This will help her to own the information and her brothers to gain some important knowledge. This is a win-win situation in my book! I can’t wait to see how it unfolds!

V.I.C.K.I.

Homeschooling For Us

This is the beginning of our fourth year in our homeschooling journey. Things have changed so much during this time of living and learning- from what I believed what it was to be “doing school” to how we raised our kids. Our first year was mainly a de-schooling year. We bought a complete curriculum that first year and barely used it, it just didn’t fit us(mainly my teaching style). Then we became more eclectic in our approach to schooling and we fared a little better. A couple of years ago I was introduced to Charlotte Mason and had started reading about her and her education philosophy. Her writings spoke directly to my heart and I knew that we were a kindred spirit. So I started to implement her philosophies to our lives little by little. In the spring of 2010 I planned on using Ambleside Online for our next school year’s teaching. I had quite a few of the books already(I’m a book junky) that I had gleaned from yard sales and secondhand stores and I purchased some that I knew I wouldn’t find. But by the time the school year started I had chickened out and we used other materials. That school year was hard work to get through.

This year we had no funds for purchasing more curriculum due to some unforeseen hardships, so I was led to try Ambleside Online again. I only needed math to buy so we drilled and played math games until we could get it. During the end of summer I planned out the entire year of school out weekly and put together their notebooks(I was still finishing it their first week back). I did excel sheets for me to put in my own notebook to check off also. We started off this year with a bang and we were off and running. After the first week my 13yo daughter says to me “I love this new curriculum!”. I asked the boys and they all agreed that they were enjoying learning. Wow, did I feel like supermom or what! We have now completed 5 weeks of the school year and are enjoying a little break.

Happy to be Homeschooling,

V.I.C.K.I.

Friday Night Family Movie for Free

Last Friday I was searching for a movie on Netflix and I remembered about the free family movie offered on The Homeschool Channel. So I looked on their website and found that The Sugar Creek Gang- The Great Canoe Fish was the free movie offered that night. I had heard of The Homeschool Channel for a while but never had the chance(mostly due to my lack of memory)to thoroughly check it out. As the kids played I went on the website to take a tour of the website. The first thing I noticed was that it has a video streaming on the front page, so I watched Ken Ham talk about dinosaurs(very informative, by the way). The next thing I noticed was the comments on the left sidebar. Most websites don’t receive much feedback in the comments field, this site was different . The comments were diverse and spanned from complimenting the site, to commenting on a particular video, to a thought that someone wanted to share. Below the streaming video is a calendar for the weeks schedule of videos or classes and one for the following week. And not only do they have streaming video, they also have on demand videos. The selection is incredible: science experiments, homeschooling high school, unit studies, crafts, etc. The Homeschool Channel also has it’s own community. You can log on and have your own page with inbox. There are blogs that have great information and a forum to ask questions and interact with others. I can’t recommend this free resource any higher for quality and content.

After perusing the site and watching Ken Ham the time came for the family movie. The kids and I sat down with our homemade kettle corn in hand-ready to enjoy the movie. We really enjoyed the movie and are looking forward to tonight’s Homeschool Family Movie Night movie The Sugar Creek Gang- The Race Against Nightfall.

Movie Mom,

V.I.C.K.I.

It’s Back to Homeschool Time

We have started the fourth year in our homeschooling journey and just finished our first week back. This year I am focusing on the Charlotte Mason’s teachings that I have been reading. In previous years we dabbled in some of her ideas and used Ambleside’s reading lists and now we are using the Ambleside Online curriculum fully. At the end of last week I asked how the kids thought about our shift of learning and it was an overwhelming “Yah!”. Kyra even commented “I love it!”. So not only was I feeling super excited and full-filled, the kids were learning and loving it! Let’s face it….how often do Moms have all their kids and themselves enjoying something at the same time?

Learning and Loving It,

V.I.C.K.I.

Wild Turkeys in Our Yard

The front porch is a common place while doing lessons and this morning was no different. As we wound up our first week of homeschool we spied wild turkeys on the lawn. Kyra saw them first and grabbed my attention and I hurried to let the boys know what was going on. There were at least 20 in this flock of wild turkeys! The family got a kick out of seeing them since we’ve only seen domestic turkeys on farms, at zoos and on our Thanksgiving table. Yum! Brian just smacked his lips and wished it was hunting season already. Unfortunately I didn’t think about taking a picture until they had already disappeared into the adjoining woods of the property. Oh well, maybe I’ll be more on the ball next time.

These are the memories that homeschooling allow us to take part in! Gotta love homeschooling!!

Making Memories,

V.I.C.K.I.