Sunday, December 21, 2014

Climbing

The days have been grey, rainy and short. Yesterday there was a short break and it wasn't rainy but somewhat grey and cold so we headed out to the rocks to do some climbing.


We were not far from the Moors. It was a bit grey.

The kids climbed and jumped.


Miss K was dressed in pink, her favourite colour. I think she might have grown into the overalls that I bought her.

Here he is getting ready to leap.


He landed. He really did enjoy leaping and jumping. We played a game where he tried to sneak around without me finding him. I am not sure who won but we have fun.



J was standing up on the rock and leaning back but the wind was blowing and keeping him up.


We stayed out for about 40 minutes. It is about a 15 minute drive from our house. I am glad that I was able to take the kids out and give them some fresh air and exercise.


Beth
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Friday, December 19, 2014

Week in Review 19 December 2014

We began our week with a trip to the Royal Armouries. That was the birthday celebration for J. It was somewhat of an excuse to take the trip. We don't normally give the kids a birthday trip though Miss K is asking to go to Disneyland in Paris. I guess she thought since she got a trip to Hawaii one year she could ask for this. (We were flying home from Asia on her birthday and missed our flight in Tokyo so they put us on a flight to Honolulu and then on home. We only spent about 3 hours there.)

Monday was the trip and Tuesday was the actual birthday. We did some school between the celebrations.

J found the Seattle puzzle and decided he wanted to do it. It is one of the more difficult puzzles as it is not interlocking. We did manage to finish it in two days. Puzzles tend to be a bit addictive. I will put a piece in and then another one and maybe just 1 more and next thing we know we have worked on it for 30 minutes.


J received a box of candy from his flute teacher. I don't think it lasted long then again right now sugar is not lasting long. Enjoy because after the New Year sugar will be out of the house for a long time which might just be until Valentine's Day.


J's big birthday gift was an introductory session at the local archery range. He loved it and scored 283 out of possible 360. He is ready to go again.


Miss K is copying her history sentence. I usually just have her write the lesson title on a card. She did that and then picked words out of the lesson. I don't think the words make sense but she is trying and doing what she sees her brother doing.


Miss K has been calling everyone love. I think she has been out shopping too much. When I am in the shops near our house the workers will often say, "thank you, love".

That wraps up our week. I have done some baking this week making banana bread for the neighbours which they all said they would eat for pudding which is dessert. I made some cookies, peanut blossoms with some Kisses that someone brought me from the States. I want to make sugar cookies and Russian tea cakes.

It is 4:20 and already dark. It short days of winter are here.

We are taking some time off from books though I did say the kids need to do some math.

Beth
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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Birthday Celebrations

Yesterday was a trip to the Royal Armouries. Today was the real birthday.

J wasn't sure if he could get up in time for breakfast before flute lesson. His teenage sleep in genes do not have any problems. He did make it to breakfast and so it was the traditional number pancake. I have to say that 1 and 4 are relatively easy to make.


I think we had a progressive celebration. Pancakes at breakfast and then he opened his gifts at lunch. I said he couldn't open gifts until he had finished school because I knew it would be hard to have gifts sitting there while trying to finish math or science.



He wanted a vanilla cake with chocolate icing. I found a new cake recipe in my America's Test Kitchen. It tasted as good as a box cake or maybe even better. It was nice and yellow and looked good with the chocolate frosting that I bought.

I decided that I needed to decorate it a bit so I went down to the shops to see what I could find. Peanut M&M's worked. Miss K even ate one. She is usually ani-nuts. Her brother told her Nutella was nuts. She stayed away from it for a long time and then had some and discovered that it was chocolate. She told him it was chocolate. Anyway she ate a peanut M&M.


As I was heading to the shops to get something to decorate the cake, I realised I didn't have candles. The local hardware store to the rescue. They had candles and a number of things to choose from. I got sparkling candles.


Tomorrow he has an archery lesson which was his big gift from dad and mum. He is busy celebrating.


Beth
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SchoolhouseTeachers.com Review

We are hitting the school mid-year slump. The days are short, cold, and rainy. School is getting long, dull, and monotonous. I need some new ideas. The kids need some new activities. SchoolhouseTeachers.com is helping bring some ideas and activities into our days. I was recently given the opportunity to review the Yearly Membership.


SchoolhouseTeachers.com Review

SchoolhouseTeachers.com is the online curriculum for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine (TOS). I admit that prior to this review opportunity I didn't know that this existed. Yes, I had heard of TOS but didn't realise all that was on the website and the resources available. There are courses for a whole year or just a few weeks. The courses are not live so you can join anytime. There are also homeschool resources and information.

We are studying Renaissance history right now and one of the first courses that I saw was titled Renaissance History. The lesson I opened to was Renaissance Christmas. It was perfect to slide into our history. We learned some terms and also talked a bit about the song, Twelve Days of Christmas giving me an excuse to pull out my favourite Twelve Days of Christmas book.

That gave me just a bit to add to our current studies which is always a bonus.

There are so many resources. My kids love colouring while I read and I discovered Figures in History. December's figure is William the Conqueror. That fits with my love for English history. There are just a few colouring and other activities that Miss K and I can enjoy together. Again just another resource to add to our learning.

I am beginning to think about high school. Yikes, didn't we just begin 2nd grade. J could begin some courses next year that are high school level. The planner in me is already thinking about what I am going to require, the records and documents needed. I spent some time reading the section on high school which was mainly about transcripts. That gave me the confidence that I can continue to homeschool though high school if that is what we decide.

J is eagerly looking forward to algebra not because anything I told him but because his father told him that was when he began to enjoy math. J told me tonight that since 4th grade he has been looking forward to algebra. I told him he can begin algebra when he passes the algebra readiness test. That was some of the motivation he needed.  Schoolhouse teacher.com has an algebra course that will be perfect to help him as he prepares to take the test. He has targeted 5 February as the day he will take the test.

I am finding so many resources on this website, things I didn't even know where there to help with homeschooling - classes, resources, dailies, and more. As I looked through the courses, I was impressed with the teachers these are qualified teachers.

You can pay for a month or save money and get a one year membership which gives you access to all these resources. There is even a way that you can try it free for 30 days. Now is the time to try it as it is on sale.

SchoolhouseTeachers.com Review

Maybe this will help you as it is helping me through the mid-year slump.


Click to read Crew Reviews


Crew Disclaimer


Beth
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Happy Birthday




14 Years Old 

When I think of you, there are so many different things. 

You continue to have a love of adventure and taking risks. I can't wait to see where that takes you.

You have gifts and abilities with languages that amaze me whether it is French, Latin, or trying to speak German in Switzerland or maybe just learning the accent so you sound like you are a local boy. You are talented.

Your abilities to learn a musical instrument are wonderful to hear. I loved listening to all the songs you were trying to play on the tin whistle.

I can wait to see the things that you are able to leap over. You have overcome so many things and I continue to pray that God will guide you and give you the strength for each day.




You are a loving and caring big brother.


I am thankful that you are part of our family. I can't wait to see what happens this year.

Beth
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Monday, December 15, 2014

Royal Armouries Museum

We went to the Royal Armouries Museum as a birthday trip for J. This is the national museum of arms and armour and claims to be one of the most important museums of its type in the world. It is about an hour from our house so we decided to go.

Here is Knight J ready to go slay some dragons.


Lady Miss K waiting.

There are over 70,000 items in the collection. We did see lots of things. We found things that have fit with the history we have studied this year -- The War of the Roses, Henry VIII, Safavid, and a few others. It did make our history a bit real.


There was mail that you could feel. I am impressed with the kid friendliness of the museums. There were a number of things to do or touch.


We did see a sword fighting demonstration. Instead of just fighting they fought but talked about what they were doing and explained what would happen. I felt like I learned something not just watched a sword fight.

J is trying to put the puzzle of Henry VIII together.



The museum is free we just paid for parking. It was not crowded at all. It was a nice way to celebrate J's birthday.


Beth
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Friday, December 12, 2014

Week in Review 12 December 2014

We got our tree up this week. I can check that off the list. This morning I realised I have not finished my shopping and have no clue what we will eat Christmas Day and I really need to plan that. All the grocery delivery slots are booked so it will mean a trip to the store. The Christmas cards are not finished. I need to get busy.

This afternoon my husband and I sat down with Amazon and did our gift buying. I still need to go to the toy store and pick up a gift and buy stocking stuffers but the pressure if off. I made a menu so I can make my grocery list. We are not being tradition as we are skipping the turkey and brussel sprouts. This evening I made 25 cards so I think we might be ready for Christmas.

That was today. What did we do the rest of the week.

History -- we made it to Henry VIII. I did get a request for the kings and queen song. We read about Henry VIII and then remembered our visit to Hampton Court.


This is what the table looked this week during school. In my mind things are always neat and put away but reality is everything is on the table.


We did find some time to play a game. Hexagon Continuo is a game that I found at a thrift store. I miss the thrift stores in American. There are no instructions so we made up our own rules. I lost. Maybe I need to write new rules.

This time we just matched colour. I think we decided based on looking at the box that you can match colour or number.


Miss K loves Annie. Daddy downloaded Annie to his Kindle so she can read the story. She loves reading on the Kindle.


We saw snow flakes twice this week. I heard lots of yelling and wondered what was happening. They were supposed to be starting school. I knew the excitement was not because they were starting school rather it was the snow flakes. Nothing has stayed which is fine with me.

We have one more week of school and then we will take a bit of a break. In that week we need to fit in a birthday as well. J turns 14 this week.

I am hoping to go to a Christmas market and J is hoping to see the Hobbit movie. Miss K has ballet. I think that is about all for this week.

Beth
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