Friday, December 30, 2011

Artist Study - Winslow Homer

As we study American history I thought it would be good to read a bit about Winslow Homer. I found a book at the library. I admit it has been on our pile for quite some time and since it is due about on Monday after already being renewed at least once I decided it was time to read it. After a bit of reading, I gave J the assignment to pick a picture in the book and to draw it/copy it. I heard, I can't do it." To which I reply, "I didn't ask you if you could, I told you to do it." We have conversations like that at times.

He got his clipboard and a pencil and went to work.

I was very impressed and told him he did a great job and that I knew he could do it. He had found an illustration in the book and copied it. He did a great job.

Then Miss Me Too wanted her turn. She had to have her clipboard. She started drawing and I wandered away to do other things. I was amazed when I went and saw what she had done.

I know it is not that impressive but when I saw what she was copying.

I could see what she was drawing.

I think I might need to have her copy some other pictures and work to develop her drawing skills. She does like drawing and writing. She hears her brother often say, "how do you spell _____." and so she will say, "how do you spell epithelial?" Yes, that is what she asked one day. I had to look it up before answering her.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

My husband graduated

Insert loud clapping and cheering.

In March 2005 he took his first class for a D.Min in Missiology. The beginning part of this year was spent writing the final project. Then in the summer he was editing it. In October he defended his project and earned the title, Dr. He did it in just short of 7 years. It was a long and at times difficult process and I wasn't even the one doing the work. I am very proud of him and the work that he did. His research topic was unique and he thinks that only one or at most two other people have researched this topic.

We decided that the children and us as well needed to celebrate the complication and so we went to graduation. They had a December graduation which was only for Graduate students. It was a nice ceremony. My pictures was the ceremony were not good. Here is one I got afterwards.

Now that this is done we are getting excited for what God has next for our family. For the past two years we have been praying and considering various opportunities. We made a list of different places were could live. We have looked at various organizations. Two days after he submitted the final edited project we had a meeting that made quite a bit clear. So now we are working through that process. This is an opportunity that builds on his research. His desire has been through all of this that God's kingdom would be built dup

It looks like the place we will end up living was not on our long list of places were we could live. So the following places are no longer being considered -- Taipei, Hong Kong, Shanghai, University City, Paradise, Los Angeles, Seattle, Malaysia, and Singapore. God's ways are not always our ways.


Monday, December 26, 2011

Have your DNA and Eat it Too!

I saw this idea and link on Pinterest and though it would be a fun activity to add to our science reading. I was in the Amish grocery store the other week and found the mini colored marshmallows and so I bought them.

I had to help Miss K with her project. It took me a bit to figure it out but once I did it was easy.

She was proud of the DNA. She was telling someone that she likes science and we have marshmallows in science. It makes sense when you know what we did.

J got a bit frustrated. I was trying to understand it, help or rather do Miss K's and explain it to him. That was a bit more than I could do.

He did figure it out and was able to do it.

This is a good project and really helps to understand DNA a bit more. It is not that hard.

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas from our family. We enjoyed a wonderful 
morning at church and then time with family.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Projects

I remember as a child making candles with my parents. It was a family activity that we often did in the fall or winter. I remember saving milk cartons or actually buying milk in cartons so we could have the cartons and using juice cans, etc. I decided to try that this year with my children. I found paraffin at the thrift store and bought some things with coupons at the craft store (one week I got three 50% off coupons in the newspaper insert so the kids and I each bought things for the project).

I looked online and found a few suggestions. We got our jars and containers ready. Some of these were things that I have collected through the year.

The most fun for the kids was watching the wax melt.

I used some jelly jars and some teas that we have gotten tea in this past year. I didn't have any chopsticks to use to help hold the wick so I broke a bamboo skewer.

It was a bit more of a mama project but the kids did help. They had fun and have some gifts for grandma and aunts.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Piano Recital

In the fall we found a new piano teacher for J. The past two years he has taken lessons from someone local and things just weren't working out to continue. Through a local homeschool group we found Olga. We met her and loved her approach, ability, and kind manner. Olga does not teach twaddle (that is a word that I never heard until homeschooling and one I have always wanted to be able to use). J's piano playing has improved. He loves it and will often sit and play. He has asked if various places we are going have a piano for him to play. Tonight was the Christmas recital. Olga has 6 students in the area and we were at the home of two of the boys for the recital. One of the things that impresses me with Olga is her ability to teach the beginning student as well as the gifted and advanced (which is not J but two other local students).

Mummified Apple

As we study the body in Classical Conversations, we have begun to read Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology. One of the first experiments in there was to mummify an apple. We had everything so I thought I would give it a try.

We peeled two apples and put each one in a mug. One had nothing just plastic wrap on top and the other one had a mixture of baking soda and salt. We put them on a shelf for a week. I was a bit concerned that the one with nothing was going to be okay. I had checked it halfway through the week and it wasn't gross looking. Thankfully, by the end of the week it was not looking so good. The fear that the experiment won't work.

The mummified apple had dried out and gotten smaller. It was a fun experiment and I am glad that it worked.

My Body

We finished our six week study of the body in Classical Conversations. For six weeks we colored and cut the various parts of the body getting ready for the final assembly.

Here is Miss K standing with her body.

Just the body -- J added the face.

During the previous five weeks they had been tracing one or two children each week. In Miss K's class they were actually cutting the body out which I would not recommend if you are using thin paper. The last week that they were tracing Miss K went over to the lady doing it and was insisting that she be traced. I didn't remember her being traced but the lady said she had been. Miss K kept insisting and so she agreed to trace her. When it came time to put the body parts on, they couldn't find Miss K's cut out body but they did find the body from the last week that had not been cut out. My thought is that Miss K knew she had not been traced.

J with his body.

Just J's body with the face that he made.

Now that I have pictures of the bodies maybe I can take them off my living room and dining room walls where they have been hanging. It just isn't quite the House Beautiful decor but it is the homeschooling House Beautiful look.

This project is from the book My Body by Patricia Carratello. I think it is an excellent way to show the various parts of the body and be able to see how it all fits together. As we worked through this, we have talked about how wonderfully God designed our bodies.

Math Graph

We are working on graphing and using a graph to sort things and then count. We made an actual size graph with shoes.

She sorted crocs, sandals, and sneakers. There is no doubt that she is a girl. She had enough shoes of her own to do this graph. It has been fun to see her learn math. We are currently on Lesson 72 of Saxon K and I would say that she has 90% of the concepts down. Saxon K does not have writing except for filling  in the calendar. She does have problems making a 2 but we are working on that.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Reading Day

We needed a change of pace and something fun. So I decided to have a reading day. I planned it and reserved a stack of books from the library. I am enjoying and blessed to have a wonderful library. I got a number of my book suggestions from this list. I just started at the beginning and worked my way down the list.
We did have green eggs and ham for breakfast. I could not add green food coloring to my eggs that was just beyond what I could do.

My kids loved it. I think it was one of their favorite breakfasts.
Some of the books we read that day included:

Angus and the Ducks by Marjorie Flack
Animals should definitely not wear clothing by Judi Barrett
And to think that I saw it on Mulberry Street by Dr. Seuss
Bambi’s Children by Felix Salten
The Biggest Bear by Lynd Ward
An Amish Christmas by Richard Ammon
Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban
The Egg by M.P. Robertson
The Big Snow by Berta and Elmer Hader
Andy and the Lion by James Daugherty
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
Floss by Kim Lewis
Daisy Comes Home by Jan Brett
The Lonely Doll by Dare Wright
Bats at the Library by Brian Lies
Ox-Cart Man by Donald Hall
Morris Goes to School by B. Wiseman
The true book of Freedom and our U.S. Family by Paul Witty
Curious George at the Parade
Curious George goes to the hospital by Margret & H.A. Rey
Amos & Boris by William Steig

I think my favorite book was Animals should definitely not wear clothing. Daddy enjoyed reading Bats in the Library.

I thought I would be able to read more but I had a cold and my voice was giving out. It was a fun morning and one that I would repeat. We did get a long list of books read. It does require a bit of planning to get the books from the library.


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