Archive for the ‘12 years old’ Category

A Year In Review 2013 (“Play 60”)

January 11, 2014

Oh and physical education?

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Yeah I got that covered too. πŸ™‚

Year In The Life 2013(“We Are Not Makers Of History…..)

January 11, 2014

We are made by history.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

Yes, finally I am able to say good-by to 2013 with the last review post saving Social Studies for last. I love history! I am an origins person digging deeper and deeper into the past. I just can’t help myself. I get all geeky excited when making connections, when fitting another piece of the puzzle together (and there are SO many connections).

Social Studies consists of three topics, World History, American History, and Geography. So what did our year of Social Studies look like?

Being that my title contained a quote by Martin Luther King Jr. I think I will start with American History.

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I mentioned in my Language Arts post how Little Sis and I enjoyed the Scholastic Storybook Treasures on Netflix, one of those was titled Amazing America and contained 5 stories about the history of our country. Our favorite was Martin’s Big Words and the storybook itself is collection worthy.

Since on the subject of Netflix I also want to mention the series Dear America. This series sparked lots of interesting conversations and was great to watch with both girls.

The Civil War played a big part in our year with visits to our local history museum with their new exhibit

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and since I can no longer have gluten it was fun learning the history of how one of my new favorite “breads”, Johnny Cakes played a part in the Civil War too.

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This coupled with Miss Sky and I watching PBS’s American Experience The Abolitionists brought the time period even more alive. I myself found it very interesting learning more about Harriet Beecher Stowe who’s book Uncle Tom’s Cabin played such a huge role in changing peoples minds about slavery.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/films/abolitionists/

Another movie that sparked many conversations in our home was one of my top 5 most favorites, Fried Green Tomatoes. We had discussions about the KKK, racism, and segregation. Which then brought up discussions of Rosa Parks.

We read one my favorite Louisa May Alcott stories An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving and again thanks to our visits to the history museum the girls were able to visualize the time period.

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Add to this another wonderful PBS American Masters special on the authors life (she is one of my most favorite writers).

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/episodes/louisa-may-alcott/the-woman-behind-little-women/1295/

I mentioned my Pinterest Herstory board already right? Yes SO many wonderful woman history makers.

Since on the subject of favorites I will end our American History studies with the movie It’s A Wonderful Life. If there ever was a movie to help explain socialism and capitalism this would be the one.

Since mentioning PBS so much I think I shall kick off our studies of World History with Downton Abbey.

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Miss Sky has really taken a huge interest in this series so much while waiting for season 4 we watched the BBC series Lark Rise To Candleford (which I love), the Titanic miniseries (again that we love)and seasons 1,2, and 3 of Downton right thru. I love that these series took us through Victorian times leading right into the roaring 20s.

How could I mention the Victorian Times without bringing the anime Black Butler up. I mean this is what stirred Miss Sky’s interest in the first place. Thanks to this series we had many discussions about Jack the ripper and the movie A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott brought the period alive even more. Another great PBS documentary to go alone with this was Empires: Queen Victoria. This helped explain the beginnings of the Industrial Revolution, which influenced Dickens to write the story.

http://video.pbs.org/video/2245707094/

Other influences was Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame which brought about conversations of religious differences, persecution, and burning at the stake. We also had conversations about the real ending, Victor Hugo and thanks to The Nostalgia Critic and Paw’s Movie Reviews we watched one of my most favorite reviews yet of the musical Les Miserables (and yes the movie has been added to our queue).

The year wasn’t all bleak though the girls had fun learning about the Terra Cotta Army from the first Emperor of China thanks to our visit to the Children’s Museum

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and Little Sis and I enjoyed China’s Heroines in History series, with our favorite being The Legend of Mu Lan by Wei and Chen An Jiang, that is written in both English and Chinese. Thanks to the BBC Human planet series we were able to learn about how nomads from Mongolia live in yurts.

Speaking of Human Planet, which I was going to mention in geography, we learned what Tibetan sky burials are which lead to conversations about Buddhism and watching the PBS documentary, The Buddha.

http://www.pbs.org/thebuddha/

We also had talks of Hinduism, cremation, reincarnation, and watched the movie Life Of Pi(which is on my top 10 list of all favorite movies).

We journeyed back into ancient Egypt with our Children’s museum visit

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and had many more discussions about ancient Greece thanks to the movies Clash of the Titans and Wrath of the Titians where Miss Sky made the connection between the Hunchback’s song Hellfire and what a Siren is.

Wrapping up with geography we jumped ahead to present day Egypt while at the Children’s Museum,

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thanks to Disney’s Lilo and Stitch and my What About Earth Pinterest board we learned about Hawaii. Thanks to Princess Tutu we learned about Germany and how the town of Nordlingen that the anime is set in was really built in a meteorite crater, called the NΓΆrdlinger Ries. Thanks to the story Family Under the Bridge we learned about Paris, France, and thanks to the Disney’s The Three Caballeros we learned about South America.

I mentioned BBC’s Human Planet series above already we also like the Globe Trekker series and playing the Wii Party Globe Trot game.

What a year!

I am going to be honest and say I am glad to finally be done with this because already 2014 has begun with gusto as we have watched the movie Anastasia. Russian history here we come.

A Year In The Life 2013(“This World Is But A Canvas To Our Imagination.”)

January 10, 2014

~Henry David Thoreau

I want to start this post off by saying how much Pinterest has helped with our homeschooling. I need organization. “A place for everything and everything in it’s place”, yep that is me. So to have a board to be able to organize everything in one place was the best invention ever.

I have boards that contain my favorite music, recipes, and sayings. I have one for science projects or videos, our favorite books, and art projects. By far my favorite boards are my Earth, Art, Eh, Herstory, and What About Earth boards. These are boards I put together to hold our favorite pieces of art, tidbits of woman’s history, and the many things we have learned through out the years about the world we live in. SO many conversations from these boards. The girls have also added their favorite pieces of art and what they find interesting too. It is “strewing” by way of the internet. πŸ™‚

For instance this past year Miss Sky really was interested in Japanese artists and created an account at deviantART, through Pinterest she was able to share some of her favorite pieces of art work with me.

When Miss Sky took interest, thanks to Black Butler, in Jack the Ripper I pinned Walter Sickert’s “Jack the Ripper’s Bedroom” painting. Just recently we have been learning about Paris, again thanks to the story Family Under the Bride and the Phantom of the Opera, so naturally I began pinning paintings from impressionists like Cassatt and Monet. Princess Tutu influenced us learning about Degas and so on.

So in what other ways has “The Arts” influenced our learning this year.

I mentioned Japanese artists so I will start with Mr. Hayao Miyazaki. Miss Sky’s interest in anime quickly filled our Netflix queue full of Miyazaki’s animation. I instantly fell in love with his work and each of us have our favorite. My favorite is Howl’s Moving Castle, Miss Sky’s is Princess Mononoke and Little Sis loves Ponyo.

Since on the subject of anime, Princess Tutu played a huge role in learning the history of ballet, watching the commentary of the show the girls was introduced to the famous classical music pieces used as well as the stories which brought on viewings of Swan Lake. Not to mention the influence it played on their own creations.

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(Little Sis)

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(Miss Sky)

Speaking of classic music, Disney’s Fantasia ,along with watching Paw’s Music Movie review (they did a wonderful job with this review and it one of my favorites),Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, Saint Saens The Carnival Of The Animals, and Britten’s Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra the girls was introduced the many different parts of the orchestra.

I mentioned Paw’s Music Movie Reviews as well as the Nostalgia Critic web series was HUGE this year and now musicals have filled up our queue. πŸ™‚ (If you don’t mind bad language they really are a bunch of very talented young men and women)

http://thatguywiththeglasses.com/

Which brings me to our visit to the Children’s Museum and the showing of Rapunzel.

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The Disney movie The Reluctant Dragon took us on a behind the scenes tour of the Disney movie studio and how their animated movies are made.

I mentioned Minecraft already but I can’t help it honestly it counts for everything but the girls also learned the art of architecture.

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Miss Sky’s interest in Cosplay has influenced her own designs.

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Oil pastels and Final Fantasy were other big influences in the girls art work

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(Miss Sky)

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(Little Sis)

as well as DC comics

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and My Little Pony.

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(Miss Sky)

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(Little Sis)

Games

Wii Music (this game is a great way to introduce instruments without having any)

Electroplankton DS game

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Movie Maker

and the keyboard game at Girl games.com

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Last up Social Studies.

A Year In The Life 2013 ( “Language Is Wine Upon The Lips”)

January 9, 2014

~Virginia Woolf

I love words, I always have. My parents took a picture of me when I was about 2 taking a nap on top of a couch covered in books. Things of course have changed since then, they now reside on my nightstand. πŸ™‚ You can not turn a corner of our home without running into some sort of shelf filled with books. I just can’t help myself. I am my dad’s daughter for sure.

I have very fond memories of the two of us never being able to pass by a bookstore without at least stepping in for a quick peak. The smell, the serenity, the feeling of holding a book in my hand is pure delight to my senses. Of course we could never leave empty handed. I still can’t walk past a pile of books without looking and they are always the first thing I spot when walking into someone’s home.

I know I have said it before but this was probably my biggest hurdle to get over in homeschooling. I had to realize that just because I love books doesn’t necessarily mean my children will. I had to realize that my love for words didn’t stop with books. I love music, I love movies, I love blogs, I love articles (did you know the short stories of Jean Shepherd ran in Playboy magazine before becoming one of the most classic Christmas movies ever?). Words are everywhere!

So what did our year of language arts look like?

We ended 2012 with the girls just starting to get in with the story of Alice In Wonderland and that interest carried over into 2013. So I think that is where I shall start.

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Miss Sky found a Dover story coloring book I had and got so caught up in the story before we knew it we were checking out different movies (Miss Sky was interested in how Alice’s shrinking was filmed) and listening to the dramatic LibriVox audiobook.

https://librivox.org/alice-in-wonderland-by-alice-gerstenberg/

Sometimes it was a movie that inspired the reading of a story. The movie Tangled inspired Little Sis into reading Rapunzel by Paul O. Zelinsky.

Little Sis and I also enjoyed the Scholastic Storybook Treasuries from Netflix.

Other read alouds we enjoyed (and still are) this year are The Violet Mackerel series by Anna Branford, The Ramona series by Beverly Cleary,

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Junie B Jones First Grader by Barbara Park, and thanks to our local history museum’s annual Headless Horseman festival the girls are very aware of the story by Washington Irving. A little history tidbit, the city of Irvington in our state was named after the author.

As with everything many discussions are born from what we read and before I start reading I usually ask a for a brief summary of what was read the previous day.

Little Sis also decided to participate in the summer reading program at the library.

As I have already mentioned books are not the only reading materials we use. Miss Sky loves her subscriptions to Otaku USA and Cosplay USA

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which brings me to manga and The Black Butler series( why she needed another bookshelf behind her door).

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I have really come to appreciate this form of art, getting hooked on a series myself, and can see why she enjoys it so much.

This year I learned the terminology of fan fiction, OC, and discovered that I myself am a “fan girl”. Where Little Sis has really been getting in with reading this year too

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Miss Sky has been reading when she wakes up, reading instead of being asleep (Uhem, I still have nights like these), reading whenever she can (she is reading now as I type this) fan fiction short stories.

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This is the child I was worried about not liking books. This year I added a word of the week on the chalkboard to help Little Sis learn how to use a dictionary and learn alphabetical order but it is Miss Sky who informed me of all the words she has looked up on her 3DS.

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She also just recently started writing poetry. Speaking of which as part of Miss Sky practicing her cursive I started writing a new poem on the chalkboard every week for the girls to copy.

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I have noticed *huge* improvement in both of their handwriting since doing this.

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Little Sis has been practicing her cursive too and has been learning capitalization and punctuation.

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Miss Sky isn’t the only one writing, Little Sis loves to create books

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and journal writing.

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The girls are always researching something or other whether it is how to draw a certain something, a YouTube video on how to build something on Minecraft, or reading reviews of what movies they want to add to Netflix.

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Games.

Our second new favorite family game of 2013, Disney Headbands,

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Scribblnauts Unlimited (The second 3 DS game I needed to buy 2 of. I can not recommend this game enough. It is by far the most played DS game ever and SO much learning like spelling and grammar.),

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Disney Apples to Apples, Disney Create.com,

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Manga Creator 2,

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Charades (even though we have a game we enjoy playing the original way too, “first word, 2 syllables…..”), Silly Sentences (Someone starts the sentence off then we go around in a circle adding a word until the sentence is finished), Story Starter (Someone starts off telling a story then you ask “Sky what do you think they saw?” and have them participate in adding on to the story), and good old fashioned Hangman.

How about the Arts next.

A Year In Review 2013 (Never Trust An Atom….)

January 8, 2014

because they make up everything (ba-dum-DUM).

Science, next to history is my most favorite “subject” and why not? It’s having a question and trying to find the answer about the world we live in. Why is the sky blue? What’s the surface of the moon like? Does life exist on Mars?

“To make discoveries, you have to be curious about why the universe is the way it is.” Isaac Asimov

So what did our year of science look like?

Being that science is simply being curious I think I will start with the curiosity fair at our local history museum. I mentioned previously in that post how I was pretty proud the girls already new much of what was being offered but by far the most exciting moment of the day was the egg catapult.

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We tried many different ways of securing our eggs but they kept ending up scrambled. Being that egg shells themselves are naturally hard to keep mama from crushing while brooding I know it has to do with the impact. Yes still pondering on that one. πŸ™‚

Next, how about a little astronomy? We enjoyed lots of sky gazing last year as we charted the moon’s phases and coincidently ended with a “super moon”.

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Of course there really isn’t anything special about the moon being closer to earth. It doesn’t orbit around in a perfect circle. So sometimes it is closer, sometimes farther but we sure had fun observing.

Speaking of sky gazing we also enjoyed being able to see Venus, Jupiter, and Mercury with the naked eye.

http://www.space.com/21310-jupiter-venus-mercury-memorial-day.html

Since I am talking about space I might as well mention one of my most favorite astrophysicists (because we all have one right?) Neil deGrasse Tyson and his radio show Star Talk Radio in which we are subscribers.

http://www.startalkradio.net/

Let’s see there was our annual Earth hour celebration

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and discussions about energy conservation, recycling and doing our part.

http://www.earthhour.org/index.php

Thanks to the video game Final Fantasy the girls interest in flowers piqued and we dried peonies for potpourri (which still contain their fragrance).

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Which brings me to nature’s seasonal rhythms. We keep a nature corner adding items accumulated from our hikes and I keep a poem on the chalkboard to help mark the change in seasons.

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We also celebrate summer and winter solstice.

We try our best to eat seasonally and take advantage of our garden and local farmers preserving fruits and vegetables to eat during the winter months.

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Thanks to our farmer friends we have made over the years the girls personally know the people responsible for growing and raising the food we use to nourish our bodies. Through this they have learned the life cycle of plants and animals naturally.

I mentioned hiking, this past year we had a nature scavenger hunt,

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(Lynn Gordon’s 52 nature activities)

collected rocks that we used to spread a little kindness,

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(Where we dropped around the campground when we went camping)

and went cicada shell hunting.

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Our visit to the Children’s museum had us learning about the special effects they used to make the movie Avatar

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and thanks to my emergency room visits and many tests the girls couldn’t help but learn about the human body and digestive system.

Miss Sky and I enjoy the PBS Nova and Nature series and had many conversations about the What will the future be like and the Harpy eagle episodes. Lots of wonderful conversations from those shows.

Thanks to the Violet Mackerel series Little Sis learned what a theory is, we had many conversations about archeology (which she also remembered from our trip to the Children’s museum),

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and tonsils.

Lastly games.

Wolfquest,

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gamevial’s Lif,

http://www.gamevial.com/screenshots.php?game=lif

and The Endless Forest where you can be the animals and learn about their natural habitats.

http://endlessforest.org/community/

Oh and I can’t forget the DS game SimAnimal.

We also enjoy the game Animal Linkology and the co-operative game Harvest Time.

Whew, language arts is up next.

A Year In The Life 2013 (“Houston, We Have A Problem”)

January 7, 2014

Yes, it is that time of year again. Before I break in 2014 with any new posts I must review our year of learning. How did it go? Where do we need to improve? What exactly DID we do anyway?

I must say, like all my year in review posts, I am amazed at everything we accomplished this year. SO much happened this past year physically and mentally. I am afraid 2013 will be remembered as the year spent in doctor waiting rooms and in the girls own words, “thank goodness for our 3DS” (and learning the difference between 2 and 3 dimensions, who said video games are not educational?). It wasn’t all a loss though, most of it I am labeling under “science”. πŸ™‚

First up to bat is mathematics (yay).

Besides the girls learning mathematics naturally by “living” Miss Sky decided she wants to attend art school at our local community college. This means the SAT and a few basic credits first. So we started a more formal study of mathematics late into the year to help her get familiar with test lingo. I really like the Scholastic Reading and Math Jumbo workbooks for Little Sis but am very disappointed they stopped at 4th grade. So for Miss Sky I am using the Math is Fun website to help come up with practice problems and the Common Knowledge Sequence of what is covered in each grade as a guide.

http://www.mathsisfun.com/

http://www.coreknowledge.org/download-the-sequence

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We needed to review the multiplication tables and jumped right into learning to multiply with regrouping. We moved along with multiplying 2 digit numbers and long division with 2 digit divisors and remainders.

Where one child may be a bit “behind” the other is very much ahead. I promise to keep my tangent small. I truly do believe this is because one, the individual doing the learning and two, because Little Sis never learned to dislike math in the first place. She learned basic mathematical skills simply by playing games. Games on-line, video games, and board or card games. She thinks mathematics is fun, and guess what? It is! How it is taught in school, not so much.

I am sure by now you know we started homeschooling using the Waldorf method of education. This method believes in keeping the child “asleep” until first grade then you begin introducing numbers. I no longer agree with this at all. Little Sis began learning how to play games at the age of 2 and started using the computer at 5. Please if you take just one thing away from reading here, do not hold your child back from learning. Don’t force them either, introduce numbers and mathematics as a normal part of their life, because it is. Mathematics is everywhere! Anyway I promised.

Besides the many games, which I will get to momentarily, she learned how to tell time, odd and even, recognizing patterns, 2, 3, 4 and even 5 digit addition with regrouping, and adding with multiple addends. She also learned 5 digit subtraction without borrowing. She started learning the 2,5,10, and 11 times tables with the help of The Table Trees computer game and helped Papa prepare 2014’s calendar.

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http://www.amblesideprimary.com/ambleweb/mentalmaths/tabletrees.html

She also enjoys playing Putt-Putt computer games

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and Jumpstart.

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Both girls are able to read and bake a recipe,

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introducing Little Sis to fractions, and Miss Sky is able to double it.

We busted out the tangrams

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and worked many puzzles together.

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Papa made us a travel tic-tac-toe game for our park outings

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adding to our dice and deck of cards to practice times tables, math war, greater and less than etcetera, etcetera.

Minecraft!! Oh how we adore Minecraft and the many created worlds of 2013. There was Wonderland, Ponyville, Swan Lake, Kingdom Hearts, Black Butler, Princess Tutu, Nintendo and lately the Palais Garnier(uhem, phantom) just to name a few.

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(Miss Sky’s)

Speaking of geometry, the girls *love* the 3DS game Freaky Forms (one of 2 3DS games I needed to buy 2 of and worth every cent)

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and both girls really, really studied how to draw rain and tear drops.

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You can really see the influence geometry played in my Christmas present from Miss Sky.

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Games, all the wonderful games.

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(Nacho Loco, still continuing with geometric shapes. πŸ˜‰ )

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(Monopoly)

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(Yahtzee)

Realizing there are just to many games we play to list I will bring this post to a close by listing one of our new family favorite games of 2013.

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Rat-a-Tat-Cat.

There you have it our year of mathematics. I am thinking science will be next (YAY).

Little Comments

October 10, 2013

Miss Sky has had her face in her 3ds pretty much any spare minute she can. Addicted? Maybe, but not how you may think. πŸ˜‰ She has been reading, reading, and reading fan fiction stories.

“Mom there are some really good ones. Some I have a bit of trouble with but have been looking up words as I go. For instance once I understood what flailing meant I was good.”

Flailing was not our word of the week but it should have been. Since her mentioning it I have found it twice. Once in the book I’m reading and once in an article a friend shared on Facebook. I paused both times to show her and am pretty sure she won’t have any more problems knowing what it means. πŸ™‚

Week In The Life (The Omnipresent Sebastian Michaelis)

October 7, 2013

I have seen on a couple of my favorite blogs mention a word of the day. I thought instead of a new word everyday we could handle a word of the week. So this week our word was omnipresent. Why, because I read it in my book and thought to myself “that would make a good word of the week”. πŸ™‚

Naturally after learning the definition Miss Sky says “Oh like Sebastian from Black Butler. He seems to be everywhere at the same time. So he is simply one hell of an omnipresent butler. πŸ™‚ ”

Speaking of Black Butler we have finished the second season and while Miss Sky is waiting for the third she has been reading fan fiction stories on her 3ds (Kingdom Hearts too).

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“Mom I am catching lots of misspelled words and typing errors.” She has been using her 3ds to look up words she doesn’t know the meaning of too.

Miss Sky finished Junie B. Jones Boo… and I mean it. I had forgotten how much that Junie B. made us laugh. Seriously Junie B. could have been titled Miss Sky, a handful she was (is) I tell you. How boring life would have been without her. πŸ™‚

Little Sis read another one of our favorite autumn stories.

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Let’s see there is always Minecraft with the girls building Ponyville, new drawings

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(Little Sis)

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(Miss Sky)

and watching the show together.

There was a Germany Globe Trekker documentary as well.

http://www.pilotguides.com/tv-shows/globe-trekker/

A new poem courtesy of October’s High 5 magazine

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and learning to play Rummy. Oh and there was others too.

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Miss Sky and I have been working together on her cursive and math. She copies the poem in cursive and we do a few problems every day. I am going to need dusting up on my algebra I see, thank goodness for Kahn Academy (Whew).

Cooler temps have brought good smells from the oven including Maple Glazed Walnuts

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which I love chopped and added to oatmeal with a little applesauce and maple syrup, yum yum. Recipe from Feeding the Whole family. Of course they are great by themselves and I don’t think will be around very long.

Peace for the journey.

Week In The Life (” Now What?”)

October 1, 2013

Okay think of Brad Garrett’s voice from Finding Nemo while reading the title above. πŸ™‚

Now that I have deschooled and am able to see learning in everything we do from watching Black Butler with Miss Sky or My Little Pony with the girls before bed and see connections everywhere and know how to feed an interest and set up our environment conducive to learning and realize learning always happens, now what?

Now it’s time for me to focus on the fact Miss Sky will be 13 years old in 15 days and almost ready for high school. It’s time for me to focus on my goal of learning how to write a transcript for her diploma myself because she would like to attend art school at our local community college. “Mom I am ready now.”

These last few days I have been very busy, busy in the kitchen and busy having conversations with Miss Sky about her future goals (that I know can change at any given moment). It has made me realize there are a few things she needs to work on if she really does plan on seeing these goals through. This is why I love being my children’s partner instead of holding onto a label calling ourselves this or that.

If Little Sis came to me and asked to try school as her partners Papa and I would do what was needed to see that through. I wouldn’t worry that we could no longer call ourselves “unschoolers”. If both girls decided to go to school we wouldn’t even be homeschoolers anymore. My focus is on following *my* children’s interests and making them happy not in what we label ourselves. SO… things might start looking a bit different around here. The difference is *she* wants too.

I am not worried though, not at all. Even though she might be behind in mathematics, in reading, vocabulary, science, and even history she is very advanced for her age. I say getting caught up in mathematics will take maybe a few months.

If there is anything I want to add in this post it is these last 3 years of radical unschooling have been the best thing to ever happen to us. The relationship we have built, me letting go of what I thought learning should look like have really paid off. The girls learning really flourished once I realized this *beyond* what I ever could have imagined. Why stress and have tears for years over something once they are really ready to learn will only take a few months? Maybe it’s not mathematics for you, maybe it’s learning to read. When a child is ready it will happen. πŸ™‚

Kitchen, yes let’s start there.

So besides apples

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and applesauce

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and gluten and dairy free apple crisp

http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/gluten-free-apple-crisp/21e94198-f4e3-456a-8af6-00d5781c791f

(Used Cherrybrook yellow cake mix and Earth Balance and poured a little vanilla Silk in my bowl instead of ice cream)

what do you do when your neighbor brings you a whole bag full of peppers and with the last big batch of Roma tomatoes from your garden?

Why make freezer salsa

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and breakfast burritos of course.

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I tried my hand at making gluten free crepe like tortillas for mine and used the leftovers to make gluten and dairy free burritos for the freezer.

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I like Amy’s brand but they are $$ so thought, I could do that.

http://www.againstallgrain.com/2013/01/26/crepes-grainfree-paleo/
(crepe recipe)

The girls?

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(Miss Sky)

Lots and lots and lots of Minecraft from both girls!

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Games,

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reading,

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(Brambly Hedge Autumn from Little Sis)

enjoying beautiful weather,

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story making,

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new beginnings,

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and the Dear America series on Netflix.

Peace for the journey.

Week In The Life (“I Can See For Miles And Miles”)

September 24, 2013

Happy Autumn and what a beautiful Autumn week it was!

This week I talked with another new homeschooler from Papa’s work who pulled their 8th grader out of school. I never thought I, shy me, would ever become a contact person for homeschooling yet here I am talking with complete strangers about something I am really passionate about.

When talking with new homeschoolers I have learned ,from being one myself, not to try and persuade someone into unschooling. Radical unschooling has worked wonderful for our family but that does not mean it will for everyone. It is best to find out what they want from homeschooling and help point them in that direction; however the conversation always comes to what we do and then the questions.

“How do you homeschool more than one class?”

So I thought I would take a moment and explain how unschooling works for our family here in case there are any new readers.

Unschooling means not school. So for us there is no curriculum, there is no subjects, there is no school at home.

So that means no spelling, math worksheets or workbooks (that is what is used in school and the girls don’t go to school, we are unschoolers πŸ˜‰ ), and reading is not limited to books.

“So how do your children learn these things?”

By living, but new homeschoolers don’t understand that yet because they are still stuck in school. Why if you choose to unschool you *must* deschool.

How my children learn to spell is by them typing on the computer or YouTube on the Wii everyday. They learn to spell by playing video games and reading. They learn to spell by asking “Mom how do you spell…?” πŸ™‚

They read everyday. They read when playing video games, they read while reading magazines, they read by having subtitles on while watching movies and yes by reading books.

They do mathematics everyday too by playing video games, playing board or card games, cooking, looking up video games or merchandise in general to buy, by getting an allowance and saving or borrowing when going shopping.

I didn’t need to have worksheets explaining place value they learned by earning gems on Animal Jam. Miss Sky learned negative numbers by borrowing from her allowance. Mathematics are everywhere including in art and music. Miss Sky has learned SO much geometry just from her drawings alone.

The girls learn by me following their interests and with me setting up a safe place where that learning can flourish. They learn by living just like humans have done for centuries.

Just this year I needed to cut gluten and dairy out from my diet. I needed to learn a whole new way to cook without gluten. I did not need to go to school to learn this, in fact I don’t think school could have prepared me for this because it had no way of knowing gluten and dairy would be a problem for me in the future. In fact school did not teach me to cook period. I learned by working at a small Mom and Pop store when I moved to Indiana at 18 (Thank You Karen!!).

Carrying an egg around for a week did nothing to prepare me for the journey of parenthood. They couldn’t possibly know I would have a child with learning disabilities.

School leads you to believe it is the only place one can learn. School leads you to believe you need a teacher in order to learn. Our family and *several* others has proven otherwise.

If you live you learn, always learning we are. πŸ™‚

Speaking of gluten-free πŸ™‚ I discovered a flourless vegan banana peanut butter chocolate chip cookie recipe that is delish.

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http://www.twopeasandtheirpod.com/gluten-free-vegan-banana-peanut-butter-chocolate-chip-cookies/

I used honey instead of agave. Now I know how to use all those over ripe bananas that I used to bake banana bread with.

I mentioned Autumn and beautiful weather well another walk and visit to the apple orchard was suggested

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as well as backyard fires.

Speaking of games

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(While waiting on dinner)

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(SimAnimals)

and Little Sis has been on a reading kick reading just about anything she can get her hands on.

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More Cosplay designs form Miss Sky

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and just because from Little Sis.

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My Little Pony has made it’s way into our home

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(Love the cutie marks)

and a Roger Rabbit family movie.

Wishing peace for your own journey.