Archive for the ‘5 year old’ Category

A Year In Review 2011

December 28, 2011

Wow looking back over the past years posts I can not believe not only all the changes that took place but all that was accomplished. I am so glad I started blogging if just for this reason alone.

Well I decided to sum up the year by listing all *our* favorite resources. This is not*my* list by the way but was accumulated by the girls while looking over past posts.

So here is our 2011 favorites list from Miss Sky’s (10 turned 11) and Little Sis’s (5 turned 6) point of view.

Wow traveling all the way back to January, we were not yet unschooling but things were starting  to turn sour and I found myself becoming lots more “relaxed”. It’s funny looking back and seeing what the girls picked as their favorite projects. I can also see now how much they learned from projects that weren’t affiliated with “school” at all.

Let’s begin with when we made curd’s and whey

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which became cheese and later casein. Oh by the way you should be able to search my blog for these projects and instructions in my blog search located over on the upper right corner above my About page :).

Little Sis LOVED watching The Letter People you tube videos to help with letter sounds. The game Spot It quickly became one of our most favorite games and both girls still enjoy the book Apple Fractions.

Sewing School brought on many sewing projects from the girls over the year.  Now the girls make their own patterns for projects.

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The American Girl Felicity series was another hit with Miss Sky bringing on many independent projects including learning about the presidents.

We accomplished  The Naked Egg science experiment which led to many other egg experiments.

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We visited The Historic Artcraft Theater where I learned a thing or two from Mary Poppins. Other favorite outings included a trip to Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum,  Drama class, homeschool skating, the Indianapolis Zoo, Science day at the fair grounds, a trip to Kings Island where dinosaurs were the big hit

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Martinstag, dining at the historic Kopper Kettle restaurant and taking a hike at our favorite park saying  good-by to winter .

*Favorite read alouds which inspired many projects, researches , and conversations. The 101 Dalmatians


The Paper Dragon


The Country Bunny and the Little Golden Shoes

The Girl With The Silver Eyes

and The Ramona Series.

*Other favorite books the girls were glad to have around for independent research.

Usborne’s Living Long Ago

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Monsterology and the other Ology books.

Basher Astronomy

and even though we didn’t go through the whole series (which Little Sis wants to start reading again) I am really glad to have all The Magic Tree House research guides on hand.

Oh let’s not forget Ranger Rick magazines.

*Favorite “tools” or supplies.

Wikki Stixs

Pattern Blocks

Instant Snow

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Bare Books to create stories and comics (you could also bind your own like my tutorial on making main lesson books).

Sketch books

*Favorite new resources by far was the Roku to instant stream Netflix  and the Playstation 2 game console.

*Favorite Dvds, videos, movies or documentaries (most which can be viewed through Netflix or you tube).

The X-men original cartoon series and X-men Evolution (most anything Marvel).



Walking with Dinosaurs and Walking with Prehistoric Beasts

The Little Travelers dvds

School House Rock

All the Ice Age movies

Dora the Explorer

Go Diego Go

Don’t Forget the Lyrics

*Favorite Websites


Animal Jam

Kidzui (thousands of free children’s games played on their own safe browser.)

Disney Create

Tux Paint

*Favorite board games and video games

Thrillville (vg)

Ice Age 2 (vg)

Ice Age Dawn of the Dinosaur (vg)

New Super Mario (vg ds)


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Disney Apples to Apples

Monopoly Deal


The Tea Party game

Animal Rummy

Sherlock memory game

*Favorite projects

Raising rabbitsSalt dough fossils

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Egg Geodes

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Sea Monkeys (which have gotten pretty big)

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Symmetry projects

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making Boo Boo Bunnies

and making cookies :).

Whew, to see it all out like this makes me realize we had an awesome year! I do not regret any changes we have made this year and I *know* the girls don’t. Honestly *all* of us are the happiest we have ever been.

I can not wait to see what adventures await in 2012.

Oh and PS I do not get paid for listing any of these resources, these truly were picked by my daughters as favorites. Please I would prefer shopping used, local, and using your public library before buying anything from Amazon :).

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year!


A Week In The Life of Unschoolers

November 3, 2011

Man this week flew by, I am still stuck back at Monday. Despite all the sugar rush this week I still feel we had a pretty productive week and not surprisingly science played a key role.

Let us begin with a journey into dragonology,

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daily walks enjoying beautiful 70 degree weather,

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playing with magic rocks,  watching monster movies as a family like the original Invisible Man and Abbott and Costello meet Frankenstein.

Waking up to this,

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candy experiments (did you know pez will float to the top of water once dissolved ?)

and viewings of Halloween science videos (The girls want to try this on dad).

Playing at Fantage, started reading The Sea Fairies by L. Frank Baum,

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enjoying more of Little Sis’s art work (especially love the sea creature).

Watching episodes of Dora with Little Sis and watching The Brain Game with Miss Sky on the Roku. Playing games of Uno,  The Tea Party game

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and improving our gaming skills with the official strategy guide of Kingdom Hearts (watch out Ursula here I come).

Then lets not forget all the birthday planning for a soon to be 6-year-old :).

Life is good friends , wishing you all a great weekend!

Welcome To Monster High

November 1, 2011

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Happy Halloween !

Yellow the Bracken, Golden the Sheaves

October 30, 2011

Rosy the apples

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crimson the leaves

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Mist on the hillside, clouds grey and white,

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Autumn good morning, summer good night.

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A Week In The Life Of Unschoolers

October 28, 2011

Whew what a week it has been !

It’s funny how some weeks pass and seem like nothing was accomplished then boom a week comes that you can’t believe all that was done.

I mentioned how our week started by watching a non Disney version of The Little Mermaid, then we read the story by Hans Christian Anderson which led us on many learning adventures and ended with a viewing of the Disney version of The Little Mermaid.

Well this has brought the sketch books back out and the girls have been busy drawing up a storm this week.

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(The girls making their “sea gardens” from the story.)

We also listened to Oscar Wilde’s The Fisherman and His Soul from LibriVox comparing the two stories.

Then we finally watched the movie Tangled which led to a reading of Rapunzel where Miss Sky said “Man they really added a lot to the movie”.

We noticed this was Disney’s 50th animated motion picture and thought how cool it would be to watch all the Disney animated movies in chronological order to see how much they’ve evolved. I mean who knows what adventures this will lead to.

Other learning adventures this week included Miss Sky continuing her mythical creature search reading the Handbook to her Monsterology book

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and starting a journal to write about her discoveries. She even noticed on Animal Jam “look mom they have Yeti masks, it says in my book they are related to Big Foot”.

Little Sis worked on some Halloween word searches

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and this time could read the words she was looking for.

She also wanted to see how much change she had

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and learned how to count by 5 and 10.

She read the books Biscuit by Alyssa Satin Capucilli and her new favorite Bears in the Night by Stan and Jan Berenstain.

I have come to the part in The Tudors where all the beheading has started (I am SO thankful not to be living during Medieval times). I have been explaining to Miss Sky what’s been happening in the show,since the show is not appropriate for her to watch, and we got in a long conversation about Thomas More. Well I found him in our Book of Saints by Amy Welborn and read the passage to the girls. This also led to us watching A Man for All Seasons.(Which is appropriate for her to watch.)

I am sure I’ve forgotten something again but that pretty much sums up our week.

Wishing everyone a great weekend!


October 25, 2011

One of the many things I love about unschooling is that you never know exactly where you might end up at the end of a learning adventure.

Take last night for example. Little Sis wanted to watch a non Disney version of The Little Mermaid. It was said at the beginning of the movie the story was adapted from the story by Hans Christian Anderson. I thought how fun to see how much of this was true by actually reading the true story of The Little Mermaid after we watched the movie.

I myself love collecting fairy tales, and not because of my Waldorf days, I always think about the knowledge of a time period when a story was written. It amazes me the descriptions of the ocean Anderson uses in The Little Mermaid that was published in 1837.

Well surprisingly enough most of the movie held true except of course the ending ,who many find sad. Miss Sky however disagrees saying “besides not marring the prince she gets the eternal soul she was wanting”. It was the comparisons however that took us on our learning adventure.

All through the movie references were being made by the girls. “Dolphins can’t live deep in the ocean, they are mammals who need to breathe air.” “I recognize this piece of music from the movie Fantasia.” “Was this movie made before or after Disney’s Little Mermaid because the princes look a lot like each other.” I doubt our movie watching days will ever be the same :).

Well this led us on a search, the computer must never be off while watching movies, that indeed Disney’s version was first but this was just the beginning.

“We” learned that the piece from Fantasia was Night on Bald Mountain written by Modest (what an awesome name for a musician during the 1800s) Musorgskiy in fact they used two of his pieces in the movie. The girls also recognized the Ride of the Valkyries by Richard Wagner.

This led us to learning the Sorcerer’s Apprentice was written as a symphonic poem based on Goethe’s poem and music by Paul Dukas in 1897.

Which led us here.

Man how talented is he !

Which led us to watching more of his videos, all because a five-year old wanted to watch a movie.

Life is good friends!


How could I forget.  Do you think it possible that The Little Mermaid could be tied to The Beatles? In our home yes :). With all the underwater talk of course a certain Little couldn’t resist the chance to mention Mr. Paul McCartney’s(have I mentioned this is Little Sis’s favorite Beatle lately?) new ballet Ocean Kingdom.

Indeed Life is very good!

Little Comments

October 22, 2011

The girls found the Beatles radio station on the Roku. While listening the song Because came on.

Little Sis:” This song sounds like Queen.”

That’s my girl :).

Week In The Life Of Unschoolers

October 21, 2011

This week we were more distracted then normal and not just because of the headlines. We were anxiously awaiting a visit from our oldest daughter. We did manage to find ways to kill time though.

The girls found a make-up/style game that was all the rage this week.

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Also Miss Sky’s been playing the game Baby Blimp at kidzui. You create babies and care for them before you deliver them to their homes.

We of course had a movie day filled with the classics and with Halloween being just around the corner we started watching The Addams Family to temporary replace our marvel series. The first episode was about the superintendent informing the Addams they needed to send their kids to school. I found this episode funny considering how we are homeschoolers that the Addams Family could possibly have been the first homeschoolers ever televised. I loved what Gomez Addams tells the superintendent “Why have children just to send them away”. 🙂

Anyway what goes best with movies?

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Cookies of course.

While doing a bit of searching the other day on the phoenix, Miss Sky also took an interest in learning about other mythical creatures and found a series of books that caught her attention and requested a trip to Barnes and Noble (You don’t have to ask me twice).

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The book is Monsterology.

Finally the day had arrived and you know the girls wasted no time sharing with their big sister everything they had been up to :).

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Wishing everyone a great weekend!

Discoveries of a Radical Unschooler

October 21, 2011

I was meaning to write about this after Miss Sky’s birthday but Monday I was feeling a bit melancholy if you couldn’t tell. Well after a day of kicking back with my girls and getting my priorities all in check, now I am ready to spill the beans :).

Something that has become tradition in our household for birthdays is for the birthday person to get their own day. A whole day to spend however you want and to get whatever you want for meals.

Usually if it happens to be one of the girls birthdays you can pretty much  expect to hear the words “it is MY day” coming from their mouths. I mean after all it isn’t everyday you can watch whatever you want to on T.V. This year though I noticed a difference in Miss Sky and how she wanted to celebrate her day.

For starters she wanted to go to Toys R Us to spend birthday money and was listing everything she wanted to buy. One gift she wanted was a set of puffles from Club Penguin. Little Sis, whose birthday is right around the corner, began to express her feelings of  how she wished she could get a puffle too. We explained to her that she had her allowance she could spend but she would have to wait to buy the puffles until her birthday. Well to a certain 5-year-old the word “wait” didn’t settle to well  and before Papa and I could step in and intervene Miss Sky said “I’ll buy you one with my money”. Miss Sky didn’t hesitate in the least to share with her little sister. Of course once there we bought the puffle for Little Sis but we were so proud that Miss Sky offered to share without asking for anything in return.

Once home Miss Sky was all about her new purchases and new codes to play Club Penguin and Little Sis did understand that Miss Sky got first dibs on the computer or T.V. After playing on the computer awhile she said Little Sis could have a turn and Miss Sky went outside to play with her new presents.

Okay here was a day that Miss Sky could choose to do whatever she wanted and she chose to play outside and know what else not one time did we hear the words “it is MY day”.

Miss Sky had a great birthday. She expressed her happiness over and over. We talked about her playing outside and being over generous with her little sister and her reply was ” well since we started unschooling it feels like everyday is our day, we can play on the computer when we want, watch television whenever we want and we get an allowance to buy whatever we want so if I couldn’t get everything today I wanted for my birthday in order to make my little sister happy I knew I could save and get it later”.

In other words some might think we are spoiling our kids by letting them make decisions for themselves or letting them get whatever they want with their allowance that’s not tied to chores but I’ve noticed the complete opposite. Maybe spoiling children doesn’t produce a spoiled child after all.

By the way I’m not talking about parents who buy their children everything to compensate for them not being around and I’m not talking about spoiling only with material possessions either.

Wishing everyone a great day!


October 17, 2011

So I found a draft of something I thought was deleted when we had a power surge. The moment was already past when I found it so I didn’t bother to post it but today while faced with the days headlines I am again reminded of why I wrote this in the first place.

Staring at me again was the news of yet another teenage suicide. I can not begin to express the emotions that run through me every time I see this. My heart literally aches for these children who feel like they need to end their life. Something that all these children seem to have in common is the fact they hate school. How sad that children and parents don’t think they have other options and WHY the hell do people think that being bullied is just part of life?

I live in the “real world” and I would NEVER allow myself to be bullied by anyone let alone tell my girls that it is just part of life that you will have to deal with.

Then I ask WHY do parents feel that unless we control or tell our children what to do they will grow up to be wild and unruly like in Lord of the Flies, that book was fiction for crying out loud. I don’t HAVE to tell my daughters to take a bath they don’t like to stink or to tell them to go to bed eventually they fall asleep.

Anyway here is my lost post. My hope is that parents who read it might start realizing we(parents) don’t have to be the bad guys to our kids. That teenage rebellion against parents doesn’t have to be normal (I do have a 21 year old daughter ).  I wish parents would realize that our children are not us. Just because I might like a certain style or music or books or movies does not mean my children will or “have to”.

Most of all I wish parents today will let every one of your children know just how much you love them!

And RIP Dan Wheldon, your sweet smile will be missed here in Indy.

“The Post”

Deb Lewis wrote:

“Once you’re really listening to your kids and not your sense of injustice, you’ll find that answering them and interacting with them is intellectually rewarding and stimulating and fun. It’s not something you *have* to do. It’s something you *get* to do for a very little while.”

As I have been pondering over the weekend whether or not I should share my opinion of our last homeschool co-op outing, this was waiting in my e-mail this morning from Sandra Dodd’s blog Just Add Light and Stir (link found under blogroll on the right). You can also find the rest of the quote there too.

Deb Lewis couldn’t have said what was going through my mind last Thursday any better :).

For me, when I think of homeschooling co-ops I think of parents and children interacting with one another or “socializing” while out enjoying an activity together.

I understand the need as a homeschooling mother, unschooling or not, to be surrounded by other homeschooling mothers. In my family my support of homeschooling varies. Some family members support “my” decision and there are some waiting for the day I fail. So it is nice to be around others who likewise support your decisions.

Something that I don’t think of when attending a homeschooling co-op outing is the parents planting themselves down on a blanket and ignoring the h**l out of their children. I was the *only* parent out on the playground with my children.

Yes I like to talk, lord knows as well as anyone else that knows me can tell you I *love* to talk 🙂 but you can talk and push your children on the swing at the same time.

While I was there Miss Sky had to find the parent of a child who fell off the monkey bars and landed on his *head* and was crying hysterically. I along with Miss Sky helped the children use the zip line and out of 8 swings I was pushing children on 6 of them who did not know how to swing themselves (all at the same time). The other 2 were occupied by my children. This is when 1 child replied to me “Gee you sure are fun” and another child asked if she could come home with us.

Okay if I was the parent of that child I would be extremely embarrassed. Not to mention if I saw a “stranger”(this was our first time with this co-op) pushing my child on the swings I would have at least gone and  introduced myself.

The worst part though ,for me, was all the laughter coming from the children having fun and as I was laughing and having fun with them I would occasionally glance over at the group of parents ,who so planted their butts down on the ground with the majority having their backs turned, not ONCE did they look to see their children’s happiness. How sad is that ? (Ugg)

When did parents become so disconnected from their children? I use to believe that video games and television was the cause of so much sex and violence among teenagers but I am starting to think that is not the case at all.

These are my thoughts anyway and like I mentioned previously our search for a homeschool co-op continues. I have even had thoughts of  starting one of my own. I guess only time will tell.