Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Mom School!

During the holidays when our studies where a little lighter and I wanted to share something interesting with the kids we did a couple weeks of learning about Julia Childs! I love to cook and I have a couple kids who enjoy cooking and well we all LOVE to eat good food so this turned out to be tons of fun! 
We watched a few episodes of her original black and white show, and some of the newer ones. PBS has some available and there a lots on youtube too!
This was such a much so I *almost* was a bad library lover and did not return it. It was an original first edition! The Potato-Leek soup was VERY tasty and very yummy!
This was a fun comic style book all about her life, Bon Appetit! ~ the kids enjoyed it.
They also though she was wildly hysterical!!
This was the kids favorite book we read about her, Minette's Feast ~ its all about her cat!
And then we fell in love with her a little more when we turned to this picture at the back of the book...Minette was a tortie! It takes a special person to love and be loved by a tortie!!

Riley was so gung-ho to make crepes but being knowing their reputation I was a little nervous so I kept putting him he just jumped right in not knowing that they can be tricky and made GREAT crepes! He even followed her directions and was flipping them in the air! It was awesome!
Another great resource is that her kitchen is in the Smithsonian and you can take a virtual tour.
Not to share as a family but on my own I read My Life in France and Julie and Julia, (and watched the movie) which is what started this whole interest in Julia Childs! They were both interesting reads in their own ways. 
Do you have a favorite Julia Childs recipe?
Bon App├ętit! 

Tuesday, January 06, 2015


Just a couple little snippets of schooling to share today!
Our fall nature table is always one of my most favorite!
We had the most amazing science class right out our front door. A monarch butterfly came out of it's chrysalis on our front porch in one of my plants. The kids named it Dotty!
Homeschool co-op went well, Fern my artist loved her second ceramics class.
Leili and I have been going through the capital letters, we are having a lot of fun (some of it sentimental as I think this is the last time I will do this)!!
My knitting class at our homeschool co-op finished up my dyeing yarn with kool-aid! 
Some friends and I started a littles outdoor school once a week for our 5 year olds, it is so nice to have a whole morning outside with these fun kids.

Fern and I did a little research on our foraging and Fern made it into a bar graph. Rose hips for us!

And a little peek at our table, we don't always work at the table but sometimes it works well for us. I am thinking it will soon be time to spend a day a week doing our school work in the downtown library where it is full of plants, all warm and green!

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Good Beginnings!

We started up our school year and what a couple weeks we've had!
We officially started school and I tried to get a picture with the kids all showing what grade they were in (I tried to get Leili to sign "K" but really it just looked like she was flashing gang signs...)!
Leili was up at the crack of dawn asking if she was a kindergartner yet, she got all of her school work done before any of the older kids were out of bed! Just she and mama.
The first week we of course started with the letter A, I can remember doing this with the other kids. It is sad that this is my last kindergartener.
We also made a morning candle for while we say our verses and do some finger plays. Leili really enjoyed this!
Leili and I also made bees for our nature table. We have so many bees this year!
And then we started homeschool co-op.This session we are taking all 3 hours, this is a big change for us and quite a commitment!!!
I am hoping this good start is a good omen for the year!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

2014-15 Ready to Roll!

Well here we go shoving off into the new school year! How is it that I have all 4 kids school age this year?!? Yes my little one is kindergarten so not major academics, but still this is crazy! Here is a look into this years mama's school book, things get wiggled a bit but for the most part this is the plan for the year. (Sorry some of the photos came out blurry I have no idea how that happened!)

As usual we are using Oak Meadow for the majority of the subjects, we do not do their social studies or history. It is just easier on this mama to do that together as a group. I am considering doing Fern and Jake's science together to also help with the amount of material I am teaching and time. As you can see there is also a little Waldorf, Charlotte Mason, Unschooling and TJed thrown in too! I have learned over the years that homeschool labels are generally just narrowing and constricting and so I don't label our philosophy. We take what works for our family from wherever we find it and call it good!
If you have any questions let me know! I'm happy to share!

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Poem in Your Pocket!

Do you remember when you started loving poetry? Do you remember when you forgot about that love? The first poem I ever memorize was Fog by Carl Sandburg;

The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on. 

I remember learning what siting on your haunches meant and then getting up from our desks and doing it. I think it was second or third grade. 
When I was 9 my dad bought me Where The Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. I loved that book! It still lives on my living room bookshelf.  Now my kids love it!
In high school I fell in love with The Bard so my kids are subjected to that too!
Well April is national poetry month and just this week I learned about a totally fun day to go along with it! April 18 is Poem in your Pocket day! So keep a few short ones in your pocket and share them!! Here is a cute printable to write your favorites on to share!!
I love the idea of a Common Place journal, I've kept one on and off for a few years for poems that strike me. 

I never saw a moor,
I never saw the sea;
Yet know I how the heather looks;
And what a wave must be. 

I never spoke with God,
Nor visited in Heaven;
Yet certain am I of the spot
As if the chart were given. 
~ Emily Dickinson 

Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Day of Our Homeschooling Life!!

It's been a while since I've given a peek into our day and since Simple Homeschool put out an invitation I thought I'd join in! So welcome to our Wednesday!

Our mornings are slow, I am not one of those mamas who get up early and get things done. Too many years of sleep depravation is my reasoning but really Im just not a morning person if anyone is going to talk to me! ;)

This day is one where Dan is home, he travels frequently but when he is in town we often get days with him home all day. This was difficult for us the first few years of homeschooling, but thankfully we have found a rhythm that Dad fits into and can also slip out of.
Our morning starts with a warm breakfast, blankets, and heater vents. We also take care of animals, giving the cats attention and waking up the bunnies. Which is not so hard on this beautiful sunny morning!
Legos in the morning, Legos at night, LEGOS ALL DAY LONG in our house!! But I find it a gentle way for the kids to transition from morning time to schooling time so you'll often hear me suggest it! And yes there are legos all over my house!!!

Just before the call to come together my oldest comes to me with Cookie his rat who seems to have a mass, he also brings his rat book. So we take a timeout to check on her, read about rat ailments and call the vet to get an appointment. I love that his first go to was a book! 

Every morning I write out all that we would like to accomplish for the day, my kids like having all the information at once and I like that I don't get asked 20 times what else we are going to do! Its all right there! Our family schooling time is by far the largest chunk, but the kids do have some individual things that we do.

We have quite the mixture of homeschooling philosophies here in our home! A little Waldorf, a little Charlotte Mason, a little TJed, and a little crazy all mixed together!! Its great! I am a firm believer that your philosophy/curriculum should serve your family not that you should be a slave to your philosophy/curriculum. We start our day with a Waldorf-ish verse and a scripture we are memorizing. After everyone memorizes the scripture we go out for a fun family activity. Today our family study activities will be after our individual work because of their length. But usually it is done right after our scripture.

Jake learning how to read Fahrenheit and Celsius on a thermometer...

Fern writing numbers...

Leili acting out our story of the week with finger puppets (Little Red Ridding Hood)...
Brother and sister are drawn to the puppet theatre like magnets!!

Riley is reading Matilda and LOVING it! This is a picture that just makes my mama heart go pitter-pat. This guy, my first born threw me right into trusting in schooling. Reading just did not click for him when society says it should. But we took the leap of faith in just trusting that he would get it when he was ready as long as we did not squash his innate love of learning! Now I have to tell him to stop reading and go to bed!!

Our kitchen table turned into math central today and Dad was the central command! Whew! One day off for Mama in the math dept!!

Beautiful Fern LOVES writing notes and now she has found she LOVES writing numbers!!

Leili is being like Little Red Ridding Hood and baking muffins for the family, she chose Coconut Banana! 
Usually Fern prefers to wait for me to do her reading with her, but Little Bear just could not wait!

I have a couple volunteer responsibilities and since today dad is home I run out all by myself for a quick visit. Dad finishes up the school work for the morning while I am gone.

Leili's muffins came out great! Riley played the piano! And lunch was made! Wahoo!

After lunch we watch a great National Geographic video on volcanos, geology is our family study for science/nature study right now and we are enjoying learning about volcanos (and my family is realizing just what a geology nerd I am...)!
After our video some friends come by for a short visit then after that we head over to the nature center across the river. Today we not only enjoy the warmth of the sun and the beauty in our own back yard but we also had a winter nature scavenger hunt! We found everything except an icicle but we are NOT complaining!! 
Cub and Boy Scout meeting end our night and now it is good night!
Thanks for stoping by!!