Lesson Learned



Vacation Bible School begins at 7pm and ends at 9pm at best. Then we're on the road for the 25 minute drive home. Then there's a small snacking moment. So, bedtime is at about 10:30 or so. More or so. Sleeping in goes until about 9 or 9:30, then about 10 there's breakfast, then chores, then.....and the next thing you know it's after lunch. Lesson learned: do not attempt a hefty school schedule or any at all during the week of a night-time Vacation Bible School!

Our Summer Curriculum




LLATL-Learning Language Arts Through Literature (working thru Grade 3 workbook to finish)
Calculadder-Daily Math drills
Horizon Math-Because it's considered an advanced math program we selected Grade 2 for her 3rd grade year. We're finishing up
Cursive Writing Practice-Grade 4: A reproducible daily practice by Teacher Created Resources
Skill Builder's Reading: Grade 4 Carson Delarosa
Apologia Zoology-Flying Creatures of the 5th day.
Beautiful Feet Early American History:Primary Version-We're finishing this up from our 3rd grade year before moving on to a Geography/Cultures focus.

Actiities Planned: Homeschool Sports League: Soccer, Swimming Lessons in July, Vacation Bible School at COG

Vacations planned: Georgia to celebrate Gramma Hayes's birthday, Missouri to celebrate Gramma Greene's birthday, Alaska to visit the Torkelsons

Books to read: TumTum and Nutmeg

Videos and books to prep us for Geography

GOALS for Bethany:
Get very comfortable with writing words in cursive
Finish our History from BF Publishing
Finish Math Curriculum or atleast hit the highlights to get ready for next year
Read aloud every day to the children
Do a mini-science Unit Study to prep for Geography
Read 2 full length books/assign daily pages to read
3 sentences per day about her reading
2 days narration to me about her reading
Memorize 10 Commandments

GOALS for Daniel:
Have addition and subtraction facts memorized
Improve his handwriting
Daily Reading time
10 minutes of Daily Read Aloud Time to Me
Write 3 sentences daily about a topic of his choice
Memorize 10 Commandments

Each Wednesday I'll report on our progress. Next update on how we're doing will be Wednesday, July 1.

Wholesome Learning: Hebrew Names, Volume :1 Part 1



Wholesome Learning: Hebrew Names, Volume :1 Part 1

Online Geograhy Website




This site looks great so far, and has a variety of activities which can be used in a Geography Unit Study, or to supplement a current text you're already using. We'll definitely be using this. It's basically an online International Library for children.

Loving to Learn, Learning to Serve



Tonight the children, Danny and I went up to our church and helped with Vacation Bible School Props and set-up. Bethany and I did outlining of the painted props. Daniel helped sort screws and put them in the supports for the props.

This is part of it for us. What would it profit us if they only love to learn. We are also teaching them to learn to serve....here at home and in our place of worship.

Supplements Aren't Just for Vitamins


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I like supplementary materials. Now, the key is remembering that I have some and using them! These are great tools to put in a grab and go school bag for errands, Dr.'s appointments, or staff meetings, should such a thing exist for you! These are helpful also for changing up your schedule, or filling in some blanks.

Today I picked up these items:
Skill Builders: Grammar, Grade 4. Short lessons focusing on parts of speech, sentence types etc.
Skill Builders: Reading, Grade 4. Skills include comprehension, vocabulary, logic etc.

Both of these are published by Rainbow Bridge Publishing. They are reproducibles and easy to understand so that the student can do the work themselves. Two pages per week would take you through the year. They are small in size so easy to pack and carry. See also summerbridgeactivities.com.

Also: Cursive Writing Practice Grades 2-3 by Teacher Created Resources. Cursive has been the challenge for us as of late, and as far as I can see it, these will help jump start our hesitancy to really jump into cursive. The book is small with very self explanatory lessons. Two pages a week and you're done!

Finally: Math Detective(Beginning) for Grades 3-4 by The Critical Thinking Company. I love these books. They challenge me! They also have grade appropriate Science and Reading Detective series. Visit CriticalThinking.com or call 800-458-4849 for resources. We have used Mathematical Reason with Daniel, and it's a great tool. It helps them look at math in a whole new way. One that I would have liked to have seen at some point is Can You Find Me, for PreK-1. It develops skills in reading readiness, science, math and social studies.....just sounds like fun!

I also picked up Teachers Daily Lesson Plans by The Riegle Press Inc. I will be using it to plan out our Geography Studies over the next couple of years. It can be used to plan art, reading, music, cooking, crafts, service projects, reports etc....all focused around Geography, a particular continent or people group. It was in the bargain bin for $3. I hope it will work.

I also purchased a nice-sized wall chart of the World and the United States, the 13 colonies, plus a cute border (that I thought included more countries and continents) that I will use as a border round our bulletin board and white board. Now I am just sorting through which Geography books and/or curriculum we will use. Geography, here we come!

Video: Washington D.C.


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Today we read two chapters from American Pioneers and Patriots published by Christian Liberty Press. I think almost anything by CLP is excellent. We have used several of their books for history and science readers. These history books also have some fun hands-on acitivites and questions which conclude each chapter. It's written at about a 3rd or 4th grade level, and is written in narrative form making it very easy and fun to listen to. The children have loved it. Even though it's been many weeks since we have needed this book, they still remember the stories.

Today the chapter was on when George Washington became President. We also read a special section on the use of the fireplace, and how important it was in early homes.

To add to our historical study we watched Washington, D. C. put out by 100% Educational Videos. This is one video in a collection called Our United States. A young student and her mother narrarate the video. I found it at our local library and highly recommend it.

One of the things I learned is that the original White House burned to the ground during the 1812 War. I do not recall learning that, but I have learned it now. One of the reasons I love teaching!

Also: Lessons 106 & 107/Horizons Math, LLATL, Calculadder
Daniel: Explode the Code book 2, Calculadder, Spelling, HW
This afternoon: soccer league

Eagle Video


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Last night I reviewed National Audobon's EAGLE Aventures video from their Animal Adventure Series. The video is about 30 minutes long and is pretty fascinating. It's not too terribly laced with agendas, but seems to be pretty straight forward.

We're using Apologia Zoology currently and are studying birds and insects. Our next section is on feathers, so this should be a helpful supplement. (I was also able to pick up some goose feathers while in Georgia this week. Five really nice ones which will help in our study. Nothing like hands-on.)

I found this video at my local library.



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Regarding: Art Gadget

My goal is to increase reader's and my own appreciation of beautiful art. So, if there's an artist's rendition of a biblical event or scene please know that....yikes, just watch your eyes. Many artists leave off cloaks, wraps, etc. which may make the painting or sketch one you would prefer not to view. I think we all understand that, so just be advised.

Oh, click on the pic and you will be able to read the history of the artwork.

What Actually Happened


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Make n' Break
School Pictures
Library on Geography Search-some success
Portfolio Cover Art-Bethany and Daniel

The Plan for the Day


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Today is our first day back to school for the new year. We plan to begin today, and go through this date next year with about 12 weeks of vacation and free days scattered thoughout. Planned, but scattered.

Today will be a very light day. We will play Make 'N Break, a fun and fast moving thinking game using colored blocks to build the image on the card. This is a timed game which can be played at varying levels. We will do Calculadder drills, read together, make a bird feeder, and paint. We will also go to the library.

Yesterday I purchased supplies for a back to school bag for the children. Here is a picture of their first day of school with their bags!

Daniel is 6 and 1/2 and is in 2nd grade mostly.
Bethany is 9 and entering 4th grade.

This summer we will finish leftover curriculum from last year and begin our geography focus. The children will also participate in summer soccer league, swimming lessons, and other activities with friends. Planned also are two more vacations, one to Missouri to celebrate my Mom's 70th birthday, plus a trip to Alaska to visit with our friends the Torkelsons. These vacations will be the first 2-week break planned for this school year.

Once our curriculum choices are made I will post the selections.

One of the Reasons


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I found this quote by Charles Swindoll on parenting. It describes one of the reasons we homeschool:

"The church and schools can not resurrect what the family has put to death!"

While this quote may stoke the fires of those who oppose homeschooling I see it as a framework of responsibility. Danny and I do not expect the church or school systems to take the Deuteronomy 6 mandate and run with it. God gave the mandate to us. There's no question in my mind of the invaluable role of the local church in the life of a growing Christian family, but it surely is not the foundation. I don't expect it to do what we're to do. While homeschooling is not the context of Pastor Swindoll's quote, it fits well. I encourage those considering homeschooling to see it as retrieving the dropped baton and continuing the race marked out before us as parents.




Being a homeschooling Dad is a lot easier than adding myself as an author to this blog!

Websites Scratch Pad


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An Ongoing Post:

I may eventually organize these sites topically and put them as a link on a sidebar, but I think I would eventually run out of room. We'll see. I am on a serious learning curve for links, so just copy and paste to go to the site for now.

This site looked good. I love freebie teaching helps and this site has them. I will be using the student self-evaluation form, which I think helps put the ball in their court on learning.

This website has timed games played online for geography and other subjects. Because we are doing Geography this next year I am especially excited about another tool to reinforce the learning.


This site has many kinds of click-on type globes to help reinforce geography, understand people groups, etc.

This site enables you to listen to music samples from continents, it also organizes it by time periods. It color codes it by time period. You can click on the composer and learn about them. It also has a timeline of world events overlaid on the top bar so you can see what was happening in the world when a particular composer was living. A great auditory learning tool, good for history and music.

Where It All Began



Our homeschooling journey began when our oldest was about three. My husband Danny was meeting with some men for prayer on a weekly basis. This was a group of men who cared greatly for their family and recognized their opportunity to send sharpened arrows out into the world they were born into. Enter: homeschooling. Most of these men were homeschooling Dad's, they shared Danny's concerns about the future, and encouraged Danny and I to attend our first homeschooling convention. We did. The point of no return. Heavy influencer: keynote speaker that year, RC Sproul, Jr.

Because Danny travels for a living I was not anxious to take on this endeavor, but each year the glue sticks better and better. I'm stuck on homeschooling!

We began by printing out number tracing pictures off of the internet, buying a book or two at Sams and just finding bits of time to have fun with Bethany. There was always lots of music to dance and sing to. She was always a natural and eager learner. We read to her from week 1 being home from the hospital, and it didn't take her long to develop her own love of learning. Someday I will post a funny video of us teaching Bethany the hard-g sound. Daniel also makes a cameo appearance.

Well, other than what was already in God's heart for our family, that's our homeschool beginnings as I see it.




No fancy pictures or clever remarks. Just trying to upload a cool template for Field Notes

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