Monday: Both Naomi and Daniel asked for limited study today so they could work on Jessica’s birthday present. I required them to work on 3 key subjects before they started on the creative project. One of Naomi’s subjects was Bible and she wanted help with knowing how to journal as she reads, so I spent time with her sh owing her what I would journal after reading a selection from her book. Once their studies were done they started on their gift for Jess. Each project has required research on the internet and then tweaking things to match the supplies we have either at home or can buy in town. During the morning, Daniel also helped me install a new printer – I like including the kids in setting up new technology – I do it under the guise of them needing lessons in keeping up with the latest technology but truth of the matter is they get it quicker than I do!! Daniel had taekwondo in the evening, and Naomi went into town also to check out touch-rugby as she might start playing that (mixed team).
Tuesday: A study day! Everyone stuck to their study schedules and worked for the full amount of time. In the afternoon Daniel helped with a few chores, did some reading, and cooked dinner. Naomi worked on some craft – she didn’t go to Bible study as she wasn’t feeling 100% and needed some down-time.
Wednesday: A short study day as Naomi and Daniel just focus on the important studies for a few hours and then spend the rest of the day working on Jessica’s birthday presents. Jess is out for most of the day today (she works 2 jobs today) so it makes it an easy time to work on her presents. For studies Daniel focused on Bible, Math, Writing and Taekwondo terminology. Naomi focused on Bible, Math, Drivers Ed, Piano. Late afternoon Naomi had a piano lesson and went on to play mixed-soccer, Daniel had Taekwondo.
Thursday: Daniel is finished Jessica’s present, though Nomi had one problem after another yesterday so while Jess was in town, she worked a little more on her gift. The girls and I then went into town – I had an appointment, the girls did the grocery shopping. While I caught up with my prayer partner the girls had lunch then we had another round of appointments. Naomi started a typing job for Peter – data entering. Daniel had boys bible study.
Friday: Today is Jessica’s birthday! Birthdays used to be like a public holiday for our family – no school, minimum chores. But these days with everyone working different times it is a bit harder to pull off. So we had breakfast together, except for Joshua as he is house sitting. Then Jess went to work, Nomi cleaned my floor, Daniel did the dishes and I started planning Jessica’s birthday party. Daniel spent the morning doing his yard maintenance chores, Naomi finished her data entering job for Peter. The afternoon was spent just relaxing together – more like how birthdays should be spent!!
Saturday was all about Jessica’s birthday party. When the kids were really little I didn’t do parties, we did play dates and sometimes birthday cake. When they were a little older they started organising either their own party or parties for each other. I’ve always provided the location, transport and food! I did plan their 18th. But Jess turned 20 and we wanted to do something fun. So I planned a scavenger hunt with some of the families with whom Jess is particularly building relationships with (as an adult). I read a book on scavenger hunts called “Boondoggle: the Scavenger Hunt Redefined” so we called our party a Boondoggle. It was a lot of fun – teams of three had about 2 hours to complete as many challenges as they could, involving as many people as they could. Each challenge required them to take a photo of crazy fun answering the clue. Every team threw themselves into it and ended back at our house ready for dinner and a slideshow! Lots of fun. Due to privacy issues I’m only showing a few of the photos highlighting our family.
Sunday – Sunday morning, I wake early very thankful that my family pitched in and cleaned up the house after last night – the house is in order, floor cleaned and I have a few hours of peace and quiet as every one will sleep in as I suspect they stayed up last night (after cleaning up) to watch the Rugby!
Resources we’ve been using:
I found this resource several years ago and have seen it as a benefit in our homeschool. I love the Teaching Writing, Structure and Style as it is a dvd course to teach the teacher. Having understanding myself, having clear objectives in how to improve my children’s writing meant I could continue to stretch them without giving them specific lessons – they applied this knowledge to their writing whenever they were writing – for Bible study, History, Science or after reading a living book. I found my kids choosing their words more carefully and expanding their vocabulary and sentence styles. But this way of teaching didn’t suit Naomi and Daniel – who weren’t as established thinkers and writers. So I have used their workbooks which have the lessons and activities self explanatory in one workbook. Once again, I have found my kids writing improve, but it has been an extra lesson in their day, not so integrated into their other studies. That being said, the things they learn in their writing lessons are being transferred to their other writings.
If I was doing my homeschool over again I would do language arts slightly differently than IEW promotes (every homeschooler and teacher will have their own opinion). I would start with a Charlotte Mason / Ruth Beechick type of mix with reading lots of books to my kids, having them give oral narrations, learning phonics, using copywork and eventually written narrations. I would then add IEW once my children were established with reading, thinking and writing their thoughts on paper. I would use IEW to improve writing, not teach it as I believe there are more gentle ways to teach a love of writing, but IEW is a great way to polish and expand their writing.
IEW have a very large range of tools – not just writing – it is worth browsing their extensive website. (* There is no affiliation with IEW, this recommendation is given without any benefit to me)
What I’ve been reading (online or as a book):
* What to do when its not working the way you want: A reminder to have a proper perspective in regards to our home.
* Building Blocks for Writing: If your child is struggling to write, have a read of this post; a reminder of some gentle methods that work.
* I have a problem with labelling Kids, not Diagnosing them: reminding us to use the diagnosis to help our child
* I see You – probably the most impacting post I read this week: a reminder of how we can learn from our children.
A quote I’ve been pondering this week from Yes They are all Ours:
“Use what you have.
Do what you can.
Trust God to perfect it.”
Conversations I’ve had with my kids this week:
* Proverbs 31 – It is always good to hear my kids express their understanding on a passage. I am so often reminded of truths as I listen to them.
* Resilience: We have to know what we are doing is right for us, and have a thick skin when others seem to criticise
* How to prepare a Resume and prepare for an job interview
Also sharing and linking with others:
Throughout the week I share with one, or more of these blogs listed on my Link Parties page – but I share wrap up posts with: