Tuesday, October 9, 2018

math game!

One of my kids LOVES math and the other purports not to like it at all.  I have been trying this year to make it as engaging as possible.  

One thing we are really working on is speed/knowing our math facts in an automatic way so that as we are doing more complicated equations, the basics feel very fluent.  

I am immensely grateful for the wonderful friends that I get to walk this journey of home educating with and one of those friends is Evelyn.  God orchestrated our meeting in the school office on the one day a week our kids attend a supplemental program.  On that blustery morning a friendship was kindled that I couldn't be more grateful for!  Once upon a time I jotted down a note from either a conversation or perhaps one of her instagram posts or stories to hide the answers to math problems around the room.  

I had recently gotten out my collection of numbers picked up at flea markets, etc. over the years and I would set out a number and they would build it with popsicle stick tally marks.  

I grabbed the numbers again and with their help we scattered them all around the room.  

I held up flashcards (again from my long collected stash of vintage stuff!  Using vintage flashcards just makes me happy!)  and they raced around to locate the answer and place it in their own piles.  

When we had used all of the numbers the kids wanted to work together on the subtraction problems.  They sorted all of the numerals into piles for quick grabbing.  They piled the answers (or equivalents when the numeral they needed wasn't available which added in even more math practice, matching equations to equations!) on the tray until they were out.  

Finally they once again used the popsicle sticks to build the answers to the addition and subtraction problems mixed with tally marks!  

There was much hilarity and I think everyone had a great time with math that day as well as building a lot of fluency!  This was all super simple - sometimes the simplest things are the most fun!  I hope you and your kids have a great time with this if you decide to try it.  


Thursday, October 4, 2018

still adventuring . . .

with this man of mine!  

Happy ten year anniversary to us!  


Thursday, August 2, 2018

First Day of School!

This is my fourth year homeschooling our kids!  I can't really even believe it has been that long.  This homeschooling adventure has been and continues to be such a fun and interesting and full of opportunities to lean on Him experience.

Each year has been different in many ways including starting the new year.  It is fun to me to see the progression. Year one the house was just so. I had set up our “classroom”. I got up and got dressed in something I would have worn when teaching public school. The night before I was planning to start our school year, Adrian took the kids to Chick-fil-A to give me a quiet house to finish my prep. I was exhausted and the only thing that sounded good was bed. 

I have learned despite my tendencies to be a night owl that a rested mama is a better mama. So I went to bed with the book box half filled, the empty library crate, the huge collection of cardboard boxes that the kids created with over the weekend and David’s Lego train track, his inspiration of the day yesterday, still taking up most of the living room floor.  They didn’t care or notice as they opened a few fun garage sale find back to school presents and everyone is calm and happy!  

Silly as this sounds in some ways as I write it out, there was a time when it would have bothered me that when I was hoping for "tidy and organized" for "structure" to begin that David showed up for the first day of school in his too small and smelly from summer wearing and not enough depositing it in the laundry chute shark costume BUT I recently read Greta Eskridge's post that gave me wonderful perspective and is helping me calm down inside about such things.  

ha ha, when you buy a "new" drawing pad at a garage sale sometimes there is still a leftover drawing from the previous owner.  ;) 

After some morning time on the couch reading from the book of Romans (we have been making our way through the Bible, roughly a book a week since last August), finishing our Interlibrary Loan procured read aloud that is due, Will and Charlie Mayo, Boy Doctors, etc. I gave them some free time to play with the lego train and then we got ready to leave the house.  

We went to pick up our curriculum for the year at our one day a week school.  Cora has been SO excited to have her own math book like brother!  She was thrilled and immediately started working through the pages in the backseat as we rode in the car the rest of the day.  David was there to help read directions and check her work.  A bonus I hadn't previously thought about!  

 We went to a couple of different stores to try to buy a few fun school supplies like a spiral for each of them that we use throughout the year but those couple stops were not the highlight of our day.  There was wild silliness, crowds, lots of restocking carts clogging aisles, crazy drivers, etc.  David did stumble across a diary with a lock though and movable sequins that he was super excited about so that was good though.  

Then we hit up a STEAMfest at one of our local libraries, the Sand Creek library, a location that was new to us to visit.  We had been at our "home library" the day before turning in books and cashing in for Cora's Summer Reading prizes and we saw the poster.  It seemed like a perfect way to cap off our first day of school.  

There was an activity where you sorted items into recycling and trash bins . . . 

optical illusion tops . . . 

taste tests, sound experiments and 

probably David's favorite . . . 3D pens!  He has been eyeing these for awhile online having seen one advertised in a Scholastic catalog I think.  He wanted to buy one and then create an Eiffel Tower for me for a birthday present but the price was a little steep.  

The kids each had a ticket and at each station received a sticker.  When they collected five stickers we got to turn the ticket in for a sack full of fun school supplies AND a fidgit spinner.  I know the craze has been going on for a while but these were actually their first ones and they have had so much fun playing with them!  

They got to make buttons and control robots with ipads, build with cubelets, pet a blue tongued skink, etc.  

I got to meet and have nice conversations with a couple moms, one from Italy! and another who is just beginning her first year of homeschooling.  

We had a great day, came home exhausted, had a throw together dinner telling Dad all about it and hit the sack!  

One last photo, pic of Cora's math book taken by her in the backseat of the car.  😍


Saturday, July 14, 2018

It's that time of year . . .

When my mind gets all wrapped up in planning and preparing for our next school year!  New planner bought!  I'm having trouble falling asleep at night because I have so many ideas running through my mind.  :)  

Made the first marks on the pages tonight!  Is it just me or is writing the first thing in a brand new blank book the hardest part?

I started with a drawing just to decorate the page and make it look pretty and let my mind settle into the planning process.  I used this video to draw these alpine buttercups.  

David is entering 3rd grade and Cora is beginning Kindergarten!  She is so excited!  

A few of my goals for this year are to have some recitation nights with the cousins, to do at least one party school and to go on field trips.  Also, we don't have any trips planned very specifically but I am definitely interested in continuing to incorporate worldschooling into our education.  

What are you looking forward to about this coming school year?  (Don't answer if you're not ready to "go there" yet! 😊 )

What have been some of your kids' favorite things to study in history?  

Happy rest of summer and happy planning for all of you teachers out there!  


Thursday, May 24, 2018

just making the week colorful

photo taken by Adrian Sunday night when I was making our calendar for this week

(and no, I do not do this every week)

Thursday, May 17, 2018


Happy May 18th!  What does this day hold for you?  David, Cora and I get to walk over to our neighbors' house two streets over to enjoy muffins in their backyard celebrating the end of school and beginning of summer!  We're really excited. 

Photo:  a door in France, taken April 6th


Wednesday, May 16, 2018

magical day with the budgies

Towards the end of our trip to the zoo today we went into the budgie feeding area and the experience was really magical with the kids.  They were bold and brave in feeding them and patient in waiting for them.  They delighted in this encounter with nature and I'm so glad I got to be there to see it.  

Thank you, Nana for taking us to the zoo!