Friday, September 14, 2012

Weeks 1 & 2

Our first official week back to homeschool looked like this:

Although we were sick with respiratory infections, I took the opportunity to have the girls learn about the respiratory system ;-)


Our first week back, I assigned the girls to write about their dreams: what they want to be when they grow up, where they want to live and if they want a family, how many kids, etc.  I am hoping to remember to do this in the spring, too, to see how it changed.  Ideally, I would like to have the girls do this exercise each year and keep this as a writing sample in their portfolios.  I think it will be fun to see how it changes...especially since I have one who either wants to do something creative OR be a nurse and the other who wants to be about seven different things and live near me so I can always help her out.  

Something new...
We started something new this week and I hope to make it a weekly assignment.  At the end of the week, the girls write a paragraph or two about what they learned that week and what they found most interesting/exciting/their favorite part of the week.  It has been really cool to see what they remembered from the week and that they are both really excited about history, they just LOVE the Victorian Era!  They are also really enjoying just crashing on the couch together and reading MCT Grammar for a little grammar review.  Art journaling was another highlight.  Although I didn't take a photo of it, the girls are using American Girl Fashion + Math as a little math review and they are LOVING that--I just wish it were a curriculum!  They do it on their own, do more pages than I would ever assign and seem to enjoy it like they have never enjoyed math before!

We played a little 40 Days in Europe this week, reviewed our Latin roots, enjoyed some logic puzzles and were entertained by Jason's reading of Shel Silverstein books.  Jason LOVES Shel Silverstein--he has CDs of Shel reading his stories and Jason loves to take on different voices when he reads the poems, this was a favorite bedtime ritual when the girls were small and this week Jason picked it back up again--much to the girls' delight!

Jason had some evening meetings and dinners this week, so the girlies and I enjoyed a fun GNO (He's going fishing all weekend with friends, so we are looking forward to a girls weekend this weekend!!).  We also finally watched "The Lorax"--oh my!  LOVED it!  Could make some political statements about it--but, I will refrain! I also finished some furniture--something I used to enjoy doing back before homeschooling took up so much of my time.  Also, spent a lot of time thinking about how Allie is growing up.  sigh.  She's wearing lipgloss.

In my life this week…I have been concerned about my uncle and praying a lot.  

I am inspired by…this blog...not sure if it is Meg's simplicity or her amazing photography or her humor...but I just can not get enough of this blog!

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…Piper started Rutgers Children's Choir this week!  Allie will be starting Art classes through Mason Gross School of the Arts on Saturday.  Other than that, we had LOTS of time with the homeschool neighbors--these girls are video-making aficionados.  We are spending today (Friday) at a park with some friends!

I’m reading…The Elephant Whisperer by Lawrence Anthony.  I had heard the story on NPR a while ago and a patron came in the library the other day looking for The Last Rhinos, which reminded me that I wanted to read this book.  It's truly an amazing, beautiful story.  I am trying to finish it because Jason is chomping at the bit to read it!

I’m cooking…I was a vegetarian for years before I had kids.  But when I was pregnant and nursing, my mother was convinced I was always afraid I was not getting enough protein and so I started eating a little meat...and then Jason and I decided it was important that we all ate the same things as a family and that two growing girls needed meat...anyway, over vacation my family realized before I did that I never ordered meat in a restaurant (even when we are not on vacation) and that I have been making a lot of grain and veggie dishes and it was sort of decided that we would all pursue a more meatless diet.  I can't commit to this completely without running some risks, but for the most part we are all meatless these days and LOVING it!  Jason reserves the right to get a good quality steak once in a while and Allie says she will be the kind of vegetarian that eats bacon because it's mostly just fat-- but for the most part this family of mine is very happy eating things like Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos, Chipotle Pumpkin Soup, Farro with Roasted Root vegetables, Lentil Salad, Rice Bowls, Chard with Goat Cheese & Pine Nuts and Avocado Omelets...among many other things!  I love to cook and find I enjoy it even more NOT having to clean meat (ick!).

I’m grateful for…my family's willingness to go mostly-meatless.

I’m praying for…my uncle who has acute myelogenic leukemia.

A photo, video, link, or quote to share…I loved this article about Simple Parenting.  I have long thought that if we schedule every second for our kids and have them in a lot of activities, they don't learn to entertain themselves and problem solve, explore their world for new ideas, think outside the box.  I appreciated and agreed with this article.

My Favorite Resource this Week...

Having a university nearby that offers a lot of wonderful classes for children.  We were considering moving last year and it would have taken us over an hour from this wonderful university and I knew we would not have anything like it nearby.  I love the quality of the classes offered there, most are taught by professors from the undergraduate program.  I love that my girls are taking classes on a college campus, in college classrooms, surrounded by college gives them a feel for what college is like (of course, I am there with them, too).  The other day Allie grabbed a campus newspaper and started reading and felt "so cool" reading about world events and campus events.  I think these university classes are a great introduction to the world of college.

Linking up with:

Favorite Resources This Week at Learning ALL the Time
Homeschool Mother's Journal at iHomeschool Network
Weekly Wrap-up at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers
Collage Friday at Homegrown Learners