Friday, June 7, 2013

Week of June 1

It's been a good week.  Relaxed, it went fast.  We are enjoying the beginning of summer.  Our neighbors across the street have a pool, their kids are my age, grown and out of the house and every summer our neighbors tell us to please, please use their pool because unless their kids visit from Virginia or upstate NY, no one uses it.  We have enjoyed MANY afternoons in their pool.  This year, our next door neighbors put in a pool.  They both work full-time and their kids are in school now, camp in the summer.  The kids have all been friends forever and Piper walks their dog now (he has irritable bowels) and they have told us to feel free to use their pool any works out well because we can keep their dog, Buddy, outside with us when we use the pool.  The best part is that I can see the pool from the living room window and watch the girls in it while getting stuff done--it's like having a pool without the work (or messing up hubby's yard!).

What We are Creating
  • We toured a Rose Garden
  • Allie spent a lot of time sewing, she has asked that I not show photos of what she sews and I respect that.
  • The girls were inspired by Hannah's video on 7 Cool Homeschoolers and figured out how to make friendship bracelets and made TONS!!
  • Video making and editing for Seven Cool Homeschoolers!
    Piper loves to take photos.  Allie lives in the studio.  Thanks, Hannah for inspiring the girls to make bracelets!
    Video- editing for 7CoolHomeschoolers.
  • Experimented with water colors in our art journals--this is what I love about art journals--it's a place to experiment and explore art and try new things and not worry if it's perfect!
  • We are combining art journaling with Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg.  We will do some of the exercises in our art journals and combine them with art. (Thanks for the recommendation, Jess!)
  • We did some freewriting this work.  We've actually done this before, but the girls are older now and had an easier time letting go.  They actually asked if we could do it again and again.  They wanted to share what they wrote and really got into it! 

    experimenting with water colors to make different backgrounds for freewriting
  • The girls have been art journaling like mad--they both have Pinterest accounts now and they pin  things that inspire them (or things they want to do or learn about or make) and spend hours in our little makeshift studio creating to their heart's content--they don't need my direction anymore at all!
    the girls have started to work in their art journals independently

What We are Doing

  • Allie can't get enough iCivics -- she has learned so much about the law through this site! <3
  • Both girls did a few chapters in the Teaching Textbooks 6 that we have to see if they like the program and if they can learn from the program (it's important to me to have the girls be part of this decision).
  • We played several hands of Division War
  • Jason taught the girls to play Liar's Poker this week ;-)
  • Jason's guitar teacher (a friend of my brother's since middle school) told him to read up on Pythagoras and string instruments, Musical Tuning, etc.  Jason found it FASCINATING and shared a lot of what he learned with the girls & I!
  • Piper has been working on her cursive writing.  I had worked with her on this our first year homeschooling and then it just kind of slipped off our schedule.  This week Piper took it on herself to get out her Handwriting workbook and work through it :)
  • Read two chapters in Story of the World 4
  • SOTW 4 is bringing up some interesting topics--we had a lively discussion about whether property/crops should be equally divided among everyone OR should people have to work for what they had (it was a simplified discussion)...THIS kind of discussion is what I dreamed of having when we started homeschooling.  Interestingly, my girls were naturally on different sides and had a lively debate :-)  I played devil's advocate on both sides to get them to think deeper.  
    Jason learned about how the Pythagorean theorem applies to string instruments and then taught us.
    more watercolor experimenting, freewriting, a discussion about how even the best ideas have their down sides.
  • I've also challenged the girls to memorize The Gettysburg Address, they are not happy and are having a hard time with it, but I think it's good exercise so I am cracking the whip!
  • Our neighbor's pool is in full swing--we are close with our neighbors and they have said basically that we can use the pool anytime we want.  The girls have been swimming with the neighbor's kids and sometimes while the neighbor's kids are at school--the great thing is that I can see them/hear them out the living room window!  It's like having a pool without actually having all the work involved!  Can't be beat!
    Excuse the window screen, we were just enjoying our neighbors' pool--we have great neighbors who work full time all week and tell us to use their pool!  Actually, we have 2 neighbors that have pools that are seldom home and tell us to PLEASE use the pool or it just sits there!  We are blessed with awesome neighbors!

What We are Reading

  • What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: from fox hunting to whist: the facts of daily life in 19th century England (read-aloud) we are doing more skimming for interesting things and telling them out loud than reading cover to cover
  • Chapters 4 & 5 in Story of the World 4 (some together, some on our own)
  • What's Your Angle, Pythagoras? a Math Adventure (Jason's guitar teacher recommended this book and he read it aloud with the girls)
  • The Emerald Mile: the epic story of the fastest ride in history through the Grand Canyon - Jason
  • The Total Tragedy of a Girl Named Hamlet - Piper
  • That Summer by Sarah Dessen - Allie
  • Waiting for You by Susan Colasanti - Allie
  • several other YA romances - Allie ( I can't keep up with her, she reads a book a day; I have no issue with her reading these kinds of books, because she does read other genres and literature as well)
  • The Spark by Kristine Barnett - Theresa
  • Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg - Theresa
    Jason loves books about nature.
    The girls and I are just skimming the book on the right for interesting facts and are finding plenty!
    I just started this book the other night and between mom's night out and other stuff I have not had a lot of chance to read it, so far it's ok.

 What We are Watching

  • The girls and I watched "Safe Haven"--Allie and I had both read the book and were anxiously awaiting the DVD release!
  • 7 Cool Homeschoolers

    Family Life

    And finally, I would just like to share this photo of my cRaZy husband.  He is passionate about plants and flowers and trees, so much so that he will get down on the ground and lay UNDER a rose to get a different angle/photo of the bottom!  He also loves to experiment with filters on his lens now--he has this theory about using PhotoShop/Lightroom to edit photos--if you know him and you know some of his other funny comments over the years, I am sure you can appreciate this!

    Homegrown Learners