Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Thane *FINALLY* started rock climbing! He is on the Junior Team at our local club. I can't think of a better way for him to expend some of that energy!

(Please excuse the blurring pictures. I had the ISO set too high.)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Can You Smell Them?

This is our wall of flowers. It's lovely.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Claude Monet Artist Study

We're diving into Impressionism for the last weeks of the 2009-2010 school year with the "Father of Impressionism", Claude Monet. I'm curious to hear the boys' opinions on his work since they didn't care for the paintings of NC Wyeth's that were not within his usual 'realistic' way of painting. I have gained an appreciation and love for this style of painting and I am excited to learn more about some of the artists who use it.

We'll be using these Monet art cards to study and then the boys will add them to their art album.
Monet and the Impressionists for Kids
Discovering Great Artists
(Love this book!)

Found this DVD at the library for us to watch:

I also ordered these J-I-N-G-O games from Rainbow Resource.

Lastly, if you are looking for some incredible notebooking pages to go along with your Impressionists study, look no further. Nadene from Practical Pages has created some. They are simply amazing! Oh, and check out this great narration idea her kids did for Seurat's "Bathers at Asnieres". We are so doing this!

If you missed the post about how we do art study, you can read about it here.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Weekly Report...Week 29

We didn't have a typical school week. We took it easy, had fun, but still managed to learn stuff.
History (Both)
I let James and Sarah of Liberty's Kids teach the boys this week. They learned about The Declaration of Independence, Washington crossing the Delaware, and Molly Pitcher. Magnus also read another Jean Fritz book, "Will You Sign Here, John Hancock".

Science (Both)
I didn't plan anything this week, but we did get a lesson about squirrels. Some students on campus have been collecting data about reproduction in squirrels. They have been trapping them, marking them, and giving them birth control shots. read that right. Birth control for squirrels. We were able to watch and ask questions. The boys got to see a male and a lactating female up close. It was pretty interesting. We also studied butterflies, but I wrote about that in the Fun Day Friday section.

Language Arts
Magnus...He read a paragraph and completed a keyword outline.
Thane...Completed a few episodes of Headsprout and continued reading to me from Sam the Minuteman.

Math (Both)
Math took center stage this week and probably will for the rest of the school year. The boys completed some worksheets from Math Mammoth and I got a shipment of games from Amazon. We had a lot of fun with math this week. If you missed my posts about it, please find them here and here. You won't be sorry for clicking on the links.

Fun Day Friday

We're "growing" butterflies and received our caterpillars in the mail yesterday. Today we read a book about their life cycle and the boys drew their own butterflies and labeled its parts.

Our picture study included another painting by NC Wyeth called "A Fight In the Forest".

Magnus named it "A Deadly Quarrel" and Thane liked "Indian Defeat". Thane discovered that if you turn the picture around and look at it from various angles, different parts of the painting jump out at you. Picture study still continues to be a favorite part of our week. So glad I finally got off my tush and planned something.

In the afternoon we met up with our homeschool group at the roller skating rink. I was a little nervous taking the boys since they have never been on skates and it's been nearly 15 years for me, but we had SO much FUN!!! Magnus got the hang of it pretty quickly and Thane was able to do a good job too. I saw my life flash before me only once! We're hoping to do it again real soon.

Oh...great news! Magnus auditioned for a part in our community theater's production of Winnie the Pooh and he got cast for Christopher Robin! 32 kids auditioned for 9 parts and the director said he was "perfect"! Guess I'm going to be a stage mom now! ;o)

Monday...Audition for Winnie the Pooh (Magnus)
Tuesday...Drama (Magnus) and AWANA (Both)
Wednesday...Fencing (Mangus)
Friday...Homeschool skate at the roller rink

We're hoping to go to the beach tomorrow and on Sunday, Collin and I will be celebrating 12 years of weddedness! :o)

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

More Math Fun

We have had a fun math filled day! We started out by playing a new game called Zeus on the Loose.

I had a feeling this game was going to be a big hit because of the mythology theme. My boys (especially Magnus) LOVE all things mythology. This game is so much fun! It is a great way to practice addition, subtraction by 10, and rounding. The only thing I don't like about it is the pictures of the gods are

Next, we watched a couple episodes of Sid the Science Kid.

"The Sticker Chart" was all about how and why we use charts. "Enough with Seashells" was about how and when to estimate.

We took what we learned a step further and created our own charts after making estimations.

I placed the same size legos in a jar which we are calling our estimation jar. The boys took out 10 legos and piled them on the table to get a good idea of what 10 legos looked like. We placed them back in the jar and the boys gave their best estimation.

Magnus estimated 50 and Thane estimated 47. The actual total was 43. The boys then made a chart showing who got the answer correct. I will fill the jar periodically with other items and whoever estimates the closest will get a sticker. Once they get 3 stickers, they will get a small prize.

After a quick bike ride to the store to get M & M's, we did some more estimating and graphing. The boys opened their packages and estimated how many were in their bags. Can I just say that Magnus' had significantly less than Thane's and I feel cheated out of my $.99. Then I had them sort them out. I found this page on the internet to help out with that.

Once they were sorted, the boys had to graph how many they had. We used this graph to record the data. Magnus was able to record his data using each square having a value of one. Thane, however, had to think of each square as two because he had so many M & M's! It made the lesson more of a challenge for him, but he figured it all out!

Once they had their chart filled out, they had to add all of the columns together to get the correct amount of M & M's that were in their bag. Then they had to figure out how much they were off by. Magnus guessed 21...actual total was 32 (yep...only 32)...he was off by 11. Thane's estimation was 32...actual total was 55 (yep...23 more than Magnus' bag)...he was off by 23.

We are all looking forward to having more math lessons like this to go along with our regular lessons. I'll blog about those too, so be sure to keep checking back!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Math Facts The Fun Way

Gorgeous weather + wiggly boys = math fun outside!

I called out addition and subtraction facts and the boys had to jump to the answer. They LOVED it! And yes, they are wearing pajama pants. We are homeschoolers after all!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Weekly Report...Week 28

Well, after being in "survival mode" last week, I have officially declared this week and next SPRING BREAK! However, we're not taking time off from school entirely. We're just going to have a lighter load. Here is what we managed to accomplish this week:

History (Both)
George Washington took command of the Continental Army this week. The boys watched the appropriate Liberty's Kids videos, we read George Washington by D'Aulaire's, Magnus read a Landmark history book (George Washington Frontier Colonel by Sterling North), and we added to our timeline and map of the Revolutionary War battles.

Science (Both)
We took a break from NOEO this week. As much as we enjoy the experiments, I just was not up for it. The boys watched a few animal DVDs and I called it "good". We've enjoyed watching birds, especially the humming birds, helping themselves to our feeders. Oh, and the boys learned how to make fire using a magnifying glass and the sun. Not sure how I feel about that.

Language Arts (Magnus)
Writing...We corrected and improved the first draft he wrote last week and he wrote his final draft.

Language Arts (Thane)
He completed a few more episodes of Headsprout, did some copywork, and read aloud to me.

Math (Both)
This was our first week of doing math together. I printed off the Math Mammoth Blue Series books we are going to be working through and placed them in 3 ring binders. We did several pages together and I didn't hear much complaining. In fact, Magnus said he liked doing MM better than RS...Thane disagreed.

Latin (Mangus)
Don't go there.

Fun Day Friday
Not much fun. We have a visit with our charter school advisor but then we are meeting our homeschool friends at the park this afternoon for some gun and sword fighting. We'll be ready for the Apocalypse...will you?

Thanks for stopping by! Maybe I'll have pictures of the beach to share next week!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Weekly Report...Week 27

Our family is officially in what we call "survival mode". We're doing the minimum that needs to be done. I am somewhat burned out and it is the end of the quarter for Collin. Exhaustion has set in for all of us but we are going to make it. God has a way of working it out so when I am jello, Collin is a rock. When he is jello, I am a rock. It's been that way since the beginning for us.
Needless to say, we did what we could with school this week. We survived.

History (Both)
"Don't fire until you see the whites of their eyes!"~General Howe
We read about the Battle of Breed's (Bunker) Hill this week. I was particularly happy to have scheduled 3 episodes of the Liberty's Kids video. The boys are learning quite a bit from those and getting, somewhat, of an unbiased view. We also read, "Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams" by Jean Fritz and talked about the the items discussed during the 1st and 2nd Continental Congresses as we completed a mini book about them.

Science (Both)
We demonstrated water's surface tension by completing a few experiments.

We filled a glass to the rim with water and added pennies, one by one, until it overflowed. We were able to get 30 pennies in it.

We dropped 28 drops of water onto this penny before they flowed off.

Water easily flowed through the bandana into the jar...

...but then when we tipped it over, nothing dripped out!

Water's surface tension is stronger than alcohol's so when you drop alcohol onto water, it drags the alcohol into a very thin filming causing it to look like you made holes in the water.

Language Arts (Magnus)
Writing...He watched the third lesson of SWI A, completed the key word outline, and wrote his first draft. Again, I am very proud of his product.

Spelling...moving right along!

MCT Poetry...We started learning about Alliteration and will continue it into next week.

Language Arts (Thane)
He completed 4 episodes of Headsprout, worked in ETC, and continued reading Sam the Minuteman with me.

I finally got this figured out. If you'd like to know the changes that are taking place, you can read about it here.

Latin (Magnus)
Not with the week we were having. No way. And that's okay.

Fun Day Friday
We finished up our history projects, studied this picture of NC Wyeth...

The Attack on the Block House

...watched a video about the Orchestra, painted a spring scene using QTips...

...and learned about fractions using a Hershey bar...

Monday...library visit
Tuesday...Drama (Magnus) and AWANA (Both)
Wednesday...Fencing (Magnus)
Thursday...Went to a musical of "A Year With Frog and Toad". It was fantastic and a welcomed change to our normal school week.
Friday...Fun Day Friday but no park day due to rain. :o(

Thanks for stopping by!