Saturday, September 10, 2011

Back in the Saddle Again

Hello, neglected bloggy friends.  Miss me?

Well, our new school year has begun.  Julianna wanted to start early, so we ended up beginning a week before than I had planned to.  I had believed her enthusiasm to start and proclamations of "missing school" as proof positive answers to my prayers of desperation for a student with willful I see they were just a ploy to get the First Day of School prizes.  Silly Mom.  ;-)

First week went well.  Last couple weeks, not so much (Ashamedly I admit that it also included a drive through our neighborhood school's parking lot with visions of enrolling her in my head.  The only reason I didn't stop was there were no parking spaces.  True story. Divine intervention?  Lol!).  Homeschooling moves just like life, huh?  Ups, downs, bumps, smooth sailing...hardest part is staying consistent through the ever changing tides.  We shall continue on...or at least grip tightly to the rope and drag on until March when the homeschool conventions begin with their encouraging workshops.  And the exhibit hall.  Freebies make all things right in the world.

On to our year so far.  I can already see some changes in the curriculum that need to be made.  I just cannot seem to find our groove in the area of phonics/language arts.  We are using Institute of Excellence in Writing's new LA program, Primary Arts of Language.  It's okay, but it is WAAAAY labor intensive (printing off materials, preparing games, etc.) for the amount of time it actually takes her to complete the task.  Still pondering what direction to go with it. Math seems to be going okay.  We're using Right Start Math and while it is very hands on, it's kinda dry.  We'll see how it goes.  She's doing well using the abacus, though, so we're making progress. Science ( is her favorite subject so far.  I like the way it's laid out - nothing overwhelming to complete daily and the experiments have been simple.  For social studies, we are using History Pockets from Evan-Moor (  Love them.  We started with Ancient Civilizations.  Last week we did an overview of "what is history?" and this week we are starting Ancient Mesopotamia (followed by Egypt, Greece, Rome, China and Aztecs).  I will do a separate post about it when we are done.  The activities are great.  Next unit we will do is Colonial Times which I hope moves us through November. 

My school room is still not giving me a groovy feeling, but I'm working at it.  Not sure what I want it to look like, which is one of the problems.  Our calendar area is slowly coming together.  I love the date on wall rings that I did (I got the idea here:  By May, everything should be hunky dory!

Hope your new year is going swimmingly.  :-)

Here are some pics:

We made tie dyed shirts.  They turned out awesome!  Colors faded only slightly. 

Pencil cake made for my "adopted" kiddos.  ;-) (Excuse the pan.  Shameful condition, really.)

My "flying WV" brownie.  Gotta represent!  Go Mounties!!  2-0

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