CategoryHomeschool

Homeschool Memoirs #4 – Something new

This week I hope you’ll share something new you’re using, why you’ve decided to use it, and if you have used it how you like it.

My something new is homeschooling itself. I love it! :wink1_tb:

Actually, just yesterday I came across a Homeschool Tracker program. It looks interesting. I’ve played with it a little bit, but not that much yet. I don’t remember where I read about it – on someone’s blog – but I don’t remember which one. From what I’ve seen of it, it looks pretty interesting. It looks like it’d be particularly helpful to use with more than one student. We’ll see how much use it gets this year. I like the scheduling aspect of it – that looks really helpful!

Homeschool Memoirs #3 – Routines

This week’s assignment is to share about our routines, and then a prayer of ours for the school year.

Routines are something I really struggle with. Things go so well when we have a set routine, but it’s the establishing of routines that’s hard for me.

We don’t have a set time for when we start school. That’s because we start when C goes down for his morning nap. S is still adjusting to school in general, and having little brother playing right beside him proves to be more of a distraction than anything else right now. Since C’s nap time varies, our school start time varies as well.

We always start with Bible, then do Phonics/Handwriting/Reading, Numbers, and then the Readiness Skills or whatever other activity we have planned for that day. Throughout the rest of the day we work on things like recognizing letters on packages or papers, and counting various objects around the house. As we get more accustomed to homeschooling, I’m wanting to settle into more set times. But it does work for us like this though.

My prayer for this school year is to really get into a good routine of homeschooling. Right now it’s new enough that my schedule still seems disorganized. It’s been a challenge to juggle everything.

You’ll probably see assignment #4 in a day or so – they’re posted on Wednesdays and I’m hoping to get caught up this week. :O)

Homeschool Memoirs – Agenda

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Well, I’m a little late on this this week, but here it is. I already posted most of it in my first post, so I’ll keep this one short. We’re homeschooling one little one right now. He’s 4. We’re using the A Beka K4 curriculum. We chose it because I really like how strong they are in phonics.

We’re also using some other books picked up here and there. Those are mostly just to supplement though, and are not being used as curriculum. I’m too new to this to go without lesson plans just yet, lol.

We are using the A Beka cursive curriculum instead of the manuscript. Part of my reasoning for the cursive was that even if it takes him longer to write in cursive, that’s ok. Why teach him to print this year, and require him to write in cursive in a year or two? I was told recently that “a four-year-old cannot learn to write in cursive,” but S is doing just fine. I wasn’t sure how he would do, but he is exceeding my expectations.

My favorite part of schooling with S is Bible. We’re not using the A Beka for Bible – but only because I didn’t buy it. No other reason. Right now he’s learning a verse that corresponds to each letter that he learns. For example, the verse for C is Ephesians 6:1. “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.” S is able to memorize verses so easily, and it is such a blessing to me to listen to him recite them.

I don’t know if we will stay with A Beka for all of our boys’ schooling. I’ve used Switched on Schoolhouse and really like it – we may use that in a few years. I don’t know. We’ll see how the kids do when they get older.

One verse for me that is a big part of homeschooling is Proverbs 22:6.

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

Homeschooling is one way that I can raise my boys so that when they are grown, Lord willing, they will be strong Christian men.

Homeschool Memoirs

Homeschool Memoirs!

I saw this over on Susan’s blog. I thought it would be a neat thing to join in – and if nothing else, a place for me to record some of our homeschooling information.

The theme this week (which I’m really late on, but that’s ok, I guess, since I just saw it today) is All About You. So here’s the all-about-me, homeschooling version.

I’m Melody, married to Stephen. We have two boys. Our oldest (S) is 4 and our youngest (C) is 7 months. We started K4 with S two weeks ago.

We’re using the A Beka K4 cursive curriculum. Stephen and I both attended PCC (that’s actually where we met) so we were already partial to A Beka. Then after we were married, we taught at a local Christian school that uses A Beka. I worked as a teacher’s aide in the Kindergarten classes, and knew that if we ever homeschooled, I wanted to at least use their phonics program.

A few years later, Stephen taught at a different Christian school. They used Switched On Schoolhouse, and we got a pretty close look at that curriculum while he was there. :laugh_tb: We may use it when the boys get older, but since we’ve not seen their curriculum for the youngest kids, we’re sticking with A Beka. That may change later, it may not. We’ll see.

Bought curriculum today

We’re officially on our way to becoming a full-time homeschool family! It’s hard for me to imagine that the time has already come for S to be in K-4.

A few weeks ago, a new friend sent us a big box of books that she used with her kids. There were TONS of teacher manuals in there! I never did get a chance to sit down and blog about it, but that box is a tremendous blessing to us. Thank you, E!

We still needed to get some things though, so after talking to Stephen’s mom, we decided to order curriculum through her (she’s the secretary for a local Christian school). No problems there. She showed us the items we need and we were to get back to her with our final order.

Then I was reminded of a local curriculum exchange store. We went there today. They had a lot more than I expected. We got some of the books, but there are still a couple things they didn’t have that we need to have Mom order for us. Not many, though!

So between my friend, the curriculum exchange, and Mom, we’re set for this fall.

In a way, it’s a bit intimidating – wanting to make sure we have everything and hoping we don’t forget something. On the other hand, it’s really exciting!

Edited to Add: We’re using A Beka Book for those who are curious.

Need to go to the store

I discovered today what an adventure all-out potty training can be. I also discovered that I need to go get more training pants! Today was the first day I put my little guy in training pants instead of diapers. I’ve put him on the potty before (and he’s gone), but I figured I’d go all-out.

By 11am we had gone through 4 pairs of underwear. We only have 9 pairs. I started getting mental images of me washing all his other pairs while he naps, and then washing again at night after he goes to bed!

I thought 9 would be enough. . .(ok, you experienced mamas can laugh at me), but apparently I was waaaaaaay wrong! I had no idea how many times a day a little boy has to go!

"Jesus wept"

Little man said his first Bible verse today. YAY!

I’ve been working with him on Bible verses, but today was the first time he actually said a whole verse. It might be a short verse, but hey – it’s a start.

Next step: learn the reference that goes with it.

I’m a proud mama tonight!

Definitely potty training now

Last night as I was getting Little man ready for bed he asked to go potty. He’s not been going every time I’ve put him on there, but I figured it couldn’t hurt. He goes most of the time…and since his diapers are getting drier and drier between trips to the bathroom…

I stood him next to the toilet to see if he’d climb up there himself (he climbed up onto Annie’s potty when we were visiting her this week – so I wanted to see if he’d do it here too). I leaned over and looked at the mirror for a second, and then I thought, “I better see if he’s gotten up there yet” because I couldn’t see him in my peripheral vision.

No sooner had I thought it when I felt something wet on my bare foot.

Little man was peeing on the floor, and it was splattering onto my foot!

I quickly scooped him up and set him on the toilet, but he had already finished, lol! It took every ounce of my being not to laugh my head off while I was cleaning it up. I did NOT want him to know I thought it was funny!

So I guess we’re fully in the swing of potty training now!

My little helper

Little man was intent on helping me tonight when I was switching laundry from the washer to the dryer, so I took advantage of it. Instead of throwing each piece of clothing directly into the dryer, I handed it to him. I told him to “put it in the dryer,” and he did. Piece by piece by piece. It was so sweet!

By letting him play this “game” I was effectively teaching him to do laundry. I’m also using it as another way to teach him to obey Mama. At eighteen months of age, he can follow basic commands like, “pick it up,” “put it back,” “put it down,” “bring it to Mommy,” and I could go on and on. Stephen handed him a wadded up sheet of paper today and told him to throw it away. I wasn’t sure if Little man knew what that meant, so I led him to the trash can and told him to put it in the trash. He did. He grabbed it back out of the trash can, and I told him to put it back in the trash. Once again, he put it in the trash. I made a big deal out of it, and clapped for him. He had a huge smile on his face and clapped for himself. He was very proud of his accomplishment.

Little ones know and understand so much more than we usually give them credit for. I don’t expect my son to act like an adult, but in treating things like a game, and working with him when he is willing to learn, I am training my son to do things around the house. With a little direction from me, he can get food from the pantry, small pans from the cupboard, and pick small items off the floor for me, as well as pick up his toys and bring me clothes that he can reach. Once Little man has mastered a skill, I no longer make a huge deal out of it when he obeys. I simply thank him. Eventually, he gets to the point where he obeys the first time I tell him to do something. That is my goal anyway; for Little man to obey the first time.

What a joy it is to train my son early! He is definitely Mama’s little helper!