Monday, August 31, 2009

Monday, Monday.. augh

morning sucked. he has -0- brain cell power, I tried to wake his brain up with food. that didn't work. I tried to wake his brain up by counting to 10 and then counting backwards. I tried to wake his brain up by saying the alphabet forwards and backwards. it was hysterical, he couldn't not day it backwards. we tried doing homework on a clipboard in bed, at the desk, at the kitchen table. finally we took the print outs (writing assignment, spelling worksheets / language assessment / science desert book) and pedaled to the park and worked at the table there.

Before we left, while waiting for the coffee to perk, we did complete the map lesson in social studies. then we explored the neighborhood that explored that same neighborhood and went to the park. While at the park, we did some fill in the blank, he had difficulty dictating sentences while transcribed them for him. We did discover while there that we could packed a lunch, and so we wrote down what we would do tomorrow. After reading from his science book, we pedaled home. We were able to do something academic today, at least before I completely lost my mind wondering why his was not firing on all 4 cylinders (he has a Toyota Prius fuel cell brain).

Once we got home, we sat down before a mirror, and I demonstrated how to do a self portrait. He was not able to complete the his version of a self portrait today. He said he was just exhausted. This is very strange in my opinion since he went to bed at 8 pm, slept until 7:30 am and had breakfast, he should have lots of energy, but he has none. we noticed during the art lesson that he has dark circles under his eyes, which seems unusual since he does get 11 hours of sleep every night, or at least he is in bed that long, frequently he wakes up and comes and sleeps with me after a bad dream.

So that is our day so far. He would rather sleep, I wish he would just get his work done so that he could chill out the rest of the day. Last week we tried let him chill in the morning, then in the afternoon, he still has -0- motivation to do his work. So that is not an option.

Friday, August 28, 2009

5 days down: 175 to go

1.True/False: My student has to complete every activity within every single lesson. FALSE

2.True/False: My student has to complete every lesson within every unit. QUESTION OF THE DAY: here is the point of contention for me. There are so many lessons 'available' each week that I can not find time to do the things that I think make homeschooling fun. Going to the Children's Museum . Going to the Aquarium or the Zoo. Going to the Pearl MFA or Jesse Jones Nature Park. Using cooking and double recipes to make math fun. Grocery shopping to teach money and banking. How to find out that 12 biscuits for $2.99 is really $.25 a biscuit and that a case of 144 diapers for $32.99 are $.23 each. We tried to reduce the busy work by skimming through some of the math, and doing only even or odd problems because he obviously knew the answer, skimming through and letting him answer questions orally rather than write them down in a journal, was still very very time consuming and so very intense.

3.True/False: If my student understands the concepts taught in a lesson I need to have my student take the lesson assessment and move on to the next lesson. TRUE

Materials for 08/24/09 to 08/28/09

Math 3
lesson 1 – hundreds – done
lesson 2 – comparing and ordering – done
lesson 3 – skip counting (opt) – done
lesson 4 – thousands (opt)

Language Arts3
Spelling 3
lesson 1 – list/ABC order – done
lesson 2 – syllables - done
lesson 3 – sentences
lesson 4 – dictation
Literature 3
lesson 1 – wind and sun - done
lesson 2 – bundle of sticks - read
lesson 3 – why larks flew away
lesson 4 – why larks flew away
I read the first 18 pages of George Washington to him as a change of pace, surprisingly he got up and walked away, bored with the story.
Language Skills 3
lesson 1 – word wise – done
lesson 1 – sentences – done
lesson 2 – sentences – done
lesson 2 – word wise (opt)
lesson 3 – subject / predicates – done
lesson 1 – actions (opt) – done

Social Studies
lesson 1 – communities - done
lesson 2 – community needs - done
lesson 3 – community people - done
lesson 4 – community laws
lesson 5 – maps
lesson 6 – where is your community – partially done

TX Science
lesson 1 – life cycles - done
lesson 2 – insect life cycle - done
lesson 3 – metamorphosis - done
lesson 4 – fish life cycle - done
lesson 5 – amphibians life cycle - done
lesson 6 – reptile life cycle – partially done
lesson 7 – bird life cycle

Art 3
Many Kinds of Art – we modified this and did a watercolor of the Chihuahuan desert that we visited on our summer trip.

Music 3
lesson 1 - we watched the first 3 videos on lets learn music, it was so boring we gave up. We put in a pop music CD (Hannah Montana) and used a flashlight on the wall to imitate the bouncing ball for the beat.
lesson 2

lesson 1 – we have Wii sports resort, a mini trampoline, razor scooter and played flag football this week
lesson 2 – pedometer – done

Health 3
lesson 1 – bones / muscles/ nerves – done
lesson 2 – respiratory

Introduction to online learning
lesson 1 - scantron - done
lesson 2 – organize - done
lesson 3 – math - done
lesson 4 - language art – done – writing assignment<--------- OMG, this was so painful this week. I tried printing vacation pictures and letting him write about them, he couldn't think of a thing to write or even know where to start. I tried printing out the questions from the Intro OLL and he couldn't write a sentence and I had to prompt him to even come up with a list. Finally I gave up, and started dictating and I would write down the first half, and he would dictate the second half of the sentence. I am at a loss, he appears to have no creative writing skills. He would have rather given bone marrow than write compete sentences. I do not understand this as a concept, anymore than I understand his not wanting to read. It should be a genetic marker in his DNA, he is the offspring of two voracious readers, he has acquired our math and science aptitude but he seems to have completed missed my writing genes.
lesson 5 – history (no this we have incorporated something that we found FUN. We have a PBS DVD set called LIBERTY KIDS and watched a couple of episodes to change the pace.

Today is FUN Friday. It is almost noon and we have not done anything but eat breakfast so far. We are going on a bike hike for 2 miles.
Later we could work on Health, Spelling, Social Studies and maybe vocabulary. While we should rewrite the questions for Monday, I am dreading it.

we did our 2 mile bike hike. we did two lessons in social studies. got home and did one session in study island. won a blue ribbon. we did two lessons in health and two lessons in literature and then we bagged the rest of the day.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Interesting Goals

This home schooling is much harder than advertised, I am getting nauseated daily from the stress. it was supposed to be fun, but it is a daily fight to get him to do more than 2 hours of academics which means that I am not doing it right, learning was supposed to be FUN.

He doesn't want to write, he doesn't want to read. He just wants to get a job, make enough money to get a house, quit the job, and live in the house. heehee "richly rewarding, easy and fun",


"exciting projects and fun learning activities" heehee (demoniacal giggles)

okay, all I asked him to do was write some narrative sentences to benchmark his writing skills, and you would think I was asking for bone marrow.

He is eager each morning for 1:40 minutes and then POOF it is 'work' and he it too tired, we change up our format, change the subject, change the location, and he drags the rest of the day. we are changing out the first two topics of the day so that we at least get a fresh shot at each on a weekly basis. and while I expected some reluctance in his least favorite subjects Language and Grammar, I feel like I am dragging a 1200 lb bull around the farm to eat, drink, and exercise.

We have not even attempted the lofty original goal of penmanship and cursive. Art and music would have been daily offerings, we are scaling back to weekly for now just to maintain sanity. He would not even relax for me to read to him for 1/2 hour, just not getting off on to the start that I planned.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I Hate my Life

is his matra for the last two weeks. I am not sure why, but I assume it is to get 'attention'.

however, after struggling with spelling this morning, completely blowing of language, we switched to music, art, and science. that got us through another 2 hours before he just couldnt take it anymore, refused to look at battling beetles and opted to self direct to online math games.

we had a discussion about choices. he has one choice. he can go back to school or he can embrace homeschool, but negative attitude about homeschool will see him enrolled in public school. He has had his 'come to jesus' and is going to adopt a more pleasant attitude about homeschool.

we are 'wading' through the online list of 'things to do' from the 'school', it is a little confusing, but we are muddling along.

7:30 - 8:00 am Breakfast
8:00 - 8:30 log in, read email
8:30 - 9:00 Math Assessment
9:10 - 9:40 Spelling (ABC Order)
9:40 - 10:20 Grammar/Literature
10:20 - 11:00 Intro Music, (Flashlight and Hannah Montana)
11:00 - 11:30 Art (Desert Watercolor)
11:30 - 12:00 Social Studies - Government
12:00 - 12:30 Lunch
12:30 - 1:00 Texas Science -(butterfly lifecycle / compost pile)
1:00 - 1:30 Multiplication Math
1:30 - 2:30 Trampoline

Monday, August 24, 2009

First Day Activities

7:30 - 8:00 am Breakfast
8:00 - 8:30 log in, read email
8:30 - 9:00 Social Studies
9:10 - 9:50 Spelling (ABC Order)
10:05 - 12:00 Wii Sports Resort
12:00 - 12:30 Lunch
12:30 - 1:30 Texas Science
1:30 - 3:30 Wii Sports Resort
3:30 - 4:30 bouncing on the trampoline
4:30 - 5:30 Physical fitness assessment

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Getting ready for the year.

The day before the First Day of School. TXVA is a public school and not a homeschooling program, you are required to log your child's attendance every school day beginning August 24th. All TXVA students are required to log 1080 hours of attendance in the course of the year. This averages out to 6 hours per day, 5 days per week. Please remember not to begin working in any courses or logging attendance until the first day of school. As I understand it, if the 1 hour math is completed in 20 minutes, he has completed the entire hour of the daily course work, and can move on to the next subject.

Introduction to Online Learning is a 10-day course in which we must participate during the first 10 days of enrollment. It will help orient our family to the program, provide us with a daily checklist of things to do as well as prepare us for a successful school year.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

P.E. Activities

HCYA (Homeschool Christian Youth Association) Sports Day is an intramural physical education program that takes place at the Willowbrook Sports Complex, 12539 Perry Road in northwest Houston

Students ages 6-9 are rotated through a pre-determined game schedule in teams that are set for the year to minimize confusion. Students age 10 – 18 choose from a list of activities for their age group.

LOCATION: Willowbrook Sports Complex

12539 Perry Road in Northwest Houston
about 1 mile NW of 249 @ 1960

DATES: 2009-2010 School Year FRIDAYS we meet

Sept 4 & 18
Oct 2 & 16* & 30
Nov 13
Jan 8 & 22
Feb 12 & 26
Mar 12 & 26
April 9

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Chess Club

It's not just for homeschoolers. Anyone can play. Actually, it's an official tournament every Friday 7:00 pm at the McDonalds inside WalMart on FM1960 at Cutten Road. $8 to join US Chess Federation, if he is not already a member, then $5 each week for (three or more) rated games. There are several home-schooled families that come often. You may be able to make some connections.

There are also unrated games or "clubs" at the Barbara Bush Library on Wednesday afternoons and Thursday evenings at the KaBob restaurant in front of Home Depot on 249 north of Louetta (quite new, not sure if they're fully "up and running.")

We also have all-day tournaments on some Saturdays. If you have found my website, you probably found the list:

You might also find useful information here.

Monday, August 3, 2009


Service Type UPS GROUND
Shipped From NORTH LAS VEGAS, NV 89030 7557

Delivery History

Date 08/03/2009
Address SPRING, TX 77379
Date 08/02/2009

The HP Computer arrived safely. We are installed and set up, connected to the internet, behind our own firewall but ready to log on and learn.