Thursday, October 29, 2009

The Purple People Eater

we got a 8 pocket Purple Folder... and it really helps to keep things manageable. I keep at least a weeks worth of study guides for each subject in there. Changing out a new unit as we complete them.

the first pocket has our contract, our daily schedule and our writing prompt for the semester.
the second pocket has our Vocabulary and Grammar-Usage-Mechanics assignments for the week.
the third pocket has our Spelling lessons.
the fourth pocket is filled with our Literature study guides.
the next pocket has our Social Studies test review guides.
followed by the Math pocket with 5 daily lessons
We keep Science and Health in the last two, since they are the easiest subjects and it is harder to finish the first three pockets and easier to work on the last three pockets, it is our reward for doing a good job.

after 'suffering through social studies, vocabulary, and grammar today, Magnus is finally enjoying his Science DVD on Polar Bears. He is finally Happy and feeling the reward.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Stone Houses, Clay cups, Lever building

Machu Picchu (Quechua: Machu Pikchu, "Old Peak", pronounced [ˈmɑtʃu ˈpiktʃu]) is a pre-Columbian Inca site located 2,430 metres (8,000 ft) above sea level.[1] It is situated on a mountain ridge above the Urubamba Valley in Peru, which is 80 kilometres (50 mi) northwest of Cuzco and through which the Urubamba River flows. Often referred to as "The Lost City of the Incas", Machu Picchu is one of the most familiar symbols of the Inca Empire.

The Incas started building it around AD 1430 but was abandoned as an official site for the Inca rulers a hundred years later at the time of the Spanish conquest of the Inca Empire. Although known locally, it was largely unknown to the outside world before being brought to international attention in 1911 by Hiram Bingham, an American historian. Since then, Machu Picchu has become an important tourist attraction.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I love my son, I love my son, I love my son

I would like to know how his previous teachers did as well as they did.

He had a math study hall with his online teacher today and he had a blast. She said his name like 1/2 dozen times and he smiled so big each time.

afterward, the lesson at home was:

If you have $50 and you go to the store and buy a vase and a lamp, and the lamp is $20 and you get $3 change, how much was the vase?

and 6 hours later.. SERIOUSLY we burned through 40 skittles trying to demonstrate the mental steps to figure out HOW to SET up the problem so that you can THINK about it and ANSWER it intelligently.

It was like playing blackjack with 6 decks and asking him to count cards. THAT was how painful it was. Eventually we got to a point of at least some understanding, ate the manipulative's, and went to scouts.

Tomorrow is Donald Donuts and Social Studies day, we will be Bike Hiking before a trip to the Library.

In contrast, Monday went so easy, 1 lesson here, a lesson there, a break here, a lesson there, yada yada yada.. I think it would require a planetary alignment to have two good days back to back.

Magnus and Math Lesson

video
new technology to teach in a new digital age.
K12 provides the computer, the internet connection, the teacher, and we provide the child and coach him to learn in a comfortable setting so that he is becoming a life long learner. This is Charter School in Texas.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

History Mystery

http://teacher.scholastic.com/histmyst/index.asp

From Scholastic, History Mystery is a game, but I would not call it an easy one. This game has lots of history time period options. Your history buff will be doing some research and really working at it. This is some great practice at research and will likely give kids some facts and historical background that they wouldn't get otherwise.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Contract Negotiations

I have one word for you. EXHAUSTED. I have been sick for 9 days and Magnus for about 5 now. While he has always been a RELUCTANT LEARNER, this last week has been just absolutely the most disheartening week ever. I hates to get out of bed, I hate to fight with him. I see the deadline loomin and know that he is falling behind, and he just wants to laydown. My husband, predisposed to be critical of homeschooling from the start, constantly wants to know why we are not 'doing' more. He is moved by the 8 - 3 clock rather than the 8 - 8 clock. I have a 400 lb weight sitting on my head, pressing down into my spine.

the only positive note, is that we found 4 Tracey West books, checked them out from the library and Magnus read them on his own, happily, by himself, in his bed each night. We returned them, and found four more. He has read two of them. Granted they are level 2 and 3 books, but seriously I do not care so long as he is READING on his own, that is a huge step. I opened one up yesterday, and found a vocabulary word on every other page that was on level for him, and asked him what it meant (in context of the story) and he was pretty accurate with them. I seriously wish that we could ditch the literature books and go with a curriculum that used this author, it would make my job So Much Easier.

Today I hit my breaking point, with Magnus using tears, drama, and depression in an attempt to avoid work. His father using whatever it is that he uses to ask me why we are not doing more, why were are watching T.V. and surfing Facebook, I remained calm until after Chess Club and after Cub Scouts and go back home to have the FAMILY MEETING.

We gave it 9 weeks, I am not happy. Magnus is not happy. Dad is not happy. So this is not working. Dad has agreed to back off and give it until the end of the school year. Magnus has agreed to a contract. I agree to teach him for 9 more weeks. He agrees to work each morning, starting at 8 am, on two subjects, without tears, fits, or drama and he can get a 15 minute break. Then 2 more subjects, followed by a 15 minute break, the faster he works, the faster he can get his break. After four subjects, he can get a 1/2 hour lunch and 1/2 hour P.E. break, and then 2 lessons, 15 minute break, 2 lessons, 15 minute break.

Now he has been getting breaks all along, Many of them have been stretching into 3 hours because of all the drama, so I have no idea why he thought he was gaining something during contract negotiations, but he smiled, and gleefully accepted the terms. I wrote it out, in terms that he could understand, and I agreed to give him 9 more weeks.

Mayor Mom has come up with Household Chores, should he decide that he doesn't like his JOB of being educated. He can get an education, or he can apprentice as a housekeeper. His job will include but not be limited to washing the floor, scrubbing the bathroom, and generally learning a skill that would get him a job with Merry Maids.

We shall see how the week plays out.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Language Arts Fun


http://www.toytheater.com/


toytheater.png



What is Toy Theater?
Toy Theater is a collection of early learning activities to be used as another tool in the teachers toolbox. An eclectic "Theater" of learning toys, Toy Theater is a safe place to play and learn. Who is Toy Theater aimed at? Toy Theater is aimed at both preschool and primary school age children but is open to people of all ages, even you.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Pearl Museum of Fine Arts




6 weeks progress


Due to an increased awareness that we are running out of time in the first 9 weeks and behind, he has gotten the lead out and is showing some serious dedication to getting his work done:

SCHOOL OBJECTIVE:
17% = A
15% = B
13% = C
11% = D


Math: 13% - C
Spelling: 14% - C
Literature: 13% - C
Language Skills: 16% - B
Social Studies: 15% - B
Texas Science: 25% - A+
Art: 15% - B
Music: 20% - A+
P.E.: 19% - A+
Health: 18% - A+

Conduct: (100% Effort) - Improving
so he earned 4 hours of fun and exercise at Friday Nite Live. He loves the Ping Pong Room.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Create a Soap

too pretty to actually USE. I hate that part. LOL. Art Club

Literature Language Arts



kidsmomo.png


Kidsmomo is a wonderful kids book review site. Worth a visit and a bookmark on Delicious!  Great site with some podcasts, mystery, and more.  They say this about themselves: Kidsmomo believes a bookshelf should only be bare when someone's reading what was on it, so we're all about introducing kids to books and series they'll love!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Art / Music



nycarver.png

Another site that shares sites had this one posted and I just loved it! Medieval gargoyles, stonework and carving are featured on this site. Some really cool stuff.  If your kiddo is into the middle ages and gothic stuff this site will be a fun exploration.