Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Kitchens, and Paints, and Maps, Oh MY!

Have I mentioned that I want to turn my playroom into a classroom? Well, I do.

I'm starting to hunker down on home-schooling the girls and getting as much information as possible before "formal" teaching begins. J and I have been searching through catalogs and online to find the things we would like to get for the girls here at home. I remembered we had been given a catalog for school equipment and supplies by a friend in the Department of Public Health. So after running through the catalog I signed up for one online at and found this cute kitchen play set that I would LOVE to get the girls. Cooking and tea parties are their favorite.

Like I mentioned before, I do want to get them a wall map, but J came up with the idea of the pull-down maps we had in public school. That way we can have multiple maps without minimizing space in the room. I found a website that sells ceiling mounts for these kinds of maps. I was thinking the easel kind (like the one posted) would work, too, but I think the ceiling set of 11 maps would work best so I can use them all as they grow.

Then a friend of mine pointed me to for cute storage units. I want to get rid of all these toy boxes to better optimize space for their toys. Making the storage go UP instead of out and around would help with that. The ones on the website were only 20 each.

I am so excited to be looking through all of this now so that when I plan out for the next school year, I'll be able to make this into a "private school" and file all of this stuff in our taxes. I have so many ideas and so little money, it's a bit disheartening, but it will be done! I'm compiling a list of things that I would like to get for our classroom so that way when friends and family ask what they should get the girls, I have a list of supplies and equipment they can look at and buy. I'm tired of having to get rid of multiple toys they don't care for or play with. This way I don't have to keep getting rid of toys, and they benefit from learning with what they are given. AND we won't have to buy everything. :)

I'm so excited I can't even type anymore. My mind is racing.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

All I Want for Christmas...

Is an awesome wall map for my girls' Social Studies projects. I have a wall poster of the planets somewhere in my things...BUT I CAN'T FIND IT and it's driving me nuts. I find this one (picture) at the office depot website for $15 and it's LAMINATED so I want it. The world map would be awesome. But I also want one of just the United States. I have so many ideas. I HATE BEING BROKE. A globe would be nice, too. WHY ARE THEY SO EXPENSIVE.

We're currently doing a bunch of holiday lapbooks that I've either found or created myself using bits and peices of information I found online. We did one on Santa, and are currently on Hanukkah. We'll then being doing Muharram (Islam New Year), Yule (Winter Solstice), Christmas around the World, and Kwanzaa. And THAT is just this month. We also did A Pocket for Corduroy for our Reading study. Have I mentioned how much I am LOVING lapbooking? Lily loves it too. Pictures will soon follow.

I will have an all picture post of all of the recent lapbooks we've finished as well as her journal. I've been trying to keep it a daily journal (Monday through Friday) But I keep forgetting to sit down with her and do it. Juggling three kids AND homeschooling is hard work. But I'm starting to get the hang of it. I'm going to talk with the state some time after the holidays are through to see if they would reimburse us on a kindergarten curriculum even though Lily is not of compulsory age for another two and a half years. The kid is just so smart, I'm the one who is keeping up with her.

Also, I'm trying to post daily, but I get distracted easily. I sign online and then totally forget what I came here for. LOL. But everyone will be seeing more posts from me. I'm not gone yet.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Tracing and School Projects

When Lily was 2, we started working on writing. Well, Iris turned 2 at the end of October and we are currently working on tracing lines. The main problem that I am having is having her hold the marker or crayon correctly. We had this same problem with her spoon and fork. Thankfully, it's not a very big deal and she's doing quite well if you ask me.

As I've mentioned before, as well as homeschooling, Lily is going to a private preschool here in town. I wanted to post all of her art projects that she does throughout the school year. She goes to a Lutheran school and for September the theme of the month was being "Fishers of Men." I don't remember the whole parable and whatnot that goes with that, but she did have a lot of fun. One thing that I forgot to add to the photo was this little water bottle that she had filled with sand, little plastic fish and blue water. It's super cute and up still as a decoration.

In October they did fall and Halloween themes as well as transportation. They worked on fire safety as well and Lily came home reminding me to stop, drop and roll if my clothes ever caught fire. Last month was Thanksgiving themed and they worked a lot on turkeys. The black feather used to have a little red headband to go with it but the girls fought over it and it fell off.

I have a bunch of other things she has worked on at school as well as the activities she brings for home, such as her Weekly Reader. I'm looking into seeing if I can acquire the WR after she's down with preschool for our homeschool sessions.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Corduroy Lapbook

Today was our first attempt at lap-booking. Until about last week when I joined a yahoo homeschoolers' group, I had no clue there was even anything called a lapbook. And only a couple of days ago did I actually *know* what it was. So, thanks to the lovely help from the HomeschoolShare website, we were able to try out their activities and try our first lapbook exercise.

This assignment was on the book Corduroy by Don Freeman (one of my favorites from childhood!) Lily had a lot of fun working on it, and it took a great deal of time for all the gluing and coloring and cutting. We enjoyed ourselves very much. Though we are a pretty secular bunch (mixed religions) I really enjoyed the Bible verse that was added to this activity and shared it with Lily, who agreed that it was a very wise proverb.

The mystery toy game was played by not only writing words for the clues but pictures. We had a fun time with that, and lily was super excited that she found the right toy with all the clues given. We actually did this a couple of times with different clues and toys than the one posted.

All in all, we had a fun time doing this and I am very much going to continue using lapbooks as a teaching and learning tool.

About Us

*waves* Hi there! For the sake of anonymity, I'm Luna! I am 23 years old and I have three beautiful daughters between the ages of 4 months and 4 years that I have been teaching since birth. My husband and I first came to the decision of homeschooling when Lily, my oldest who will be 4 on December 26th, showed signs of brilliance. She was very ahead in many areas academically and was easily bored with the activities of other children her age. As she got older, we encouraged learning with fun activities and she has mastered a lot of things that most children her age have not.

My husband is incredibly intelligent, and I, though not as bright as my husband, was also a "gifted" student. Academically we were miserable in school. We did not feel challenged and learned very little through the public school system. Most of what we know now we taught ourselves growing up out of boredom. We were very hands-on kids who needed to have fun in learning to continue to excel. We did not get that at all from our experiences in public school.

Currently, Lily is attending a private preschool. She enjoys it very much, but for her, it's more of a social gathering than anything else. The things that are being taught in class for the three-year-olds are colors, and shapes, and the basics, which Lily was taught at least a year ago. Iris, my 2 year old, already knows what they are teaching in her sister's preschool. Though Lily is attending a class three days a week, we supplement her with other activities using worksheets and workbooks, and different forms of play. She works with the basics; reading, writing, and arithmetic, and we also add in secondary languages (Spanish and American Sign Language) and music. Whatever she brings home from school we use together to help her younger sister learn, too. Until I can find a good support group so that she can still have a bit of socializing with children her age, we are currently just winging it and letting her enjoy her preschool.

This blog was created to post pictures and progress of all the things we do. I'm trying different things until next year when I start a formal program with her since she is getting closer to compulsory school age.

I have another daughter, Rose, who is currently 4 months old.