Monday, August 7, 2017

100 Days of Art: Day 6 - Rainbow Paint Chip Mosaics

Silas is learning about rainbows in his My Father's World curriculum this week. For our art project, I decided to use the huge bag of paint chips I have collected and have the kids make rainbow mosaics!

It was so easy (my favorite kind of art project!). I simply cut different shades of the rainbow colors into small squares. I put each color group on a sheet of white paper to make it easier for the kids to grab the color they needed.

I drew a simple rainbow outline on a sheet of white cardstock for each of the kids. They put glue on each stripe, one at a time. Then they filled in the stripes with the paint chip squares!

They turned out really nice! The kids decided to cut out an ark to put under the rainbow to remind them of Noah's ark. It was a cute touch!

Look at our other art projects:

Day 1: Learning to Draw
Day 2: Pyramids
Day 3: String Art
Day 4: Optical Illusion Art
Day 5: Kandinsky Concentric Circles

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Week in Review

We started this week with Titus's fifth birthday on Sunday. We had a big party in June for all three boys, so he helped me make a honeybun cake (his favorite!) and we played whiffle ball with some friends (his request!).

Titus completed Week 15 in My Father's World. He learned the letter C this week and we had a cow theme. He loves the farm theme we've had the past two weeks! One of his favorite activities was "Give the Cow Spots" - I printed off a cow outline, he rolled the dice, and put that many black Unifix cubes on the cow.

He can sound out and read many CVC words now. He is so excited to learn to read since his big brother (and best friend) Silas is reading now. He is determined to read! I have to make words for him all day long on the small whiteboard for him to sound out.

Silas finished Week 15 in My Father's World (1st grade). He is reading very well now. He loves the Bible stories he gets to read in his own Bible reader. I am so proud to call him a "reader" now! He learned how to make and read graphs in math this week. I love how My Father's World incorporates so many hands-on activities for math! There is a workbook for him to use, but the activities are truly the heart of this math program. He got to graph M&Ms and animal crackers - yum!

Mercie started her first week of 4th grade. She did great, although I still have to sit with her for most of her lessons. She learned about classifying animals in science, about geography in social studies, reviewed some math and grammar concepts, and read a few chapters of "Little House on the Prairie" and the first five chapters in Genesis.

Eli started his first week of 7th grade. He asked to learn astronomy this year, so I bought him the first edition of Apologia Astronomy. I am also making his own worksheets instead of using the notebook journal, and I am adding lots of hands-on activities and experiments. This week, he made his own working compass and a model of the solar system with balloons. He also did a fun experiment on gravity by lighting two ends of a candle and balancing it on two glasses (the candle started spinning), but I didn't get a picture (darn).

In history, he did a quick overview of the world. He did some review in math on mental math, estimation and rounding. He loves his math because it uses sports statistics quite a bit! He is also doing the writing portion of his language arts books. It does have a short "grammar link" each day, which I really like, to keep grammar fresh! He is doing a literature guide on the book, "Johnny Tremain". He did a few art projects using his Art Lab book - drawing still life, and then drawing still life with black ink (which, by the way, STAINS).

Mikaela started her first week of 9th grade. She is using Apologia's General Science. This week was a history of science. She had several experiments and demonstrations, including density, hot and cold water molecules, and how to blow up a balloon with vinegar and baking soda in a 2 liter bottle (which exploded on us and shot the balloon off like a bullet).

She is doing consumer math, and learned about buying a car. She thinks it is much more fun to learn with real life experiences. She did an overview of geography this week, reviewed parts of speech in grammar, and read some of the Hobbit for her literature study. In art, she drew a few really nice pictures - one outdoor scene and a picture of Eli.

The three little kids and I did an art project based on Kandinsky's Concentric Circles. We also played outside quite a bit, took a few trips to the library, and went to a Community Fun Day at the park. There was free ice-cream, free face painting, and a magician. Titus and Silas both got to be magician's assistants, which was really fun.

How was your week?

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

How I Organize My Father's World Kindergarten (God's Creation From A to Z)

We've been using My Father's World God's Creation From A to Z with Titus, my just-turned-five-year-old! (His birthday was July 30.) We are on Week 15 this week. We started this when he was 4 1/2 years old. He has really done well with it! He is starting to blend words and can read lots of CVC words. He is recognizing words he knows and will point them out. He tries to sound out everything! We really love My Father's World.

I've seen many blog posts that have very elaborate filing systems for organizing the papers and such for this curriculum. I don't have the time or space for that! With five kids and five sets of curriculum, I need to streamline as much as possible. I want to share my very simple and easy way of organizing My Father's World God's Creation From A to Z.

I found the best plastic container at Walmart! It has a lift-out tray perfect for holding the small things needed daily and pretty deep storage area. It was about $8! I even went and bought another one (and I'm sure I'll buy more and more, haha) for my own "teacher" supplies.

In the tray, I have the following items:
  • the picture card envelopes (each week, they have picture cards to cut out and store in the envelopes - they are used several times weekly)
  • the small alphabet flashcards (I keep the letters we have learned and are learning in the envelope - I use them for daily review and games)
  • short vowel cards (also in an envelope - they are used weekly to reinforce the short vowel sounds)
  • pencils, markers, crayons, scissors, glue stick, pencil sharpener (we use these daily)
  • a small clock with moveable hands (learning to tell time, it's nice to have on hand)

Under the tray in the storage area, I keep:
  • the teacher's guide
  • a red folder that holds his worksheets for the week, his blend ladder chart, calendar and number chart
  • his math workbook (there is very little math in MFW, so I do supplement with a kindergarten math workbook)
  • handwriting tablet (I use a yellow marker to write letters and he traces them - there is only one day of handwriting in MFW, so I do like him to practice often)
  • extra flashcards (in a zipper bag, I keep the flashcards we haven't learned yet)
  • alphabet flashcards (we use these almost daily, but they won't fit in the tray - I keep them in a zipper bag)
  • bingo cards (in a zipper bag)
  • words to remember cards (again, in a zipper bag - the ones we haven't learned yet)
  • badge patterns
  • worksheets (I keep the ones we haven't used yet paper-clipped by week in the bottom of the storage container - I can easily grab next week's worksheets and slip them into his folder on Sunday)

There are a few things that won't fit into the tub - Cuisenaire rods, textured letter puzzles, and other manipulatives. I keep them close by on a bookshelf. I actually keep the puzzle right on top of the storage container because we use it all the time.

He also has a binder that holds his completed work. I have dividers for each week, and I label them by letter and theme (for example C- Cow or W- Water). Each week, we have to make a badge that will help us remember the Bible lessons and letter/theme. I glue these to the front of each divider. Everything he completes goes behind the correct divider. He loves looking through his binder! I usually hole-punch the worksheets at the beginning of the week to make a quick transfer each day.

If you'll look at my Teacher's Guide, you can see that I write tons of stuff inside! I like to add in some fun hands-on math activities as well as crafts and extra worksheets for each theme. I don't have to do this, but Titus is always asking for more school, so I try to find some simple and fun things he can do. I simply write them in pencil on the schedule. I try to include the books we read each week to go along with the theme, but sometimes I forget. It will be a great record of his Kindergarten year!

I also keep small Post-It flags on the current week and on the reading lesson instructions (which are in the back of the teacher's guide). It makes it easier to flip to the right pages!

We are really happy with My Father's World! Titus has learned so much and I have had so much fun teaching it!

Monday, July 31, 2017

2017-2018 Curriculum Choices

Wow, hard to believe another school year is in the works! We usually homeschool through the summer, but this year we've taken more breaks than ever. We just started back today after a 3 week break, so I thought it would be a good time to share our curriculum choices. They are all over the board this year, people!

Mikaela: 9th grader (eek!)

MATH: Abeka Consumer Math (1 Credit). Algebra is not her strong suit, so we have decided to make her 9th grade year an easier math year. She really loved math today - she even said, "This math is fun!" Next year, we will complete Algebra 1, then Geometry, and then Algebra 2. (Bought new from Ebay for $24.59)

LANGUAGE ARTS: Holt Elements of Language (1 Credit). This book will take her through a semester of grammar and mechanics and a semester of writing. It's a public school textbook, but it looks fabulous. (Bought new from Ebay for $11.08)

READING: I have a book list for her to read this year. She will also be required to complete two literature guides. The first is "The Hobbit", which she started today. Some of the books she will be reading are "Frankenstein", "Fahrenheit 451", "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea", and "To Kill a Mockingbird'. I'm including this in her language arts credit.

SOCIAL STUDIES: Glencoe World Geography (1 Credit). Graduation requirements in Louisiana list "Social Studies" instead of "History". This year, she will do World Geography. She is (hopefully) going to be able to list every country on every continent. (Bought new from Ebay for $15.57)

SCIENCE: Apologia Exploring Creation with General Science (1 Credit). Most of the textbooks we chose this year were secular, but I really insist upon a Christian science book with a young earth view. Apologia does not disappoint! I didn't get the Notebook Journal, but I am creating worksheets and lab report sheets in Power Point for her. (Bought used from Ebay for $14.52)

ART: Artistic Pursuits: High School Book 1, The Elements of Art and Composition (1/2 credit). She will use this book several times a week for 1/2 credit of art. (Bought used from Ebay for $21.12) I also bought her a nice pencil and charcoal set to use with it.

MUSIC: She plays piano and will continue with that for 1/2 credit of music.

BIBLE: She and Eli will be going through a Bible study by James McDonald called, "Think Differently". We also have nightly family Bible reading and morning devotions before school.

Eli: 7th grader

MATH: Scott Foresman Exploring Mathematics (bought from Ebay for $11.99). He really liked this math book today, as he was using football statistics as part of the example problems!

LANGUAGE ARTS: Glencoe Grammar and Writing (bought from Ebay for $11.90). This book will take him through half a year of writing and then half a year of grammar.

READING: He will have a booklist to read this year, and he will complete two literature guides. He is reading and completing a guide for "Johnny Tremain" right now. A few books on his booklist are "Wonder", "Treasure Island", "Sherlock Holmes" and "Number the Stars".

SOCIAL STUDIES: Glencoe Human Heritage World History (bought from Ebay for $8.55). He will learn world history this year, as he has not done this in a while. He's been stuck on American history for a few years!

SCIENCE: Apologia Exploring Astronomy (bought from Ebay for $18.00). He has been wanting to study astronomy, and I love Apologia so we decided on this book. I am also creating his worksheets and lab sheets on Power Point instead of buying the Notebook Journal.

ART: Art Lab for Kids (bought from Amazon for $12.26). There are 52 art labs in this book that he can do independently.

BIBLE: "Think Differently" by James McDonald, plus nightly family Bible reading and morning devotions before school.

Mercie: 4th grader

MATH: Macmillan McGraw-Hill Math Connects 4 (bought from Ebay for $10.09). She loves this math book so far! There are hands-on activities and plenty of practice problems.

LANGUAGE ARTS: McGraw-Hill Language Arts (bought from Ebay for $14.99). This language arts book covers grammar, usage, mechanics and writing in short simple lessons.

READING: She will be reading lots of books this year, as well as completing two literature guides. She is reading "Little House on the Prairie" right now. Some others on her list are "Farmer Boy", "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory", "James and the Giant Peach", and "The Glass Elevator".

SOCIAL STUDIES: Macmillan Mc-Graw Hill Regions History (bought from Ebay for $8.55). She will be learning about the regions of the United States, as well as memorizing the states and capitals, landmarks and presidents.

SCIENCE: Scott Foresman Discover Science (bought from Goodwill store for $2.99). I have created worksheets and activities to go along with this awesome science book that I used in school! The copyright date is 1986, and both my husband and I both remember using this book in school!

ART: I will be doing twice-weekly art lessons with her, Silas and Titus. Some will be based on a famous artist, some will be just fun, fluffy art projects.

BIBLE: She will be reading through Genesis and Exodus this year. I am making her some Bible study worksheets in Power Point to complete when she finishes her daily reading. She will also have nightly family Bible reading and morning devotions before school.

Silas: 1st grader

He is using My Father's World Learning God's Story for 1st graders. We started this earlier this year and we love it! He is on week 15 this week. He is reading so well, loving the hands-on math (today we graphed a package of M&Ms), and really thriving with this curriculum. We are definitely going to stick with this!

Titus: Kindergartner

He is also using My Father's World God's Creation. He is doing so well in this! We are on Week 15 this week. He is sounding out and reading simple CVC words. He also loves the hands-on aspects of this curriculum. I do add some fun projects each week and a math book, but overall it's a great program that we are going to finish! I'll move him on the Learning God's Story when he finishes the kindergarten program.

All in all, I spent quite a bit less than I usually do on curriculum! The kids love the public school textbooks (why, I'm not sure, but they do). We had a great first day back today, and I hope everyday forward is as smooth as today was!

100 Days of Art: Day 5 - Kandinsky Insipired Concentric Circle Art

*I'm back here at My Full Heart, because it feels more like 'home' to me.*

We've done quite a bit of art projects since I've last posted. It's been nice having a break from posting, but I have missed blogging and hope to be regular again since our school started by today!

Mercie, Silas, Titus, and I completed a really neat art project today inspired by Kandinsky's Concentric Circles. We first watched a short video biography of his life, and then we looked at some of his artwork. The process was simple and quite fun. Here is the piece of art that we replicated in our own way!
Image result for kandinsky
(Wassily Kandinsky)
I opened a pack of construction paper and handed each child a sheet of white cardstock. Then, we started cutting and gluing circles. I tried to have them make 12 squares in a 4 x 3 grid like Kandinsky's, but Mercie and Titus's circles were too large for that, so I just asked them to make it a grid.

They had lots of fun with color patterns and sizing their circles. I had lots of fun, too! It was a relaxed and open-ended project. We didn't draw our circles first or trace them - Kandinsky's circles were all lopsided and uneven, so I told the kids not to make them perfect. They seemed surprised at the freedom to cut out ragged-edged and funky looking circles!

Here is our finished product. (Top left is Mercie - age 9, top right is Silas - age 7. Bottom left is Titus - age 5, bottom right is me - age 32.)

Here are our first four days of 100 Days of Art project!
Day 1: Learning to Draw
Day 2: Pyramids
Day 3: String Art
Day 4: Optical Illusion Art

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Several Weeks in Review...

You may or may not have noticed that I've been absent from my blog for over two weeks. It wasn't an intentional absence; life has been happening. I have been in a blogging slump, I guess you could say. I'm not really sure which content appeals to my readers. I have such a wide range of children - preschool through high school - that I feel like my content is all over the place. Since my older two are also using Bob Jones with DVDs, I feel like there's nothing really blog-able about their schoolwork.

I do want to start blogging regularly. I'm guessing the break was what I needed. I kept asking myself if I really wanted to keep blogging or just give it up. I really have enjoyed blogging and I do want to keep it going. I've been thinking about scheduling my blog - Monday for preschool learning, Tuesday for elementary learning, Wednesday for middle school, Thursday for high school, and Friday for a whatever post.

Here's what has changed or been going on in the past two weeks.

Mikaela and Eli dropped Bob Jones math. It was way too hard and too way too long. Neither one of them was enjoying it, and I was having a difficult time teaching it to myself and them teaching them. The DVD teacher was not great, either, and I couldn't understand what he was trying to teach sometimes. In fact, my cousin (who is working on the same job my husband is) used to be an algebra teacher. I had him look at Mikaela's algebra when they came over to watch the Superbowl. He thought it was a ridiculous book for the 9th grade. He said it felt more like chemistry than algebra. That made my decision for me - I dropped it. Instead, I ordered Mikaela Key to Algebra and Eli Key to Decimals. I plan on Mikaela completing all 10 books in the Key to Algebra series this year, and Eli should complete the Key to Decimals and Key to Fractions. Since they've been using the Key to... series, math has gone much easier and honestly, Mikaela is learning so much more. She is more confident and happy when it comes to algebra.

Silas will begin My Father's World 1st grade tomorrow. I ordered the deluxe kit, and he is very excited to begin. Titus will begin My Father's World kindergarten next week (it won't be here until Tuesday). Mercie will also begin her 4th grade year next week (I blogged about her curriculum yesterday).

We have been going to a nice Baptist church here in Alabama. The kids enjoy Sunday School and Rod and I have really been blessed by the sermons. They have some different activities for kids on Sunday nights, but we haven't been yet. I do want to start going.

We have been to Auburn several times to the pediatric dentist. Silas has had some problems with his teeth, related to his teeth grinding, and had to have two molars pulled. He is going back in two weeks to have a spacer put in to hold the space open since those teeth won't come in for two or three years.
Mercie and Titus also have a few cavities we will be filling.

The weather has been nice - cool and windy one day, warm and sunny the next. We have fun playing on the playground here in the condo complex, throwing the football with Eli, and taking walks along the lake.

I miss home already, but this is a really nice area we are staying in.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

4th Grade Curriculum Choices

Mercie has finished her 3rd grade year. She will be taking next week off a break, although she is going to finish her math workbook - Math Lessons for a Living Education. She has mostly completed this book, but since we started it several months into her school year, she hasn't quite finished it. Most of what is left is review, so she is going to work in it every day until next week until she is through. She won't have any more work, except free reading.

I was very torn over what to order her for 4th grade. I dislike changing things up mid-year, and I'm doing my best to make sure we get curriculum that will work for us. I did lots of research and looked at lots of curriculum packages and reviews to find the "best" for her learning style and for my sanity. Here is what we placed the order for today. It is all coming from Christian Book Distributors and will be here next week. I will then fill in the lesson plan pages I created six weeks at a time.

Creation to the Resurrection, Volume 1, Second Edition: The Mystery of History Series  -     By: Linda Lacour Hobar
I chose Mystery of History Volume 1. Mercie hasn't had much exposure to the ancients, and I think it will be a fun year for her. I used this with my two oldest when they were in 4th and 2nd grade. I remember all of the fun activities we did, and I think this hands-on learning style will be great for Mercie. The review cards and timeline are two things that will help her visualize what she's learned.

Christian Kids Explore Creation Science--Book and CD-ROM  -     By: Robert W. Ridlon Jr., Elizabeth J. Ridlon
We will be using Christian Kids Explore Creation Science. I believe a firm foundation in Creation Science is so important. As a public school graduate, I can honestly say I knew nothing about creation science until I was a married woman. I believed in the Biblical Creation, but the science behind it was unknown to me. I really want Mercie to have a good grasp on the facts before we delve into something else.

Language Lessons for Today Grade 4   -
I have decided on two different books for Mercie. The first one we will be using is Language Lessons for Today, grade 4. I plan to use this book 3 times a week. I love the fact that this program includes lessons on grammar and punctuation as well as oral language skills.
Grammar Minutes Grade 4   -
I also decided to get Mercie Grammar Minutes for grade 4. There are 100 pages in this workbook, and she will use 3 a week. They are quick and easy worksheets that go over almost every grammar concept she will need to know.
Modern Curriculum Press Spelling Workout Grade 4 Homeschool Bundle (2002 Edition)  -
We are also doing Spelling Workout this year. We haven't used formal spelling much, and I think she could benefit from it.

Teaching Textbooks Math 4 Complete Kit   -     By: Greg Sabouri, Shawn Sabouri
After much deliberation, I have decided to use Teaching Textbooks 4 for her. I think she will do well with the computer-based lessons. She was excited to get to use the computer for math.

God & the History of Art Revised  -     By: Berry Stebbing
One of the curriculum I was looking at was My Father's World Creation to the Greeks. One of the biggest draws from this was God and the History of Art. I wasn't crazy about the other resources, so I decided to just get the art and schedule it in twice a week for Mercie. She is very excited about this.

Lessons in Responsibility for Girls: Home Economics for Home Schoolers, Level 2 (Ages 8 and Up)  -
I also bought her this Home-Ec book for young girls. It will teach her about nutrition and cooking skills which she is very interested in. She will use this twice a week.

I feel like this a great workload for her, and I am excited to begin!