Unschooling: Living Without School; Living Free Range-Freedom to Learn What One Wants When One Wants

Friday, July 29, 2011

Building A Curriculum

I just learned how to build a curriculum!!! YAY!!! I am so proud of myself, and thankful to the lady that gave me the step by step instructions! Just had to share. 

Also, I Promise to post last weeks' lessons this weekend with this weeks'. I am getting behind, but we stay so busy on the weekends and then during the week I get busy...Eh...anyway...I will.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


So I have been thinking more and more about building my own curriculum during Samantha's elementary school years. And I think I have decided that is what I want to do. Looking at all the fun possibilities out there! Join a few good websites with good material. Follow the state standards and build my own lessons. Oh the fun we will have! There will be so many options! And I am great at integrating standards. This all comes so naturally to me! So I have been looking around on all the homeschool sites and I keep hearing this term called..."Lapbooking?" Hmm...Okay, well what comes to my mind is some sort of game on the LAPtop. So I thought, "I wonder if Samantha is old enough for it yet?" So I begin to Google these "non-exsistent lapbooking websites," when I realize lapbooking has nothing to do with laptops! It is actually a hands on activity dealing with all areas of academics where a child learns one topic and compiles all the information into a chart-like design. It is very neat. It involves reading to get the information, technology to find print offs and such, vocabulary, motor skills like cutting, pasting, coloring, etc. Critical thinking and organization skills. Thinking about having to decide what information goes best together and then having to organize it logically. It could even involve math or science, depending on the topic and what is included in the board. Ah...How I cannot wait.

This is one done by an older child on Leonardo da Vinci. Mostly because I could not find one done by a younger kid without the kid in the picture. I am sure the parents would not appreciate that...

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Homeschool Expo

I have been looking forward to the homeschool expo since January. I am so excited I finally got to go. I almost didn't go, but then I found out it was more than a curriculum fair. They also had seminars and such. I got up really early this morning and got ready. I was able to find a sitter for Samantha-since Jessie works Saturdays, so it was really nice to be able to take my time and not have to tote Samantha around and say, "Shh!" constantly. I stayed pretty much all day. I got to look around and go to 3 seminars. I picked up a few things for the Babies too. I found some tanagrams, a Judy Clock, and a rubber band tray-not sure the proper term for it. I didn't spend much either. I wasn't able to get a pic of everything before Samantha tore into them. She was so excited! And she is great with the tanagrams! I met so many new people and got so much good information through pamphlets and seminars. I was questioning my ability to homeschool, but now I am more excited than before!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Week 16: Cause and Effect

The cause and effect week turned out pretty well.
Monday: We read "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie..." This was a HUGE hit with the babies because I had a stuffed mouse to go with it. The got to take turns holding it and hearing all the silly things the mouse asked to do. They made me read it to them everyday for the rest of the week...I am still reading it.

Tuesday: We went around the house looking to see what things caused what. We opened the refrigerator and saw the light turn on. We flipped the light switch. We turned the TV off and on. Etc.

Wednesday: We took different art supplies and saw what each one did. For example, we talked about how the markers made different colors on the paper. (The whole point of this was to say, "There is a blue line on the paper BECAUSE I marked on it with a marker." I was trying to get a point across because the babies still say things like, "My cup fell." "Why?" "Because it just did fall.") We also took Samantha Color Me a Song by Crayola and used it because the faster you color, the faster the music goes, and I wanted them to see the correlation between the two.

Thursday: We baked blonde brownies so we could see what effect the oven had on our batter. They were awesome! Hubby LOVED that activity because he got to eat them. (Forgot to take pics.)

Friday: We watched more Word World. W Drought. When "W" was taken out of the word "Water," it turned it into "ater."

I will have to look up what next week is...To be honest, I don't remember. 

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Week 15: Transportation

The transportation unit was a little tough, believe it or not.  But we got most of our activities done. Although, it ended up more of a unit about cars instead. :)
Monday: We were going to read the "Seals on the Bus," but the Babies opted for some of Brennon's Carz books. 

Tuesday: We looked for and named different types of transportation. 

Wednesday: We painted with Hot Wheels cars. We rolled them through the paint and onto the paper. Brennon opted out of this, but Samantha really enjoyed it. 

Thursday: I just couldn't think of anything...

Friday: I could not find a show, but to be honest, I just don't think I tried hard enough. Too much going on this week trying to get the house re-decorated and going here and there. 

This week is Cause and Effect. This is a fun one because there is so a wide range of things that could go with this unit. 

Also, I ordered a new book called "Home Learning Year by Year-How to Build a Curriculum from Pre-School Through High School." So far it is great, pretty detailed about what they need to know. And has some AWESOME resources to use from websites to books to places to go, but it doesn't actually tell you HOW to get started like I thought it would. I am still a bit confused about that. Also, the curriculum fair is coming up next week. I hope I get to go...Gotta find a way though...Not sure if I like Hubby working Saturdays anymore. It gets in the way of a lot.   

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Week 14: Sports

Father's Day was a little mixed up, since they weren't actually lessons, and she did them after Jessie got home. 

Monday: We did not read a book. 

Tuesday: We worked on Samantha's motor skills by throwing a ball back and forth.

Wednesday: We did more painting. She really enjoys painting. She did a picture of a dancer, and Brennon painted a picture of a person rowing a boat. 

Thursday: We made Powerade.

Friday: We watched Word World: Play Ball. 

This week is !!! 

Week 13: Summer Fun

This week went great! The Babies really enjoyed the summer activities. This was one of my favorites. 

Monday: We read the Summer section in the Seasons Book. 

Tuesday: We went to the pool and had some water fun. 

Wednesday: We painted suns. We started out with yellow and then added some red to make some orange. Samantha really enjoyed this project. She was very proud, and wants to add it to her collection of art in the bathroom. 

Thursday: We made popsicles. 

Friday: Barney-Summer Fun. She isn't much into Barney anymore, but I wasn't sure what else to show her. I already picked that one out awhile back. 

Next week is Sports. 

Saturday, July 2, 2011

TLS Books

So the Babies are doing great with their reading! Samantha recognizes and knows the sounds of all the letters. And she is recognizing and "building" sight words. Anyway, she really enjoys written work, and I want her to learn to write the letters and do fun "worksheet" activities without paying teacher prices, so I decided to look online and I found a FREE website. You CAN opt to donate a few dollars. Anyway, it has worksheets for grades pre-k through 6th grade. It has such a wide range of subjects from the standard alphabet and language to foreign language and holidays. It even has printable flashcards for colors and numbers and such and has word lists with need to know pre-primer words and such. I am so excited!!!