Broadwell Academy, Weeks 3 and 4

While looking back through my plan book and pictures on my phone, I have quickly realized that I’ve been horrible about taking pictures of our school days. I’m really going to work on that because I definitely don’t want to forget about all that we’ve been doing!

For our third week of school we began a sort of ongoing theme with our U.S. National Symbols. We started off reviewing the Pledge of Allegiance, reading about our flag, making a flag, and learning all about the Star Spangled banner. I found so many great books at the library, and Sarah Anna and Reece both really enjoyed learning about it all. We also ended the week with a fun gymnastics day, making patriotic brownies, watching a movie about the American flag, and Sarah Ann also got to go to an American Girl day at the library!

Since Fall arrived during our fourth week of school, it was of course the perfect theme for the week! We listed all the things we know and like about fall, went on a fall nature hunt, made fall cookies, enjoyed the cooler weather, learned about why the leaves change colors, and read “The Leaf Man” and made our own! Awanas is a favorite part of the week, especially when Sarah Ann got to bring Anna Claire with her for “Bring a Friend Night.” Nanny also took us to HiWire on a morning off, and we took another little “field trip” to Edventure with Daddy to see the dinosaurs and the butterflies before those exhibits closed.

It usually takes us about an hour and a half to two hours to get school done each day. I love that we can take a morning off and do school in the afternoon or break it up a little bit throughout the day. One of Sarah Ann’s favorite parts is that she gets to¬†wait and to some of her reading with Jeffrey before bed. It’s definitely always a learning and growing process, and I’m so thankful for a great first month!

 

Karate Test and Fall Festival

There’s been some big things going on for our big boy over the last few days!

Saturday morning Reece had his very first karate test for his yellow tip on his white belt. He had to do his self-defense moves, and he did awesome! We are so proud of him! We found out on Saturday night that he passed his test, and he was so excited!

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Tonight Reece had his last fall festival at preschool! He has been so excited about singing their “pepperoni pizza song” on the stage! Reece sang so loud and did such a great job! We also got to see Reece’s classroom, and he showed us all around the room and the discovery center, which is his favorite! I can’t believe it’s his last year of preschool!

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Boo at the Zoo 2014

One of the kiddos’ favorite fall traditions is going to Boo at the Zoo! To be completely honest, Jeffrey and I don’t really understand all the hype–it’s crowded, you can’t see many of the animals, and you really don’t even get all that much candy. But nevertheless, the kids get so excited about going, and it’s definitely become something we look forward to each October. Today they couldn’t wait to wear the new Halloween costumes for the first time. They were so happy and proud! We, of course, had a wonderful time with our friends Todd, Maria and Sarah. The kids danced, ate candy, watched a magic show, did lots of trick or treating, and even got to see a few animals before they went “ni-ni” as Carson says. It was a perfect fall evening to be outside, and I must say that Dorothy, Jake and Captain America make every experience so worthwhile! Happy Halloween, everyone!

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Broadwell Academy, Weeks 1 and 2

I can’t believe that we have now finished up 7 weeks of school, but yet it still all seems a little surreal! We are settled into a really good routine. There is a lot of flexibility, which I love, but we also have a good flow through our days. We are loving co-op, and Reecey is loving his last year at preschool–but he also really enjoys doing some “school” at home on Thursdays and Fridays too. I’ve learned that the best way to keep Carson occupied is play dough, coloring, snacks, or rotating the toys he plays with right on next to us on the rug. Earlier this week Sarah Ann asked me if I could homeschool her until she went to college, so I guess it’s safe to say that she is enjoying it too! My days are busier than I could have ever imagined, between taking care of our home, planning and teaching, small group, and the kids extracurricular activities, but I am so very thankful for this precious and busy season. Sometimes I feel like I need to pinch myself because I am getting to do all that I have ever wanted to do–be a Mommy, be at home with our kids, and loving and serving our family!

But enough jumbled thoughts about how much I love homeschooling…

Here’s a little bit of what homeschooling looks like for us so far this year. I decided to use a curriculum for math and reading/language because I wanted to ensure that I was covering what I needed to. For math we are using Saxon 1. It is very well laid out and very to the point. Sarah Ann really likes using all of the manipulatives. This summer we finished up “How to Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons,” so we started the school year with Abeka’s first grade language and letter sounds books. It has been a great review of letters and sounds, but also really challenged Sarah Ann in her reading comprehension, writing, and so much more. Lastly for handwriting, we are using “A Reason for Handwriting,” which uses new Bible verses each week.

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For Bible, Sarah Ann is attending Awanas so we are memorizing two to three new Bible verses each week. We are also doing a weekly geography/map activity, which just involves a couple of questions each day. My big focus for the year was definitely having her read, read, read. So I decided to use Social Studies and Science as one of the big platforms for that. I looked through the SC SS and Science standards to help me come up with weekly themes, so that we could incorporate lots of books from the library for Sarah Ann to read. And so far, so good–it has worked out wonderfully, and we have had a great time learning so much!

And now here’s a quick peek into our first two weeks…

During the first week we focused on back to school and getting into a routine. All of our books were about going to school and kindergarten. We also did some fun beginning of the year activities like an “All About Me” information sheet, a beginning of the year self portrait, making bookmarks for all of our school books, and doing our first science experiment with magic paint. We also snuck in some swimming while it was still so warm! It was a great first week with lots of excitement and figuring this whole homeschooling thing out!

Our second week was all about Apples! We learned an apple poem, made apple prints, learned about Johnny Appleseed, read lots of apple books, studied the life cycle of an apple, and did a really fun apple volcano experiment that the big kids absolutely loved! We also ended our week with our first official field trip to Sky Top with Daddy!

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sweet snippets

here are some sweet snippets from our day…

sarah ann and reece got into a bit of trouble when they decided to completely rearrange the living room while i was putting carson down for his nap. they were suppose to be playing with with mini-dinosaur figures. so i came out and told them to clean up by the time i came back out of carson’s room. i guess they wanted to make sure they were on my “good side,” so when i came out they said, “we’re just reading a book and eating some healthy, delicious carrots.” and can i just tell you how much i love that sarah ann can read anything and everything? i am so proud of her!

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we enjoyed a breezy afternoon outside, and i love that the kids were so excited about wearing their hoodie jackets. hoodies are my favorite too, and i’m so happy that it’s cooling off so we can wear them!

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reece is loving karate, and i love seeing him in his element there. he does such a great job listening, doing his memory work, working on his self defense and skills. he is growing and learning so much. we are so proud of him!

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carson is such a trooper through all of the running around town to get sarah ann and reece to and from wherever they need to be. as long as he has music or a movie and a snack, he’s pretty good to go! i sure do love my little car companion!

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and this sweet girl–always reading, always reading–even when she’s suppose to be falling asleep! i love her excitement, and i love seeing her learning. i’m so very thankful to be both her mommy and her teacher!

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