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Rylee {Kindergarten} ~ Learning Goals

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BIBLE
  • Memorize Bible Verses {Level 1}
  • Weekly Bible Story Lessons {New Testament, Old Testament, Character Quality, Holiday, Other}
    • Lesson
    • Bible Verse
    • Activities
    • Craft
    • Songs
 

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Reading Log {Printable}

My kids love books... they love to read and they love to be read to.  We have been using this reading log so we can easily keep track of the books they have read.  They each keep their reading log on their clipboard that they use daily.

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As they start a book they are to write down the title, author and start date.  Once the book has been finished we write down the finish date.  It's really great to have this list for the kids to look back through to remember all the books they have read.

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Weekly Chore Chart {Printable}

This is a {simple} chore chart that I use with my kids.  They each keep their chart on their clipboard and then they can easily keep track of the chores they are to do each day.
 
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At the beginning of each week I write down the chores I expect them to do.  Throughout the week as they do their chores they either put a sticker in the box or color the box in or mark it somehow.
 
I also include things like practice the piano {15 minutes}, silent reading {1 hour}, etc...!  

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Oil Spills {Science}

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Oil Spill
{Let's Read and Find Out Science: Stage 2}
By: Melvin Berger

This week the kids learned about oil spills.  We discussed the causes of an oil spill, how hard it is to get the oil out of the water and the affects the oil spill has.  We also talked about (and looked at pictures of) the recent oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Sensory Table {Ideas}

Sensory tables provide hours of hands on fun while allowing children to develop many important developmental skills.


I set out a sensory bin everyday for the kids to use.  They use it once their work is done and they are waiting on me for additional instructions. 

Here are some of the sensory bins we use {sorry, I haven't posted much on our sensory bins... this list will be updated as I get around to posting more of the ones we use}

Pom Pom Bin


INFORMATION

THE TABLE
You don't have to have a commercial sand/water table.  I mainly use totes with lids that I bought from Big Lots {$3 each}!  This way I can have several different sensory bins ready to go at any moment and they are very easy to store! 

SENSORY MATERIALS
There is really an endless amount of options for sensory materials that can be used in a sensory table.  Here's some of our favorites...
* Sand
* Water {colored water is lots of fun too}
* Rice
* Pasta
* Cereal
* Easter Grass
* Flowers
* Fake Snow 
* Tissue Paper
* Bells 
* Peanuts
* Marshmallows
* Shaving Cream
* Fish tank gravel/rocks
* Cotton Balls
* Ice Cubes
* Shredded paper {I have bought bags of different colored shredded paper from the Dollar Tree... PERFECT for this}
* Birdseed
* Packing peanuts
* Curling ribbon
* Confetti
* Shells
* Glitter
* Finger Paint
* Foam shapes 
* Buttons
* Pom Poms
* Toy worms, animals
* Candy {example: conversation hearts for valentines day}
* Corn Chips

TOOLS
Add any type of tools for the children to use with the sensory material .  Kids are so creative and will come up with LOTS of ways to use the tools you provide!  Here's a few of our favorites...
* Cups
* Bowls
* Measuring Cups
* Different size containers {great for beginning pouring & measuring}
* Spoons
* Jars
* Tongs; Tweezers
* Popsicle Sticks
* Clothespins
* Garden tools
* Spray bottles
* Ice cube trays {shape ones are a favorite here}
* Straw
* Funnel
* Strainer
* Bucket/shovel
* Eye dropper
* Toy people, vehicles

SHOPPING

My favorite store to shop for items to use in our sensory bins is the Dollar Tree!  Make sure to watch for seasonal/holiday items!

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URGENT: Prayer request for my Aunt

My Aunt Christie went with 14 of her college students on a mission trip to Haiti. On Sunday she was riding in the back of a 'truck' (all open), the breaks went out on the way down a mountain and the truck flipped. Thankfully, most of the students were treated and are okay. My aunt and a few of the students were not. On Monday afternoon they flew my aunt and the other injured students to a hospital in Miami Florida. The students are getting better with each day and 2 of the 3 have been released. However, my aunt has multiple broken bones (neck, ribs, both shoulders, pelvis...) and has major head trauma. Her brain {the frontal lobe} is swollen, she has chest trauma and her heart rate dropped yesterday into the 30's. She is beginning to respond over the last 24 hours {squeezing hands, wiggling her feet a little and shaking her head yes and no occasionally}. She is in very critical condition at this point.

I am 20 hours from her. My heart is breaking that I cannot be with her. I am here.... but my heart and all my thoughts are with my Aunt Christie.

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Thank you for your prayers for my aunt... and a HS update...

This last week has just flown by so fast. Last Saturday I was able to fly out to Florida to be with my aunt.  When I walked in the room she did recognize me and I was able to spend a little bit of time with her. 


She has really bad brain trauma, chest trauma, many broken bones and she is in so much pain.  It was so hard to see her... but I am thankful for each minute I was able to spend with her.

I returned home late Monday and was very happy to be with my kids again.  Each day Aunt Chris is improving, if even just a little bit.  She was able to have her first surgery on her pelvis late Thursday evening to repair damage to it.  The surgery was a success and the surgeon is hopeful she will be able to sit up soon.

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Strep Throat

If it's not one thing, it's another.  Well, not usually... but this last month and a half has been crazy.  Earlier this week Austin was sick, he was back to normal within a couple days.  Thursday McKenzee comes down with the same thing Austin has and then Saturday Alexis gets it.  All fine now. 

Yesterday I ended up very sick {within just a couple hours, seriously I felt fine yesterday morning) with a temp of around 105, very sore throat, bad headache, everything so sore I can barely move.  Today Josh took me into the doctor, a quick swab... I have strep throat.  I am exhausted and don't feel good at all.  I have a 10 day prescription of amoxicillin {2 pills/day} so hopefully I'm feeling better really soon.  I know I would be feeling better if I could just get this fever to break.  It was a little higher at the doctors office today but as long as I have tylenol in me it seems to stay around 101-102 {which is much better than yesterday}.

Now my house is falling apart, laundry is piling up, I have tons of things to get done... and I'm to exhausted {not to mention I feel awful at the moment} to do anything.

I try to not post to much stuff like this on here (although it seems like I have been this past month and a half with Rylee's broken elbow and my aunts accident).... but thanks for listening to me cry for a couple minutes...

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Fun in the sun

Summer so far has been CrAzY here!!  With everything going on and all the rain we have gotten... we really haven't had lots of time for all the summer fun I have planned.  Finally this week we were able to spend lots of time in the pool :)

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First official day of summer! {Our Summer Plans}

Today is the first official day of summer for 2010!!  We have definitely been experiencing hot summer weather for a few weeks now but with the last few weeks having been so crazy for us it's nice to officially kick off our summer today!

Alexis joined the level 4 gymnastics team on June 1st!  She is LOVING it but it is requiring a lot of time.  She practices 11 hours a week.  Plus there is our driving time (35 minutes to and from the gym) 4 days a week.  But she loves it so it is definitely worth it.  Austin joined a pre-tumbling team so there is another night every week that we head off to the gym.  Rylee still cannot do gymnastics because of her elbow that she broke, however, in 3 weeks she will be able to which will require even more time spent at the gym.  Of course, all worth it and we all love it!

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Cherry Picking & Cherry Pie {Summer Fun}

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We have been waiting for the cherries to be ready to pick... finally this week we were able to pick them.  The kids were so excited about being able to help pick the cherries.  I loved watching them as they looked and looked for the 'perfect' cherries that we could use to make some yummy cherry pie!

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Alexis~ First 2 mile run

I LOVE to run and was so excited when Alexis asked if she could go on a run with me. I know she also likes to run and runs at gymnastics practice 4 days a week.  We decided I would head out and run a little bit first (3.5 miles) then meet her at the end of our driveway so she could go with me.  She ran 2 miles with me!  And she did SO great!!!  She was talking and laughing the whole time and was so much fun to run with.  I really enjoyed our time together.  Can't wait to take her again!

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Just 2 more weeks to go!

It's been a little over 2 months since Rylee broke her elbow while doing gymnastics at the gym.  Since getting her cast off she has been doing great!  She is able to move her arm perfectly again and has had absolutely no complications.  However, she has not been able to return to gymnastics yet.  Gymnastics is what she loves.  Every day she puts on her leotard and every day she asks me if she can do a cartwheel, a round-off, a handstand... just one {pretty please Mommy}!  

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Long time..... gearing up to start the new year!!!

It's been a long time since I have posted here on my blog. Josh asked me around the beginning of July to please stop spending so much time on my blog (and the internet) and just spend the summer having fun with the family. Of course, I felt I needed to honor his wishes and at the beginning of July I decided to just take a break... no blogging and I haven't even checked emails! Our summer has been WONDERFUL!!!!

Over the last few weeks I have decided that I need to make our homeschooling a bit more 'simple' than what I had planned. We are going to use a little bit of Abeka materials for this upcoming school year just to help me not have to spend so much time creating, making, printing, etc...!

Our summer break is not over just yet.... we will be starting our new school year on September 13th!

I hope everyone has been having a wonderful summer! I am looking forward to starting our new school year... we are going to have so much fun this year!!!

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Rylee {4 Years Old} ~ Back Walkover!!!

Rylee is SO excited... yesterday she decided she would like to learn how to do a back walkover. I spotted her a few times and then she DID IT!!!! I am so proud of her!! It's so great to see her being able to do what she loves most again (after breaking her elbow at the gym this past April and having to take 3 months off)! She absolutely amazes me!!!!

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Our school year so far...

Our school year is going great! Alexis is in kindergarten and flying through her work. Austin is in pre-k and catching on to things faster than I ever expected. And little Rylee is 3 and learning her letters and numbers! I'm not sure I will be able to keep up with them as fast as they are learning. It is so amazing to watch them get so excited about learning new things.

Today Alexis started learning how to add. After the first few times of explaining it she had it. She has picked up on reading very fast and is reading sentences (slowly, but she's getting it). She can write all of her letters, she can write words and is starting to write sentences.

Austin is starting to work on blends to learn how to read. He is writing his letters and he is also adding write along with Alexis.

Rylee is working on an alphabet book. It is so cute to wach her learn her letters. With each letter I introduce a new "alphabet friend". For "A" we had "Alexander Alligator". For "B" we had Betsy Bee, etc...! We have a cute little song that goes along with each letter and I make up pages to add to her 'book'. I'll try and get some pictures taken of each page we have done. She loves her book! She is also working on learning her numbers and her shapes (and drawing them).

I hope they continue to have such a love for learning as they do now.

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b & d confusion SOLVED!

FINALLY!!!! Alexis has had a big problem telling the difference between her "b" and "d". She was constantly confusing them... very aggravating (for her... and me... lol)! Finally we talked about how the b faces right and the d faces left. That was all she needed... she got it!!! She still stumbles a little bit but then she will stop and think through it and realize which is which. YAY!!!!

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What type of homeschooler am I???

I keep hearing of all these different 'methods' of homeschooling. I never really put a lot of thought into it. I just homeschool. Not sure what the method is... I teach my kids. LOL! However, I keep reading that every homeschooler follows one of the many methods. There's a traditional method, an unschooling method, charlotte mason, eclectric, etc...! So I decided I would do some research to figure out what my method is. That way when somebody asks (and it comes up a lot on a HS forum that I am on) I can at least have an answer.

For us it's pretty simple... we can use a 'boxed' curriculum (which is mostly what we do... we love Abeka). We're going to use BJU next year for social studies, maybe a different handwriting program, possibly some unit studies (that I am putting together myself)... whatever.

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Summer Plans

We will be starting our "summer vacation" starting near the beginning of May and lasting until the beginning of August. During our vacation we will continue with some of our studies, of course ;)

The first thing on the list is a study on "character qualities"! We will be doing small studies on being helpful, kind, attentive, thankful, dependable, obedient and one on forgiveness. Each of the kids will make a book (maybe a lapbook? I'm in the beginning stages of planning this) to go along with our studies. I am still in search of some good books, crafts and activities to go with it.

Josh is going to do a study on seeds and how they grow when he and the kids plant the garden. They will also be helping to take care of it.

We will also be learning about America and many other countries. It will be just 'basic' things that we cover, but .... it will be an introduction to the amazing world that God has created.

I will be printing off practice worksheets for writing and math. Alexis will be reading as many books as she would like (*I* am hoping for at least 1/day). I am hoping to work on her reading comprehension and fluency. It will give us a good start for 1st grade. I will also be (slowly) working with Austin on reading and with Rylee on sounds of letters (possibly beginning blends).

And... yes... we will have more than plenty of time for playing and enjoying the outside and the sun and the pool and relaxing and staying out late catching bugs and all of that :) We can homeschool for an hour of a morning and a little bit of an afternoon (during the really hot time of the day). Maybe more on those rainy days

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Planning Ahead: 2009-2010

We are so close to wrapping up this school year and with that... I've started thinking about and planning for next year. I really do love this part. Planning and buying and planning some more. It is so much fun. It's just very exciting for me to think about the things that my children will be learning :)

Right now this is what I have planned for the kids for next school year (I am not done planning yet... this is just what I have figured out, so far)...

ALEXIS
Phonics - Abeka
Reading - Abeka
Writing - Abeka; A reason for handwriting “A”
Spelling - Abeka
Language - Abeka; Language Lessons are for the very young
Math - Abeka
Social Studies - BJU Heritage Studies
Geography - Basic study on the US, landforms, mapping, continents, countries, oceans.
Science - Exploring Creation with Astronomy; Abeka (unit studies on plants, animals, insects, energy, seasons, five senses)
Health - Abeka
Motor Skills:
Building Thinking Skills 1
Can You Find Me K
Visual Perceptual Skill Building 1
Daily Reading Warm Ups (Teacher Created Resources)
Mind Benders Beginnings 2

AUSTIN
Phonics - Abeka
Reading - Abeka
Writing: Abeka; A Reason for Handwriting K
Language - Language Lessons for Little Ones 2
Math: Abeka
Social Studies: BJU Heritage Studies (Alexis)
Science: Abeka; Exploring Creation with Astronomy (Alexis)
Geography - Basic study on the US, landforms, mapping, continents, countries, oceans (Alexis)
Health: Abeka (Alexis)
Motor Skills:
Developing the Early Learner Set
Building Thinking Skills Primary
Can You Find Me K
Mind Benders Beginnings 1

RYLEE
Phonics: Abeka
Language: Language Lessons 1
Writing: Abeka
Math: Mathematical Reasoning Beginnings 1-3
Fine Motor Skills:
I can Paste
I can Fold
I can Trace
I can Draw
I can Color
I can Cut
Developing the Early Learner
Can you find me prek
Building Thinking Skills Beginning

ALL
Bible - Abeka
Art - ARTistic Pursuits; Draw! Write! Now! (Rylee will also be doing her "I Can..." series)
Music - Kindermusic
Sign Language - Signing Times DVD's

I am also considering some type of "beginning" spanish program. And a typing/introduction to computers program.

It does look like a lot. But it always looks like a lot when it is written out like that. LOL!

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Alexis: 2009-2010 1st Grade

I cannot believe my little Alexis will be in FIRST grade next year!! Wow... she is just growing up so fast!

I have so much planned to do with her. I am so excited about everything she will be learning. It's going to be a GREAT year!

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Rylee: 2009-2010 Preschool

Yes, my 3.5 year old will be starting 'preschool' this fall :) She is SO excited... and so am I. We are going to have a lot of fun!

PHONICS, READING & WRITING
Abeka
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Plus lots of "alphabet" books!

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Easter Lesson: Part 1

Today we did the first part of our Easter lesson. The kids really enjoyed it! We sang a few songs and then spent about 20 minutes reading through the first part of the Easter story. Then the kids colored a coloring page that went along with the bible story we had just read about (the last supper).

Afterwards they each made an "egg tree"! They had fun coloring the tree, cutting out the tree, coloring all the eggs and cutting them out and gluing them all on a piece of paper and then decorating it. They are so proud of their creations :)

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Easter Lesson: Part 2

We had a terrific day!!! The kids are really enjoying learning about why we celebrate Easter. Finally they are less focused on the Easter bunny... which is really nice :) :) :)

This morning we sang some songs and spent about 25 minutes reading our bible story. Then they colored two pictures that went along with what they had learned. And then they colored (with crayons) easter eggs so we could hang them around the house. They LOVED doing this. We have easter eggs on our windows, kitchen cabinets, mirrors... we are definitely ready for Easter now ;) We also took the pictures they had colored that go along with their bible story and we "taped" them in order and hung them on the door. They are very good at re-telling the story by looking at the pictures!

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Easter Lesson: Part 3

Today we finished our Easter lesson and all the crafts that I had planned. We started off singing the songs we had been learning. Then we finished learning about why we are celebrating Easter.

Afterwards the kids colored a picture of an easter basket and then colored some easter eggs and glued them to the basket. And then they wanted to hang them in their windows so we did.

After lunch everyone was pretty exhausted and Austin wanted to watch a movie so we sat down to see what was on. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory had just started so we watched that. I had never seen it before and was surprised it was so good! LOL! The kids LOVED it!!

After Josh got home we had homemade pizza and sat down and watched the movie about the last supper, crucifixion and resurrection. It was really good and the kids really enjoyed it.

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April 14 - 19: Week in Review

We are nearing the end of our school year. I did not realize that the last 20 lessons would not introduce new concepts (well, except 3) and be basic review. SO... this week Alexis did 10 phonics lessons and 10 math lessons. She is 10 lessons (in each phonics and math) from being done!! I am sure we will finish those up this week which means she will be DONE! She finished up her 'writing' a few weeks ago. Science is also done and social studies will be done this week too!

Her reading is also really improving. She is reading faster, with more expression and retaining more of what she is reading!! She is really 'getting it'! I love listening to her read!! It still amazes me that she IS reading. LOL!

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Good-Bye Kindergarten! Alexis is ready for 1st Grade!!!

Alexis managed to do a ton of work today and FINISHED everything!!!! Of course, everything she did was review and she has it all down really good but she is DONE!!! Her kindergarten year is COMPLETE :) She is very excited that she will now be in 1st grade :) :) :) YAY!!!!! I am so excited for her!

Hard at work...
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