Friday, December 2, 2016

Homeschool Bookshelves

We recently moved from Washington state to Ohio and we love it here!  We have more room in our new home and are able to have a homeschool room that isn't also our dining room (so thankful for that!).  So far, I've unpacked the homeschool room and set up the bookshelves:

I've been sharing a lot of pictures of our life in our Instagram, please feel free to follow us:

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Stop Motion Video Production

Katie is starting a new subject, which is one of her favorite things - Technology!  She is learning how to make stop motion videos.  How these work is you take several pictures and make a video.  To me, it is a very slow task - taking a photo and then moving your prop and then taking a photo, etc.  However, it does look really cool when it is done!

Here are 2 of her beginning stop motion videos she created:

Friday, July 22, 2016

Logic Stage Outlining

Starting in the Logic Stage, which is grades 5-8, you will want to teach the child to outline.  The Well-Trained Mind explains why a slow progression of this is best as it prepares the child for high school.  Don't make it any more complicated than you should, it really is quite simple!

5th Grade - Begin to teach the child to outline once a week.  Explain that outlining is simply finding the main point (summary) in the paragraph.  You will want to choose a text from that week's history resources that the child read about the topic they found most interesting.  You will start using a text that contains 5-6 paragraphs, or one page.  Have the child take each paragraph, one at a time, and find the main point by answering the question, "What is the main thing or person and why is it or are they important?"

Example of one-level outline:

I.    Main point of 1st paragraph
II.   Main point of 2nd paragraph
III.  Main point of 3rd paragraph

6th Grade - Same as before but you add in subpoints under each main point, which are lettered A, B and so forth.  Use 2-4 subpoints under each main point it relates to.  Outline up to two pages.  To find the subpoints, simply write the additional information given that correlates with the main point.

Example of two-level outline:

I.    Main point of 1st paragraph
      A.  First supporting point
      B.  Second supporting point
II.  Main point of 2nd paragraph
      A.  First supporting point
      B.  Second supporting point
      C.  Third supporting point

7th Grade - Same as before and when the child has got down the two-level outline well, you can start adding in more supporting points.  These points are numbers (1, 2, etc.) that give details for the letters (A, B, etc.).  If the child isn't ready, they can hold off until the start of 8th grade.  Now the child outlines 2-3 pages.

Example of three-level outline:

I.    Main point of 1st paragraph
      A.  First supporting point
            1.  First subpoint
            2.  Second subpoint
      B.  Second supporting point
            1. First subpoint
            2. Second subpoint
II.  Main point of 2nd paragraph

8th Grade - Same as before but now outlining 3-4 pages and doing three-level outlines.

Example of three-level outline that sums it all up:

I.    Main point
      A.  Additional information about the main point.
            1.  Detail about that additional information

In The Well-Trained Mind, she states a simple question the child can ask themselves as they write the outline for supporting points - "What else is important to know in this paragraph?"  You can read the whole section on how to outline in the book on pages 297-301.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

7th Grade Curriculum Plans

I planned out our 7th grade year earlier this year and since then, I've made a few changes.  This is our tentative 7th grade plans:

Bible - Memoria Press Christian Studies IV

Logic - Memoria Press Traditional Logic I with DVD

Math - Saxon Algebra 1/2 with Saxon Teacher CDs

Grammar - Rod and Staff English 6

Vocabulary - Vocabulary from Classical Roots A & B

Latin - Henle Latin I with Memoria Press Guides & Quizzes/Tests

History - Medieval history

Reading - Medieval history book list & Classics book list

Science - Earth Science & Astronomy

6th Grade Ancient History Book List

Katie's book list for 6th grade to go along with what she is reading in her Ancient history studies:

  1. Tales of Ancient Egypt - Green
  2. The Golden Goblet - McGraw
  3. Mara, Daughter of the Nile - McGraw
  4. Myths & Legends Series - Tales from.. China; Japan; India; Africa
  5. Heroes, Gods and Monsters of Greek Myths - Evslin
  6. Greek Myths - Coolidge
  7. The Golden Fleece and the Heroes Who Lived Before Achilles - Colum
  8. Tales of Greek Heroes - Green
  9. The Tale of Troy - Green
  10. The Trojan Wars - Coolidge
  11. The Children's Homer: The Adventures of Odysseus and the Tale of Troy - Colum
  12. Black Ships Before Troy: The Story of the Illiad - Sutcliff
  13. In Search of a Homeland: The Story of the Aeneid - Lively
  14. Aesop's Fables - McGovern
  15. The Last Days of Socrates - Plato
  16. Caesar's Gallic Wars - Coolidge
  17. Cleopatra - Vennema
  18. The Bronze Bow - Speare
  19. Outcast - Sutcliff
  20. The Eagle of the Ninth - Sutcliff
  21. The Silver Branch - Sutcliff
  22. Myths and Legends - Horowitz

*Book list originally intended for 5th grade but I had several surgeries that delayed our history studies a year while we kept up with the basics.

Friday, February 19, 2016

How Do You Homeschool?

A common question I have been asked over the past 7 years that I've homeschooled has been: "How do you homeschool?"  There are 2 books that I recommend and they are the KJV Bible and The Well-Trained Mind:

I've read both of these books so much and I find that tabbing is helpful and highlighting the WTM is a must.  It is that easy and almost all of the answers about life and homeschooling and are in these books!  I like seeing the whole picture of what I set out to do and both of these allow you to see that - the Bible allows you to see the whole picture of life and eternity and the WTM allows you to see the whole picture of education from birth to college.

The thing is, people won't read anymore!  That is the reason they have problems with life and God because they don't read His Word and then they have problems with homeschooling because they aren't reading the book that shows them the way.  READ!  I can't say it enough but this is my answer to those that ask how I homeschool and it works!

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

6th Grade Curriculum - Index of Posts

Here is a list of posts about what curriculum we are using for 6th grade:

6th Grade Sciene - Botany, Anatomy & Zoology

For 6th grade science, we will be doing block studies of botany, anatomy and zoology.  We have several science encyclopedias and will use them as references and we have the 2014 World Book on DVD.

Our main book for botany is Usborne's World of Plants and then we will also reference our DK Nature Encyclopedia.  I have a few books on botany and a guide for Washington state plants/trees.  She will be doing activities/labs from ideas I find online or in a library book that pertains to what she is studying that week and a terrarium.

For zoology, we will be using various encyclopedias and some animal encyclopedias we own.  We have many books on different animals, insects and classification.  She will be doing activities/labs about animals that involve the microscope and a frog (plastic) dissection kit. (no books pictured)

Anatomy will be taught from our Scholastic Human Body Encyclopedia, DK Human Body Encyclopedia (this has graphic images) and combined with other books we own.  We will also be using the My Incredible Body PC program, optical science kit and anatomy coloring book.

For all the science topics we will be studying, I will be giving worksheets from Science Essentials Grades 5-6, it also includes some activities/labs.  I will also be using some free things from the internet to flesh out our studies.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

K'nex Education - Blender

Another awesome physics project from the Gears set!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Narration With Minecraft

Katie isn't a big fan of history and it is the one subject that she isn't too enthused about writing a narration for.  I had her evaluated and we were told her writing was advanced, so that isn't the problem - the problem is interest with history.  We were given ideas of doing history narrations a different way - acting them out, drawing them, typing them, etc. but then the idea of creating them on Minecraft came up and well - Katie was sold! 

She did her first history narration on Minecraft today and it was awesome!  She read a section in Story of the World 4 from chapter 11 about Australia.  She told me a bit about what it was about and then she did her Minecraft creations.

The first one is the map of what Australia was at that time, the next 2 creations are easy to understand by reading her signs.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

K'nex Education - Car Window Crank

Katie built her 2nd physics project - a car window crank.  She didn't understand it at first and I had to explain to her that we used to have to crank up the window manually.  She was shocked that we had to do such "hard" things - yep, pushing a button these days is pretty easy!  Let's not forget the days of hard things...

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Organizing Homeschool Books by Subject or Category

We have accumulated a lot of science, history or other books that pertain to homeschool topics and I wanted them organized even more than just grouped by science or history, etc.  I wanted to split my science up into several fields and here are the ones we did: anatomy, botany, physics, chemistry, farms, earth science, astronomy, zoology and insects. 

I couldn't find any affordable dividers, so I made my own with colorful cards but I do want to eventually make some that are sturdier; something like poster board.  I also did the few language-related books we have, math, government services and geography.  I've yet to do the history shelf but when I do, I want to divide it up into time periods; ancient, medieval, etc.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

6th Grade History

Katie has already completed a study of history from ancient times to modern, so she will be starting the chronological cycle all over again.

For 6th grade history, Katie is going to start at the beginning again with Ancient History up until 1400.  We have all 3 volumes of Human Odyssey and that is what she will be using for 6th, 7th and 8th grade history and we will weave in Notgrass American history throughout the years to meet requirements.  The first book is Volume 1 The Human Odyssey; Prehistory Through the Middle Ages.

We have many resources that we own to help her in her studies.  We have timelines, encyclopedias, primary resources, atlases, Uncle Josh's outline maps CD and other various books to read.  I took a picture of some of what we have that she will be using along with her studies.  Katie will also be reading from a book list for literature on correlating topics, you can see it here:

6th Grade Math, Logic and Bible

In Math, Katie will be finishing up Saxon Math 6/5 and starting 7/6 mid-year hopefully.  We use Saxon Teacher and love, love, love it!!

For Logic, Katie will be finishing up Building Thinking Skills 3 and starting with Critical Thinking Book One and then work her way into Critical Thinking Book Two.

Our Bible program is the same and we are continuing on with Memoria Press Christian Studies Book III after we finish the second book.  Katie also reads the Bible on her own and memorizes scriptures.

6th Grade Language Arts - English, Latin, Reading, Writing, Spelling

For English, we are still in Rod and Staff English 5 but continuing on with R&S English 6 - we love this curriculum!  It also teaches writing, so we don't need a separate curriculum for writing.

In Spelling, we are finishing up the All About Spelling series with the last two books, AAS 6 & 7.  Katie will also be doing Spelling Workout E & F and possibly G & H.  Since we have been doing AAS, Spelling Workout is really just extra practice for her and she has been going through a lesson faster since we returned to it recently as an extra.

Katie is still doing Latina Christiana I since we took off time from Latin to focus on the main subjects while I was having health issues.  She will continue on with Latina Christiana II using the DVD teacher.

Reading for us is not a curriculum, it is a book list.  I plan on listing her 6th grade book list in another post, which I will link to here (if I remember!).  She will be reading books that correlate with Ancient History.  She writes full-page narrations after she reads each book and also reads in the evening.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

K'nex Simple Machines Gears - Crank Fan

Katie is really enjoying physics and one of the recent projects she made was an crank fan from the K'nex Simple Machines Gears Kit.  She was so excited to start the kit and at first, the parts weren't fitting but she realized after going back over the directions, that she put something in the wrong place.  She was so excited to complete her fan and she learned so much about gears!

I highly recommend the kit, there are a total of 7 projects to build:  crank fan, car window, blender, phonograph, eggbeater, stationary bike and chainsaw.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Completed 4th Grade Reading List

Here are the books that Katie read this past year for 4rd grade and also the read-alouds we read to her. 

I was pretty lenient this year for the evening reading, so she only read 2 on the list.  However, she read a lot of books on her own at night AND listens to audiobooks just about everyday that she chose but I don't keep a record of those.

Independent Morning Reading
  1. A Child's Garden of Verses - Stevenson 
  2. Kidnapped - Stepping Stone series
  3. Treasure Island - Audio by Jim Weiss
  4. Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde - Stepping Stone series
  5. Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes - Stepping Stone series
  6. Heidi - Spyri
  7. Pinocchio - Classic Starts 
  8. War of the Worlds - Stepping Stone series
  9. The Time Machine - Classic Starts 
  10. Little Women - Stepping Stone series
  11. Little Men - Classic Starts
  12. Blue, Orange or Lilac Fairy Books - Lang 
  13. Secret Garden - Audio 
  14. The Little Princess - Audio 
  15. The Wind in the Willows - Grahame 
  16. Peter Pan - Classic Starts 
  17. How the Camel Got His Hump - Kipling 
  18. The Jungle Book - Stepping Stone series 
  19. Rikki-Tikki-Tavi - Kipling 
  20. Just So Stories - Kipling; Audio 
  21. Laura Ingalls Wilder - all the novels
  22. Beatrix Potter Tales
  23. Walter de la Mare - poems 
  24. Poetry for Young People - Sandberg 
  25. You Read To Me, I'll Read To You - Ciardi
  26. Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats - Eliot 
  27. Charlotte Bronte and Jane Eyre - Ross
  28. Jane Eyre -Stepping Stone series
  29. Frankenstein - Stepping Stone series
  30. Phantom of the Opera - Stepping Stone series
Evening "Fun" Reading
  1. The Family Under the Bridge
  2. The Moffats
Family Read-Alouds
  1. To Swim In Our Pond - Vietnamese proverbs
  2. South Korea - True books
  3. North Korea - True books
  4. Far Beyond the Garden Gate - Brown
  5. Beijing - Platt
  6. All the Way to Lhasa - Berger
  7. A Picture Book of Daniel Boone - Adler
  8. If You Grew Up With George Washington - Gross
  9. Betsy Ross and the Silver Thimble - Greene
  10. Can't You Make Them Behave King George - Fritz
  11. Boston Tea Party - Freedman
  12. And Then What Happened Paul Revere - Fritz
  13. Kids At Work - Freedman (just looked at pictures)
  14. Cotton Mill Town - Hershey
  15. The Story of an English Village - Goodall
  16. The Bobbin Girl - McCully
  17. Redoute: The Man Who Painted Flowers - Croll
  18. Life On a Plantation - Kalman
  19. Cotton Mill Town - Hershey
  20. How We Crossed the West: The Adventures of Lewis & Clark - Schanzer
  21. Swamp Angel - Isaacs
  22. The Lewis and Clark Expedition - A True Book - Perritano
  23. Working Cotton - Williams
  24. A Visit to William Blake's Inn - Willard
  25. Please, Malese!  A Trickster Tale from Haiti - MacDonald
  26. The Miracle of the First Poinsettia: A Mexican Christmas Story - Oppenheim
  27. Ruby's Wish - Bridges
  28. Striking It Rich: The Story of the California Gold Rush - Krensky

5th Grade History and Literature Read-Aloud List

Some of these are family read-a-louds and some are extra independent reading for Katie that pertain to what she is studying in history.  They are either factual books or literature.

*These books go along with Story of the World Volume 4

  1.  The Visual Dictionary of the Civil War - DK
  2.  Life in the West - True book
  3.  Wild West - DK
  4.  Korean Children's Favorite Stories - Kim
  5.  Wagon Train: A Family Goes West in 1865 - Wright
  6.  World War I - DK
  7.  The Great Migration: An American Story - Lawrence
  8.  Theodore Roosevelt: The Adventurous President - TIME
  9.  Kids During the Great Depression - Wroble
  10.  The 1900s Decade in Photos - Corrigan
  11.  Stubby the War Dog - Bausum
  12.  Old Yeller - Gipson
  13.  Who is Anne Frank - Abramson

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Our Growing Educational Books

I like having books on a variety of topics available for my kids, so when they have a yearning for a certain subject, chances are we will have a book on it!  If not, they can use the World Book encyclopedia DVD we bought, which contains all of the encyclopedias on one disk!  My daughter has really enjoyed looking up things in the encyclopedia and I'm glad we purchased the DVD because it takes up less space than an entire set would on the shelf!

Most of the extra books I have are on history and science topics, so we dedicated a shelf to each.  This is our history-related bookshelf but it does include some geography books on states as well:

This is our science bookshelf, which is so full, we had to put some on another shelf:

The last shelf is full of miscellaneous things from geography to math:

I buy a lot of our books from Scholastic and more than half were FREE!  We have what we call "Scholastic Time" and my daughter reads for an hour from any of the books on these shelves.  She always comes away really excited with what she has learned.  My son, even though he is just 2, has already enjoyed several of the books, like the pop-up Presidents and Magic School bus books.

5th Grade Curriculum Index of Posts

Here is an index of posts of what we are using for 5th grade:

5th Grade History & Science

For history we have took our time and are just now getting to Story of the World Volume 4.  I don't regret it though because we have read a LOT of extra books on all the different historical topics and it has been enjoyable.  I have some extra activites to go with this time of history, like a Civil War fun pack but didn't picture those.  We also plan on adding in a state history study and learning the states and capitals this year.

Science is one of those neglected subjects in our house but we finally made it to the last subject to complete our full-science learning - physics!  We are using Elemental Science Physics that includes the Usborne encyclopedia, 2 biography books and some others pictured.  We are using K'nex Gears kit and Snap Circuits Lights as well.

5th Grade Math, Writing, English & Spelling

Katie is almost finished with Saxon Math 5/4 and will go right on to Saxon Math 6/5 by February and will most likely finish it before 6th grade.  I don't teach math, she loves using the Saxon Teacher and it has been working great for her!

For writing, most of it is included in our English curriculum and she also writes a lot in history, science and reading but I may also add in Writing Strands Level 3.  For English (grammar), we are using Rod & Staff's English 5 Following the Plan.

For spelling, we were going to go on to Spelling Workout D and finish it up but decided to buy the next level of All About Spelling - so we are finishing up All About Spelling Level 6 and then also doing Level 7.  Level 7 is high school level but Katie is ready for it and she loves this spelling program!  I haven't ordered Level 7 yet, so it isn't pictured.

5th Grade Bible, Logic and Foreign Language

For Bible, we are in the middle of Christian Studies II and may make it to the 3rd book before 5th grade ends, but I decided to plan the 3rd one for 6th grade.

A new subject for 5th grade is Logic and we chose to go with a game, Building Thinking Skills Level 2, to ease Katie in to adding on another subject and she loves it!

Katie is in her 2nd program for Latin - Latina Christiana I and then she is also adding in Spanish this year with La Clase Divertida Level 1.  I added Ludere Latine games that go along with the lessons in Latina Christiana I.

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