Friday, October 30, 2009


I don't even care if their chemistry notebks get colored, its a blast to see what sugar & CO2 can do to catchup week chemistry

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Soccer Season Complete

Soccer season done! Celebrating with a Kansas friend's visit and afternoon trip to Shedd Aquarium

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Corn mazes and Farm Visits

" Mom, you really want us to go into that corn field that is the largest corn maze in the world? I'm not sure it's a good idea Mom." So, I led these two all through 14 of 24 spots in this maze without getting lost. They forget so easily my geographic positioning system brain. It helps that I've gotten lost so many times in the past on Midwest gravel & dirt roads. They were much happier when they looked at how many more spots we visited versus how few spots their sister and the Daddy visited.
So, of course we had to experience the pedal go-carts and the thrill of going as fast as these legs could pedal. What a wonderful autumn Sunday afternoon family outing all the way up to McHenry County Illinois where the trees were BEAUTIFUL colors and the smell of homemade donuts wafted from the vendor sites near the corn maze.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Devotion, Conviction, A Goal

WOW, what a week!

Tennis lessons and soccer practice at the park district; piano and violin lessons were awesome; Columbus is history along with names like De Gama, Vespucci, Magellan and Diaz. We got to apply 9volts to water in order to examine electrolysis and said "see ya'll later" to the Alkali Metal group. Next week we will become aware of Alkali Earth metal group. There were a few tears shed when the countries of Africa were more challenging to learn than we'd like. Sheppard Software provided us with tools to practice country outline maps of Africa along with geomorphology and rivers of the continent. We are reading some stories about Mansa Musa along with a book called, Castle Diary. The Middle Ages were not just in Europe, but also occurred in Africa and influenced history there too. I took someones advice and started listening to the Secret Garden on I've never heard the story or seen the movie. I'm intrigued. I've also checked out another turn of the millennium mystery story that sites Pliny the younger as the main character during Domitian's time. My G1 did two MathUSee chapters this week and will do 2 more next week because, as I pointed out, he really didn't need more time to do skip count by five and ten in order to learn those multiplication facts. He did GREAT! All did well with spelling and working all their consonant blends like champion spellers. Grammar lessons were flying and individual reading flourished, well at least until someone left their book at the tennis court.

The house got cleaned for a visit that didn't happen due to full planes and hunting season. And G2 managed well with a bout of puking on Thursday evening. She has caught up with much of the work she missed on Friday even the painting from our art chapter about the Limbourg brothers. Latin lessons with the Daddy were much less rammy than usual. Finally, I got to participate in a discussion about Macaulay's book, For the Children's Sake. I've read the book several times and continue to wrestle with the choice to home school these children. Is it for me or for them that I should have so much less time to myself? Should I stop spending so much money on their private, classical education? Should I let an expert take over and do this because they know more about elementary education than I do? God is in charge of all this, so why can't I give up the control and just let Him take over in the classroom? And, I'm continuing to be convicted by this decision to devote my energy and my development as a teacher to this goal this year. To re-evaluate why I do what I do and how I do it so that it is truly for their sake.

The latest art work as follows is G1's portrayal of a kangaroo; G2's music note; and G3's turtle.

Our Indian Princess: Purple Feather

She climbed a 25 foot rock wall. She climbed the stairs and more stairs to the, get this, zip/zap line tower. AND got down by the appropriate lines VERY FAST and shrieking quite loud. Then she took a peaceful canoe ride with her friend and the Daddy.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

We do more than music and art, but...

G3 has finished 100 songs in his book and G1&2 are enjoying lessons with a new teacher (I'm thrilled with this woman's style of teaching!). We've discussed The War of the Roses in History and the Princes in the Tower. Columbus is ready for Monday which is perfect since it's his day. Isabella and Ferdinand plus the Portuguese Henry were this week's subject and did well to teach us where the origin of knots in identifying a boat's speed came from in history. MathUSee is progressing to the stage where Saxon2 lessons are interspersed without problems for anyone. Art is wonderful as our clay projects dry and we paint them with tempra on Friday. Chemistry is dwelling on Alkali Metals and Hydrogen. The desert habitat is fun when we get to identify and describe plants from that landscape. Spelling is regular as well as FLL reading, but G2 finished a mystery book from the American Girl series without problems and has started Eager Star from Tyndale House. Both boys are enjoying Kidsboro books for individual reading and don't want to pass those books along when they are done. Bible study with Acts in CBS is very helpful. So, all in all, we are enjoying the onset of Fall and the matching smiles as seen in the next picture.