Friday, January 31, 2014

1st Week of Homeschool

Well we just finished up our first week of homeschool. Bug loved it!!! We had a blast. Unfortunately the calendar and days of the week and weather chart I ordered haven't arrived yet, but we still did circle time every morning just with songs, and he told me the weather outside by just looking out the window.
This week's unit was counting by 2's, Weather, Groundhog Day, W words, and Seasons. We had a lot of fun. We read books about why leaves change, why weather happens, and Groundhog Day. We found songs about the seasons and the weather. We did worksheets of all types on all our subjects, and we had fun counting by 2's.
So here are a few of the worksheets we found and did. Next week I hope to do more cut and paste and art project style activities but this week I forgot to by some of the art supplies we are sorely lacking (including glue sticks).
Here is our W words worksheets. I found out this week apparently my kid hates coloring... who knew? So after we did this one I promised no more coloring sheets. That from now on we would only do actual activity worksheets.

Here are our Groundhog Day themed worksheets. He did a connect the dots by the letters of the Alphabet, answered counting questions about groundhogs, and drew a groundhog coming out of his burrow and answered the question "My Prediction For Groundhog Day 2014 Is" He said that if the groundhog had a long tail it would not see it's shadow but that if the groundhog had a short tail it would.

Here are the weather and seasons worksheets we did. He did two matching ones, all of which he got right. The last one was to draw the weather for each season. He drew a tree with changing leaves, a beach scene, snow, and a cloudy rain storm.

All in all we had a great week. I can't wait until next week. Homeschool is really amazing. I love working one on one with Bug. He is loving it too. As for socialization, he has 3 birthday parties to go to over the next three weekends, and a few playdates in the works, and a standing playdate for the playground every couple of days come spring. I think all in all this was the best choice we could of ever made.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Bug's Curriculum For Homeschooling

I thought I would share this in case anyone was wondering what our plan was, or if they would like ideas for their own, or to give me pointers. 

Week 1: January 27-31
Weather, types and causes, and seasons. Groundhog Day.
The letter W. W words.
Counting by 2.

February 2nd : Groundhog Day

Week 2: February 3-7
Honesty, Good Manners, Why we makes laws and rules.
The letter H. H Words.

Week 3: February 10-14
Valentine's Day. Kindness and love. Friendship and Charity.
The Letter V. V Words.

February 14th :Valentine's Day

Week 4: February 17-21
Plants, life cycle, types and parts.
The Letter P. P Words.
Starting seeds for our garden.

Week 5: February 24-28
Matter stages. How Ice becomes Water and Water becomes Steam.
The Letter X. X words.

March 2nd : Dr. Seuss Day

Week 6: March 3-7
Dr. Seuss. Books and activities related to him.
The Letter S. S words.
Counting by 10.

Week 7: March 10-14
Dinosaurs. Types and how they lived, how they lead to birds.
The Letter D. D Words.
Trackways and footprints. How we find fossils.

Week 8: March 8-17
St. Patrick’s Day and Leprechauns.
The Letter L. L Words.
Refraction and how Rainbows work.

March 17th : St. Patrick's Day

Week 9: March 24-28
Zoo Animals. Animals from other lands. Conservation and Endangered Species.
The Letter Z. Z Words.
Animal fur patterns.

Week 10: March 31- April 4
Week Off from School For Baby Shower Prep

April 5th : Baby Shower

Week 11: April 7-11
Oceans and sea creatures.
The Letter O. O Words.
Buoyancy Experiments.

Week 12: April 14-18
Easter. All about Spring and Easter.
The Letter E. E Words.
Eggsperiments with egg dying and hard boiling.

April 20th : Easter

Week 13: April 21-25
Recycling, Reusing, Upcycling, Earth Day.
The Letter U. U Words.
Cleaning up the Town. Earth Day Garbage Walk.

April 22nd : Earth Day

Week 14: April 28-May 2
Royalty and Kingdoms of Old. Types of Countries and Governments.
The Letter Q. Q Words.
Currency. Counting Money.

Week 15: May 5-9
Insects, Bugs and Crawly things.
The Letter I. I Words.
Identification and intro to Taxonomy.

Week 16: May 12-16
Babies. Both Human and Animal. How to care for them. How mommies take care of their young.
The Letter B. B Words.
Diaper Changing 101.

Week 17: May 19-23
Families. How different cultures form different families. How siblings interact. Kids.
The Letter K. K Words.

Week 18: May 26-30
Week Off from school for birth of baby.

May 26th : Memorial Day

May 29th : C Section date. Birth of Baby.

Week 19: June 2-6
Baby Time off... possibly start Garden.

Week 20: June 9-13
Gardening. Planting and caring for a garden. Starting our pond too.
The Letter G. G Words.
Spacing plants, counting seeds.

Week 21: June 16-20
Rivers and Fish. Local Aquatic life. Ecosystems.
The Letter F. F words.
Finding local aquatic life. Field trip to the river.

Week 22: 23-27
Local Animals of the North Country.
The Letter A. A Words.
Looking for local wildlife.

Week 23: June 30- July 4
Forth of July. History of America.
The Letter J. J Words.

July 4th : Independence Day

Week 24: July 7-11
Camping and Outdoor Survival.
The Letter C. C Words.
Field Trip: Backyard Camping.

Week 25: July 14-18
Rainforests. Why they are dying off, and why they are so important. Life in a Rainforest.
The Letter R. R Words.
Adding under 10.

Week 26: July 21-25
Reptiles and Amphibians.
The Letter T. T Words.
Subtracting Under 10.

Week 27: July 28- August 1
Birds and Nests. How Birds live, both flighted and flightless.
The Letter N. N Words.

Week 28: August 4-8
Birthdays and Anniversaries. Why we celebrate things. Marriage and why people get married.
The letter M. M Words.

August 5th : Our 8th Anniversary

Week 29: August 11-15
All About YOU! All About Bug.
The Letter Y. Y Words.
Measuring Height and Weight. Growth.

Adventures in Homeschooling

Well Bug is officially out of Pre K. I know anyone who has followed this blog must be asking, "WHY???". I know, we were all so pumped about it. I was so excited to have a school aged kid. He was so excited about going to real school. Yet right from the beginning things felt wrong. He was being bullied on the bus, he was making the wrong types of friends in his class and adopting the behaviorisms of some of the rougher, older boys who were getting him to act out. His stress level was through the roof. He would come home exhausted, wake up exhausted. There was a lockdown in his school in the early fall after an irate parent was threatening the school, and then just last week in the high school a student brought a realistic looking bb pistol to school. Needless to say homeschooling began looking better and better.
Before Thanksgiving things got really bad. He began to cry every morning, claiming he could learn better at home with me, that he had no friends in school, that the kids were all mean, that no one liked him. I had emailed with his teacher a few times and we had spoken, and had a parent teacher conference. Everything seemed to be going better. She told me that he often has a hard time adapting to their routines, which is true, we have been wanting to have him tested for the Autistic Spectrum almost since age 1. He does not adapt well to change and often will melt down if not given proper time to adapt to a change in routine. I thought that things would be getting better. His report card came back with stellar marks in everything academic, he scored the highest score on the standardized tests of any pre k student in the school. However behaviorally it was a dismal report. I was in shock. This just wasn't the kid I knew and loved. Then I began to realize that even at home he wasn't that kid anymore. My happy go lucky studious nerdlet had been replaced by a grumpy, exhausted, sullen, nervous wreck. Every morning became a fight to even get him on the bus. It was all falling a part.
Then over Christmas break we had a family meeting on whether or not to keep him in school. He seemed to take a renewed interest in it and asked if we could try it a little longer. We all agreed. I had hope that after a few weeks off he would be happy to go back. However by 2 weeks after Christmas he was melting down again every morning. By this point he had missed almost as much school throughout the year as he has attended. Between being truly sick, making himself sick with worry, or just being so stressed and exhausted that I couldn't fathom sending him, he had missed probably close to 20 or so days.
This all culminated on Tuesday morning when our sweet boy should have been super excited to tell his friends and teachers at school that he was going to have a baby sister, which we had found out the night before. Instead he begged for us to just once and for all take him out of pre k. He very logically and clearly outlined for us that he felt he needs more time at home with us, that he can learn better with me, that he wants to help me come up with what he should be learning, and that he feels school had nothing more to offer him. For a barely 4 year old it was a very well reasoned argument. So we agreed. Homeschooling it was. PreK is not mandatory in our state and it is not even a really needed thing. I have many friends who did not send their kids to pre K and they were fine. Plus we did give it a really long try. We made it halfway through the year before we gave up.
So we signed the paperwork today and I sat down with Bug and over the course of a few hours we had outlined a curriculum starting this coming Monday that ends the middle of August. It covers a variety of subjects and incorporates history, science, math, reading, vocabulary, drawing, gross motor and fine motor skills, and yes even socialization.
So here we go.. we are embarking on the adventure that is homeschooling. Wish us luck!

River Autumn

Well after 22 weeks of pregnancy with this gorgeous rainbow we finally know what it is we are having. A girl! After 5 years, 5 pregnancies and 3 angels, we finally will have our girl and boy. Our perfect family. I would have been tickled to have another boy but when the tech said girl, I have to admit I got a small thrill. Knowing I will get to have one of each is just the best gift I could receive. So here she is River Autumn a perfect little bundle of girl. only 18 more weeks to go.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

2013 Handmade Christmas Post

Well it's a tad late but here are some of the handmade gifts I gave people for Christmas this year. I can't post them all because they haven't all been given out yet. Yes I am very bad at mailing out gifts. All Crocheted gifts were done free hand. I never use patterns.

 A soft crocheted hat with decorative stitching at the bottom and crocheted holly berries and leaves as decoration.
 This was the matching scarf.
 A glass bead necklace with a gorgeous alpacca cord that I crocheted. I made the charm from glueing a print of a great quote from Firefly to the back of the glass bead. The friend that got this loved it!
 Crocheted Owl Purse
 A TMNT hat, crocheted. I actually made a few of these as gifts (this one I sold to a customer). I only have pictures of this one though. 
 From the back.
 Hand crocheted USS Enterprise. I loved making this and I think I may make one for myself at some point. 
 Excuse the goofy look on his face. This is hubby modeling the viking beard hat I made him for Christmas. He loved it.

There you have it. Not all of them, I will probably have to do another post soon but here are a lot of the gifts I made for Christmas. I love sharing them with you guys because honestly it's fun to show how simple it can be to give something awesome and one of a kind to someone you love, and all it costs is a little hard work.

Monday, January 13, 2014

A Hopeful Story About Breastfeeding In January?

This is 2014. When I started this blog it was 2009. That was almost 5 years ago and it was a very different world as far as Breastfeeding goes. Almost every January and February since I began this blog there have been countless stories of people bashing breastfeeding, telling women they can't breastfeed in public, harassing breastfeeding mothers etc. However this year I found nothing. Instead I came across a wonderful story about the current Pope, Pope Francis, telling women to breastfeed their children in public because "they are the most important people here". This took place at a mass baby baptism, in which he told the mothers of the babies to feed them without thinking twice. I personally love this Pope, I have followed him from his election last year. He alone has given me renewed hope in Christianity. I mean after all Mary breastfed Jesus, why would we deny our children the same nutrition and comfort that Jesus was given. I see this as proof that in just the 5 years since I became a mother breastfeeding has come forward by leaps and bounds. It is so much more accepted and  commonplace. When I had Bug, I only had a couple friends who breastfed their babies, and not because my friends tried and couldn't do it, but because they didn't even try, most had the attitude that it was icky, or would take away from their relationships, or just simply be too hard. Now 5 years later I don't know barely any moms who haven't at least attempted to breastfeed. I am so proud of how far breastfeeding has come.
That is not to say however that there isn't still prejudice, and doctors shoving formula at new moms, or public places that frown on or ban breastfeeding mothers, there are, so we need to continue to push forward, normalizing breastfeeding until it is entirely accepted and even preferred over formula use. Formula was never intended to be a replacement for breastfeeding, but as a tool for helping mother's who could not or can't breastfeed. Educating young mothers that breastfeeding is not "icky", is vitally important.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

20 Weeks

Well I have been super busy the last few weeks. Between Christmas, Yule, New Years, the 1st anniversary of the death of my Grandmother and then add in several pregnancy complications and illnesses and a fall, we have been very busy. I still am going to do a post about all the homemade Christmas gifts I made this year, especially now that most everyone has gotten theirs. I also plan to start doing gardening posts of course since it is now halfway through January and it's the time to start seeds. And of course January is as always Breastfeeding Prejudice Awareness Month here at the Green Mommy, so I will be getting on some posts about that as well, but today, right now, I only have one thing on my mind. I am 20 weeks pregnant! I am halfway! I have made it this far! After 5 years, 5 pregnancies, 1 child, 3 losses (one just under stillbirth age), a 17 week long horrendous miscarriage, surgery, and this being our fifth and last try... I am finally 20 weeks pregnant again, and very very hopeful that this happily growing little one will be our Rainbow Baby. I know that even though we are now 20 weeks anything can happen and while still birth is less common than miscarriage, it still occurs quite often. So I am still trying to keep my feet on the ground but I am hopeful. I deserve to at least have hope. So for all of you rooting for us, please keep praying and cheering us on because so far it is working. :D

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