Thursday, September 23, 2010

It’s all hunky dory

Our first year of homeschool is well under way and so far it’s 99% good. I’m still adjusting to our new normal. I find it much harder to do anything I would like to do {like blog} during the day. We’ve had a couple of moments where he didn’t want to be here and I wasn’t sure what on earth I was thinking, but we’ve moved on and all is good.

I think he is pretty awesome and he still thinks I’m pretty awesome {I only say this because he tells me so multiple times a day}.
 IMG_8379I have come to one definite conclusion…..I still don’t like history.

Read dry text, memorize facts, regurgitate facts = boring!

I have to find another way. Any suggestions? We started out using Lifepac, but I’m a little under enthused with it. I’m currently reading
The Well Trained Mind and am considering purchasing The Story of the World books, but I’m not sure where to begin with a 5th grader in his first year of homeschool. Any words of wisdom?

IMG_8392We have been enjoying some fun art projects courtesy of Deep space sparkle. Loads of great ideas over there.

IMG_8272Flying kites has become a favorite thing to do on a windy day. You can learn all sorts of things by flying kites. Corban and I thought it would be fun to make our own sometime. I just wish it would start to feel a little like fall around here. 85-90 degrees is just not working for me anymore, especially when I’m running through fields trying to make things fly.

IMG_8398I’ve been working on other things too, like some laptop bag orders, journals and some other custom orders for a friend. 

IMG_8417I’ve made several laptop bags recently, but I think this one is my favorite. Probably because I’m partial to the aqua version of the Hunky Dory fabric line. It makes me smile. I would really like to keep this journal for myself, but I won’t. {It’s in the mail today Tracey.}

So a quick recap:

So far so good on the homeschooling
History not so much fun
Kites and art are fun
All is hunky dory here

God is good!


  1. Trying to repost, the last one disappeared.

    Our children are grown now and I wish we had the internet when we homeschooled. If we had I would have made a challenge for each to find interesting facts (about the subject at hand) and present at dinner. A crossword puzzle of interesting facts, trips to local landmarks are great too.

    Skits, even just a simple costume while reading a famous address helps make a memory for kids.

    We found the more we “unschooled” the more our children learned and blossomed. The first months were torture till a friend pointed out that we were just mimicking public school. We had to break away from the routine and home school. Once we did, it went so much better.

    We had 3 very different types of learners so it was always a challenge to find ways that “worked” for each. We also found that small chunks of time (particularly for our son) worked best. An hour of sitting work earned him extra time outside. He loved that idea so much so that in 8th grade he spent his “spare time” building us a pond complete with brick patio and walk. It was part math, science and physics rolled into one. Another time we encountered difficulty so we had our child be the teacher. They stood, we sat and they taught us the history of Gettysburg. It was so rewarding to see our children grow and learn.

    Today my husband and I have a fabricator, a nurse and a chef. The fruits of our labor are wonderful and we feel very blessed.

  2. Oh man do I love Hunky Dory. Your projects are GORGEOUS! I never tire of your fabulous ruffled journals :-)

    I think it's awesome that you're homeschooling! I know it's hard. I'm considering it for Lauren but I haven't totally made up my mind. Luckily I have a couple years to figure it out!

  3. that is an ADORABLE laptop bag!! And awesome job with the homeschooling, you'll definitely get into a new normal, it will just take some time :)

  4. I see you are using Easy Grammar. I love those books! My school uses A Beka books, but I often use Easy Grammar pages as a supplement.

    I agree that sometimes history can be a bit boring. My 5th graders love to discuss and tell stories about what we are talking/reading about in history and sceince. After each paragraph or short section I always allow for discussion. It takes up more time, but the students enjoy the lesson more and it "sticks" better than just reading from the book or me lecturing. Also, I bring in topic books from the children's section in the library. These books have tons more pictures and intersting facts than a textbook. I don't know if you are already doing these things or not, but I figured I would share what works for me. Happy homeschooling!

  5. (Love the laptop bags!) As far as history goes, throw out everything you have, get one really good textbook to use as a sort of timeline guide, and start reading historical fiction and biography rather than using the textbook. Make (don't purchase) a timeline little by little along your wall with adding machine tape and labels you make yourself. Use pics from National Geographic (used ones are CHEAP) or student-drawn graphics.

    And start taking field trips to battlefields and museums and places of historical significance. There is nothing boring about history, but I agree that it's boring the way it is so often taught - dull, dry facts and memorization. ICK. Get rid of that idea. Learn about the real people. Not just a short paragraph in a textbook, but a whole biography.

    And watch documentaries and docu-dramas. Help your fifth grader learn how to do online research and write papers about a particular person or event or thing.

    And let me know how it goes. :-)

  6. I liked Mystery of History. She puts everything biblical and secular into one historical timeline, which I thought was really cool. It's also told more story like instead of facts, facts, facts. I have a copy of the first book if you want to look through it.

  7. Seriously loving that laptop bag.. uh-mazing!!

  8. This may not sit with you too well....but my son has learned more from The History Channel than he has ever learned from a classroom. Granted, you would need to watch it with him,and preview it beforehand, in case you don't want him seeing it. But, it has really helped my son, and myself! I hated history until I started watching history channel. lol.

  9. I love love history with sonlight. I used to hate history. Now I love it and learn so much from teaching my boys. We did use abeka but I thought it was too dry and boring.


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