Monday, February 28, 2011

A Few Changes & Next Years Curriculum

Just a quick update on what we are using right now and what the plans are for next year's curriculum for both boys. We have been using BJU's Distance Learning classes with Joshua.  It's going very well but when I started BJU math with Joshua I knew he might not thrive well with it.  Since I had to pay for the complete grade kit for the BJU Distance Learning classes I wanted to give it a try.  I've learned that Joshua does much better with incremental lessons and consistent daily review of those concepts.  Mastery based math just doesn't seem to be enough review for him. So we decided to move him to Saxon math.  We are also using Teaching Tape Technology dvd's with the Saxon books.  With the English he was doing ok but again he seemed to need the same constant review of grammar concepts that he needed in math.  I learned that Saxon had a grammar and writing curriculum also so I took a look at that and have decided to move Joshua to Saxon for grammar also.  I will be picking up the Grammar & Writing at convention this coming weekend in Memphis so we will start that the following Monday.  If all goes well with it we will continue with it for the next level.

My research for next years curriculum brought me back to Heart of Dakota.  We have enjoyed BJU but I wanted to shorten our school day and I've always wanted to do HOD with Joshua. I just couldn't seem to make it work for us in the past.  I knew that we could go back to using HOD for next year so I began looking into the Creation to Christ manual.  I was completely sold on coming back to HOD for both boys starting next year.  It hit me one day that I could do Preparing right now with Joshua and it would help him with the skills he will need for CtC in the fall.  We will receive our Preparing materials on Tuesday and get started on that for Bible, History, Geography, and Science.  We are really looking forward to Preparing and HOD in general.

For Spelling, Reading, and Cursive Handwriting we are continuing with the BJU Distance Learning classes. Next year for Reading we will be doing HOD's Drawn Into the Heart of Reading. I'm really liking BJU"s Spelling. As we get closer to fall I'll make some final decisions regarding Spelling but at this point I'm leaning heavily towards doing BJU Spelling again only teaching it myself.  Joshua's cursive is coming along very with BJU right now. For next year he'll do all of the writing & copywork required in CtC in cursive to serve as his handwriting.

I'm also considering enrolling Joshua in an IEW writing class taught by a licensed IEW instructor.  IEW stands for Institute for Excellence in Writing.  If I don't do a class then we will get the Student Writing Intensive dvd's for him.  I'm leaning towards a class for accountability and to start giving him an idea of what high school might be like.  I likely will make use of tutorials, etc. in high school and I want him to start understand what it's like to have to do work and turn it into someone other than me.

Jacob is turning 5 in April and he's doing so well with "school" type stuff I feel confident in going ahead and doing K with him in the fall.  He will be 5.5 years old at that time and he's already chomping at the bit to learn his letters and numbers. Right now he enjoys playing on Starfall, doing Abeka's ABC 123, Readiness Skills, and Art workbooks. I'm also using Learning at Home by Ann Ward with him.  I plan to start him in Little Hearts for His Glory at half speed in the fall for K.  I will be going half speed so that LHFHG can be used his K and 1st years.  I will be using the appropriate levels of math and phonics for him each of those years. At this point I plan to use Saxon Math and Phonics for him. We'll see how that works out.  I'm really looking forward to it.

Well this went much longer than I had planned. If you stayed with me bless your heart.  I really appreciate it!

I hope everyone has a wonderful school week!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Meet Emilda

Emilda is an 18 year-old Compassion sponsored child with the mental capacity of a three year-old.  She lives in a squatter community in the Philippines. And she's FAST!

In 2009 Emilda competed in the Philippine Special Olympics and she performed well enough to qualify for the World Special Olympics in Athens, Greece this Summer.  But she needs your help to get there.

Emilda's parents are unable to pay her way to Greece and neither is the Philippine government. Her beginning need to get there was $19,837.  Thanks to people just like you all she needs now is $10,000.  A gift in any amount will help.

You have the opportunity to send Emilda to the World Special Olympics! Just think what this would mean to Emilda and her family.  

Pictures and more information about Emilda are available at The Making of a Special Olympics Champion

To make a donation to help send Emilda to the World Special Olympics go here:
Donate to Help Emilda

Please prayerfully consider whether the Lord would have you donate to help Emilda.  You can make a difference in the life of this impoverished child.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Read the Bible in 90 Days Update

I've been neglecting my blog again.  Sometimes it just seems there aren't enough hours in the day.  I wanted to give a quick update on reading the Bible in 90 days.  I was not able to keep up with the reading.  I want to be honest and transparent so I'll say that there are two things I believe hindered me in my reading.  The first was that I started a day late.  I didn't find out about it until the end of the 1st days reading.  I really thought I could catch up but that brings me to the second reason I wasn't able to keep up.  To do the days reading takes about an hour to read each day.  I just wasn't prepared at the last minute to add that amount of time to my day.

Moms Toolbox will most likely repeat Read the Bible in 90 Days again during Summer.  I plan to join in the next time they begin the process. This time I will be better prepared and can give this reading the time it needs and not start from behind at the very beginning.  I am looking forward to it.  The days that I did read in this attempt were a blessing beyond measure.

Will you consider joining in the next time?  I hope so.

Time4Learning Review

I've been invited to try Time4Learning for one month in exchange for a candid review. My opinion will be entirely my own, so be sure to come back and read about my experience. Time4Learning is an online educational program that can be used as an online homeschooling curriculum or for afterschool enrichment. Find out how to write your own curriculum review for Time4Learning.


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