Alphabetical Order

8 Oct

Today we worked with 16 words that start with P.
I dictated the words and made sure that at least half of them were “new words”.

(we first folded the paper so as to mark 16 squares)

After writing the words, he cut out the squares and starting organizing.
He had to go as far as the fourth letter with some words.

He put them in groups by second letter,
arranged each group individually
and then put all the groups together.

Besides learning how to order words alphabetically,
he learned new words and practiced handwriting,
cutting, problem-solving, organizing, and task completion.


Independent October

7 Oct
We’ve been working really hard for the last six months,
so we decided to take October as Independent Projects Month.
He chose three projects to work on alone – zero mom interference.
This was our first week and it’s gone great.
He chose a drawing project using a “How to draw cartoons” book.
Here are some of my favorites:

He also chose to work on choreographing his own dance piece.His third project is a research report on the Saber Tooth Tiger,
inspired by this Saber Tooth fossil given to him by an uncle.I found some sites for him to get information.
He’ll be putting a book together with his findings.

This week, we also: found a scary spider in our kitchenpicked lots of jocotes – a fruit specific to Central America (I think)
There are Jocote Trees everywhere here, and the kids go crazy for them in October.First, you gotta get your pole ready.
You need to smooth it with a machete and fix the end to catch the jocote.
You stick the pole way up in the tree and try to get the fruit into the catch.
It takes patience and aim to manage this, but he’s a pro.

With the extra time that Independent Projects Month is giving me,
I get to spend more time with my other kids –
This is the youth group that trains at our art center in the mornings.
They haven’t seen much of me since we started homeschooling,
even though they’re just downstairs.

This is a project that I started 10yrs ago and have been full-time directing since.
This year, the project is being run by one of our graduated students.
It’s been hard to let go and delegate, but it’s allowed me to homeschool,
and he’s doing a great job as junior director.

Video Collage of what we’ve been doing in our Art Classes

2 Oct

6 Months!!!!!!

2 Oct

We are celebrating 6 wonderful months of homeschooling!

This was our very first day
we painted, mostly because I didn’t know what else to do.

This was our very first project –
we learned all about the Mesozoic Era,
fossils, extinction and the age of the Earth.

We learned about continents and oceans,
and know all the countries of our continent.

We did SO much writing –
creative writing, summaries, poems…
we learned about the parts of speech,
did lots of spelling lists and worked on composition.

We did loads of math and science,
and felt a strong attraction to these subjects.

We did our second big project on
The Solar System
Tomorrow is the gran debut of The Pluto Monologues!

We did ballet once a week with a friend.

Dance, circus, arts&crafts and music
every Tuesday and Friday at our
Art Center

We started our most recent project on
Greek Mythology

We had kittens!
Played soccer with the cat?

We built a new bedroom
bringing an end to 8 years of co-sleeping
(mama’s still having difficulties with this one)

Took our first big family trip

Survived another hurricane season
in the tropics

Welcomed our river back,
built dams

and had lots of picnics

I still managed to put on a few performances
and get some creative outlet

DH and I celebrated our 7yr anniversary

Bought a new mac with this silly photo program

started this blog, met lots of awesome people in the hs communities,
and finally figured out what “dh”, “dd”, “ds”, etc. mean after
months of guessing because I was too shy
to ask on the forums.

We love homeschooling!

Geography Ball

12 Sep

I found a little sponge world globe ball
for geography class.
Very fun.

As a warm-up, we start out
throwing the ball back and forth,
and calling out the name
of the first country we see.

Then comes the more challenging part.
I throw him the ball
and call out the name of a country.

He catches it and finds the country as fast as he can,
and throws it back.

Greek Mythology

8 Sep
When my son was born, my grandmother gave me a very special book – Myths and Enchantment Tales, 1949 edition. It was my father’s when he was a boy, and my favorite book on Granny’s bookshelf when I was a child. It meant the world to me that she remembered how much I loved it. We recently gave Greek Mythology a whole hour of its own on our schedule. We are reading one story a week from the beloved book, which is getting so old that I had to put it in the “untouchables” box of our homeschool library, for fear of it completely disintegrating from too much handling. After reading, he sight-copies one of the illustrations and writes a short summary. The illustrations are dreamy. The English is ancient and full of new, old words to learn. He is fascinated by the stories, which seem even more magical when read from the worn, yellowed pages. The preface (though severely politically incorrect) does a fantastic job of explaining how these stories might have been born from observing nature, and gave for a wonderful discussion on how we have always been looking for the answers to who we are, where we come from and how we got here.

The Bone Eater

1 Sep

After taking a month off, it’s been hard getting my son back into the practice of writing. He did keep a travel journal during our trip, but it wasn’t daily.

Before the break, we’d mostly been working on writing summaries, but now I’m finding that I need to be more creative.

I looked for some prompts on the internet, but wasn’t very happy with what I found. So, I decided to make up my own. Here are some of them:

Describe a Monster
Give it a name. What does it look like? Where does it live? What does it eat? What does it do? What kind of sounds does it make? Use rich adjectives. Try to start each sentence differently.

If you could choose any super power, what would it be? What would you do with it?

A Magical Place
Imagine a place where anything can happen. Where are you? How did you get there? What are you doing there? What do you see around you?

The World-Saving Invention
Imagine that you have invented something that saved the world by solving one of our biggest problems. How does it work? What problem does it solve?

Letter to a Bully
Think about a time when you were bullied. Write a letter to the bully. Explain your version of what happened and how you felt. Explain why you think what he or she did was wrong.

I let him write as much as he wants, and don’t try to force him to “make it longer”. The better the prompt I give him, the more he wants to write. I figure in enough time for discussion before writing and after reading aloud what he wrote. Today we did “Describe a Monster”.  He wrote it in Spanish (his first language), but here’s a rough translation: 

The Bone Eater is an evil and ferocious monster who eats children wandering up the mountain. He has a son named Cuchumolongo who also eats bones. They have claws that are one meter long and two centimeters thick. They’re red and their eyes are the color of fire. They have pointy ears and tails, and they can jump very high.

Solar System Mobile

14 Jul

We finally finished our Unit Study on the Solar System.

Continue reading

Homeschooling an Only Child

9 Jul

As a homeschool newbie, I spend quite a bit of time reading other homeschoolers’ blogs.Many of them are filled with three or four children running around the yard, playing ball, reading around the kitchen table together, going on field trips together…Ours is quite a different picture.
We have one child and are not going to have more. Continue reading

Moving Out at 8yrs. old

4 Jul

Yup, he´s 8 yrs. old and he´s moving out… of our bedroom.
We’ve been co-sleeping since the moment he was born, and now it’s coming to an end. Continue reading