Our Adventures in Homeschooling and Life

Thursday, June 24, 2010

New Language Arts curriculum

We tried out the new language arts curriculum from Common Press. We are using the red book, which is 2nd grade level but its about where my youngest is. Today is the first day we used it and it went wonderfully. He really enjoyed the lesson and I think he really is getting it. Its wonderful! I am hopeful about this program! Yeah~!

Space food

We got the kids a freeze dried ice cream bar from Hobby Lobby so they could try space food. We discussed the process of how they make it, what its made for, why the Astronauts have that kind of food, etc. It was a nice treat!

Science mural

We are creating a space mural of the planets. Its a work in progress. But the kids are loving it!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Blessed Dragons Store

We have always had a reward system in our house for a while where they earn things like sleep overs, ice cream, DVD's, sodas, etc. ( They don't get candy and soda on a regular basis so this kind of stuff is a treat)(Our boys are 8 & 12). They get rewarded for completing their lessons daily, without giving us grief, completing chores, behavior, going to bed on time with out hassle, etc. This has worked well. For the most part.
We decided to take your store idea and add to it. (age appropriateness and such) We created our own family store complete with Store bucks. We use real change for the change part but the "store bucks" for the rest. My husband thought it would be cute to teach them about paychecks too. So, we created little paychecks with stubs. They get paid 1 Store buck per day for completing their chores. And an additional store buck for getting all stars for their lessons, chores, behavior, etc, per day. At the end of the week they get a pay check. (oldest gets taxed, just a little) They have to take it to the "bank" to get it cashed. They sign the back and get store bucks. Then visit the store where there are various items like sodas, cd's, dvd's, ps 2 games, toys, small candies, suckers, ice cream, sleep over coupons, Stay up late coupons, etc. They choose what they want to have to figure out the change. Then they "Check out". If they have any store bucks or change left it gets deposited in the "bank". They can make purchases every evening if they have money.If they don't then they have to wait for "pay day". They can earn extra store bucks for yard work, and books they've read.
My husband also wants to start letting them take out loans. No more than their previous check amount (with interest). He's hoping this will teach them about responsibily, contracts, giving your word on something and how important it is, and stuff like that.
All of this is of course on their level.
We tried it out this afternoon. The kids thought it was soooo cool! They absolutely loved it. I haven't seen them that excited in a while. lOl. It was awesome!

I designed and printed out store bucks on green construction paper.

Then we laminated them. (I love my laminating machine!

Heres what they look like.

I wish it was that easy sometimes. LOL

Here's the checks. I tried to make them similar to checks but still fun for the boys.
Here's John at the bank cashing his "check".

John still cashing his check.

Eric is checking out the store. Trying yo decide on what to purchase. LOL
John is "checking out" with his purchases. Dad was banker, and teller this time.
We all had a blast!

Friday, June 18, 2010

The "Store"

There was a suggestion made today on one of my e-groups. Some parents do a store in their home and every evening their kids get like 15 cents and get to choose candy and such from the “store”. They are teaching their kids about money, budgeting and more. I talked this over with my husband this evening and we might take that idea and expand on it. Our oldest is 12 so we we’re thinking of giving him a “pay check” for doing his chores and such and take out a tiny but for taxes, ss & medicade. To start teaching him what it will be like to have a job in a few years. We also thought we could create some fake money or get some off Amazon, and they can use the money at the “store” to purchase items such as candy, sodas, ice cream, books, ds games, movies, cd’s and more. We are still working out the details but it might be a cute idea and a great learning tool!

Note booking

Since we are all an artsy type family and love hands on stuff we have started note booking some of our activities and such. In History we notebook our maps, people, etc. For those of you who don’t know what note booking is, it is a lot like scrapbooking, just for kids. It is a great way for them to express themselves through art and a wonderful way to display what they have done.


Since we are doing a unit study on medieval times and we are still waiting on a few books to come in this week I told the boys to make a castle out of legos and anything else they could find. Here is a picture of their progress so far. My youngest is almost done. My oldest had his almost done as well then realized, after his younger brother pointed it out, that without a floor there was no support and it made his castle flimsy. So he started over. LOL

Oceans Mural

Here is the start of the Oceans Mural...

Time Line

The Crab that Played with the Sea

Oceans Unit

My youngest is working on his oceans unit study. We are using a thematic unit on Oceans and it seems to be working well so far. He has started an oceans mural, he has started a timeline for a story we are reading called “The Crab the Played with the Sea”. He learned about crabs today and did an animal web chart (lists characteristics and things he learned about the crab) and we created a word wall with all the Ocean type words he will be learning during this unit. We will add to the word wall as we work through the unit. Today we also did some art called a Sandy Scene. We used an empty tin can, rubber cement, shells, and cut out some ocean animals and plants. It was a lot of fun to make.

Postal Service

I am getting more and more annoyed by out post service. I ordered a game from Amazon last Thursday. It wasn't processed for 3 days. Then finally mailed. I paid standard shipping. It arrived in Oklahoma City on Tuesday. I live 1 1/2 hours from OKC. (I'm in Lawton) As of today, Friday I have yet to recieve it. I called our local post office. And was informed that it takes 3-5 days for a package to get from the city to Lawton. WTF!!! It's an 1 1/2 drive. How can it take 3-5 to mail form the city here? What is going on with our postal service. This is ridiculus!!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Long Day

I’ve had a long day. Checked my face book, homeschooled the kids, cleaned the house, planned lessons, researched for future lessons, supervised my oldest while he was cooking, blogged and got a haircut and my eye brows done. My youngest has stressed me out a bit today. We are working on his words. He has a habit of using loud ugly words sometimes. It can be exhausting. I am pretty beat tonight. There are just some days when I’m just worn out.


We are planning a rockets unit study in July. We are going to pick up a, hopefully inexpensive, rocket from Hobby Lobby. My hubby and the boys are really looking forward to this. Now I just gotta figure out how to plan their lessons. What books to get, what activities, etc. Planning all their lessons is hard sometimes. But I enjoy it.

Our Lessons

We are trudging along with our lessons. Even through the summer. Our medieval times unit is coming along slowly. I had to make changes to it already. We haven’t even assembled anything in our lapbook and I’m already making changes. Lol. We started reading Adam of the Road together but we all found it extremely boring, despite the activities that went along with it. So, we put that aside for A door in the wall. Which is working well for my oldest. My youngest will start reading A tale of castles & battles soon as the book arrives from paperbackswap. It’s an I can read level book so it’s perfect for him. He will also read Knights of the Round Table for Literature. My oldest will also be reading an Eye witness book Arms & Armor and Swords: An artist’s devotion starting next week. I have also ordered a couple medieval coloring books for the boys that I think they will really enjoy! For Science I have ordered George's Secret Key to the Universe from Amazon for my oldest. My youngest will be reading The planets in our solar system for his Astronomy and Dolphins for his Oceans unit. For Language Arts my oldest will be continuing with A door in the wall and my youngest will start his new language lessons, next week hopefully. He will be doing Learning Language Arts through Literature, The Red book since he’s a bit behind on his language skills.
I have to figure out when I can work in a William Shakespeare unit study sometime before February. In case I haven’t mentioned this before, our “school” year is from February to February. We do it this way because we usually get our income taxes back in February and that’s when we purchase any items we need for the year. We can’t really purchase much during the year. I know its different but it’s what works for us.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I have yet again changed the boys science. I am trying something different. Thanks to some wonderful suggestions from one of my homeschooling groups. My youngest will be reading, on his own, some I can Read books about Oceans, Dolphins. My oldest will be be starting a new book series soon, George's Secret Key to the Universe. I think he will really enjoy it. They will read along with doing several hands on activities. I'm looking forward to this.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Tonight we watched Legion. It was an awesome movie for the most part. (Not recommended for younger kids though) I really enjoyed the movie overall, but I felt it could have used a bit more detail. It was lacking some explanations. Like a big WHY? Why was “God” fed up? The only time it references it is at the end when the new mom, Charlie, is remembering something, the talking you hear at the end, and she says “God was just tired of the bullshit”. Why was that specific baby needing to live. And that one angel who disobeyed so he could help, why did he tell that one kid to find the prophets? It mentioned it one time and didn’t say anymore. Are there going to be more movies? Why we’re speaking they Latin at the very end. I’m guessing that because the old language was based in Latin. Overall, good action, good movie, just lacked a lot of information.


Tonight we watched the new Wolf man movie. We left our oldest, 12, watch with us. It was quite entertaining. Good story line, great actors, a bit gory. Not appropriate for younger kids. We enjoy a lot of movies. Especially ones like this. While the movie was good, I felt it could have been better.


Last night my husband and I watched Obsessed. I know it’s been out a little while but since our local Hollywood Video is closing we were forced to go to Blockbuster online. While we like it, we don’t always get to watch movies when they first come out. Sometimes we get them after they’ve out a bit.Anyways, the movie was great. Good story line, great actors, all around great movie. We loved it. Not a great movie for kids, but still a great movie.

Alice in Wonderland

Last night we enjoyed the new Alice in Wonderland. It was actually pretty good. My youngest has now fallen in love with the movie and has already watched it again and has been walking around quoting from the movie. It’s so cute. It incorporates a lot of same, unusual language as the original book. It is a great movie for kids or adults.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Cheated with dinner

Tonight I cheated on dinner. Since I recently hit a block on what to fix for lunches and dinners I just went with quick and easy and totally unhealthy. I asked for help on planning the menu and didn’t get any suggestions. I got a Stouffers Lasagna. The boys and Aaron liked it. (They eat just about anything) But, I didn’t care a whole lot for it. I’m not suppose to eat anything made with white flour or anything with sugar. Well, the noodles we’re white and spaghetti sauce has sugar. (A lot of sugar) We have been trying to eat well for the past year since I found out I had a thyroid problem. Which totally explained a lot. I try avoid the foods I’m not suppose to have as much as possible but its soooo hard when we’re surrounded by fast food and quick heat up meals. Even though I’m home with the kids all day, I still get tired and sometimes don’t want to stand over a hot stove and cook something for an hour or more that my family will devour in less than 10 minutes. (I have all boys in my house you can only imagine) I had even less energy before I started my Dr. Christopher’s thyroid maintenance pills a year ago. I’m doing a lot better but, still not great. I still have bad days occasionally but not near as many as I use too. Because of the thyroid issue, not having energy to do anything, and stress I have put on some weight. So, now I’m at the point where I want to do more most of the time but can’t, cause of my size, self confidence issues, and chronic pain it makes it hard. I the Wii fit plus and can barely make it through 1 maybe 2 games before I’m in sooo much pain. It really, really sucks. So, anyways, I try to eat as healthy as I can afford too, most of the time. But, there are occasions that don’t happen like tonight. However, since I’ve started my thyroid pills I have gone from a size 22 pants to almost an 18. Just from diet change. I am bordering between a 20 and an 18. If it wasn’t for the pressure on my tummy I could wear 18s. So, its progress. I’m hopeful that if I can get down a little more I’ll be able to do more and when I can do more I will lose more. That’s my goal anyways. :)

Recognizing greatness

We cannot recognize greatness in others unless we too posses that same quality in ourselves.

Daily Struggles with my spirited child

Today has been especially challenging with my 8 year old. Let me start by explaining about him, his personality and such. For anyone who follows Astrology you will totally understand when I say he’s 100% LEO! He thinks the world revolves around him, he is always right, but at the same time a very bright child and stubborn as hell. Anyways, since we pulled him out of public in 1st grade at the age of 6 it has been a struggle with him. He is very much a hands on learner, the type of kid who doesn’t like to be read too and once he’s got it he’s done and ready to move on. Well, we have been trying to find what works for him, learning wise, for 2 ½ years now. It hasn’t been easy. We have good days and not so good days. It didn’t help that I was having issues at the time as well and him and I would just butt heads. He has really struggled with his reading and writing. I tried sooo hard to get him to sound out the letters to read. He was having NO part of that. He knew his letters, sounds, etc but refused to sound anything out. I tried everything I could think of, read books to help, asked a ton of people for suggestions but no such luck. He would read sight words but nothing more. He wanted to read but he would choose hard books and when he would guess at a word and get it wrong I would correct him and he would get mad. With the help of a friend I found a book he would read. “Teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons” by Siegfried Engelmann, Phyllis Haddox, and Elaine Bruner. We breezed through that book. Then we tried to read regular books again. He choose a Scooby doo book. Didn’t work. He was frustrated and I was frustrated.
Finally I think we’ve nailed it. For one he lacks confidence when it comes to reading and second he is lazy. We decided to start back at the beginning with him with “I can read books”. He loves to read the Henry and Mudge books. So, we are letting him check those out at the library. They have less than 50 of them. Once he has read all of them we are gonna push him to start reading chapter books. Hopefully by then his vocabulary will have improved and he will have more confidence. Another thing we struggle with though is his spelling and writing. Because he refused to read for so long we are doing a 1st grade spelling with him. Which he is handling just fine and enjoys. Once we’re done with this book we are going to push 2nd grade and keep going until he reaches around his potential. Because he refused to read, and we are behind on his spelling, he can’t write yet. He does minimal writing now. Mostly in his spelling book but, even then he gets lazy and asks me to write it for him. I of course tell him no. It’s like pulling teeth to get him to write anything though. We barely get through his Latin and Language cause it has more writing than all his other subjects. I try to simplify it as much as possible when it comes to his writing otherwise it turns into a huge fight. It’s not worth it. Now to today. We we’re doing his spelling and we had a huge fight. He was giving 50% effort. He was writing his words and started writing really sloppy and big and I got upset. I stopped him and we had a long, serious talk. (He frustrates me so bad sometimes). I explained to him that spelling is very important to life. Without reading, spelling and writing you can’t get very far in life. (I want my kids to have more opportunities and not have to struggle like I have) I explained that without that you can’t get a good job, and without a job you have no money for food, clothes, a house, etc etc etc. (I’m up front and honest with my kids.) I tried to make him understand that without a good education it’s hard. (That doesn’t mean you have to have a degree, just a good education). I also talked about how some things might be boring and there might be some things he doesn’t want to do in life. But, sometimes he has to suck it up and do it anyways for the greater good. There are just something’s I won’t bend on. And reading, spelling and writing are some of those things. He was crying by the time I was done of course I felt like total crap, but he finished his work without anymore issues and we hugged and talk it over afterwards. It’s just do hard to get through to him sometimes. He’s sooo stubborn. That’s one of things I love about him and don’t love about him at the same time. LOL.


This week is going well so far with the new schedule. My oldest has completed his work daily without it taking ALL DAY! And yesterday my husband had a half day. So, even with him being home, us running errands and doing stuff around the house we still managed to complete all the lessons. Woo Hoo!

Our Schedule

With the suggestion of a fellow homeschooling mom. “GCK homeschool”. We are trying out a new schedule this week. We have independent study and group study. Independent work, which is spelling, math, handwriting, Pagan Studies and Latin, is done in the morning, since I’m not a morning person, and group work in the afternoon. Monday group work is assembling the lap books, Tuesday is History, Wednesday is Science, Thursday is Language Arts and Friday is Notebooking and completing any unfinished work. This is working so far this week. Lets see how long it will continue. I am hopeful!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Our Homeschooling Philosophy

We are a very eclectic family. Lots of different beliefs, likes, dislikes, etc. We believe that kids are always learning. It never stops. And they can learn from anything. They can learn from a book, watching TV, playing outside, playing a video game, playing a board game, cooking, grocery shopping, just being around an adult, the list is endless! So, while we have a lose schedule daily for our lessons, school/learning never stops. We don’t “Homeschool” from 8am-3pm Monday-Friday. We learn 24/7. I plan their lessons with the help of my wonderful husband and the influence of our boys. That’s right. I ask our boys what they want to learn, pay attention to what they are interested in, and include them in discussions about planning lessons. If something doesn’t seem like its working, I talk to them about it, ask their opinion and we make a change, if possible. I do follow The Well Trained Mind by Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer. It is my guide line. I believe that kids need “guidance” when they are young. While I don’t think they are mature enough to make all their decisions on their own, I value their opinion and try to treat them with respect. You must give respect to get it. If I let our boys choose everything they did during the day I don’t think they’d learn “enough” to get them through life. (But, that’s just our boys and my 2 cents) This is a tried and failed experiment in our home. I consider myself an eclectic homeschooler and part unschooler. I have been reading an unschooling book and despite what some people think I do have a lot of the same beliefs as an unschooler, but at the same time I think there are certain things kids need to know. And certain guidance that kids need. At least this is true in our home.
So, there you have it. That is basically our homeschooling philosophy in a nut shell. Take or leave it.

History Channel

The History Channel is offering free DVD's to schools and homeschools. The DVD they are giving away is a copy of their series, America: The History of US. The offer is only good through July 1st!
Theres also links after you finish filling out the form where you can sign up to receive newsletters, show information and updates.

NASA Sciece

I was sent an email this morning from one of my group. (Well Trained Mind) NASA Science is offering free DVD's and info about supernovas.
"Thanks to NASA, supernovas will soon be going off in classrooms around the country—no safety glasses required. It's done via a DVD called Journey to the Stars. Teachers can request a free copy along with supporting lesson plans and activity sheets at
"We want every classroom in the country to have a copy," says Lika Guhathakurta of NASA's Heliophysics Division in Washington DC. "Kids of all ages from K through 12 will enjoy the show—and never look at the night sky the same way again." (from their website)
At the bottom of the page, you'll see "The journey begins here" - click on the word "here," and it will take you to the order form for the free DVD.
Its worth checking into.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Unschooling Handbook

I am currently reading The Unschooling Handbook. It really teaches you have to a different perspective on how kids can learn. I would recommend this book whether you homeschool, unschool, or are just a parent, grandparent, anything in general.


I absolutely love It is one of the best resources available. It is very reasonable and afforable. I get as much of my stuff from Amazon as I can.

Blockbuster online

We we're recently turned on to this site cause our local Hollywood Video is going out of business. It turns out it's a pretty good site. There are tons documentaries and more. A great resource.

DVD Swap

This is an awesome site. You can trade DVD's and get new ones.


I absolutely LOVE this site. I have saved a ton of money using it. You can trade or purchase books on this site.

Online Learning

The kids love playing Roblox, and I always throw in any kind of educational games I can find on line.

Computer Games

We like using Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego, Jump Start games, Build a lot, Fable & Oblivion. We are hoping to eventually expand our collection of compter games.


My boys love to read. They have free reading time daily and every night before bed they have reading time. They love reading books such as Henry and Mudge, Magic Tree House, 39 Clues, The Witch Trade, Charlie Bone, Dragon Slayers Academy, The Secrets of Droon and any books about dragons.

Literature Reading

The boys are usually reading a classic literature book most days with their lessons. Such as Journey to the Center of the Earth, Robinson Crusoe, A Christmas Carol, The Hobbit, Wind in the Willows, War of the Worlds etc. It’s important that they get exposed to these classic stories. While my oldest usually reads the original or more advance version of these stories my youngest reads the kids version and/or watches a movie related to the book.

Wii game system

We are very fortunate to have the Wii game system. It is a wonderful system to use for learning as well as physical education when it’s rainy, too cold or hot outside. We have the Wii fit plus, Wii sports, Monopoly and Medieval games. It will not replace the boys being able to go outside but it’s a good alternative. Nothing beats going outside for some fresh air, bike riding and such.

Nintendo DS learning

I don’t believe all learning needs to be done in front of a book. Kids learn from anything and everything. So, we make great use of their Nintendo DS game systems. We have Spanish for everyone, My word coach, Learn Geography, Learn Chess, Burger Island , Cake Mania and Build a lot for some of their learning. They can learn something from each of these games. We're hopeing to get some more DS games soon. Such as Professor Layton games & Science Papa.


Since I was blessed with boys and they have the worst handwriting imaginable we do handwriting on a daily basis. We just use the Evan Moor handwriting books or what ever we get our hands on from or paperbackswap. com

Pagan Studies

We are an openly Wiccan family. I think it’s important for kids to have religion in their life, and since we are Eclectic Wiccans, its part of their lessons. My youngest is mostly listening to Pooka stories, coloring some pictures from Pooka pages, and doing crafts either I come up with or come from Circle Round. My oldest is reading Silver Raverwolf’s books and has recently started working through Raymond Bucklands complete book of Witchcraft. My goal is for the boys to experience Wicca, live Wicca and read as many books as they can about it while living at home. When they get old enough to make their own decisions they can choose to stay Wiccan or choose a different path.


For our Science I have been using “How the Earth Works” for our Earth Science. It covers just what the boys need to know as well as some experiments. I basically plan their entire curriculum. I try to include some reading, note taking, writing, research, activities, art and an experiment. It seems to be working well. We will be using “How the Universe works” as well as some NASA curriculum I was able to get FREE. (Gotta love free) We plan on starting with the planets this month, then next month move in to rockets. My husband has been dying to do rockets with the boys. We are devoting an entire month to rockets, if we can. The boys will be making some from scratch and we will try to purchase one from Hobby Lobby. The NASA curriculum we have has worksheets, badges, budget forms and everything they use for their planning, tracking and such. It should be exciting. This might take more than a month. LOL

Latina Christiana

For our Latin we use Latina Christiana & my oldest uses Famous Men of Rome. “Latina Christiana was designed as a beginning course for students of all ages. Each lesson consists of ten vocabulary words, a set of grammar forms, and a Latin saying. Exercises reinforce memory work, teach systematic grammar, and provide simple translation. Prayers, songs, conversational Latin, history lessons, maps, and games add interest and motivation. Latina Christiana and Memoria Press' Famous Men of Rome make the perfect pair. Latina Christiana's teacher book includes a small, free study guide for Famous Men of Rome, and these heroic stories of 30 great Romans will make the study of Latin come alive. “ (from website…Latina Christiana). There are also lessons on DVD for the older ones and lessons on CD for the younger ones. Both my boys are really enjoying their Latin studies. I love when they substitute words for Latin ones when they talk.
We purchased our Latina Christiana curriculum from Christiana on Amazon. I have heard great things about other Latin curriculums, but I haven't been able to try them out due to their costs. I have found Latina Christiana is very affordable and works wonderfully for us. There are some Christian references, but you will find that in most Latin curriculum, but it is easily skipped with out missing out on anything.


We are currently using Math-U-See. With this is a program you basically learn everything about a topic in one year. Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division, etc. There’s usually a few extra things thrown in the mix such as measurements, areas, cups, pints, etc. While most people, like myself at first, would think your kid might get bored doing the same thing, they really don’t, at least not mine. The books start off pretty easy and get harder as it progresses. It teaches more and more levels as you work through the book. There are also test booklets and it comes with DVD’s that teach the lesson to the child and you can purchase manipulative’s to go with the lessons. Such as blocks or fraction overlays. It is an awesome program in my opinion. But, keep in mind, what works for mine not work for everyone else.

The Well Trained Mind

We are currently using The Well Trained Mind by Jessie Wise and Susan Wise Bauer as our guide to homeschooling. "The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home (first published 1999 by W.W. Norton and now in its third edition) offers a step-by-step, grade-by-grade, subject-by-subject guide to the classical pattern of education called the trivium. " (from their website...The Well Trained Mind). It offers soooo much information about lessons, curriculums, and more. I fell in love with the book the moment I read it.

Total Language Plus

We are using Total Language Plus for our Language lessons. “Total Language Plus is an innovative language arts curriculum focused on critical thinking and communication skills.” “TLP offers literature-based, discovery style learning designed for Christian education. Our authors select exceptional literature and integrate the separate parts of language arts: spelling, vocabulary, grammar, and writing, as well as critical thinking and communication. “ (from their website.) It is a “Christian” based curriculum however; it is very easy to just skip those parts. What I like about Total Language Plus is that it incorporates a good story with it. It also has activities and field trips suggested for each section. Some of the questions really make a child think. It can be a great asset for kids who don’t care too much for writing. Some of the books turn it into a fun activity. The website is set up so you can look at a description and grade/age level suggestion for each book.

Story of the World

We are currently using Story of the World by Susan Wise Bauer and Jessie Wise, volume 2: The Middle Ages. This is our first actual “curriculum” to use for History. Before I started using it I just picked a topic they we’re interested in and created a unit study about it. It worked for the most part, but its good to have a guideline to work it now. My closest friend was using it with her kids. Mine find the actual reading extremely boring. We are hoping to try the CD’s soon. But the activity book provides a good spine, occasionally some good activities and some good reading suggestions. My boys and I do enjoy the map work though. I also use some other resources to make up for their History. Thematic units, History Pockets, internet and just about any books or info I can find and of course whatever my husband and I come up with. It seems to be working so far.
We are also hoping to start using Horrible Histories and Pagan Crusades with our History lessons.

Why we chose to homeschool

I thought I'd start off my blog with why we chose to homeschool our boys. John was in 4th grade and Eric was in 1st. Both boys we're bored with the work that the PS was providing. John was giving less than 100% effort. Usually around 50%. But, the biggest reason was Eric. Since he started school (Pre-K) he has had issues. He was always a more active child than his brother. We struggled with discipline with him. His Pre-K teacher didn't like him cause he asked too many questions and didn't always listen real well. (This was at the age of 4!) Then in K he got a pretty good teacher who actually understood him. Eric still got in trouble, often, because he asks a lot of questions, loves to talk and loves to be the center of attention. It was suggested more than once that he had ADHD. When it came time for him to go into 1st grade the school principal suggested we hold him back and put him in a T-1 class. (Which is basically a repeat of K) His K teacher, his dad and I disagreed. He was understand the work just fine, he just like to talk and has some extra energy. So, we put him in 1st grade. It was horrible from the beginning. I tried to to work with his teacher and him. He was in trouble daily. I tried going to the school and sitting in to help. Nothing was working. His teacher started taking his recess every day and even seperated him from the rest of the class. Because he would forget to raise his hand, ask too many questions, talk too much, or start irrating other kids. This might make him sound like a "bad" kid but he really wasn't he was just bored. He would complete his work, correctly then get in trouble most of the time. It didn't help that his teacher didn't like him and he knew it. Her and her assistant were disrespectful to him so he gave it back. (I witnessed this more than once). I tried getting his class changed. Didn't work. His teacher tried to talk to me about medicating him. I went home and did some research, even agreed to have him tested for ADHD. Found out that was a total joke. The meds are so dangerous and the test is a joke. I took him to the pshyciatrists office, it was just some random person who tested him and when they heard he had extra energy they prediagnosed him based on that. Theres a form I filled out and his teacher filled out. The questions we're like...talks to much, asks too many questions...what child doesn't?! I refused to medicate him and his teacher got irrate with him and said I was screwing up his chances to learn. I tried to tell her that he was bored and when she took away his only chance to release his energy all day how did she expect him to act. He wasn't allowed to talk in class, in the hall, in music, in computers, at lunch, in PE, anywhere. And PE was a joke. No real exercise there. So, anyways, when he started crying every morning about not wanting to go to school, then calling me from school asking to come home cause his tummy hurt, his dad and I had enough. We pulled them both and began deschooling them...and now homeschooling them. This was almost 3 years ago now. We have come a long way since then. We have stumbled...several times...but always managed to get back up and kept going. So, this is where out adventure begins with this blog.