Thursday, November 19, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Has many great teaching resources and many are FREE.
Laura Candler's file cabinet is full of great teaching printables for many levels of learning.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
I was looking for something that was different and fun. I really liked this site and wanted to share it with everyone.
I have both a teenager and also an elementary student I am teaching. This program fits them both very well.
I love exploring the lessons and also the online health journal you can do. I think it will bring great fun while learning important health issues in our home.
Aside from this site we will also be learning First Aid as well~
Here are a few websites I am planning on possibly using for them;
Kids Health First Aid
Teens & Health First Aid
Teens Health & Staying Safe
We plan on making some posters, practicing certain first aid techniques in case of an emergency, role playing in an emergency etc.. I think the boys will enjoy it, and it will be important lessons for them ~ for staying healthy and safe.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
“Home schooling is too important a task to rely on an inefficient method that “teaches” information to your children, just to have them forget everything they learned in a couple of weeks. If hands-on learning helps information stick in children’s long-term memories, mothers need to incorporate more hands-on strategies in their day-to-day teaching. Most left-brained moms, however, want to stay step-by-step with the traditional scope and sequence and traditional teaching methods. They often feel uncomfortable with hands-on, non-traditional teaching, yet they know their children are not retaining their textbook studies. Many children are crying out for a new and fun way to learn.” ~ Wade Hulcy ~ meet Wade Hulcy
We are changing how we teach science instead of allowing a particular program or a curriculum dictate to us how my “learners at home” are “supposed” to learn their science and we are having a ton of fun doing it~ :)
We adapt the curricula, books and resources to our learners here at home. We might turn things upside down or find creative ways to use a science text or encyclopedia, biography of a scientist or workbook page.
Some might recall how we were using Apologia General Science for my 13yo. (I dont normally go by grades, although ask my son and he will tell you 7th, lol ) anyway, he started to REALLY dislike this program.
It is very “textbooky” even though Simply CM recommends this as a Living Book program~ I don't see this when it comes to this program as much, however, there was no denying just how great this program is for the middle school learner. My Right Brained learners need to be directed in their learning just a big different and I have found some really fun ways to do just that~ here are some ideas I wanted to share with you.
First off, I have had my youngest son now 10 ½ ask me if he could also accompany my 13 yo while working on his Middle School Science. I had been planning on having them both work on the same science topic so this was very welcomed and I agreed to allow him to sit with us while listening to the audio CD for the Apologia General Science. We were working on the first Module which was entitled “ A Brief History of Science”.
The 13 yo is working the program using a Lapbook by Knowledge Box Central and after each portion will answer the “On Your Own Question” on notebook pages provided in the lapbook.
I quickly created this morning a notebooking page for two scientists that my youngest found of particular interest ( I am not too worried about starting over from the beginning since this will be a more broader approach to science history and will adapt more to his age and ability, he will be doing this program in far greater depth once he is a bit older, so for now it will be more delight directed) Isaac Newton and Antoni van Leeuwenhoek. These tied in nicely since we are also working on NOEO Science – Biology and studying the Microscope.
Here is a link to the notebooking page
(I couldn’t find one I liked so I quickly made my own to use).
We finished up listening to the first module this morning and it was then time to prepare for studying for the “test”. Hmm, well I am not big on tests (I agree with assessments and diagnostic testing) so I found a fun way for him to “review the information” and see just what he has learned thus far.
We (all three of us) are putting together a “brief history of science timeline” we are using poster board and will create the timeline with all the bits of information for each scientist from the module. We will add dates and a snippet of information or drawing if they would like. Sometimes we make them folded so they are 2 dimensional sometimes not, sometimes they like to draw a picture or make a symbol to remind them of something about the person, whichever they choose it will be a great review of the time periods and contributors that were outlined in the chapter.
We plan to add to the timeline at any time with any particular information the boys would like. They find timelines very helpful and I think, when dealing with so much information having it in a logical, sequential order really helps to make much more sense of things during historical time periods. We find it answers many questions and can add even more insight to a particular topic.
Another thing my older child is doing is instead of writing out the answers and using note cards like the text recommended, we are making a HUGE poster. Taking each piece of information outlined in the study guide and creating fun organizers or cartoons or 2dimensional folds on the poster so that all the information will be there visually right in front of him~ I explained he could get as creative as he would like~ He loved the idea and got right to work.
Changing the way the science was presented, how the activities that were recommended had to be done and allowing the old saying “the more the merrier” turned what I thought was going to be one more program set to the side into a GREAT program for teaching and learning science on different levels.
I also think seeing the interest and intrigue the 10 yo had shown while listening to the audio brought perhaps a new insight for the older child and he was able to orally go back and “recap” briefly to him what had been read thus far, a really great way for me to listen to his thought processes and understanding of the information.
I will be writing more and more about a few more (some may call) bold steps I have taken to bring more fun with our learning science at home~ but just wanted to share these ideas.
Sunday, November 8, 2009
I think Autumn is a beautiful time of year, living in New England we have the opportunity to really reap the benefits of Autumn - the cranberries, apples, picture perfect landscapes right outside your window, bright sunny days with a bit of a "nip" in the air~ it is really a great time of year, here in New England.
With all of those wonderful things we still have many things we have to do and prepare for this time of the year. The Fall Season is full of chores outside and inside preparing for winter and the upcoming Holiday Season.
I have learned over the years to try to prepare the best I can for things; bad weather, sickness, holidays etc... it is a very busy time of the year for all of us.
Homeschooling can add to our already busy schedule~ I am thankful I have taken time over the ears to make seasonal lists. They have helped me stay on target (somewhat)- I use these lists to help me remember, because like so many, I tend to get wrapped up in things and would forget some pretty important things if I did not use these things as reminders.
Here is a sample of my Fall To Do List~
* Fall Cleaning; windows and blinds cleaned - screens taken out and washed down and stored
* Pantry and Kitchen cupboards organized and food re-sorted, purge old foods from storage. I also make a list of foods I might be in need of like extra coke (for sickness) or possibly pastas or something like extra kleenex or chicken soup for cold/flu season.
* Call doctors for children to set up fall physicals (this year we skipped b/c of the flu epidemic and I will re-schedule for the Spring)
* Take out Fall Decorations and platters/candy dishes etc.. for house.
* Radiators taken apart and cleaned and vacuumed "before" we turn heat on.
* Call heating company to set up furnace to be service for long winter.
* In bedrooms wash all summer bedding and pack away and add winter comforters and bring out throw blankets from storage to be used as wraps on cold days.
* Clean out medicine closet and purge all old medicines that are out of date, make list of medicines to pick up in case of sickness and also call doctors for any prescription refills needed to inhalers, or breathing machines, etc.. add to the list a cool mist humidifier and purchase extra filters for continued cleaning throughout winter months.
** Wash and bring out all winter hats/mittens and snow pants etc.. check to see if things fit and are ready along with their boots, before snow gets here.
* pick up batteries for flash lights and check to see if we need candles.
Items I keep in my linen/medical closet:
Cool Jel Ice packs
Tylenol for adults and children ( I check dosage according to the childrens changing weight as well)
Ibuprofen for adults and children
Peptobismol tablets and also liquid form.
Vicks vapor rub
Chapsticks one for each person in the family (usually buy extra too for chapped lips and nose therapy)
Saline mist nasal Spray one for each person in the family, I print their name on it so no one gets confused.
Muscinex for children and adults
Robitussin CF and DM
Gatorade in closet also to make for popsicles
Cars maintenance for winter months – oil change, fluids filled, tires rotated etc.. I also keep a dishpan and also paper towels for unfortunate tummy troubles. Also snow shovels and windshield snow brush and blankets are added as well. (we have jumper cables, but choose to purchase AAA a well worth purchase as they have really come in handy during emergencies)
Shrubs covered for snow damage
Christmas lights put up before snow comes
Snowblower maintenance for winter use.
Salt/kitty litter purchased for ice removal
Snowshovels checked and brought out along with roof snow rake.
Snow sticks hammered into ground for snow removal of driveway before ground completely freezes.
Lists like these can really help when the weather is bad and your not as able to just run out and get something if you are sick or have a sick child.
It is near time I get out my Christmas Journal and begin planning for the Holidays ~ but I will save that for another time~
Happy Autumn preparation and planning ~
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Sunday, November 1, 2009
http://www.eduplace.com/kids/hme/k_5/graphorg/ - I used the Time Order chart and
http://www.readingquest.org/strat/ - the History Frame
http://www.somers.k12.ny.us/intranet/skills/thinkmaps.html - the Tree Map and the Chart and the Timeline were very helpful.
http://www.freeology.com/graphicorgs/- the two BEST I found for us were the Timeline and Timeline2 these were going to be perfect for what we needed. (see page 5)
http://www.abcteach.com/free/h/historicatimeline.pdf - another timeline I found from ABC Teach.
World Coloring page of Continents to track the journey of the explorers: http://www.theodora.com/maps/new4/world_color.gif - I liked coloring and laying out the entire world and continents for him so we can go back and map out the actual voyages everyone had taken.
Explorer Coloring Pages:
http://karenswhimsy.com/european-explorers.shtm - these are great to use for cutting and pasting to your notebook pages for writing~
I have found that sometimes “premade” lapbooks are kind of frustrating for us~ we really enjoy creating our own lapbooks and lapbook folds so I use many different templates and add we add the information we are learning to those. Here is where I get many of my templates:
Lapbook template for Vocabulary Words- (this is one I used for vocabulary words for the chapter).
http://web.archive.org/web/19970327132424/pasture.ecn.purdue.edu/~agenhtml/agenmc/canada/images/explor.gif - paths of exploration
http://www.atozteacherstuff.com/pages/4611.shtml - this gave me the idea of creating a poster and also using a graphic organizer for keeping track of all the people and facts that went on at this time period.
Additional Resources for working on an Explorers Unit~
http://score.rims.k12.ca.us/activity/newworld/ - activity
http://www.chenowith.k12.or.us/TECH/subject/social/explore.html - breaks down each explorer in depth (European Explorers)
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