Homeschool

Noah started Kindergarten homeschool this year. I didn’t know I was going to homeschool until probably five minutes before the school year started. I kept going back and forth between this and sending him to public school, but especially now that we’ve been doing it for a month, I feel like this was the best decision for our family. Over the summer, I read a lot about homeschooling and got some advice from friends, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the rest of this year brings. If it all goes well, we might continue into next year with First Grade. People ask me if I plan on homeschooling him forever, and all I can say is that I don’t know what the future will bring us. But for now, this is working, and it is more than just the education that is working for us. It is making me more organized in all the other areas of our home life. I’m keeping a better schedule, my house is cleaner, we are watching less TV, and we are all having more FUN! So far, so good. Noah loves learning, and I love being able to see it happen everyday. Here’s a peek into our little homeschool…

Noah doing his math while Lucas watches him.
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Kindergarten math; right now he’s learning how to make simple bar graphs.
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Our little bookshelf in the corner with our TINY collection of children’s books, coloring books, and homeschool/textbooks. We are slowly building up our book collection and constantly going to the library to check out books!
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Some of Noah’s art projects from preschool. He’s been adding to this wall lately (he wants me to tape up everything!), and he is on an Avenger’s and Comic Book heroes kick right now. He especially loves Spiderman and Wolverine.
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Lucas stacking his lego crayons. Lucas wants to be right there with us when we’re doing school.
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Noah writing. He has recently learned the phonics for m, s, t, r, c (the k sound), short i, short o, long e, short a, and “th.” He is also starting to read words and short sentences with these sounds (example words: the, that, ram, sat, sad, mad, cat, etc. example phrases: “see the ram sit. that cat is sad.”). After the daily reading lesson, he practices writing some of the letters.
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Some letters from his writing book.
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The Zoo

One Thursday afternoon, we had perfect weather for walking around outside.  Kristin and I decided to take advantage of it and head down to the Cincinnati Zoo with our five kiddos.  Apparently so did about a million other people in Ohio, because the zoo was PACKED that day.  Kristin got one of the last spots in the parking lot, and I had to park 8 blocks away, which was fine on the way into the zoo (all downhill), but after walking around for several hours and going back to the car, I did not appreciate the uphill battle with the double stroller.  Hehe.  Oh well, we still had a good time!!

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I was talking to the kids while these birds were being fed.  You could see them diving down for fish.  Kristin took my camera so I could be in some zoo shots 😛

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And she also took this picture of Claire.  hehe

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Penny was NOT HAVING IT that day.  She was ready to go!

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I was sitting next to a woman nursing her teeny, tiny baby on a bench in the Manatee House.  And here I am nursing Miss Chub.  😀

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Noah asked me to take his picture with a tiger…

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and a giraffe.

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This was the last exhibit we saw before our 30-minute hike back to the car.  She was my favorite.

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COSI

About a month ago, Sarah and I took the kids to COSI. The boys always love this place, because there are a lot of hands-on activities and cool things to see. I especially enjoyed the “Cool Chemistry” show we saw while we were there, and the kids loved watching things blow up! (I didn’t take any pictures during that part because I was busy nursing Claire and holding her ears!) It was a good afternoon outing for the kids, our last big thing to do before school started this year.

Noah and Lucas hand-in-hand in the hallway… awww…

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Saying cheese in front of a big tree slice where the kids could count hundreds of rings to see how old the tree was.

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Jacob taking his turn lifting a bowling ball, which when dropped would cause a burst of air to shoot a wiffle ball into the air on the other side.

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Noah making waves.

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Spinning the wheel to create a water tornado.

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Triton.

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Isabella shooting water jets.

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Isabella (and Savannah next picture) climbing out of the submarine.

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In the “old town” section, riding in a buggy.

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cosi11Ringing up some banana splits on ye olde cash register.

cosi12Noah the cameraman, on the set of the 50’s news broadcast.

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Camping with Sarah

We went camping with Sarah before school started. It was a little bit of a mess. We stayed for two nights. The first night, Nate and I only had enough blankets to keep the kids warm, so the two of us were FREEZING all night long (the baby was warm between us). Sarah and I went to Wal-Mart in the morning and bought three more sleeping bags and a fluffy blanket. After we got back to the campsite, we realized three people had a fever (Nate, Noah and Lucas), so we didn’t do much at all the rest of the camping trip except lay around the campsite and nap. Thankfully, we were very warm on the second night. We left early the next morning, and no one else got the fever. Well, we still had a good time, and hopefully when we do it again next year, no one will get sick!