Some posts i liked and want to remember

Here are some posts that I've appreciated in the homeschooling world.

Successful homeschooling presents Why I am Still Homeschooling.

Walking Therein gives us Isaac's water experiments.

Justin liked this one: chicks hatching. :)

Homemade homeschoolers taught a lesson on Lichen.

Whereas Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers thought that mini-offices was interesting. I agreed. Thought it an idea worth keeping for later down the road.

Wired for noise talks about socialization and isolation.

graham family ministries

I just want to remember this site.

Graham Family Ministries.

They have downloadables of a variety of sorts. Spurred my imagination.

Math Mammoth Contest

Explain WHICH book or product interests you most (see the website). Then explain in several sentences the reasons and factors that keep you from buying it at this time. In other words, give your "excuses" for not buying. You can explain how much you perhaps love your current math curriculum, cite economics, and so on. Just let your fingers fly on the keyboard!

Math Mammoth is having a contest for books from her website.

This here be my entry. :)

What would I like to get should I have an opportunity to do so?
Math Mammoth Clock
is a worktext that covers telling time and reading the clock, telling time intervals, and understanding the calendar. It is suitable for grades 1, 2, and 3.
Why? Because telling time is important. :) And I figure this book will have some hints for helping my buggy learn to tell time that I might not think of.

Math Mammoth Canadian Money
is a worktext that covers money-related topics usually encountered during grades 1-3, using the coins and bills of Canada. The book contains both textbook explanations and exercises, and is designed to be very easy to teach from, requiring very little teacher preparation (you do need to find some practice coins before the lessons).
Why? A book that uses Canadian money! so many are just USA only. So I think this is cool.

And last but not least Math Mammoth Introduction to Fractions
contains fraction-related material suitable for approximately grades 2-4. This material does not include division or multiplication of fractions, nor adding unlike fractions. The lessons are mostly simple, introductory lessons to various fraction topics.
why? simply because the idea of teaching fractions seems a bit beyond my thinking today. I know my buggy is only 3 and fractions is not something he'll be learning yet....but it's good to be prepared. :)

Learn Greek

Dan Phillips has a greek blog. Go figure that I ever check it out as I'm not into greek...but I do think it would be good to learn...and as I'll be homeschooling our buggy I figure in time we can learn it together. Hopefully this site will still be around. If not..we have DAD! :)

So why learn greek?

because God used it to speak to us. What better reason? :)

it's all in videos as far as I can tell, so it should be interesting.

Canadian Electoral System

The US Election has the various US based homeschool boards posting all types of stuff on the US electoral process. It gets me thinking sometimes....some of these companies are able to spread their stuff world-wide...why not have a bigger offering of electoral process for Canada? We just had an election too! Has no one made a Canadian Electoral Process Study?

So anyways, I figured I'd see what I could pull together from sites on-line. :)

Elections Canada On-line
- this site seems to have everything you can think of. from the basics down to the nitty-gritty.

Library of Parliament
- these folks put together a list of frequently asked questions.

- they of course would have some type of entry :)

- gives us a good overview. Lists all the parties currently available as well.

That's all I've managed to find for now. I'm thinking it would be fun to pull some of this stuff together and see if I can make an actual study unit of it all. Wouldn't that be fun? :)

Should I ever get around to doing so...this site might prove useful for ideas (not copying, just things to think about). Found out about it here. And here's another site for ideas.

I would probably need to think about doing something also on all the different prime ministers we've had as well.

Homeschool blogger award nominations

from what I understand, you go here. follow the links and then nominate the homeschool blogger that you really like for whatever category.

should be interesting to see who wins.

Join Us at the HSBA!

Types of Poems - Acrostic

An acrostic poem is very easy to write. It can be about any subject. This kind of poem can be written in different ways, but the simplest form is to put the letters that spell your subject down the side of your page. When you have done this then you go back to each letter and think of a word , phrase or sentence that starts with that letter and describes your subject.
For samples go here.

for instance here's one I did


apple and grass eaters
binky about when happy
born in 31 days
into trouble they hop
totally enjoying their foods
smile makers

Types of Poems - Diamante

Do you want to try some poetry with your kids? In Our Write Minds has a great post on writing a diamante poem!

Diamante: A seven-line poem that takes the shape of a diamond.


Majestic, proud

Roaring, snarling, prowling

Mane, muscle . . . Fleece, fluff

Bleating, leaping, grazing

Meek, gentle


A Poem of Opposites

Remember that the first and last words of a cinquain are synonyms—the last word of the poem renames the first. Diamantes, however, are poems about opposites: the first and last words have opposite meanings (or convey opposite ideas).

A diamante has seven lines that follow this sequence:

Line A: Topic A (must be a noun)

Line B: Two vivid adjectives that describe Topic A

Line C: Three interesting “-ing” action verbs that describe Topic A

Line D: Two concrete nouns about Topic A and two about Topic G

Line E: Three interesting “-ing” action verbs that describe Topic G

Line F: Two vivid adjectives that describe Topic G

Line G: Topic G (must be a noun)

So hop on over to Writing a Diamante Poem for another sample poem as well as detailed instructions for teaching your kids to write one of their own!

Copyright 2008 Kim Kautzer. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Here’s another example:

Clear, brilliant
Glowing, shining, revealing
Mirror, candle . . . Whisper, shadow
Deepening, sleeping, shrouding
Black, quiet

all this comes from In Our Write Minds.

My boy is Three

Boy are the questions starting to come.

When I am going to put him in preschool?
Why I am not teaching him right now?
How am I going to give him social time with other children?
What's wrong with the public's working for our children.
Do you realize how much time it's going to take you to do this?

Yes..... I knew there would be questions....

But some questions come so laden with "attitude" I have to be careful not to give attitude back.
Inform, educate, explain...don't be attitudinal.

ARGH!!!!!!!!! :)

Money and Children

Fun Money Lessons for Children

Watching money in action is a great way for kids to learn about how it works and what it means. There are many opportunities to turn everyday activities into money management lessons. You probably have your own, but here a few ideas to get you started.

At the grocery store. Children love making grown-up choices, so give them a budget and let them be in charge of selecting one or more items on your list. Before you go shopping, clip coupons together and reward them with the money you save.As they get older, hone their bargain-hunting skills by showing them how to comparison-shop, how to spot deals, and the differences (and cost savings) between generic and brand names.

At the restaurant. Whether you're eating take-out or dining out, give children a set amount of money and instructions to order a healthy meal. They'll practice budgeting and learn to check for what's included with their meal. As they get older, introduce them to the concepts of tax and tipping.

Playtime for the very young set. Set up play stores or restaurants with toy cash registers, coins, and groceries/food items.

At the ATM machine. Talk to your children about where money comes from, that you've earned it by working, and that you can only withdraw as much as you have in your account. When they're older, have them press the buttons and enter transactions at the bank machine.

Paying bills. When you're paying bills online, show kids that things like watching TV, using the phone, and turning on the lights all have to be paid for. While you're at it, talk about the difference between wants and needs, and the value of planning for long-term goals.

Education tip: Paying with cash rather than credit or debit cards will help your children understand how money is exchanged for goods and services. Let them figure out how much to give the cashier and verify the change. Ask for your change in small bills or coins to gives children an opportunity to recognize money and count it.

The entrepreneurial spirit. Support your child's interest in starting a business. From traditional lemonade stands, paper routes, lawn mowing, or selling crafts, children feel empowered by earning their own income. Use this fun opportunity to help them understand input costs (for the lemons, sugar, and cups), revenue and profits.

Saving. Consider giving your young children three piggy-banks — for saving, spending, and charity. Let them decorate the containers and have them help decide what proportion of their income (including allowance, gifts, or tooth-fairy money) goes into each. Swap piggy-banks for a real savings account around age 10.

Some folks I've heard do four piggy-banks just to make the math easier for their children. Saving, spending, charity and rainy day planning.

Money and the use of it can be taught most anywhere.

Much of this information was presented by "the Vault" from Scotiabank.

Mother's Day - 2008, freebies

TOS has sent out another Friday freebie newsletter. This one focuses on Mother's day. So here are some Mom's Day activities for children to do.

A homemade card - this one actually looks kinda neat, meant for older children though I think as it's more along the idea of a scrapbooked card. As TOS says :
This card will be a lovely keepsake. There are pull out cards where the kids can write a list of the things Mom does for them. Then, there are three other pull outs (That spell out M-O-M) for your kids to write things they appreciate about you.
Some Mother's Day coupons. These are strips of paper that children fill out with things they will do if requested.

Homeschoolzone has a whole whack of mother's day crafts that children can make. From magnets to paperweights to plants. Check it out. :)

Other on-line resources (I just plugged mother's day crafts into the search engine and this is some of what it came up with).

Enchanted Learning is much like homeschoolzone in that it provides a variety of activities for children to do. and then there's Danielle's place and Dltk's spot. For some other ideas you can go here or over to amazing mom's.

If none of those ideas work for you do your own search and see what fun stuff you can come up with. :)

Happy crafting!

Oh......while I was at it I thought hmm...why not research how Mother's Day came about. This is what I discovered:

The majority of countries that celebrate Mother's Day do so on the second Sunday of May. On this day, it is common for Mothers to be lavished with presents and special attention from their families, friends and loved ones. But it hasn’t always been this way.

Only recently dubbed “Mother's Day,” the highly traditional practice of honoring of Motherhood is rooted in antiquity, and past rites typically had strong symbolic and spiritual overtones; societies tended to celebrate Goddesses and symbols rather than actual Mothers. In fact, the personal, human touch to Mother’s Day is a relatively new phenomenon. The maternal objects of adoration ranged from mythological female deities to the Christian Church itself. Only in the past few centuries did celebrations of Motherhood develop a decidedly human focus.

That makes me wonder....where is all the hullabaloo about Mother's day that there is about Hallowe'en? Both started from pagan roots. :)

Wikipedia says much the same thing:

Different countries celebrate Mother's Day on various days of the year because the day has a number of different origins.

One school of thought claims this day emerged from a custom of mother worship in ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (15 March) to 18 March.

The ancient Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to Juno, though mothers were usually given gifts on this day.

In some countries Mother's Day began not as a celebration for individual mothers but rather for Christians.
Regardless of the history, Mother's Day today is just a day where we can say to the important women in our lives....hey thanks! what you do means much.

So happy crafting for Mother's day!

Free Rice

Not sure if I've ever commented on this site before.
It's called Free Rice. What is it is a vocabulary site that through advertising gives away rice to developing countries. The fact page is here.

If FreeRice has the rice to give, why not give it all away right now?

FreeRice is not sitting on a pile of rice―you are earning it 20 grains at a time. Here is how it works. When you play the game, advertisements appear on the bottom of your screen. The money generated by these advertisements is then used to buy the rice. So by playing, you generate the money that pays for the rice donated to hungry people.

So it's a site where you can improve your vocabulary and help folks out at the same time.

So far my highest score is 43, with 2580 grains of rice donated. And I must say, I really don't even notice the advertising.

Rather cool eh?

TOS contest

The HSB Front Porch is having a contest and you can win a $50 gift certificate just for blogging about The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Spring Promo before midnight April 30, 2008. Subscribe now to The Old Schoolhouse Magazine and receive 25 BONUS gifts valued at over $550! The Winter Promo sold out, don't miss out on the free gifts this time!

They are also giving away a $150 gift certificate to the Schoolhouse Store. All print subscribers (new or renewing) between April 3 - 30, 2008 will be automatically entered into a drawing. No purchase neccessary to win. To enter without subscribing, please send a postcard with your name, address, telephone number, and email address to:
The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Spring Promo Contest
PO BOX 8426
Gray, TN 37615

Field Trippers Guide

So want to go on a field trip in US or Canada?

Check out this place. Homeschool Buyers Co-op. It even has Ontario listed!

California Homeschooling

What can I say, I'm glad I live in Ontario and not California. But I do find this somewhat alarming.

On one hand you have a family with numerous complaints against them regarding abuse and a mother who is poorly educating her children.

On the other hand, you have parents who are wanting to homeschool their children and being told that they don't have the constitutional right to do so.

Dan Phillips over at Biblical Christianity has provided a whole whack of links. Go over there to check them out.

It is a bit alarming for both sides.

Easter is coming

This time of year is hard in a pastor's family, especially in a church that celebrates the day's of Easter.... Good Friday service, Sonrise service and so forth. Means extra work for pastor, and less of having daddy around to help and play. :) But I was thinking about it, and as God would have it, so was This Old Schoolhouse, they sent out their Friday Freebie, and it's all about Easter. So here are some links on Easter to help with the teaching and crafting of it.

Perhaps first I'll give you an email that was sent to me though on the facts of Easter for this year.
Easter this year is: Sunday March 23, 2008
As you may know, Easter is always the 1st Sunday after the 1st full moon after the Spring Equinox (which this year is March 20). This dating of Easter is based on the lunar calendar that Hebrew people used to identify Passover, which is why it moves around on our Roman calendar.
A couple more things you might be interested in! Based on the above Easter can actually be one day earlier (march 22) but that is pretty rare.
This year is the earliest easter any of us will ever see the rest of our lives. And only most elderly of our population (aged 95 or more) have ever seen it this early. And none of us have or will ever see it a day a day earlier.
Here are the facts:
The next time Easter will be this early (March 23) will be the year 2228 (220 years from now). The last time it was this early was 1913 (so if you're 95 or older, you are the only ones that were around for that!) The next time it will be a day earlier (March 22), will be in the year 2285 (277 years from now). The last time it was on March 22 was 1818. So, no one alive today has or will ever see it any earlier than this year!
Now for other Easter stuff :)

Make a Lesson Plan

One of the things I discovered about Donna Young's site is that she linked to various pages on how to put together a Lesson plan.

Let's say you have a book that you are using for a curriculum.
1. you chosen the book.

2. decide how long you will be using it. use these steps to planning.
Steps-to-Planning checklist:
  1. How many weeks of study?_____
  2. How many weeks for special projects?______
  3. Subtract step 2 from step 1. ____ weeks
  4. How many pages are in the book(s)?______
  5. How many lessons are in the book(s?______
  6. How many pages are tests/review?______
  7. Subtract the number of test/review pages from the number of pages in the book.______
  8. Divide step 7 by step 3- _____ pages per week.
3.Now break it down a bit more...
a. how many pages will you do?
b. where will you call it a day?
c. does the book have it's own laid out plans?

Lots more but I don't have time right now to go through it all.
Follow her links, read through her examples and have fun! :)

Planning out your Homeschool day

I was sent an email from The Homeschool Store (part of TOS). Anyways, it included some freebies.

One of the freebies listed was to Donna Young's Home School Lesson Planners. I looked at them and thought...So??? And then I said, hold on, why reinvent the wheel? Should I ever need to plan out lessons, this page just might be helpful. I'd have to figure out how to use them and all that, but this would save me the steps and energy in having to come up with something myself. You might find that it serves the same purpose for you. There are also links for a variety of other types of planning you might need to do, from daily plannersm calendars, art and more. Check it out.

They also included a link to family about how to organize your homeschool day, how to think out the process of doing so. Plan, Prioritize, Respond. Have a routine, but stay flexible. :)

Learning Numbers

I liked this idea...seems so simple, and yet so very doable. :)

From the Homeschool math Blog, teaching preschoolers numbers.

In a nutshell:
I used foam numbers and plastic numbers, and just made a heap of them between us. I would pick one, hold it up high and call out loud its name, such as "Number five!" and put it to my personal pile.

She would then find the same number (I made sure there were at least two of each) and did the same, called out loud its name and gathered the number to herself.

Then it was her turn to pick any number from the pile, call out its name, and put it to her pile, and I had to find the same number.

After all the numbers in the middle pile were gone, her task was to arrange her numbers in order. That's it.
Should you use a math dictionary? This is the blog post at Homeschool Math Blog that suggested making a dictionary (or a lap book) of math terms.

I liked the idea. Having a little book that Justin, when he is old enough, can write in different math terms that he learns.
Let your child/student make their own math dictionary! Just make a new page in it every time there is a new concept or term to study. The student can write the term, write an explanation, an example calculation, or draw a picture of it − or all of those.

Making such a math vocabulary book shouldn't take lots of time, because you don't usually encounter new words every single lesson in a typical math curriculum. The rest of the time the book can act as a reference or as a review medium.

There is one exception though, and that is GEOMETRY. In geometry, just about all the time you have new terms to learn. In fact, a big part of the geometry in elementary grades is simply learning the meaning of words such as parallel, perpendicular, trapezoid, vertical angles, symmetry, diameter, radius, circumference, and so on.
Anyways, go there to read the rest of the post. Thought it interesting, and worth remembering. :)

Discernment in Churches

I have to admit, I really like this idea that Connie has at Practicing Theology.

I hope that I can use something like this to help Justin learn to think seriously about the church that he may or may not get involved with in the future.

Her Premise.
The initial research.
The "I am there" participating.

Not sure if Connie will add more, but if she does, I'll link to them as well.

Homeschool on Video

Thank you to Mrs. Wilt for this. :)

Homeschool Rant have to go check this out. Make you laugh, make you snort, make you go ...uh huh. :) :) As Kim says "It's a homeschool rant, and it's good stuff!"

Making a 3-D snowflake

Got this idea from Holy Experience, who referred me here.

Think it's something I can do sometime with Justin (not yet though, he's not quite old enough to handle it). :)

Written directions
Take 6 squares of any kind of paper.
Fold in half on the diagonal.
Cut 4 slits on both sides, don't let the slits connect.
Lay it flat, and then using tape, take two sides and loop them together. Alternate sides.

Do this for each of the four slits.
This makes one side of the snowflake.

Then make the other 5.

Take three of the sides and staple the ends together.
then do the same for the other three.

Put the stapled ends together and staple them as well.
Then staple some of the edges together to make cohesive unit.

Then hang up! :)

The video does a better job of explaining it. :)

Ah here..found one on Youtube. :)

Surprise find

When I was looking up Spelling stuff, I found this page. I didn't find it very helpful as this colour coding stuff didn't make much sense to me. I hit the home button though....and it led me to pages I found more useful.

They have Curriculum outlines.
They have a humanities link. To a Mr. S.

And Various Homework pages, with activities to do to learn stuff. :) Things like Life in the Artic, and explorers and so forth. Might be a good resource. :)


Spelling, spelling, spelling...what child doesn't need to know how to spell, and how to spell well.
It's one of the things that drives me nuts with many of the youth I meet now-a-days...they can't spell even simple words.

Anyways, spelling helps for if and when I should need them.

Inspired by a email newsletter from TOS.

SpellingCity. I went there using my firefox browser, and was told I should use IE instead as there is a known bug using firefox with their system. So... IF you go to Spelling City...use IE.

All About Spelling has free spelling tests. They have them for each grade level.

Here's a page called Spelling It right. Run by a teacher.

Busy Teachers Cafe has this language arts page.

Everyday Spelling is a useful site as well. Comes up with common words misspelled and helps for dealing with spelling as well.

I found the Mount Diablo School District Spelling List to be the most comprehensive that I have found so far.

TLS has some worksheets. I didn't find them very extensive, but it's a resource none-the-less.

Lots of sites on-line to look at. These seem to be a good start.

Reasons to Homeschool

I have to admit, I liked these. :)

Top Reasons To Home School Your Children

  1. Studies show that home-schooled children average between the 80th and 90th percentile, regardless of the socio-economic background, or educational level of the parents.
  2. Great student teacher ratio.
  3. Very good communication between the student, teacher and parents.
  4. The student can’t lie about their homework.
  5. With a class size of one, they can’t copy anybody else's work.
  6. The curriculum is in perfect agreement with the values of the parents.
  7. The children will not bring bad habits home from school.
  8. The pace of learning will be geared to the ability of each child, not the lowest common denominator.
  9. You don’t have to fix lunch in the morning.
  10. Children will be better adjusted socially if they don’t learn social skills from the street gangs.
  11. Without peer pressure, they learn to think for themselves, not just parrot what the “group wants to hear”.
  12. Every educator agrees that parental involvement is the key to success in a child’s education. How could one be more involved?
  13. Your child will never be “just a number” in the classroom.

20. Your kids never tell you that you're a lot dumber than their teacher.

19. If you can't find matching socks for your child first thing in the morning, who cares?

18. Cleaning out the refrigerator can double as chemistry lab.

17. Your kids never have a reason to think they'll get beat up by a gang at school.

16. If the principal gives the teacher a bad evaluation, she can stick her icy feet against his legs at night.

15. You can post the Ten Commandments on your school room wall, and you won't get sued.

14. You never have to drive your child's forgotten lunch to school.

13. Your child will never go to their 20th high school reunion, meet an old flame, and recklessly abandon their marriage.

12. You get to change more than diapers, you get to change their minds.

11. If you get caught talking to yourself, you can claim you're having a PTA meeting.

10. It's better to be slightly concerned about socialisation than very concerned about socialism.

9. Your child will never suffer the embarrassment of group showers after PE.

8. The only debate about the school lunch program is whose turn it is to cook.

7. You never have to face the dilemma of whether to take your child's side or the teacher's side in a dispute at school.

6. If your child gets drugs at school it's probably Tylenol.

5. The teacher gets to kiss the principal in the faculty lounge and no one gossips.

4. Your kids recognize that this list is numerically in reverse order.

3. Your honour student can actually read the bumper sticker that you have put on your car.

2. If your child claims that the dog ate his homework you can ask the dog.

1. Some day your children will consider you to be a miracle working expert and will turn to you for advice.