Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone has a wonderful day to day!
It seems this year that the stores are racing past this Thanksgiving more then ever to get to Black Friday which I find sad : (
So little is mentioned about Thanksgiving you wouldn't even know that is was actually the holiday not Black Friday!
Anyway, I am cooking a turkey today (the church sent over all the fixins for a nice Thanksgiving meal). It is just going to be the four of us, It just doesn't seem festive when you don't have guests over... I told my family to try and think of something they are thankful for this year (It has been a really really tough year for us so thinking of something will be tough). Right now I am thankful for Advil! I have been having such a terrible ache in my knee - I guess this is what happens when you are 46.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Not Going To College Curriculum?

Good Monday Morning To You All!
I had to check the computer date to be sure it is Monday - Yilkes! The days all seem the same here.....
I was wondering if anyone has found a website/Blog which covers topics that should be covered if you don't plan on going to college?
I think that could be a great new curriculum idea for some one to sell.
What brought me to this is that on another site they asked if Kelly plans on going to college or not which should influence my teaching plans for her.
I really wonder how many of the topics would be omitted....
If you have found anything like this please let know
Thank You!

*I did find this book while roaming the web: Life Prep for Homeschooled Teenagers It looks like it covers alot of great topics -Now if I only had the money to buy it : (

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Topics Being Covered......

Here we are at Thursday already, Gosh the weeks just go by fast...
I seem to be all over the place with schooling again,
We are enjoying the Boxcar Children as our Beyond Five In A Row tile. I just love how many topics we cover doing schooling this way... and if Kelly is interested in any of the topics we go further into them. Some of the topics are childish and Kelly get's aggrivated but we just go quickly over them. I'm still not sure how you write this type of learning up in a transcript form but I will worry about that at the end of the school year.
We are also using "A History Of Us" vol. 9 for history, We are getting to the Depression (I sure can relate to alot of what is mentioned in these chapters.... no work, everything being shut off ect.). I really like Joy Hakim's books, She writes just enough about each topic & the pictures are really good which helps to keep Kelly's attention.
We kind of tossed the Apologia Zoology 1 book to the side, Kelly just didn't have any interest in most of the topics : (
We are still working on geography, using "Galloping The Globe" and I had a great atlas in our bookshelf that I pulled out "Scholastic Atlas of the World". I was getting extra books about each country from the library but really we aren't interested in going to indepth into each country just knowing where they are and some fun facts about them is just fine for now.
I still need to find a remedial grammer & math book..... I need a real easy to understand book on both topics but not babyish because she hates that. I have been using some worksheets and that doesn't seem to be working - to all over the place I think. I found a neat website on teaching children with learning disabilities, It stated some signs most of which Kelly deals with:
Indication observations:
Difficulty learning new skills, relying on memorization
Trouble learning about time
Difficulty remembering facts
Confusing basic words (dog, cat, run)
Poor coordination, 'accident prone', unaware of physical surroundings
Having a hard time learning the connection between letters and sounds (Phonetics)
Spelling and reading errors such as substitutions (house/home), letter reversals (b/d), inversions (m/w) and transpositions (felt/left)
Problems with planning
Impulsive behavior
Transposes number sequences and confuses arithmetic signs
If your run across others like this site/blog please pass it along to me ( I have really got to find some new ideas on how to help her learn.
The public school is taking the entire Thanksgiving week off, I have been debating if we would or not.... I sure could use the rest from thinking about schooling.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Praying Mantis & Baby

Here is a praying mantis I saw the other night on our hay bale, She was walking on the pitch fork with what looked like a baby on her back. I ran in and got my camera, the picture didn't come out very good. I got Kelly and she saw it also, but before I could get my son to see her she was gone... Nature really is amazingly beautiful : )

Friday, November 13, 2009

Library Up-Date

Thank you for the posts, I appreciate them!
I went ahead and wrote to the library about the matter, Well I heard back....
The head lady said she went and checked out the books and after lengthy cleaning the books still smelled like urine.... I knew she would back up the first gal. As to why I had to pay for the "worst" book, she said it was because of the stain even though I explained in my note that the book was never used and didn't leave the box. They told me that I should pick up from them plastic book protectors that I could use to protect the books in the future - That they were sorry that my family could not detect the odor! I wrote back and told her that I would pick up the protectors and that I will have each book of the 20 I take out each time checked over thoroughly by the check-out girl BEFORE I leave the library and again when I bring them back to make sure we are not charged in the future for books we did not damage.... I also said I would contact the other homeschoolers in our area and make them aware of the issue so that they too will check each book before hand so as not to have to be resposible for buying one.
Can you tell I am still in a tizzy over this? It just makes me mad! Then to top it off, the book I bought is still listed as being on the shelf....
I know from now on the libary is going to be a stickler to me about each book I take out and bring back but I just had to make an issue of it. The sad thing is going to the library once a week is my only "outing" of the week : ( I used to enjoy it but now I have worry so much about each book - I can't!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What Would You Have Done?

I just got back from my library and the steam is still pouring out of my head......
I took back about 15 books and was taking out about that same amount when one of the gals comes up to me with the books I had just brought back. She says to me "We have a problem", She said the books smelled like urine! I was dumbfounded! I transport all the library books in a canvas carring bag from the library to my home, I then place them in a cardboard box up on top of the counter. I am the only one who touches the books (besides giving them to Kelly to read). Where I put them none of the animals can get at them. Soooo I stood there trying to process what she was saying to me.... I then picked up a few of the books and smelled them, None of the books smelled like urnine to me at all. I was going to ask another librarian to smell the books for her thoughts, but them thought better of it - Of course she would say it does since this gal is saying so. Then I thought of asking just another person in the library to smell one of the books but I didn't. The gal kept shaking her head when I kept saying I don't smell anything (no other librarian's came over even though they were all standing in the area). I just didn't know what to do.... Then she said this is the worst one and opened a book and showed me a stain on the inside front cover. I smelled it and again no urine smell. I think she wanted me to pay for ALL the books.... I was getting nervous now, that many books would be so expensive! I said "I'll pay for this book" (the one she said was the worst). She just gave me such a look and then another gal came over and said it was $15.00 plus $5.00 for shipping charges. I paid the darn $20.00 - Now you know how I have no money! This really hurts! The real kicker is that we never even opened the "worst" book at all, but I guess now we will read it for sure: (
What would you all have done? I need to be able to use the library for our school books so I couldn't make such a fuss, but I really feel like I was unjustly accused.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Good Tuesday Morning!

I am feeling a whole lot better today - I thought I was coming down with something but I really think now it was just stress.... But today I am up early and thinking positive again : )

I picked up a few books at the library to read since our internet/cable is due to be shut off and I have found one that I am really enjoying, Easy Homeschooling Techniques by Lorraine Curry.
It really hit home with me since it mentions alot about how too much tv & video/computer can really affect kids.... I think alot of my childrens troubles with schooling are from my not reading enough to them when they were little. They did watch way too much tv, I thought all those shows like Barney, Seasame Street ect. were going to teach them things but really I think it just made them less able to concentrate for any length of time on one thing. I also think like the books says that tv takes away your ability to visualize, like when you read a book and you see pictures in your mind of what is happening and you float off to that place, well with to much tv you can't do that you are "waiting" for the pictures. I have tried to think back to my childhood and I can honestly say I can never remember my parents reading a book to me ever - but I always had the love of reading. I was not allowed to watch tv during the day when I was little, We only had it on after my father got home from work and of course only things like the news, Waltons, Little House On The Praire ect.. Which leads me to belive that it is the amount of time my kids watched tv that has partly stripped them of enjoying reading. My son who is now 20 and went through the public school system has said he has NEVER read a single book all the way through... he always found ways around doing it (watching a movie made of the book ect.). The things I find most sad is that he never "wanted to", you know what I mean? Anyway wrapping this all up - I now feel fine with the way we are doing school this year with using alot of outloud reading, It just might spur Kelly to enjoy a book one day.... : )

Monday, November 9, 2009

Prayers were answered again.....

I want to thank those who sent me e-mails of encouragement & prayers - Again they have been answered!!!!!! Praise God!!!! A lady who I have never meet personally who bought one of the puppies I breed heard of our electric troubles and paid $500.00 towards our electric bill!!!!!!!
We sure do have angels looking out for us!!!! We told her we would pay her back but she wants us to just get caught up with our bills.

Friday, November 6, 2009

This is going to be a long month......

Gosh, I hate when the day starts off bad and just keeps going......
We got both shut off notices for the electric and the cable/internet in today's mail - The internet will be off by the 8th and the electric by the 10th : (
Can't imagine how that will be. This month is already turning into the "perfect storm" for us.
My husband and Kelly are both soooo depressed - I have been trying to figure out how we will work things out not having electric.... and to top it off we don't even have our cell phone any more. It will really be like back in the old days here!
My husband did get an extention on his unemployment - Yea! But we don't get the next check until the 19th. (by then the next past due electric bill will be added to amount we already owe making the electric bill $659.00 plus any added charges to turn it back on), He only gets $406.00 from the unemployment so things don't look good.....
Oh well tomorrow is another day - Sure hope it's a better day!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Math & Spelling Problems - Your Opinions Needed

The weather here has been wonderful! It has taken a long time to get here but I am sure enjoying it!

On the school front - Gosh are we struggling with math! I really think it is worse then ever this year.... I have pulled out Kitchen Math I thought this might be a way to work on math without really working on math, Kelly struggled with it. She did the addition problems and subtraction problems just fine, the multiplication problems she struggled with but worked them out but the division problems she said she has forgotten how to work on them...... Her recall memory is pretty bad this year. We are also struggling with spelling - She writes the words down for a pre-test, does a word search for the words, does fill in the blank questions for the words & does the workbook questions and still by the end of the week she still gets a ton wrong, She just can not remember them. Does anyone have ideas on what teaching ideas I should use for her in math & spelling? Should I just go back to real basic math books until she "gets" it? Would you continue with the spelling even if there seems to be no advancement with it?
When we play match game with cards she does really well with that - She remembers were the matches are many more times then I do. Is there any other types of games to help memory problems. I really think this is the main issue area of her learning disability.....

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

You Have To Try This!

I was reading over at my blogging buddy's site: Toad Haven that she got her broom to stand up all by it's self. I grabbed my broom and we did it! It is kinda spooky looking but cool. I would have taken a picture but of course our floors are a mess.....
Give it a try your family will find it amazing!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Time Change.....

I always find it hard to adapt to when we change the clocks.... they say we gain an hour in the fall but in our house we just stay up later that night then everyone is shot the next day which throws the whole week off.....

Anyway, I think I have finally gotten Kelly's transcript done for the 2008-2009 school year - Yea!!!! I just have to type it up and get it off to our umbrella school. Having to work on this has really made me alot more aware of record keeping and what she is learning, You can tell by my past posts some days I am in a tizzy over it : )

I have been reading "Strategies for Struggling Learners - A guide for the Teaching Parent" by Joe P. Sutton, PHD. & Connie J. Sutton, M.A.Ed. If I understand them correctly they suggest to use grade level books and also remedial books this way your student will cover what everyone else in their age bracket is covering. I just don't see how that would work. I have found when things are getting to hard for Kelly I can see her zoning out. I can't see much good in using the harder material - I would think that would bring attention to the child that they really are behind what "other kids" their age are doing. I hate when the books have the age brackets listed on the front pages.... Most times I try to hide that from Kelly.
I find this all so interesting and if anyone has any good books or websites on this topic please let me know.

P.s. - I have been reading this blog for awhile now and really enjoy it:
Chicken In The Road she posts the cutest animal pictures and such sweet stories - Take peek if you get a chance.