"Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it." Proverbs 22:6

Thursday, February 28, 2013

MFW 2nd Grade - Week #17

BIBLE:  This week we continued memorizing and talking about Matthew 1:23.  We read scriptures in Exodus 3:11-12, Joshua 1:1-9, Matthew 28:16-20, and Hebrews 13:5.

Bible Activities:  The only bible activity this week was to make a cake and decorate it using icing to spell out "Immanuel" on it.  Given the fact we are trying to be more healthy at our house the idea of an entire cake laying around is just not a good one.  So, we'll just rest on the fact we talked a lot about God always being with us this week, and call it good.

SPELLING:  Another week of spelling over and done with.  This week we used a different approach in writing spelling words.  Just writing them on paper gets a little boring.  So, here's a picture to show what we tried new.  Caleb loved that I changed things up a bit.  :)

ENGLISH:  Caleb had some copy work in English this week along with answering questions.  He does well when he allows himself to enjoy it.

HISTORY/STATE STUDY:  We only covered one state this week and that was Kentucky.   If anyone is interested in what the state sheets look like, well, here they are:

The assigned sheet from MFW.  Caleb colors while I read tidbits from a page telling all sorts of interesting facts about the state.

For extra learning, we do these pages also.  Caleb does all the cutting and I glue them down.  Then I have him write in the blanks.  This one for Kentucky isn't completely finished yet.  When he has a lot of writing in other subjects, I let him carry this over to another day where we may not have as much writing.  

This week we also talked about Daniel Boone and how he developed the Wilderness Trail.

SCIENCE:  Our discussion and projects in science had to do with the weather.  First we tried to make a rainbow on a sheet of paper using water, the sun, and a small mirror.  We were not very successful with this, so Caleb opted to reinvent the day he made a rainbow in the goldfish pond.



Then we made a weather vane:

It didn't work exactly as we wanted it to, but I think that had to do with the size of knitting needle I used, which was the ONLY one I have.  Ha!!  It wasn't quite thick enough and so the empty thread spool sat crooked.  It's okay though.  He did get to see the wind whip it around some, as it was a very windy day.

MATH:  Lots of pages out of the math workbook were completed along with playing some math games and hitting the flashcards.  I've noticed that as things start to become a little more challenging and require a bit more thought, Caleb gets more easily discouraged when the answers don't come easy.  We're plugging along though, and I pray that this season of discouragement he is feeling passes quickly.

HEALTH/MANNERS:  Our health lesson involved "Getting Enough Rest."  I read a half page discussion regarding the importance of getting enough rest and then Caleb was required to answer some review questions.  He did really well.  I thought it was interesting how well he understood the concept of needing enough rest for our bodies to be healthy.  Then again, we're having a lot of healthy talk around here lately, so I shouldn't be very surprised.

Read-a-Loud:  We are still at in, moving through Farmer Boy.  Here's a picture of it in case you were thinking I was making it up.  Ha!  It's a thick book.  By the time I read a chapter, we're ready to move onto other just-for-fun books.  This one is FULL of history and interesting facts all to do with a little boys' life on the farm.  I've not shared with Caleb that I am getting tired of reading this book because then HE will be tired of it.  It's a required read, so we'll get it finished.  I will admit though that this weeks readings were quite interesting.  The story itself is very good.  It's just all the details.  It describes every move, every step of a specific project. But, I know, THAT is why MFW chose it -- for all those details.  Even I am learning from them.  Did I know that people cut ice back in those days from the pond or lake, and saved it up by covering it a shed with sawdust a certain way so that they would have ice in the ice house all summer?  No.  I didn't.  That is just an example of the wonderful details this book covers.


Book Baskets Reads:
The Inside-Outside Book of New York City, Roxie Munro
Cardinals, Patrick Merrick
Big Little Elephant, Valeri Gorbachev
Soap!  Soap!  Don't Forget the Soap - An Appalachian Folktale, Tom Birdseye
Little Chick, Amy Hest
Kiss Good Night, Amy Hest
The Dog Who Belonged to No One, amy Hest
The Boy Who Cried Wolf, B.G. Hennessy
Sleepy Places, Judy Hindley
Ox-Cart Man, Donald Hall
Jangles A Big Fish Story, David Shannon

The Ox-Cart Man was probably my favorite read of those we've had in a while.  It talked a lot about the things we've been learning about this year.  While reading it Caleb said, "Mom!  That's just like Almanzo!"  Almanzo is the little boy in Farmer Boy.  It was wonderful to see that Caleb remembered and could relate it to a completely different book.

On our 2nd to last day we did our reading outside on the picnic table.

On our last day of this week, we read Farmer Boy while out for our daily walk.  It was interesting with me trying to read while huffing and puffing, but I know Caleb loved it.  If he road his bike too far away he'd say, "wait, I'm too far, I can't hear you."  So, then I'd have about 20 seconds to catch my breath.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION:  I've never really posted this as a separate category or made much note of it, but I do believe it's very important.  So, as we have things to post, I'll add a little bit of something here.

We're trying to be more healthy at our house and have regular discussion on food and fitness.  These past few weeks Caleb has ridden his bike many miles.  I wish it had an odometer on it, because I think we would all be impressed with the number of miles he puts on it.   In addition to his random bike rides just playing outside, he also rides his bike every day while I walk.  We take a walk to the dead end and back, which is about 1 mile.  If we're up to it, we go past the house in the other direction for a bit and then come back.  We try to walk every day, but we also do several exercises every other day.  These usually make me HURT all over, so we only do them every other day.  When we started we took a benchmark test, so it will be interesting to see how well we do at our next benchmark test when we've been at this for a while.  That test is supposed to be at the 1 month mark.

MISCELLANEOUS:   One little project we had this morning was to put all of next years school supplies neatly on a shelf.  They've been sitting in a box in the corner of his bedroom, but now they are proudly placed on a shelf.  Lots of book, lots of learning that will be continued when Caleb moves onto 3rd grade.

This week we also had some fun with gardening.  It's been too windy and cold yet to put the plants we bought in the ground for our family garden, but Caleb helped me plant some herbs in a pot on the back porch.  Every spring I try to plant herbs, but due to weather and/or neglect they've never survived.  My personal goal is to get these guys thriving so they are a useful tool in my kitchen!

Caleb was very proud of our herb garden and two days later insisted that we'd done such a good job they had grown.  What you can't see in this picture is a hanging plant of strawberries overhead.  I placed them this way so that when I water the strawberries, the excess will flow into the herb garden.  Less water waste.  We had one strawberry in our basket the other day and so Caleb and I shared it.  He was SO excited he could barely stand it.  I know he will LOVE the fruit of that labor.  :)

In closing:

This was a rough week.  As I mentioned earlier, Caleb has been feeling somewhat discouraged.  I tried to talk to him and had dad talk to him.  But, I think, at the age of 7, we can't always understand why we feel the way we feel.  If I had to guess, we're just having the middle of the year meltdown where the things in our curriculum aren't new anymore and some of them are getting a little harder.  So, some prayers for Caleb would be awesome.  And I guess I could use some too as I try to guide my precious little boy through this rough patch he's having....We ended our week on a better note.  He said this morning....Mom, I'm gonna do better today.  And he did.

Educating in Christ,

Momma Pam

Monday, February 25, 2013

Miracle Update


I decided to put this post here since this event happened on a school.  It's incredible what a couple of weeks can do.  The first picture is just a day or two after birth.  We tried to wrap his back legs to offer support, but the wrap just didn't help.  You can see how the back, left hind foot is folded-over.  It was very difficult to watch him try to move around when it was like this.

In this second picture, you can see some darker wrapping on the back foot/ankle.  John and I put a splint on the back leg, with Caleb's assistance.  The splint made it harder for the little guy to lay down and get up, but he adapted to that rather well after a short while.  We left the splint on for as long as we thought possible.  After a week and a half, we decided he had grown some and we worried it would get, too, tight on his ankle.  So, we removed it ... to find ...

 That he looked so much better.  He was still a little weak, but within a matter of minutes he took off running allover the pasture.  He was so excited to be "free."  It was a beautiful moment to watch momma and baby interact outside of their small pen.

Just a quick up date to let you all know he is doing awesome!!

Educating in Christ,

Momma Pam

Crosspost with our family blog....

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

MFW 2nd Grade - Week #16

BIBLE:  We read through some more scriptures in our bible this week from Matthew 1:23 and Isaiah 7:14.  We also talked about the hymn, "O Come, O Come Emmanuel."  We were then supposed to sing it.  I san the first verse.  Then I looked at Caleb and said, "I'm just going to read the rest of it.  I don't like singing by myself."  He looks at me and says, "I'll sing with you mom."  So, we sang the rest of the verses together.  Jesus, pick me up off the floor.  This momma nearly fainted.  I remember looking at him, shocked.  But, he did.  He sang with me.  

Memory Verse:  Our new memory verse is "They will call him Immanuel," which means, "God with us."  Matthew 1:23

Bible Activities:  

Gingerbread man shapes: Since we were talking about God always being with us, we made a couple of "gingerbread" characters by tracing my cookie cutter.  Caleb traced them and then we each cut one out.  Then Caleb labeled them "Immanuel" and "Caleb."  We set them out to look at throughout the week as a visual reminder that God IS always with US!!

Plan in case of Separation:   We were supposed to go to a mall or a store that Caleb is unfamiliar with.  We are then to have a discussion about what we would do if Caleb were to get separated from me, or from dad if he is with dad.  We were connecting this with the realization that even if we don't see mom or dad, God is still with us.

We also talked about what Caleb should do if that were to ever happen to us.  Now, we live to far to drive to the mall.  So, we just had this discussion at the table during school.  The next time we are out and about and in a place that I can bring this back up with Caleb I will do just that.  But, I wasn't going to drive that far just for a demonstration.

SPELLING:   Spelling Lesson #14 is a wrap and we are on to Lesson #15.  This weeks words all end with "ed". 

ENGLISH:  In LA this week we had a discussion about a cute poem called The Swing.  There were some questions to answer in regards to the poem and Caleb was also supposed to draw a picture that had to do with one of the verses of the poem.  He did a pretty good job drawing a child swinging on a swing set.  We also talked about the seasons (again) and did some fill - in - the - blank type questions.  I also made him write half the sentences for copy work.  He truly dislikes copy work, but he did okay with it.

Book Basket:
I've Lost My Hat, Charnan Simon
Cows to the Rescue, John Himmelman
Come On, Rain!, Karen Hesse
Dog in Boots, Greg Gormley

Read-A-Loud:  This week we are still reading in our book called Farmer Boy.  As I said in my last post, this is a rather thick chapter book.  I'm sensing Caleb is getting a little tired of it, so I'm doing my best to add enthusiasm to my reading and make the book fun!  

HISTORY/STATE STUDY:  This week we talked about Rhode Island and Vermont.  Instead of four states, we only had two this week.  On the other days, we filled in with some discussion and reading from our history books on "what it was like going west" and "Daniel Boone."  

Timeline:  We added Daniel Boone to our timeline.  With all the state study, we haven't added a timeline piece in a long time.  I decided to take a few minutes to go over our timeline pieces and see what Caleb could remember.  On a whim, I flipped back to the beginning, which would be the beginning of 1st grade.  I was completely stunned at all the stories that Caleb remembered and could tell ME about just by looking at the time line pieces.  There were a few that neither of us could remember the specifics on, but over all, he remembered nearly all of them.  Matter-of-fact, he was having more trouble with the American History one's, which are the one's we did so far this year.  Once I said the names of the people, he could tell me things about them.  I was thrilled with the knowledge he has in his head about the bible.  The rest of the American History will come later and he'll grasp it better when we cover it in more detail in a couple of years.

MATH:  Still working away in our SM book.  We're nearing the end of 1A.  We'll go right into 1B when that time comes.

SCIENCE:  We started in our Science with Air book.  There were a couple of science projects to go along with this weeks lessons.  As you will see below, some of our experiments work and some of them don't.  We try our hardest, but for some reason things just don't always work out like the science book says they will.

Changing Size

Bottle and a Quarter:   We did a couple of projects to see how air "changes size."  Two worked, one didn't.  The first was to take a long necked bottle and placing a coin on the opening.  Then put the bottle in a bowl and add warm water into the bowl.  As the air in the bottle warms up, the coin starts popping up on the opening of the bottle.  Yes this one did work.  It was quite cool, too.

Ping Pong Ball:   With this project we were to dent a ping pong ball and then place it in a cup of warm water, covering the lid.  As the air in the ping pong ball warmed it was supposed to warm enough to push out the dent.  As I said, some projects work for us, aaaannnnddd, some don't.  We could see the dent become minimized, but it never fully popped back out.  We tried several times, made the water hotter, and nothing.  So, that was that.

Iced Bottle:   This project involved crushing ice, putting it in a 2 liter bottle, then shaking the bottle really hard.  After a few moments, as the air in the bottle became very cool, the sides of the bottle started to cave inward.  Okay, so my son just can't stand to leave things alone and twisted off the lid of the bottle before I could get a picture with the sides caved in.  We tried to replicate it, but the air/bottle was already cold and so it really didn't show very well.  But, we did at least see this one work!

Rising Air

Swirling Snake:  With this project, Caleb traced a dinner plate on some card stock.  Then, I drew a circle from the outside edge to the inside, until it looked like a coiled snake.  Caleb and Sissy colored the snake and then cut it out.

It ended up with a nice coil ....  See?  Then we attached some string to the head so Caleb would have something to hold onto.

I promise, we used every bit of caution.  I'm standing right next to Caleb on one side and Sissy is on the other.  This experiment called for a "radiator."  But, who has a radiator anymore these days.  So, we improvised and used the burner on my stove.  I was nervous, but it was all we had and Caleb was very careful.

So, he stood next to the burner and held his snake over it.  At first the snake was sorta shaking as Caleb's hand wasn't very steady.

Then - - it started twirling.  It was spiraling in a circle.  Caleb said, "I'm NOT doing that!!" with a laugh.   The point is, that when air is warm, it rises.  And in this case, as it rose, it went through the snake causing it to spiral.  Sissy was able to get a cute video of the snake in action.  If I can ever figure out how to add a video to this blog, I will post it here for you all to see.  

Floating Feather:   This project was another complete failure.  We were to take a feather, drop it over a "radiator" and the feather was supposed to float above it.  Well, more improvising had us dropping the feather over the burner.  Well, it dropped like a lead balloon, no joking here, and sizzled until the feather was completely gone.  Then, it smoked and sent a horrid smell ALL through the house!!  We had to open all the windows AND the doors to try to get he smell out.....Maybe if we'd had a radiator, this project would have worked.

Needless to say, Caleb was in his element this week.  Plenty of science projects to keep a science-loving kid busy!  He can never get enough!

HEALTH/MANNERS:   This weeks lesson had to do with brushes that we use for personal hygiene.  Such as a toothbrush, hairbrush, clothesbrush, and nailbrush.  Caleb learned that these are compound words.  He had to write them separately and then together.  Then he had to answer some questions on when to use what.  Easy-peasy he said....  :)

Tidbit:   I just have to laugh.  Sometimes Caleb likes to "air write."  Instead of answering me with words, he'll write the answer in the air with his finger.  I don't normal let him do this as I want him to speak his answers to me.  Well, during one of our lessons, he decided to "air write" his answer.  I could tell by what he wrote that his last letter was a "b" and should have been a "d."  I said, "Caleb, you know I want you to say your answer to me.  But, you wrote a "b" instead of a "d.""   He raised his arm back up and "erased" his wrong letter and wrote it correctly.  We both sat there amongst a fit of giggles that he actually did the hand-motion to erase the "air answer."  That's my boy.....

This has been a blessed week.  I feel like we're back on track and made lots of progress.  This disheartened momma need a great week like this to rejuvenate the soul.  As Caleb got ready for bed tonight he said, "mom, I hope we have a good school day tomorrow.  Today was a REALLY good day."  

Warmth to the soul.....

Educating in Christ,


Tuesday, February 12, 2013

MFW 2nd Grade - Week #15

BIBLE:  We read a lot of scripture this week.  Verses from Exodus 13:21-22, Exodus 13:17-18, Deuteronomy 1:32-33, Hebrews 9:1-10, Matthew 27:50-51, Hebrews 10:19-22a, Acts 9:1-19a, Acts 24:10-16, and 1 Corinthians 12:31 and all of chapter 13.  

Memory Verse:  We are continuing with our discussion on John 14:6.  

SPELLING:  We wrapped up another week of spelling, lesson #13, and started on lesson #14.

ENGLISH:  A typical week in LA.  In one of the lessons this week we talked about the days of the week.  He had to complete some questions and we talked about how they all start with capital letters.  

HISTORY/STATE STUDY:  During this week we talked about New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, and North Carolina.  Caleb completed all the state sheets for each state.  

New York was special because we went into a bit of discussion about the Statue of Liberty.

Read-A-Loud:  We are continuing with Farmer Boy. We learned how they get ice to fill the ice-house and what takes place on a Saturday night. 

MATH:  Lots of lessons were completed this week in our SM book.

SCIENCE:  This was a light week in science.  We had one day of discussion on birds from our Birds, Nests, and Eggs book and learned a bit about the Northern Cardinal.

With this being a light week, Caleb begged and begged to watch some of his Magic School Bus videos.  I cannot believe how much he likes them.  He would watch them for hours at a time, if I let him!

HEALTH/MANNERS:  This week's lesson was on "Keeping Myself Clean."  Lots of do's and don't's, like brushing your teeth after meals and not running through mud with your shoes on. I have to laugh a little at some of the questions.  This booklets was obviously written a very long time ago.....Two of the good habits listed:  washing my hair every week, and bathing myself once or twice a week.  Obviously, Caleb has to do this more often than that!!

Animal care:  We continue with our daily care of the animals and what used to be a rather easy feeding process for the cows and donkeys has become a bit more complicated.  It takes us 30-45 minutes each day to take care of everyone.  The longer time is when we need to clean out the rabbit cages...

A bit interruption in our school this week was when our heifer decided to have her baby, only he was coming breech.  It was a long, stressful day that ended in a phone call to the vet.  He feared our calf was dead, but God almighty saved him, and he is okay.  He's had some struggles and he's still working through some of his gimpy-ness.  But, he's a fun little guy to watch.  Caleb named him Miracle for obvious reasons.

Volunteer work:  Once a month we try to volunteer at the food pantry.  I'm pretty certain I've mentioned this before.  The only times we miss are when either Caleb or myself are ill.  This week everyone was healthy and we were able to go help out.  It is such a blessing to be there.  

Interruptions:  We've had some intermittent interruptions since the first of the year.  It's been a bit of a struggle getting through our weeks of school on some days.  I wish I could say it's all rosy and peaches and cream, but it's not.  I try hard to focus on just the good stuff in these posts, but today I am deciding to be real.  You might notice the lack of pictures in this post.  Sometimes, there just isn't time, or the activities aren't there to take a picture of.  I could take pictures of some of his assignments, but that brings me back to the time issue.

As I'm sitting here blogging, I'm trying to remember what all the interruptions were.  I've already mentioned our illnesses.  We all had various things - Johnny had an upper respiratory infection, Caleb had a cold, and I had walking pneumonia for two weeks.  All that just gets in the way of school.  We had another one week were daddy was sick for a day or two, this week when Miracle was born...and we can't forget momma's doctor visit to get established at a new doctor.  

I'm grateful for homeschool.  I really am.  We can afford to be flexible.  We're not on a time limit.  If we need to do school in summer, that's okay. It's so hot that time of year anyway. My goal between now and my next post is to analyze where we are.  I'd like to get a "picture" of when we'll be wrapping up this year.  I have our box of 3rd grade material sitting there, calling our names....It will be great fun to start prepping for that.  But, first things, first.

In all this I remind myself - we are where God wants us to be and that is absolutely the only thing that matters.

Educating in Christ,