Category Archives: home school

Young Blogger

Caleb decided he wanted to start a blog. Having a website was the first step… but WIX was difficult for him to understand… so blogging was our next idea to help him share his love for reptiles and so forth. One thing I have been learning with schooling dudes, is the importance of allowing them to pour into their interest. It encourages learning!

While snakes may not be any moms first choice :) – in our case, dads first choice (My husband HATES SNAKES)… it is something that Caleb really enjoys… and by allowing him to learn more on his own and take up some responsibility, it has done nothing but encourage learning and maturity.

Caleb’s blog is at: http://calebsreptilehide.blogspot.com/

I help him access comments when he gets them… he takes the time to respond to them on his own though. All the comments filter through my email, so things are closely monitored.

Allowing him to blog may seem silly to some… but it has been yet another opportunity to teach him something new. Teaching him about copy/paste options online. How to upload videos… how to clip videos. How to insert images… the basics of code aka html… and so forth. ITS A LOT TO LEARN. I learned it as a young teen, so it was something as an adult took very little effort.

To end, here is Caleb’s latest video on How to Care for Dubia Roaches.

To those who hate bugs. Don’t watch it haha… although its so cute. Esp. when Reed interrupts mid way.

Caleb for 9 years old does very well explaining not only the care for the Roaches but also the stages of their life as well as breeding them. Did you know Roaches give birth LIVE?! crazy! at least these roaches do. All may not. To those who may think we are absolutely NUTS to take on a bin full of 100′s of roaches. Let me just say this. I HATE ROACHES… bugs for that matter… but the cost of CRICKETS for his Bearded Dragon added up. It would have cost between 100-200 dollars a year for crickets to feed his Dragon. Ridiculous. Plus many trips to the pet store to purchase them. Gas, plus cricket cost. Way to expensive for me. Was such a pain… Crickets would die easily (their life span is only like 3 weeks… where Roaches its like 2 yrs) and they smelled worse than kitty litter. The roaches oddly enough do not stink… and after an initial investment of around $50.00 – you will forever and always have food for your Reptile. So its a cheap alternative ;-) – and a route I highly recommend if you plan to get a Bearded Dragon or other insect eating animal. Just thankful I don’t have to tend to them, if I did, we would sell the Beardie and be done with bugs ;-) – cause they are gross looking.

Enjoy!

Blessing’s for the Home School Mom

Home School.

Something we have done for 4+ years now… Feel’s weird to even write that. 4 years. How can I have a future 4th grader already?!

Home Schooling…

Something I really, had no intention of ever doing before I had kids. In fact, the thought of it made me think of overly nerdy kids and moms with no life. Yea. I was one of those who thought all home school kids turned out strange and hated it in the end. That any mom who home schooled was weird for doing it and needed a life. I was the mom who never felt smart enough and honestly probably wouldn’t be smart enough, without the help of amazing curriculum available today. Y’all read my blog. You know my grammar and spelling can be pretty bad :) – mainly out of sheer laziness and a constant rush without proofing. It is what it is, doesn’t bother me.

ED9A2574Home Schooling.

Not easy.

Full of struggle.

Full of doubt.

It may be just me. I doubt it. I as a home school mom, question myself.

Question if my kids get it.

Question if its worth it.

Question if I am doing a good job, if my children are up to par with their academics…

Question if I am doing more harm than good… and often wanting to just throw in the towel and let go.

To the public school moms.

I envy you :) – truly.

I have thought to do public school for years now… especially since we live in an area where the schools are great in compassion to some. I have many sweet friends who public school and have very sweet and well mannered, smart children.

Public School is not the enemy, home school die hards. :)

The system may be jacked up in many areas… our society may be polluted with A LOT… and much of which comes from parents, media and technology flooding our children’s minds and hearts. It really is no reason to hate or bash Public School though. After all, I turned out ok ;-) – as did my husband. It came with struggle at times, but life is full of struggles, home school or public schooled.

I envy the recitals and fun school plays. I envy the cute back packs and lunch boxes. Although I am sure if I was the Public School Mom, I wouldn’t envy any of it ;-) – but I do in moments.

So why home school?

ED9A2607I can’t seem to sum it up in any other way, besides… it feels like a calling for me.

Something I can’t seem to shake. A conviction.

A burden.

A desire.

I love my boys. Not to say, someone who doesn’t home school, doesn’t love theirs.

I love seeing them learn… and while at times I want to chuck their books across the room and escape to my room with a very strong glass of wine. I think those moments are normal, few (sometimes many) and all part of the experience.

Through those experiences, my children see their mom broken. They see sacrifice. They see apologies.

As the new year is about to start in a month or two (depending on where you live or what schedule you abide by)… I begin to do research for next year’s curriculum. All the while, I have this tug to just stop.

To give up.

ED9A2592-2The constant weight of doubt in me and my ability to school these boys, is so heavy some days.
I want my boys to do well. I want their education to be above the norm and I want them to love learning. I think so often when you are the teacher… and you are learning right along with each passing year. You tend to over think things some days…

Last night we went to our new neighbors home. Two doors down from us. They just moved in and while out with the boys bike riding… the husband struck up a conversation with Taite *our 7 yr old* – and it led to our entire family bumming off their cookout haha (they insisted). My boys went into their home and began to strike up conversations with the guest they had over. Many minutes later, some of the guest came out to meet us… One of the ladies came over to me and began asking me if the 2 boys inside where mine. I told her yes… and she went on telling me how impressed she was with my boys. She said they where so cute and intellectual in their speech. She said she was so impressed with their manners and how they told her “yes mam’.” Something we btw drill in them daily ;-) – its been a constant reminder we give them when speaking to adults. Lately they have started being much more constant with using “yes mam’ and yes sir.” I also btw use to he ANTI “yes mam’ and yes sir” lingo :) – I thought it was snobbish as a child and didn’t understand why anyone used it. I thought it was old fashion. Boy how your views change once you actually become an adult and have children. It is just so much more respectful to hear a child respond to you with a “yes mam’” than “yea.” To each their own though. Some I know don’t see it as a must… and it isn’t, its just something we feel is nice.

ED9A2546It wasn’t a “huge” conversation last night… but it was huge for me in the sense it truly lifted my spirits.

Hearing someone verbally tell you their approval of your children… and how she thought highly of my boys and praised me for it, was something I needed.

I was so blessed by our children that night and hugged them extra tight that night thanking them. Was proud of them.

Home Schooling.

It is hard.

I don’t blame anyone at all who chooses Public School, Charter, Private… whatever it may be.

I think when it comes to our children’s education, what matters is a parents desire to love those children. To train them… to teach them, outside and inside of school when they can… and to forever encourage and lift them up.

My boys have their moments of disappointment. They have their moments of bickering. Selfishness… pure annoyance :) – but they are good boys who I am so proud of.

Im thankful to be able to say, Ive been there EVERY SINGLE MOMENT. Teaching. Learning. Growing with them daily.

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Homeschool Binder’s – Weekly Scheduling

I posted on my instagram this morning about a new routine we started in our home schooling. With Travis returning to “normal” job hours recently, it has caused me to adjust to now being the sole school teacher in the house (for the most part)… and learning to tweak things to the way I feel works best. With Travis’ previous work schedule (being home during school hours and gone at night), he did majority of the schooling… Lets just say, his ways are not my ways :) – so I am finding sanity in some new methods as of late.


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One of those methods is using a binder and weekly schedules to help teach the boys independence. I started reading a book about the Charlotte Mason Method… and while some stuff I agree with and some I do not… one thing I did agree with was how she taught her children to be independent… So so important. Extra important for the mom of many who depends on independent older ones in order to deal with the responsibility of younger ones in the mix of it all.

For these binders I searched pinterest for a weekly schedule print out that would be easy for the boys to follow. You obviously could make up one yourself in Microsoft Word or Google Doc… but for me, finding something already made is always a win win :) – I found THIS ONE. It is free, feel free to click HERE to print and save the file yourself.

It is a basic weekly schedule that has room for you to write assignments for each child.

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ED9A4023So what I am doing is every weekend I sit down alone with my boys books… and figure out what they need to complete for the upcoming week.

With the curriculum we use its pretty simple to do this. We use primarily all abeka work but also teaching textbooks for Caleb’s math and a few other resources for science, healthy, history and so forth. Right now since we are behind schedule this year, we are focusing more on the CORE stuff like math, language arts, writing, spelling, that sorta stuff… the rest is just extra and if it happens, awesome, if not, its ok.. I plan to be more on top of it next year if we have a normal routine ;-) – at least I hope to be.

Ok! SO to the point.

I write down Taite’s assignments on his printed out schedule.

I then organize in his binder with dividers each subject and all his worksheets.

I also add in a portion in the binder with extra paper. His test papers. Speed drills and other supplies he needs.

If he has reading books for that week, I place those in the side pockets of the binder. I also put a little zipper pocket thing to hold his pencils, erasers and a sharpener. This way I dont have little boys getting up saying they need a new pencil every 30 minutes.

ED9A4016I sat down with the boys and encouraged them to start on their work whenever they wanted in the morning. If I slept in with baby Reed and they got up super early… once they ate breakfast and woke up a bit, they were welcome to open their binders, see what needed to be done and to get started.

I encouraged the independence by creating a “treasure box” in the room, filled with little things from the dollar tree. As silly as it may seem, this seriously has been such a motivation for them! The idea of getting to go rummage through a box full of tiny toys pushed my boys even more to get their work done and to do it well. They have done so great at being independent with this system. In fact this morning I woke up at 9am… I was up til 3am sick… and so I did not feel great this morning… when I got downstairs though Caleb and Taite both ran to me and said “Guess what!?” I in my still groggy voice said “…. what?” They said, super energetically “We are almost totally done with our seat work!!” – yall it was 9am. HAHA! I was like “what time did you wake up?!” they said “7am. So for those two hours they spent it on their own, doing their work without my even saying to start.

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We obviously still had work to do after I got up. We did an hour of Health and Caleb still had computer work to do for Math and they both still had reading… The bulk of the busy work though was done and can I just say, this is huge for us. To not have to sit there and PESTER them to finish that seat work has been such a blessing.

While this system is still fresh for us… and obviously newness does wear off eventually… I foresee this working long term and look forward to it teaching my boys the power of independence and responsibility.

It also has been great for me at staying on task… and not skipping stuff as easily.

So in short, thats the Binder Method :)

Starting some new health curriculum with the boys on the human body. Just because it's may doesn't mean you can't study or start something new :) #beautyofhomeschool #homeschool #homeschooling #boymom #dudemom

Hopefully it encourages someone reading and works for you all too.

Feel free to comment with any questions you may have :)

You can follow all my home school pins too if you want – below.

Follow Drea Wood’s board Homeschool Activities on Pinterest.

Board

It has been raining the last 2 days.

A LOT.

Our 70′s-80′s bid us farewell for a few days. Totally OK with that, no complaints. Could be snowing still, right? ;-) – while indoors though we have to find ways to entertain ourselves. Board games do become a must.

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Can you tell our floors/rugs need cleaning? gag. I did vacuum last night but I need to heavily mop soon.

What are your favorite board games? My kids recently love is Monopoly Jr. Although Caleb wants to attempt the “real” monopoly… I however am not ready for that sort of board game commitment haha.. Going to teach the kids UNO today.

While they School

Had to share these 2 photos.

A typical school morning here can consist of these two joining us.

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August our Bearded Dragon – hes quiet, best pet really for those who hate noise and messes. Just be mindful when investing in a dragon (ours was only $29.00 btw), the cost of a tank and food for this wee lad does add up. Thankful to have thrifted his large 29 gallon tank for $7.00. Hoping that last him a while. I have heard larger dragon’s can get so big they need a 70 gallon, I am hoping that is not the case. :) Also be mindful when investing in a dragon, they eat bugs… A LOT OF THEM. So you cant not like bugs. I hate bugs but my son doesn’t care, so he feeds August ;-) – and cleans his cage. Score.


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Meet Pip. We haven’t really spoken of this lil guy. Actually, its a female… but Taite said he wants to pretend its a male, so he can name him Pip. Hamster doesn’t care so Im cool with it ;-). Travis got Pip for Taite after seeing how badly he wanted his own pet to care for. This was not my doing – but oddly enough I am glad he got Pip. Pip seriously is one rad little hamster who lets Taite do whatever he wants with him! I read online that these dwarf hamsters are mean and the hardest to tame… well, we must have gotten a gem of a hamster, because this dude never bites Taite. He does however bite me. So I don’t hold him much. :-)

Love that we can allow our boys to enjoy these small little pets… we don’t have the means to Travel much… in fact we haven’t had a real vacation in about 4 years now… :( – makes me sad any time I see friends at Disney… or other amazing places… we don’t get that right now… trying to learn to be content with our situation. One day hopefully we can travel some with these kids… before they get to big any way.

Happy Monday’s. Its rainy here and I will be stuck inside all week due to not having a 2nd car. An update on our car situation is due. Lets just say, its been a stressful yet very revealing journey…