Monday, September 30, 2013

New Season, New Team

The fall soccer season has finally begun for us. The rec center where the boys play underwent some renovations so our season was delayed. The boys are on a new team this year. Our friend who was their coach has moved on to another league because his boys are older. We miss him! But they are still on a team with Adam's good buddy Ryan. They are no longer the Red Flyers team. It's hard to get used to it.... but now we're cheering for the Purple Vikings. The boys are less than thrilled to be wearing purple, but I love it! ;)
When they first started playing in this age bracket (6-9 year olds) I was scared of how big some of the kids were. Now our guys are some of the big kids! They are definitely improving and making more plays.
Saturday was a gorgeous day and my mom came to see the game. Here are some pictures ---

Adam has red shorts hanging down below his uniform shorts.
We didn't get the uniforms until right before the game... and his were way too big.
We decided to keep the red ones on in case the others fell down!

Adam is number 10 and Ray is number 11.

Adam got to be goalie in the second half.
He did a good job.
Notice his "sideline coach."

I love this "celebration shot."
Adam transformed into a top rate cheerleader when the team scored a goal.
And Ray is celebrating with his teammate on defense.

After the game I went home to do some work and Jon took Ray, Adam, and Ryan BACK to the apple farm. His office had given him free tickets to the fun area for a special event. They had a BLAST and stayed for SEVERAL hours.

 The "hamster balls" were again the biggest hit. We may have to ask Santa for some!


These are fun days with our quickly-growing boys!


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Hello Autumn! Sunday Family Fun

We kicked off Autumn by visiting our local apple orchard with some friends on Sunday. It was a beautiful, fun day!

Adam's favorite part.... running up and down a huge muddy hill!
It may look like he has four arms,
 but the two pink ones belong to his friend who is running behind him.

Mmm.... picnic lunch.

A new attraction this year!
Both boys loved running around in these "hamster balls."

He claims to be 6 feet tall.... I'm not so sure!

My adorable goddaughter
She was the official "taster."
I think she took a bite or two out of a dozen different apples.

Adam amazed us all by eating pretty much an ENTIRE apple... core and all.
I think he spit out the seeds.
We'll see if an apple tree grows in his stomach.

After the apple orchard, we headed to a local park to meet up with Ray's Cub Scout den for a nature walk and den meeting.

Ray did a great job giving a report about some endangered and extinct animals.

Adam got to release some beautiful monarch butterflies.

Here's a poem Ray wrote saying goodbye to Summer and hello to Autumn.
Hello falling leaves.
Goodbye pretty flowers.
Hello apples.
Goodbye strawberries.
Hello school.
Goodbye long days.
Hello cocoa.
Goodbye juice.
Hello soccer.
Goodbye pool.
Hello Thanksgiving.
Goodbye Labor Day.
Hello Autumn.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Our 2013-2014 Homeschool Curriculum

Now that we've completed 24 days of school.... and we're pretty well settled into our academic routine, here's a peek at the resources we're using this year for 2nd and 3rd grade.

Adam's Math

Adam's Handwriting
Adam's Language Arts Resources
(from bottom to top)
Seton Readers
Hooked on Phonics Grade 2 Kit
Seton English
Scholastic Reading Comprehension
MCP Phonics
Spelling Workout

Ray's Math
Ray's Handwriting

Ray's Language Arts Resources
(from bottom to top)
Seton Readers
Seton Vocabulary
Seton English
Scholastic Reading Comprehension
Spelling Workout

We are still adding to our Liturgical Year Notebooks
We will also be doing our Religious Education work at home... waiting to receive the texts from the parish.
Adam will be celebrating First Reconciliation and First Communion this year.
 We will continue to participate in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd and Family Holy Hour.
We attend daily Mass or Adoration at least once a week.
This year we also have a Saint of the Month and Psalm of the Month.
Learning and living our Faith is the CORE of our homeschool!

A Variety of Art Resources
This is our first year using the "Draw Write Now" series.
So far I'm impressed with it.

Here's Ray's first "Draw Write Now" project.
He is really proud of it.
Spanish songs and mini-books

Poetry Books and Binders
We continue to add to their binders each month.
This year our book club is doing a lot of poetry work.

The remainder of the content for our curriculum comes from these books... mostly from the "3rd Grade" edition. It's so awesome to be able to teach the boys together since they are so close in age. Our Music, Art, Science, History, Social Studies, Health, and some of our Language Arts and Literature selections all come from this Core Knowledge series (not to be confused with the Common Core craziness being implemented in the schools).
Over the summer I sort out all of the content/objectives we need to cover.
I divide up the material and make a schedule of what I plan to cover each month in each subject.
(This is in addition to working through the content of our textbooks shown above.)
I make a checklist for each month.
In my planning binder, I have a page for each month.
I check things off as we cover them.
I use library resources and ideas/resources found online to help cover these topics.

My planning binder includes the monthly sheets as well as a weekly sheet (shown above).
I make my own planning sheets so I don't have to continually re-write things on each page.
As you can see, these weekly sheets include spaces for activities and appointments, checklists for daily work, a space for me to write in what content lessons we're covering and the literature we're reading, my dinner plans, and a sidebar where I can keep my running to-do lists, and space to record the liturgical celebrations. This page is actually quite "un-done." I'll try to fill in a picture of a more fully complete page. At the very top I also keep track of how many school days we've completed. This binder really keeps us on track.
The boys are really enjoying having their own checklists this year.
They are able to look at all of the subjects they need to do each day and they have some choices in the order in which they can work. I keep their checklists in plastic sleeves so they can fill them in each week and then just erase them and start over.

In addition to all this, we are participating in a new co-op this year. The boys are really enjoying it so far. It's one morning a week from 9:00-12:00. They both take Music and Gym. Adam also takes a Nature Enrichment class and Ray takes "Aspiring Writers." We'll start our Catechesis of the Good Shepherd program next week. The boy will also be taking a World Geography class there.

So that's what we're up to these days! We're working hard and learning a lot!