Tuesday, February 12, 2013

WeeklyMonthly Report: Where are we?

It's been at least six weeks since I wrote about our school year.  Why six weeks?

Homeschool Ski Lessons!

I love homeschool ski lessons -- the mountain our family has skied at for the past 7 or so years provides an amazing deal for our group, which grows each year.  The boys have become competent skiers who enjoy a day on the slopes. I enjoy the fresh air (the bitter cold - not so much).  Ben has reached the highest level of lessons and is thinking of trying snowboarding lessons next year. My guess is that I have one more year of skiing with Levi before he desires to ski steeper and deeper slopes than this mama cares to try. This is something that will be part of our homeschool until Levi turns 18.
I hate to admit this, but after about four weeks, I start to get a little stressed out about the subjects that we haven't gotten done as consistently because of our extra day off to ski.  Spelling always takes a hit during this period as does writing.  Luke and Levi tend to get bare bones history readings done.

Second Place in the pack for best car design
Today is the first day of a full week of school sans skiing.  Because of the snow storm, the boys had an exhausting weekend shoveling, playing, and tubing at a friend's house. They woke a little grumpier than usual and we were less efficient than necessary.

But, I will refrain from stressing out, because I have the "gift" of an extra day this week.

20+ foot tree that fell, just missing our house, PTL!
I have, however, made some decisions about the tools we are going to use for the rest of the year.  I've decided to stop using WriteShop Primer A with Levi.  It is a great program and I appreciate the creative activities in it, but it is a bit young for Levi, and he feels that it is babyish.  I wish I would have known about it last year when he was in kindergarten!  We have gotten several weeks behind in Luke's WriteShop D, but I am not yet ready to abandon it.  We are working on re-writing a folk tale.

Plans I had for Ben haven't really changed -- except we've never gotten around to starting our elective classes.  I had wanted to use Art of Argument  (which we started last year during a review), a computer programming course (though I am hopeful Ben will get a taste of one during an upcoming Schoolhouse Review), and an online basic computer skills course.  What Ben has had to learn (the hard way) is time management and successful study skills.  In the long run, learning to manage his time efficiently is way more important for life than computer programming, for example, but he was looking forward to the "fun" electives.

Some of our review products continue to be staples in our day:  Samson's Classroom is used for reinforcement and spelling practice of our Spell to Write and Read lists.  I have really seen that it helps Levi very much and it is a good supplement for Luke.  Until recently, Ben was using Vocab Videos still -- I wanted to take a break so he would work through a Critical Thinking Word Roots program that I have.  He'll probably return to Vocab Videos in the spring.

Luke and Levi will not let me stop Anatomy and Physiology for science, even though we haven't finished Earth Science yet.  It is a case of so much to learn, so little time here!

And now that we've made some decisions for Ben about home schooling high school next year, I can re-focus on the job at hand --finishing this year strong.  

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