World History Writing Prompts

World History Writing Prompts

When teaching my older kids writing we used Write Shop and 7Sisters guides to cover the needed aspects of writing.

With my younger kids who struggle with different aspects of learning I have found writing to be at the bottom of our school list. I have decided to spend the last quarter of school focusing on writing while other subjects like math go into review mode. This is a method I do often when I feel we have not had enough time on certain subject.

Then I chose world history writing prompts to be the focus of our writing. We are using The Mystery of History Volume IV and this will be a great way for them to process the serious topics covered in the book.

World History Writing Prompts

[Read more…]

Life of Fred Farming, Lesson Plan

Add Life of Fred to your Math Boards.

Add this to your Pinterest Board

Often I read questions from mothers wondering if Life of Fred can be a stand alone or does it require supplementing. I always find it hard to take a stand on any side of the matter because I do not know how their student learns. For my son, who is delayed in math, we use Life of Fred as a stand alone but I often bring in hands-on learning, extra practice sheets and math games to help reinforce the math concepts.

This blog series on Life of Fred math is sharing how I created and expanded on math ideas to help my son learn.

Since this is the 6th book in the series my son wanted a notebook page that matched the theme of the book Life of Fred Books Farming.

Life of Fred

Life of Fred Farming Printable

Life of Fred Farming Lesson Plans

[Read more…]

Homeschool Sabbatical

Homeschool Sabbatical 2

Homeschool Sabbatical…Have you ever taken one?

I think my brain is need of a leave of absence from the homeschooling life. Not that I am looking to walk away completely from homeschooling…but 15 years of lesson planning, training children and serving my family can leave a mom looking for some renewal.

Mainly I want to recharge so I can finish this race with my youngest kids as strong as I started it with my older kids. I have 7 more years of homeschooling to go!

But what would a homeschool sabbatical look like?
I sat down with paper and pencil and brainstormed some general ideas.

Homeschool Sabbatical

Homeschool Sabbatical: Brainstorming Ideas

[Read more…]

Pi Day Lesson Plans

Pi Day Lesson Plans

Yes, this year Pi Day is on a Saturday. One of the beauties of homeschooling it taking off another day in the week and doing school on Saturday.

I was excited to find many free Pi Day lesson plans. I pinned most of them on my Pi Day board.

If you are already overwhelmed with life might I suggest only buying a pie already baked and celebrating with your kids by having pie for dessert. That is how I celebrated the last two years.

Now if you have some time, a printer and a stocked pantry let the Pi Day Lesson Plans begin!

Pi Day Lesson Plans:

Food and Snacks:

  • Of course any type of pie works but keep thinking about any other foods with pie in the name or that are round in shape.
  • My kids will be doing the majority of cooking for these meals as part of our lessons.
  • Our Menu for the day:
    • Breakfast Pie Pizza
    • Quesadillas and apples for lunch
    • Shepherd’s Pie
    • Apple Pie

Music: [Read more…]

Mission Field and Medical Field

Mission Field and Medical Field

I used to dream of heading to the mission field, but instead I have landed in the medical field. While I was not asked by the pilot if I was at the correct destination; I have since come to appreciate the similarities needed to serve in both areas.

Similarities to the Mission Field and Medical Field

Why we may never lose our clothing while flying to a far away place, we will find ourselves down to the last pair of clean underwear on an extended hospital stay.

We might never experience a tribal dance but we know the joys of the 94 dance. The magic blood oxygen number that gets us closer to being off oxygen and released from the hospital.

We might not have the joy of reading road signs in a different language but we can read the the numbers on a monitor with one eye closed.

We might not have the knack for learning to say “Hello” in a different language but we can rattle off the acronyms of 20 different medical conditions while discussing a course of action and it can sound like a foreign language. [Read more…]

The Mystery of History volume 4, CC and NP

First I want to provide a quick picture tutorial on printing The Mystery of History volume 4 Challenge Cards, and yes this will work with the other volumes.

(If you are here to for notebooking pages scroll down)

How to Print The Mystery of History volume 4 Challenge Cards

Printing Challenge Cards

I have a love hate relationship with technology. If you have found yourself completely stressed by getting the challenge cards to match-up I hope these two phrases will help.

In the printer settings change the options to Short Edge and Actual Size. 

Short Edge

[Read more…]

Adjusting the Homeschool Plan

Adjusting the Homeschool Plan

I am joining the iHomeschool Network this week to discuss “Growing a Success”, whether it be a scientist, writer, doctor, missionary or …

Really, it gives me an opportunity to discuss the tagline of my blog…I Teach the Way They Learn. In other words adjusting the homeschool plan to accommodate gifts and learning delays.

Right now you are probably in one of two places in your home school…Your student knows exactly what they want to be when they grow up OR your student does not have any idea on what they want to study or do after high school.

Adjusting the Homeschool Plan for Knowing What You Want to Be:

My first two children from a young age both knew what area of study they wanted to major in at college. Once they became confident in that decision we began altering their school lessons to reflect those desires.

My oldest son, for example, has always wanted to be a meteorologist. When he was in highschool we made the choice for him to learn Latin. Since science terms comprise a large part of his studies; Latin would serve him best.

Since he was taking AP/Honors science classes we focused on history programs that only provided the basics. Now my son does like history but there is only so many hours in a school day and we focused on his science classes.

I found a Meteorology video series, bought a textbook and outlined a selective course his last year of high school. [Read more…]

Life of Fred Australia Lesson Plans

Life of Fred Australia

Yes I was excited to find the Life of Fred Language Arts Series: Australia
I created a notebook page to keep track of the “Your Turn To Play Section.” Then I researched some extras to reinforce the concepts presented in the book. My son does better with repetition and writing down answers.

I will place these in a 3-ring binder that way he can use the backside of the paper for when he needs to draw an answer.

Australia

Life of Fred Australia PDF

In trying to keep the “fun” in the Life of Fred grammar books I went on a web search for grammar games.

Life of Fred Australia Game Ideas:

Life of Fred Australia Extra Assignments:

I really enjoyed the letter writing covered in the book. In this day of emails and text messages I feel the art of letter writing is fading fast. Since my son does not like to write for “no reason.” I came up with a writing plan to reinforce his letter writing skills. We will work on these letter over the course of finishing the book.

  • Write a letter to his favorite musician. Bonus the musician sent back an autographed photograph before we finished the book.
  • Write a letter to one of the oldest members of church, this population is more inclined to write back.
  • Write a letter to a homeschool publisher with constructive conscism on a product he was using.
  • Write a letter of condolence to an adult whose parent died.

Another grammar assignment I will have him work on while completing Life of Fred Australia is writing down each rule for using a commas. Then he will write a sentence demonstrating the rule.

Then he can write down the rules for plural and give me examples.

I have created 2 extra notebook pages for these assignments.

So each day he can do a lesson in Life of Fred Australia, write down one rule for commas (when commas are done he can do rules for plural) and then write one letter a week.

[Read more…]

Edgar Allen Poe Lesson Plans

Poe Lesson Plans

Edgar Allen Poe lesson plans for high school students. This is how one study guide from our Illuminations program turned into a 6 week in-depth study on Edgar Allen Poe.

This could be an example for my homeschooling friends who are nervous about homeschooling high school. If You Give a Mouse a Cookie is a popular pre-school book. Moms have read the book over and over to their children and provided small activities to go with the book. Guess what…It is the same format in high school except the topics run deeper.

If you give a homeschool mom a one week study guide on Poe she begins to study ways to teach the new topic.

She decides that one week is not enough to time for all the treasures she has found for her Edgar Allen Poe lesson plans.

Edgar Allen Poe Lesson Plans Resources:

She has chosen The Best of Poe: The Tell-Tale Heart, The Raven, The Cask of Amontillado, and 30 Othersfor her students to read. But then finds this book has a study guide, The Best of Poe.

After gathering information on which writings to read she decides the students must understand poetry to fully appreciate Poe.

Why not have students study poetry and practice writing poetry too. Yes, there is a study guide from 7 Sisters on Poetry Writing. 

My daughter’s favorite book in helping her understand poetry, How to Read a Poem: Based on the Billy Collins Poem “Introduction to Poetry”

Really hearing the poetry read aloud to capture all the nuances leads to buying the Edgar Allan Poe Audio Collection. Which was my personal favorite.

Why not gather some free resources from the National Park Service on Edgar Allen Poe.

Edgar Allen Poe Lesson Plans Field Trips:

Edgar Allen Poe Lesson Plans for Co-op Setting:

The breakdown of how these resources were used in a 6 week poetry unit meeting for a 3 hour class once a week; 1 hour on reading poetry, 1 hour writing, 1 hour on Poe study guide.

Week before class started the girls read and discussed the resources from the National Park Service web site. [Read more…]

Mystery of History and Grapevine Timeline

Timeline

Timelines with Grapevine Studies to review The Mystery of History volume I.

(From January 28th to February 3 2015 everything at Grapevine Studies is 50% off)

I am timeline challenged. After 15 years of homeschooling we just completed our first time line. While I do think time lines are great learning chances, you can send your child to college without ever completing one. Since I have 9 more years of homeschooling, I am pacing myself.

My struggles with timelines:

  • Deciding where to put people on the line. Do you do it by birth date, death date or another date
  • Deciding which events to add.
  • Keeping track of the project for the whole school year.
  • Which method do you use; sewing board, poster board, notebook, or on the wall?

I knew if I was going to help my kids complete a timeline I had to:

  • Keep it simple
  • Complete it in a day
  • Allow it to be sloppy
  • Have some structured directions

After completing the first semester test for Mystery of History volume 1, I ordered the Grapevine bible study timeline of the Old Testament.

Now Grapevine Studies come in the notebook format. Personally I like to see the actual timeline all at once. I copied the odd number pages since the timeline was double sided. Then I had my boys cut out each scroll, complete the drawings, and tape them together to form one long timeline. [Read more…]