Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Reno Air Races

We had a family day at the Reno Air Races. It was a hot day filled with lots of vintage planes, a few stunt shows, Air Force transportation and free T-shirts.

Jay and the children got to see the inside of an Apache helicopter(seen here) and a extremely huge plane used to refill the planes in mid-air(sorry for my lack of plane name knowledge). It is always amazing to me when I see things like this-- these machines are really used to fight for our freedom. We are truly a blessed nation to have the military capabilities to protect ourselves with such machinery.

Ayden's favorite plane of the day--can you guess why? The teeth, that's right.

Can you guess why Emry liked this one? The red, white and blue? You guessed it!

And of course this one was neat because of the face.

It was a lot of planes and a lot of noise and unfortunately the children were done before Jay and I were. We went with a homeschool co-op in Reno and received free admission but Jay and I were wondering if we could leave the children at home next time and enjoy the races by ourselves. The noise of the jets scared Emry, the heat tired Ayden out, Kensley just went along with them and Brady was content but we had to leave early. Jay and I wanted to sit in the bleachers and watch the races and enjoy the Blue Angels practice show but it was not to be. It was a neat thing to experience but we will hold off until everyone is a little older.

Life Learning Center ~ off to a great start!

At Life Learning Center we offer a multi-aged curriculum, which is individualy tailored to each students developmental needs and personal interests. We offer a small student to teacher ratio, 4:1, to be exact, which enables exceptional one on one attention for hands on activities and christian character development. Students participate in daily Bible study & worship, story time, copywork, math, spelling and reading/phonics. Children also participate in weekly drawing practice, fine arts, music appreciation, geography and nature study/science. All subjects are taught in a home environment of safety, comfort and family.

So that is my professional sounding educational goals for the year, now for some cute first day of school photos and tidbits.

Yes, we actually do educate our older children but this shot of Brady and his cute little face and beautiful blue eyes was to cute to pass up. What does Brady do during Lessons? Nap of course, well for most of the time, but he does join us for circle time, crawling around squealing, clapping and pulling the hair of his sisters.

and our sweet KensKens. She to participates in circle time, dancing, singing, praying (and this girl can really pray, head bowed and all), and listening to jokes and stories. After circle she usually colors or does tot trays and sometimes watches a video(Miss. Pattycake is her favorite).

Emry Anne is in 2nd grade this year. She is growing in her reading skills and focusing this year on spelling and geography. She will be doing a continental world tour using picture books and hands on activities. Her favorite free-time activities are listening to books on tape and watching T.V. On the 1st day of school I asked the children a series of questions and took their pictures, here are some of E's answers: her favorite color is purple, her favorite people are, Hannah, mommy and daddy (yeah for us and hopefully we will always be on the list), her favorite things to eat are macaroni and ice cream, her favorite game is the egg and spoon race, she loves to wear dresses, she wants to learn how to cook and when she grows up she wants to go to tea parties.

Ayden is in Kindergarten this year. He is focusing on copywork and math with some practical life lessons and fine motor skills intermixed. This boy loves all things science so we will also be focusing on different science and nature topics such as dinosaurs, magnets, clouds and shells. Here are some of his first day of school answers: A's favorite color is orange, his favorite person is Hannah's brother Steven, he loves any book dealing with futuristic topics, his favorite foods are hot dogs & hamburgers, his favorite thing to do is build, he likes to wear sweat pants and watch future shows (AKA the science channel, do you see a theme here?), his favorite movie is Wall-E, he wants to learn about how things work, tickling makes him happy and when he grows up he wants to make inventions.

We have gotten off to a great start and I am so pleased with the children's efforts. I feel like I have hit the mark for each child's interests and needs because I can see their hearts enjoying the materials I present. Don't misunderstand me, each day presents with challenges, mine and theirs', but God is faithful in giving wisdom, patience and protection with a few glimpses of fruit for encouragement along the road.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tot School

We are now in our 6th week of school and the children are all doing very well. Kensley is daily asking to do tot trays and is even wanting to make up her own trays, with Ayden throwing in a few tray activities. However, K's absolutely favorite thing to do is color, color,color! Maria Montessori says children have sensitive periods for the various developmental skills, well my girl is having one big time, she will even take previously colored pictures and add another layer of color, asking "is this bootiful?" she loves to color lots of things from barney, to horses and pumpkins but of course like most little princesses, Cinderella is the best, no matter how many times her face has been scribbled over. We have had to have several reminders that we color on paper not on ourselves and I think she has decided to obey. So now onto some cute pictures.

A little fine motor practice with Mr. Potato Head

Coloring a pizza. One of her favorite stories is Pete's a Pizza. It a very cute story about how a dad tries to cheer up his son on a rainy day by making him into a pizza. It is a great story to act out with lots of laughs.

And this is K's ToT tray area. I usually try to always have out something imaginative. On the bottom shelf is a group of bears to go with the picnic basket full of tea party items like dishes, a table cloth and napkins. Also on the trays regularly are a matching activity, a stringing activity, a color activity, a scooping activity and a puzzle. I just introduced K to tongs and tweezers and she really enjoyed it, the Bigs were jealous and asked for their own trays. Tot School is never a requirement at our house but an optional activity while the Bigs are working on their lessons. I do however always require her to finish what she starts and put the activities away properly. So when people wonder how we homeschool with little ones, this is how. I always think it is a good idea to have activities ready for little ones but always remember that their primary task is to play.