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Friday, January 30, 2015

Learn Math Concepts with Music

My kids love music. I read that they can learn Math concepts by listening to music about those Math concepts. So, below are two videos, to begin with. One for Multiplication facts, something my daughter needs, and Algebra for my son. They will watch, or listen, at least a few times a week. I will add more videos, as I find them, and we go along. Try them with your kiddos, and see how it works.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Landscape Art, I Have A Dream Writing and Freedom

Landscape Art, was our last drawing lesson. You can see mine below. I combined the Art lesson with the Freedom lesson, assigned to DJ. For me I feel free, anywhere there is trees, and water. Preferably at the ocean, but a lake or stream is just fine too. There is a pink lake in Senegal, that I think would be amazing to visit. I am not sure I would swim in it, very high salt concentrations, but to just sit there and read a book would be amazing. I believe there is a pink lake in Australia, too. So, that was my Freedom and landscape Art all in one. Caitlin drew out her landscape, and is currently turning it into a Minecraft world. I will share images of it when she is done. DJ finished his animal project, and still has to do his landscape. Hopefully, on Friday.

DJ was given the writing assignment, after watching videos and Martin Luther King Jr, and his, I Have A Dream speech, to pick a topic that he would want to conquer. He is currently putting it in outline form, one of the hardest things to do in the Writing Process, for him. Then he will put it into essay form. I won't say what his dream would be, but it will be on his blog when completed. I too, will be challenging myself, to create an I Have A Dream, essay. I can not decide what one topic I would want to stop if I could. There are so many that are dear to my heart. I would say ignorance, is at the top, but that is something you could beat to death and never change. It will be here on this blog, when completed, and this time DJ gets to critique my writing, grammar, punctuation, etc. This should be fun, lol.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Make Your Own Lava Lamp Chemistry Experiment

We all know that Chemistry is the study of how things react to one another. Today, Caitlin and I, made a Lava Lamp, as a Chemistry experiment this was pretty cool. You can see from the photos, that this worked well. Here are the steps.

1- In your container of choice, we used a tall thin glass vase, add two parts Vegetable oil, to one part water. You can see from the first image, which Caitlin thought was awesome, that water and oil really do not mix. Be sure you leave room at the top of your container for the bubbling action.

2- Add 2-3 drops, of your favorite color of food coloring. Caitlin added three drops, of all four colors, lol.

3- Observe what has already happened. Check out the pictures.

4- Add Alka Seltzer tabs one at a time. You can see that it immediately starts to work. The Alka Seltzer, oil, and water, all react in a way that makes a rolling bubbling show. Caitlin added a total of 4 tablets. One tablet created big fat bubbles, that kind of rolled and lifted slowly. The more tablets you add the faster, and smaller the bubbles will go up.

All in all, and easy and fun, Chemistry experiment. I got the original idea, here. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

No More Time4Learning A New 30 Day Challenge and Some Other Changes

We are about halfway through our school year.  February 13, is the end of our second quarter.  I really start to evaluate what is working, and what is not at this time.  Also, what needs more attention, and work, and what could use a little less attention. 

DJ, is moving along fine with his current curriculum.  I have looked ahead in his Math U See Algebra 1 book, and think my brain will fry, lol.  But, it is working for him, and me.  We are working through it, and he is maintaining a strong B.  The only thing I have changed for him, was adding after school hours work, to his day.  I felt it was really needed, for him to retain so much information, especially for testing purposes.  It has worked, and he doesn't even grip anymore about after school work.  He sees the difference with the little bit of extra work.  The math work is mostly review, so it helps with retention, and we will see if it helps bring his grade up to an A. 

5th grade Math, is a huge transition. It was for DJ, and now is for Caitlin as well.  She was moving along nicely, until just a few weeks ago.  She is now struggling, with too much new material being added every day, along with old lessons learned but not mastered.  This is one of the things I love about homeschooling.  Now, I can alter her Math lessons so she will master topics first, with some minor new topics as well, and move along and not stagnate.  Caitlin, has also decided she does not want to do Time4Learning anymore either.  She was only doing it for Science and Language Arts.  She hates the Language Arts, but likes the Science.  Well, for 22 dollars a month, this is not a deal just for Science.  So, we are doing away with it.  She will do Science on LessonPathways.   Language Arts will be done with me, with a huge focus on Writing skills.  She has improved so much, but there is way more I want her to be able to do before the end of this year.  I have also added to her History, Have Fun With History's website.  Short video clips on topics of your choice.  Everything else will stay the same for her.

We have one lesson left, in our homeschool Art program.  Hopefully, that will get done tomorrow.  Then I will introduce you to a new website I found, and I love it so much.  I finished the 30 day plank challenge.  I am the only one that finished it, lol.  The kids, and I, all started a new challenge on Tuesday, a walking challenge.  The point of the challenge is not how far, or how fast, but how many days you  do it.  Since we do the same distance every time, we could get much faster.  Wed we still walk with friends.  The kids opted to ride their bikes, and I walk.  We are to do five days a week, for a total of 30 days walked.  This week ended up only being three, because it is going to rain tomorrow, and we decided to take weekends off.  I am hoping with the routine of doing it daily, the kids will just want to continue doing it, after the challenge has ended. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Minute to Win It Ice Breaker Games for Kids

Last night was our 4H meeting.  For our Ice Breaker game, we played some Minute to Win It.  There were 14 kids altogether, so 7 groups of 2 kids.  Each group is given one minute to complete each task.  Task 1 pile large conversation hearts, as high as you can.  If they fall over, and you still have time left,  you start over.  Oh, and each member can only use one arm.  This one was fun, but not as much fun as Task2, forehead carry game.  Each child had to place a Vanilla Wafer on their forehead, then walk down to the target bowl, and drop said cookie in the bowl.  If the cookie falls off your head, you start over, you can not touch the cookie once it is placed on your head.  The group with the most cookies in the bowl, at the end of a minute, wins.  This was pretty hysterical to watch.  The taller kids were at a great disadvantage, but learned really quickly to not get to close to the bowl when you drop it.  Lots of fun with these!  The boys looked like they had this won, with 14 candies, but they fell over, and they had to start all over.  The most cookies in the bowl were 14 as well.

My 10 year old, has shown an interest in riding horses.  We had done some a couple years ago, but then it just got too time consuming.  I was talking to some other moms, and there is a huge interest for a 4H horse club, in our county.  I will be starting the process to become a 4H leader, so I can get a group going.  This should be interesting.  

Monday, January 19, 2015

Biscuit Readers in My Ebay Store, Minute To Win It for Ice Breakers

We are off from school today, so I get to catch up on all kinds of things. Over the weekend, we actually stayed home, and got so much yard work done it looks fabulous. I have a really cool Science post to share, but it is taking forever for the videos to load. If they all load, I will share, it is really cool. The 5 Biscuit books, shown below, are available for purchase in my Ebay store. You can always find my Ebay store, by scrolling down to the bottom of this blog. My daughter loved these books, and is finally willing to part with them.

Tonight we have 4H. DJ is the VP, so he is in charge of the Ice Breakers. We have done some really fun ones so far this year. They all seem to like the game style ones the best. So, DJ, and I, have come up with some Minute to Win It Ice Breakers. I will take pics, and share them all later this week. I always try to use what we already have on hand, so you definitely can improvise with a little thought and creativity.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Prepared Microscope Slide Set and Other Biology Items

When I purchase our Marine Biology textbooks, and other equipment, I did not buy the slides offered. They were super expensive! I hope these ones stay on sale long enough for me to get them. Not only can I use them for the rest of this year, but for Biology next year, and eventually for Caitlin. I wish they would say how long they will be on sale for. I have been an LPN for almost 30 years, yes I was very young. I recently decided to resign my position at my current job, and I will be going back to school for my RN. Since one of the courses that I can take the CLEP exam for much less money, and still earn the credits, is Biology. I too am studying Biology. I do remember quite a bit, which is good since I am teaching it to my kids. My point is, I found some really nice apps for preparing for ACT or SAT, and CLEP exams. I will share those in a future post. I am hoping DJ will take the American History Clep, and earn 3 college credits, at the end of this school year. His studying skills have improved immensely. If there is one thing I could recommend to other homeschool parents is to get your kids to remember things, not memorize them. How you do that, is totally up to you. Be sure to check out the free Biology items below, along with the slides which are not free, but an awesome price.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Teaching Homeschool Math When You Don't Remember Learning It Yourself

We are moving our way through Algebra 1, with Math U See.  Up until yesterday, I was able to teach the lessons, and assist, without too much difficulty.  Then came Slope and Intercept.  Ugh, not only do I not remember ever learning this, I don't remember ever having to use it either.  But, now I do.  The Math U See videos are not always helpful.  I like the instructor, but it doesn't always click.  We started using Core Algebra 1, as a supplement for videos.  DJ, and I, both find the instructor helpful, though a little dorky, but we can understand him.  I watched his lesson on Slope and I think I got it.  I have to memorize the formula, but I think I will just write it down, lol.  Unit 6, Linear Functions, is the lesson.  Of course, you could do them all.

Every now and then, I go through my Pinterest homeschool board, to look for things I forgot about.  I found a great website to help improve writing skills.  I wanted to share it, so I could find it easier, and so you could find it too.  It is free, and I like it.  There is another one for Grammar too, that I will share another day.  I don't think I will have my daughter, write every day, usually Friday is writing, so that will give her plenty of time to think about the topic. 

Don't forget to check out my new Jewelry in Candles Store.  I have to sell six candles in three months, or get booted.  The widget is in the top left hand corner.  Just click it.  You get to pick the type of jewelry, with your candle choice. 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Marine Biology Dissection Lab

Today was dissection day. If you missed it, in my last post I shared free virtual dissection websites. We did a Clam, Star Fish, Perch, and a Crayfish. I was kind of disappointed with the Clam. It did not show as much organ detail as any of the images we found in either textbook or online. The Star Fish was cool, and by the time we got to the Perch, I had enough. DJ finished up the Perch and did the Crayfish too.

We laid parchment paper on the table, to protect it. The kit I shared did have gloves, but no mask or goggles. We had those, already. The smell was not that bad, but there was some smell. Everything was cleaned down with bleach after use. DJ was a little freaked out at first, but once he got going, it got a lot easier to do. I do have to say that I think it would be better to dissect something freshly deceased, rather than stored in Formaldehyde for however old they were. I think the organs, and other systems would be easier to see, and find, if it were freshly deceased.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Virtual Dissection Of A Clam and Sea Star High School Marine Biology Science Lab

This week, DJ and I, will be dissecting a Clam, and a Sea Star. He is using the Apologia Marine Biology books this year. I bought the dissection kit shown below. It was a little more affordable than the one on Apologia's website. I do wish I had bought the slides, but hindsight is 20/20, as they say. We have been able to do fine without them, just think they would have been cool. In Florida, all High School Science classes, have to have a lab. Even if you homeschool. Well, not really, but I am trying to be as traditional about the High School years, as I can. Labs are the fun part of Science! I am including links to two free virtual dissecting websites, for the clam and sea star. You can purchase the dissection kit shown below, and then just follow along on the websites. Voila, there is your lab. We will be taking our own images, as we go along, so they will be shared later this week.  Oh you will want some gloves, and a mask if you are sensitive to smell, maybe even goggles.  I am not sure if those come in the kit.  I have not actually opened ours yet.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Homeschool Art Still Life Drawings

When most people think of still life art, they think of fruit, or flowers in a vase. I guess that is what most still life subjects are. However, the Art lesson said a still life is a drawing of any inanimate object. There were other rules too. Two of the most interesting, that I took from it, was that all still lifes should have an odd number of the item Also, that famous artists used the color red to draw people to what they actually wanted them to see. Very often it was just a small amount, maybe not even noticeable. So, now I have to go to an Art museum to look at some of these pieces of Art. If you look at them online, the red may not show through. That is what the teacher said.

Anyway, I did roses, but on a glass plate, with a black background. Painting on glass plates is always a challenge. You have to paint backwards to get the image to appear properly. If you ever read my other blog, you know I have been chasing the perfect rose forever. I still have not attained it, but I am so much happier with these. I actually used a red, and green, paint pen to draw the roses and leaves on the plate first. Then painted them in. The black goes on last. I have two other glass plates done too, using a different technique. I think these would make adorable gifts with homemade cookies or fudge on them. Those will be shared on my other blog.

DJ decided to do a still life of one of his favorite video game characters, Link. The drawing is what he would envision Link's room to look like. I like it, a lot.

Caitlin, did not actually complete hers.

We only have two lessons left, animals, and landscapes. Both are my favorites, so it should be fun.

Currclick for Homeschoolers


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