Week in Review

This was pretty good academic homeschooling week. We got all our October schooling done and filed away for the end of the year portfolios. Here is our week:

  • Church
  • Harvest Cook-Out at a friend’s house
  • Muscular System Co-op
  • Apiary Field Trip
  • Homeschool Choir
  • Lots of reading
  • Wood burning projects
  • Ice Skating Started
  • 20141028_090335
  • Older kids Wrote their Resumes
  • Online Computer Classes at the library
  • Muscular System Review Worksheets
  • Workbooks
  • Easy Peasy Online School (my review of this curriculum here)
  • Blogging, of course

Quite a list!!

Happy Homeschooling!

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Week in Review & Our Homeschool Co-op

Gamer coaching soccer
Gamer coaching soccer

This week was not as productive in the academics as I was hoping it would be. I am not concerned because we school pretty much year round and this school year started in July. According to our state I have a 2 month jump on this current years work.

This week we had our regular co-op classes on Monday. This session of classes are:

  • Human Body Systems
  • Choir
  • Career Readiness

The system of study this week was the Digestive System. Here is a picture from the class.

Squeezing Oatmeal through the small intestines (nylons)
Squeezing Oatmeal through the small intestines (nylons)

I am going to focus this post on how our co-op works. But, I will finish my week in review first. Here is a quick list of what we accomplished:

  • Co-op classes
  • Attended a friends soccer game
  • Workbook work
  • Some Easy Peasy
  • Math drills each day
  • Reports written for the month (we try to do one a month)
  • Soccer (my son Gamer coached, photo above)
  • Playground playing
  • Dinner at a friends house (also helped her with her homeschool paperwork)
  • Dentist Appointments
  • Fire Department Field Trip
  • Pumpkin Carving for the Nursing Home
  • Loading, unloading, and stacking fire wood
  • Blogging
  • Artwork
  • Corn Maze
  • Dinner at another friends house
  • Jewelry party tomorrow
  • Barn Dance tomorrow also

coops

Our homeschool co-op is really a homeschool class because at this point I teach them all. I have tried to have others take over the work of running a class but this has not worked out. I love teaching these mainly hands-on classes, so I don’t mind at all. My daughter Director has been a great help in the Choir class.

This year I tried something different. I had families sign-up and pay a very small supply fee to take the K-6 classes. In the past it was hit or miss whether students came to the classes. This year with that small supply fee and a registration portion we have had a wonderfully full class each week. In past years it has also been very expensive for me supply all the items for classes. This year is so much better.

Another thing I tried this year was just having an 8 week session for each season. We have the Fall, Winter, and Spring sessions. Here is the breakdown of the classes per session:

FALL

  • The Human Body (K-6th)
  • Choir (all ages)
  • Career Readiness (7th-12th)

WINTER

  • Exploring Weather (K-6)
  • Drama Club (all ages)
  • Dissection 101 (4th-12th)

SPRING

  • Beginning Botany (K-6)
  • Garage Band (all ages)
  • Yearbook (7th-12th)

The classes that say K-6 are really geared to all the way up to 11th grade but not 100% of the time so I listed those grades instead.

The classes I teach are things I would be doing with my children anyway. These classes are an extension of our learning at home. The children really enjoy doing the science projects with a group. The science classes are all hands-on with a small bit of talking in between projects. There is always a snack also.

The classes run for 3 hours on Mondays at the local library. The library has a wonderful meeting room that they let us use. The room has a full kitchen, complete sound system, full video projector and computer access, and it’s own bathroom. The library also provides chairs, tables, cups, plates, and serving tray and bowls. It really is an amazing space. This meeting space is also free to use.

I have a regular blog where I post what our homeschool co-op is doing each week: Crazy8 Homeschool Co-ops  On that blog I will post the rest of the pictures from this weeks classes and helpful info about running a co-op type class.

Our family is in our 23rd year homeschooling and with Princess only turning 5 next month we are in this for the long haul. I think families feel comfortable with me teaching and I hope they see how much I love doing it 🙂 Families come up to me each week thanking me for teaching the classes and I am glad they appreciate it.

Here is a post from my other blog that explains more about what we do: Respiratory System Co-op & how we run a class.

Happy Homeschooling!

Week in Review & Easy Peasy Online Review

We had a very productive homeschooling week this week. We were able to actually stay home Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Guess that is why we got so much accomplished.

Our homeschool days fluctuate between a day of workbooks and a day of Easy Peasy online school. The workbooks we use will be for another post. Today I thought I would share how the Easy Peasy computer school program is working for us.

This week we were able to spend two days just on computer school and the other two days were on workbooks. Mondays are taken up by co-op classes. This weeks co-op Science class was the Respiratory System.  We also had co-op Choir and Career Readiness.

Princess (Kindergarten) She does a little bit of Easy Peasy “Getting Ready 1“. On that program she learns her letters with songs, worksheets, and the starfall program. She knows her letters very well and just has fun with the online learning. The sounds of the letters is what she is learning now so the starfall program is useful. There seems to be a lot of coloring pages with this Easy Peasy level. She does like some coloring but she, like my other children, detest busy work. She liked the project this week that involved making a movable animal for the letter of the week. Below is a link to one kind of project like that that she did recently. We do tend to just skip over the busy work stuff though. So she focused mainly on her workbooks this week and the computer program Reading Eggs which she really loves.

A is for Alligator.
A is for Alligator.

Collector (3rd Grade) He does Easy Peasy Third Level. This week he worked on xtramath to practice his math facts speed and knowledge. (Easy Peasy suggests the use of that program.) In Math he worked on adding +10 and +11 and adding one more to a large number. In Language Arts he worked on poetry. This weeks topic in poetry was rhyme and alliteration. He understood the rhyming but the alliteration didn’t sink in, I don’t believe. No big deal. He worked on a spelling with the worksheet below (the first picture will show a larger image and the second picture links to the worksheet itself online). He really enjoyed it. He enjoys spelling anyway but this worksheet was fun to him. He worked on current events in History. He read an article online and then rewrote it in his own words. His choice was the clean-up from a recent hurricane in the south. In Science he played an online game about the states of matter. It was fun and really brought the point home. In PE he worked on learning how to stretch properly. All in all it was a great week. This program works all right for Collector but I do prefer that he does most of his work away from the computer screen. He enjoys it but the reading is more difficult on a screen than in a book that is in his hands. Overall he seems to be learning a lot from this program.

spelling 1spelling 2

Pilot (5th Grade) He does Easy Peasy Fourth Level. I choose this level for him because I liked what was being taught in this level, not really a grade level so much as I liked the things he would be learning this year. This week he also worked on xrtamath to practice with his math facts. (As Easy Peasy suggests.) In Math he worked on estimating to the hundreds place and adding the estimated numbers. He also did online timed division facts which he enjoyed. The Reading was a crazy huge amount this week. All the reading this year is from McGuffey’s Third Eclectic Reader. I even have a hard time figuring out this book. The language is not easy nor are the stories. I spend so much time explaining these stories to him that I think I am going to reconsider him doing the reading with Easy Peasy starting next week. For example yesterday we was supposed to read 5 different stories. Now the vocabulary he does with this he likes very much and he enjoys learning new words. Also this week he learned about a Limerick and wrote one. In Science & History he learned about Alexander Graham Bell, did an experiment with sound, and watched a video on Bell. He also did Bible work, learned about junk mail, and looked at the life of the composer Pfitzner. This program, except for Reading, works really well for Pilot. He is having fun and learning as he goes. There is never a complaint to have to do school. The picture links to the video he watched this week.

Alexander Graham Bell Movie Link
Alexander Graham Bell Movie Link

Tech (7th Grade) He does Easy Peasy Sixth Level. Just like Pilot I choose this level for him because I liked what was being taught in this level, not really a grade level so much as I liked the things he would be learning this year. This week he worked on xrtamath to practice his math facts also. This year he is working on Language Appreciation. He watches a video with part of the voices in Latin and the rest in English then he has to make his best guess as to what the Latin words mean. He has a lot of fun with it. Next week he will use this list to look up the French and Spanish words for these Latin words and look for similarities. His Math is Khan Academy and this week he worked on negative numbers and comparing absolute values. I like that on Khan Academy I can look and see what each of my children is working on right from my “Coach” page. He is enjoying his Robert Frost poetry this year. He also worked on Bible, Alexander Graham Bell, and Pfitzner, but at a higher level than Pilot. This program does not seem challenging enough for Tech. Not sure what I need to specifically change yet but something needs to change. He is kinda bored with it except for the games. Here is a link to a History game he loves. It is actually from Directors school lessons but he enjoys playing when he is done his schoolwork.

History Game Online
History Game Online

Artist (9th Grade) She does Easy Peasy Eighth Level. Just like Tech I choose this level for him because I liked what was being taught in this level, not really a grade level so much as I liked the things he would be learning this year.This week she worked on xrtamath to maintain her math fact skills. This year she is taking Sign Language and loving it. She laughs throughout the video as the teacher is just a fun guy. She has Vocabulary, Reading, and Writing. I never hear complaints from her. She is able to do all this Easy Peasy work on her own without me really. Her statement to me was that this was her best homeschool year yet. As an artist she enjoys the Art section of Easy Peasy so the link below is from her art lesson. For Math she is doing Khan Academy also. She worked on complimentary and supplemental angles, circumference, and multiplying decimals. She did Bible, History, Science, and Health. In Science she is working on chemistry and the periodic table. This program is an excellent fit for Artist. She enjoys this curriculum and seems to be learning so much. I am so glad she has found something that fits her so well.

How to Draw a Shell Link
How to Draw a Shell Link

Director (11th Grade) She is doing Easy Peasy High School. She is doing lots of classes from this site. Here is her list: xtramath, Literature and Compostion, Biology with Lab, US History 2, Art Appreciation, Music Appreciation, PE/Health, Spanish, and Khan Academy. Her favorite subject from Easy Peasy is Music Appreciation. She says she likes this best because, “I think I am learning more in this than in any other subject. I also like that I can watch the videos of all the instruments.” She also likes Literature and Composition because, “I learn new words and their meanings. There is this site that you go onto that has a story and you then answer questions about it.” She feels that for her Easy Peasy is a good fit, “There are some boring things but most of it is interesting.”

Music Appreciation Link
Music Appreciation Link

I hope this review of Easy Peasy was helpful. Have a great weekend.