Thursday, October 23, 2008

Trimester Report

It is time for a long overdue weekly report here at Ambleside Classical. However, I am going to have to change the Weekly Report to a Trimester report this time. Blogging has taken a backseat to my home, homeschooling, and outside teaching responsibilities. Here goes. Sixth grade has been a transition year for us. I have always sat right there with dd to make sure the school work got done without dawdling. We did unit studies, projects, and read-alouds. This year is different.

My dd is now working more independently, and is not interested in big projects or unit studies. She just wants to b
uckle down and hit the work, and is preferring more traditional methods. Projects are of little interest to her this year, and this was my hands-on loving child for so many years! As a unit study, project-loving Mom, this has been a hard transition as my role here in our homeschool seems to be changing.

I encourage you to take time to DO THE PROJECTS while you still may. They day will soon come when they are laid aside and the time for them has passed.
I don't regret one mess we made, in fact, I miss them. Textbooks and workbooks will always be there, but the time for pioneer bonnets, medieval princess hats, and Viking shields is gone all too quickly.

Here is what we have finished during our first term:

  • Completed Artistic Pursuits Lessons 1-4 - not as many as I would have liked
  • Did a couple of drawing lessons from Nature Friend magazine
  • Lots of drawing in free time, especially enjoying drawing cartoons
  • Completed CyberEd Lessons 1-3
  • Read science biography Thomas Edison: Young Inventor (Childhood of Famous Americans)
  • Participated in co-op Earth Science class
  • Took a couple of science-related field trips
  • Read Reconstructing America by Joy Hakim chapters 1-24 and completed selected exercises from the corresponding Oxford study guide
  • Have been reading the TruthQuest commentary aloud on Mondays to tie in all the readings with a Christian perspective
  • Read daily from book basket (self-selected TruthQuest Selections)
  • Have done map work weekly from either Trailguide, State Report Projects for Any State, or as assigned by Mom: related to history reading

  • Old Yeller
  • Huckleberry Finn
  • Read-Aloud: Little Women
  • various free reading books (self-selected)
  • Completed history-related writing assignments every other week. I am pulling these from the History Study Guide and other sources. An example of a typical writing assignment: "You have just arrived at Ellis Island. Write an entry in your journal about your trip over and what happened when you arrived." Creative writing has actually been a hit here! Some of these assignments have been illustrated or worked up into scrapbook pages.
  • Working through the Four Square Writing book. We are doing this twice a week, and I am hoping this will help her structure and organize her writing.
  • CLE Math 5. Finishing up the second Light Unit. We are loving this curricum. My dd was a former math hater, and we have tried so many curriculums in the past. CLE has built her confidence, and she no longer struggles. Her tests and quizzes have been in the 95% and above range. In fact, I have heard a few, "I like math" comments now and again!

Language Arts
  • CLE Language Arts. This is going well. We are definitely CLE fans! This year, dd is doing the entire lesson twice a week, spelling and all. On other days, she does writing or dictation.
  • Open Texture Elementary Greek. We are only a few lessons in, so the verdict is still out. We finished Hey Andrew! before beginning Elementary Greek, and that was a definite hit.
  • Typing Instructor Deluxe software. Dd enjoys working on the computer for typing.

  • Using Open Windows by CLE as devotional reading, and Wise Up! by Positive Action for Christ for Bible. We alternate these every other day to keep things fresh. This seems to be working well.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Last night I opened my scrapbook album, and found to my horror that it has been months since I have taken the time to create a scrapbook page! It is so easy to get busy, busy, busy and feel like there is no time for hobbies. One suggestion I heard at our homeschool co-op was to actually schedule hobby time in 20 or 30 minute increments through the week. The problem I run into is that I don't have hours and hours to scrapbook, so I'd like to try that idea. The hardest part will be STOPPING when my time is up!

Last week-end we explored a local state park and hiked for a couple of hours. Now this was not hiking on an even, paved path, but the kind of hiking where you climb over rocks, and don't want to look down! It was a gorgeous hike, and I took some photos (of course!). Take time and enjoy autumn's sights and smells, and scrap it all! As a side note, cross country hiking burns 1000 calories in 2 hours, so if you needed more motivation, there you go! : )

Created with Creating Keepsakes Scrapbook Designer software and Shabby Princess "Harvest Spice" digital kit.

Monday, October 06, 2008

What are you serving at your family table this week? I love hearing what others are doing. My menu was lifted from the Fall 2008 Clean Eating issue, in case you're wondering about the page numbers. : ) I love having photos of all the healthy recipes featured, and am absolutely smitten with this magazine! You can request your own free copy from Clean Eating, or look for the latest issue at your local book store.

Day 1: Quinoa, Apple & Walnut Salad (p. 80)

Day 2: Mahi Mahi Tacos (p. 34-35)
Day 3: Sesame-Mango Chicken ( p. 57)

Day 4: Roasted Cauliflower, Leek & Garlic Soup (p. 46) with Balsamic-Glazed Cracked Pepper Salmon (p. 29)
Day 5: Turkey Ragout (p. 58)
Day 6: Shrimp & Edame Stir Fry “Salad” (p. 50-51)

To happy, healthy dining!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Catching Up

My online friend Rhonda over at Imagine reminded me through her blog today that I (GASP!) have not taken much time over the summer to scrapbook. Looking at my summer photos, I like this one of my dd on the lake. I used free items from Digital Scrapbook Search Engine and Scrapbook Designer to create this page in about 5 minutes!

I'd love to carve out a half an hour per day to scrapbook. Hmmm. I am going to have to think about this. Keeping up is really the key. Step by step, little by little, rather than waiting until I have a memory card of 200 photos (and no, this is not a theoretical number!) waiting to be scrapped.

How about you? Are you finding a little time each day for something fun? When was the last time you pulled out your crochet basket or your scrapbook supplies? It is a GOOD thing to schedule a little time for hobbies each day, even if it is only a half hour. I can't believe it, but I completed my page and this post in about 15 minutes total. I may not have hours and hours of free time per day, but I think thirty minutes per day is something I'm going to try.