Do you keep a record of what you accomplish in your homeschool?
If not, YOU SHOULD! I'm finding that through these homeschool updates I can look back on our accomplishments and smile. And sometimes homeschool moms can beat up on themselves for not doing enough, can't they?
February is typically a BLAH kind of month in many homeschools, but I found that things were humming right along here. That might be because our weather was more mild than usual, and also because we had a solid week off for winter break.
Whatever the case, here is what we've been up to in February - I hope it encourages you!
Homeschool High School: Science Labs
I vividly remember my dad asking me how Anna was going to get science with LABS as a homeschool high schooler. Well - that is EASY, really.
There are ample opportunities for online classes (yes, some do offer labs) and co-op classes that offer science labs.
Anna is in Classical Conversations Challenge II, and through their study this year of Biology (using the Apologia Biology text) the class does many labs. (Just an aside - we have enjoyed all of the Apologia science texts!)
This area has ALWAYS been one of Anna's favorites, and she came home raving about a Starfish dissection - complete with pictures!
They have done several other experiments and dissections this year, but I do think the Starfish has been her favorite so far.
Homeschooling with Classical Conversations
The highlight of our week is always Tuesday, when both of my children attend CC community.
This year they are in two separate communities, but it is working out fine because they are just 10 minutes apart. My son and I helped form a brand new community this year, while my daughter stayed at our previous community because of the established Challenge program.
Our new community is small - but very sweet and supportive. It's been a magical year.
(I am enjoying tutoring the Abecedarians - truly one of my favorite parts of this year!)
One of the highlights of our new community is our Essentials teacher - she is a grandmother, former English teacher, and just loves our children to pieces. Grant has been learning so much from her this year.
His Faces of History presentation and paper are about Leif Eriksson. He has been finishing this 5 paragraph report and working very hard on his presentation. Last year's Faces of History was GREAT, and I can't wait for this year's!
We had a relaxed Winter Break and stayed close to home.
Here's a God story for you: We visited a nearby college to get a taste for what it is like and to see a friend of ours from church. As we were driving home (Anna was driving to get some experience with longer distances), our tire blew out.
Anna was extremely calm, slowed the van, and as I was wondering what we would do (my husband wasn't with us), I looked up and we were directly in front of an oil change franchise! Anna just pulled in - they changed our tire for FREE, and we were on our way.
How's that for a first time flat tire experience? The only bad thing was that we had just put new tires on our van the week before, so that hurt a bit!
We very much enjoyed our college visit - it gave Anna and me a glimpse into the not so distant future.
We also had the opportunity to volunteer at a mobile food pantry in our area.
The kids and I were at the zucchini station - we bagged up thousands of zucchini and then as people drove through the kids put the bags in their cars. It's quite an operation, really - about 10 stations set up and over 200 cars drive through to pick up food.
The morning we helped it was freezing cold, but that was ok because it didn't hurt the kids at all to feel some discomfort. I love that we can take time during our week to do this type of thing - it's one of the biggest benefits to homeschooling.
Time to READ
Another benefit to homeschooling is the excessive time to just READ.
Grant isn't quite the reader that my Anna is, but I'm finding that if I keep lots of good books around it really helps encourage him to read.
Favorites this month were:
- Shakespeare's Scribe --> We've read Shakespeare Stealer aloud and it was great, so when we saw this book at the library Grant wanted to check it out.
- Great Battles for Boys/ WWII Pacific --> We've been reading this book in bits and pieces during our morning time. It's perfect for a quick read aloud, and the information has been very interesting!
- True Legend --> I'd heard so much about Mike Lupica books, and Grant is loving them! In fact, he now says he would like to be a sports writer (just like the author) one day, and I'm ok with that.
- I Like to Move It! Newton's Laws of Motion --> This book (downloaded on Kindle) has been PERFECT for integrating with our CC Science memory work. In fact, Grant has been doing his weekly presentations on the laws of motion and how they relate to basketball. Perfect, right?
We continued along with piano, guitar, basketball, flag football, tennis.
We attended a BEAUTIFUL Atlanta Symphony Orchestra concert featuring Copland's Appalachian Spring.
As I look back on the month I am thankful for a rich variety of experiences, where my children are free to pursue their strengths, and work on their weaknesses.
Registration has begun for 11th grade for Anna, and since we are moving out of the Challenge program I am piecing together her junior year - which is VERY exciting, because it is involving lots of her interests and passions.
Grant will be in Challenge A next year -- with NINE of his peers! I know it is going to be an amazing year for him.
Thank you for joining me on this journey, and I hope this encourages you to record some of your homeschool accomplishments, no matter how small.