Saturday, June 19, 2010

In memory of Rosie

This week Duckie's dog Rosie was hit by a car and killed instantly in front of her. Duckie had to make the choice not to follow Rosie and so be hit herself and just stand and watch it happen.

A chain of unfortunate events led up to Rosie getting out and being hit, there was nothing anyone could do. It has been so hard to watch my darling daughter cope with all that happened. She had picked out her puppy and waited 4 years until we were able to get one. Rosie had been a part of our family for just over 12months and we are feeling the gap she has left.

Remembering Rosie Photo Album

Volcano LapN'notes

Most of these mini books are from Homeschool Share
Volcano LapN'note
These photos are from Zebra's (9) LapN'note. Duckie did one too but hers is very similar so only showing one.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Yes I know I am still going on about Langage Arts and Sonlight!

I found a great post at Pioneer Woman on how she has altered Sonlights program to fit her son's spelling needs (another post here). I like her ideas.

She also has a good review for Handwriting without Tears in this post.

I love it when I find another Homeschooler who has made curriuculm that I am about to use or using work even better for their family. This is what homeschooling is all about!

Friday, June 4, 2010


Setting up the workbox system could get pricy, after all you need all those shoeboxes and a desk - but how to get a cheap desk, and how to fit that many in a room, especially when you have 5 kids all needing a desk??

This one (pictured above) uses a book case to divide the table into half. I love how simple it looks when finished.
The plans are avavilable here at do it yourself. You can either buy a bookcase and modify it or build your own.
This one is a bit more expensive as it uses a plexiglass panel as a divider. I think I would just use a piece of wood and paint it, that way the kids couldn't see each other and we might get more work done ;)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Handwriting without tears

After doing my own thing, adding in bits of THRASS, doing my own thing, doing my own thing ... you get the picture :) I finally took the plunge and bought the Handwriting without Tears Program. I bought it all! well my order arrived and frankly I was overwhelmed.

Where do I start them?

Zebra is left handed and learnt to write using the Sonlight LA program. I just showed her how to form each letter. Her writing is not too bad concidering that she is left handed. She has used the THRASS letter formation songs and her writing is formed fairly well.

Duckie on the other had has part THRASS and while she can write, her letters are all over the lines and formed all over the place. I am hesitant to take her back through print and wondering if we can go straight to cursive as she is keen to learn this. We will alter it though I do not like the G or the Q in HWT.

Bunny is just learning so will start her with the first book, But not sure if I teach her in the order of the HWT book or to match the Sonlight letters as she learns them???

Monkey I am going to start with playing with Mat man and learning to form the letters before she writes them using some of the ideas from Preschool Playbook . I found this blog to day and I like the fun way of playing with the the wooden bits. I love the polishing idea, this is so Montessori.

I would love to find a font that matches the HWT program so I can make up some copywork sheets but so far no luck.

Oh well ... Off to learn how to write again. (I can write in my handwriting, THRASS handwriting and now to learn HWT!!)

Homestead Blessings

If you have daughters you will love these DVD's, we borrowed them from a friend and the girls watched them over and over again. We have made some of the bread recipes and it really is as easy as they make it look.

Raising Homemakers is a new site and they are giving away a set of Homestead Blessings DVD's. Hop over there and leave a comment and you might win it, personally I am hoping I do :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

My Sonlight order has arrived!!

It arrived!! I ordered on Friday last week and it arrived today Wednesday (6 days) is impressive in my book for a curriculum to come all the way from America to Australia. Sometimes it takes up to 2 weeks for post to come from the other side of Australia to us!! I was disappointed when it first came as only one box arrived, only half my Sonlight how can I wait for another day for the rest :( Luckily the other box arrived 3 hours later with a different courier, somehow they had got separated, so we were able to unpack and admire all these new books and resources, for me to do the usual panic why did I buy this, how am I going to use that, how soon can I start it?

My only complaint is that I got caught with customs GST and taxes this time which I have never had to pay before. Importing anything over $1000 attracts a tax (I discovered) my order was translated from approx $900 American into $1000 Australian $$ and so attracted a tax. Next time I will split the order and watch this as it cost me another $190 for my order!!!!

If you are ordering from Australia BEWARE of this import tax. Also if you split your order and process it at the same time and all the packages arrive they will add them together, if total cost is over $1000 you will still be charged the tax. So next time I order it will be in 2 bits, with a few days between them. I already have my next order sitting in my shopping cart waiting to go!!

Consequently instead of finishing our volcano study today the girls spent the morning reading all the new books. I wish I had stopped to get a photo of them. One was curled up on the beanbag with the dog reading, the others were scattered around the room reading.

The MathTacular DVD is great - I only ordered 1 thinking I would see what it was like before I got the rest but, after seeing part of it we will be getting the rest, the girls were prepared to sit through the whole thing in one sitting if I had let them!! We are doing Math-U-See but will be using this to reinforce the concepts when they struggle with something.

So I now have P 3/4 to do with Monkey and Science K and 1, then some bits that I had to replace in 1 (we lost the IG in our move) and somehow lost The Usborne Time Traveller since we have been here. Zebra was so please to see this replaced she loves it and reads it for fun. I also got the Handwriting without tears program, and some LA workbooks.

I have decided that there is not point hoping for a perfect curriculum to fit my children's particular learning needs and so we will make the LA work by altering and modifying it and adding in my own bits as needed. In the words of Sue Patrick "I believe that any good, Christian-based curriculum will work with your children, regardless of their learning style. It may not be the best, but you bought it for a reason" (pg 66 Workbox System).

My reason for buying Sonlight I like the books more and more each year. It comes with the IG which I can use or alter to fit our life. At the moment I only have 3 days for school as the other days are taken with Physio and other activities so we do Sonlight 3 days a week and it still works!! and (big plus) I only have to order from one place.