Friday, April 23, 2010

Quick Takes Friday - my 400th post

Not really surprisingly, since I do my quick takes far more often than I blog about anything else, today's quick takes happens to be my 400th post. I started this blog while I was pregnant with Charlotte, so I would guess it's been close to 4 years since I first I average 100 posts a year.

As mentioned below, hubby and I have been contemplating what to do for Eva's school next year. Well, we have come to some decisions for next year. We won't be sending her into the public school, but we also are not going to re-enroll with Seton. When Eva and I were doing school the other day, we ran into some frustrations with her math lesson. As much as I love a lot about Seton, my pet peeve about it is that they don't provide much in the way of information for me so that I can teach the subjects to Eva. That's really not a problem for me in any subject but Math. I am really terrible at Math, which people don't expect because I have a college degree in Accounting...let me let you in on a secret...Accountants love calculators! So, when I started looking into other math programs (some of which are pretty pricey) I looked at the price of 1st grade enrollment ($490) and then added up all the books that would come with enrollment that I might use, which totaled $103.25. So, I am going to be picking and choosing from curriculum this year. So, anybody have any great recommendations?

We have been cleared to host an exchange student next year. The exchange company is still waiting on some paperwork from the high school, but our exchange student was accepted by the school board, and we passed our background check and reference check. Our exchange student will be coming from Vienna, Austria, so it should be a big change of scenery for her. MIL also has an exchange student coming...he's from Germany and is the little brother of her last exchange student. Now we just have to get the basement guest room livable!

Countdown to our trip to see our godkids...T minus 7 days! Our goddaughter will receive her First Holy Communion on Saturday, and we'll gain a godson on Sunday. We are so excited to see them (and the whole family!) but are not particularly looking forward to the long drive/short weekend part of it!

I've been trying to get my housework under control, but in our move, I doubled the amount of house to clean, and lost about 50 percent of my household help (hubby just doesn't have the time to help that he used to...) so, first I tried getting back into the whole FlyLady thing, and that didn't work very well, so I decided to try the Sidetracked Home Executives file card system. As of now, I have all my cleaning cards done, and they are filed and ready to go...the question is, will I get them done today? Only time will tell (and yes, I know I'd get more cleaning done if I were on the computer less...but it's my only tie to the outside world!)

MIL was teasing me the other day that I'll have trouble homeschooling Charlotte because she won't be interested in anything unless it was princess related. My immediate response was that we could just do a bunch of unit studies involving princesses, but then, in my researching curricula yesterday I found some nursery school resources from Angelicum Academy: in Art - Cinderella shapes, in literature - the Red (Blue and Yellow) Fairy Book(s), and in Language Arts - Snow White pre writing skills.

For Easter, we got the girls the Dogma Dogs CD (thanks for the recommendation, Whimsy!) and it is a little too catchy, if you know what I mean. I find myself wandering around several days after listening to the CD in the car singing the songs to myself. I have to admit (though hubby thinks I'm a dork because of this) I really like the song "21 Ecumenical Counsels", but the whole CD is pretty fun!

More quick takes at Conversion Diary!


Whimsy said...

I used to teach my first grade catechism class the ten commandments using dogma dogs. I don't use it so much with the third graders.

I do use it whenever I have a 2nd grader at home to help her remember the commandments in order.

"Love your neighbor as yourself, my fair lady!"

LOVE #4!

I thought it was inevitable that you'd join the dark side and go eclectic. Good Luck! Bwhahahahaha!

majellamom said...

Well, I didn't realize that eclectic was the dark side, but yeah...I guess I really should have seen it coming! I have to admit that for Eva's first year of school it was WAY easier to just go with a boxed curriculum. Made my mom a little less worried, as well (of course, I haven't yet told her about my descent into the dark side...)

steph said...

I also have 5 and 3 year old daughters (think both of mine are a few months behind yours because they are just-turned). They are both princess-mad. Our homeschool, which is currently hobbling along in a test phase (I'm a reservist and my job, which is technically part time, has us living a very creative life), will get off to a full-blown start in August, although I only have dry wall and paint to put up, if that makes sense. Anyway, princess materials are hard to find, but one I really liked was and We have browsed the Guide to Being a Princess, but I'd like to get a different one as well. Another great resource for us has been the Fancy Nancy books--expands their word power (heh) and I especially like the "Explorer Extraordinaire" book, as we want our girls to have a great and deep appreciation for nature. And hey, if you can be fancy AND get dirty, it's the best of both worlds... For art we have "How to Draw Princesses and Ballerinas", and I'm sure our collection will grow (much to my husband's chagrin!)

I pretend to be the governess occasionally and dress up in long skirts with a button down shirt--they get to dress up fancy while they do their schoolwork, and they ALWAYS love that...

Oh, and I stealth homeschool. One kid is a goal-oriented person (my feisty, spastic, independent 3 year old) and the other is task-oriented (my literal-minded, conscientious, intense 5 year old), so they are motivated differently. Sometimes I do reverse psychology, sometimes I read books to them that get across something they are trying to figure out motivational-wise without me dictating the answer to them, sometimes I get really creative, sometimes I leave stuff out and about ("how did that get there?"), sometimes I drop it and try again later. I do mostly reading and manipulatives for our topics right now (even math) and have been tweaking as I discover how each one learns...sort of "cracking their code". Worksheets only work if my expectations aren't too high--DD5 does them in a breeze, but if I get occupied doing something else, she will also draw on it, turn it into a paper airplane, teach the topic to her sister, or teach her sister to make it into a paper airplane (they don't actually know how to make paper airplanes, but you know what I mean.) I find myself having to hold them BACK or trying to catch up, and I haven't figured out how to get over that hump yet. Planning to the nth degree, but doing everything in "cores" rather than in time blocks seems to be working some. Now I just need to make it a habit!!!

I am so NOT a boxed set person--I wish I was. It would make planning so much easier. And ultimately be cheaper. Eclectic we shall be, though. I need to just break down and buy my own drum to beat...

Good luck! :) Sorry for the lengthy's usually busy like that in my brain. Very entertaining for my husband...