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Tuesday, September 2, 2014

First Day Of School 2014

1st day collage

We’re starting off the new school year in Farmington, NM. I can’t wait to see in which town we’ll finish!

Back to School 2014

We have spent the remainder of August finishing out 2nd grade curriculum and now we begin our first “actual” day of 3rd grade and Preschool!

I say “actual” because yesterday I count as our first day of school…which was spent Roadschooling our way back home from Colorado.

You can’t witness this in any classroom folks…

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Our day begins with Circle Time. Always.

We light a candle and do some movement exercises to a couple poems in order to loosen up for our day.

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After selling a kidney last year to afford Calvert Curriculum, I realized I missed the Waldorf style of Oak Meadow (first grade) and decided to do something about it. (I’m kidding btw, I still have both kidneys.) I opted for going with Oak Meadow boxed curriculum for 3rd grade, however, I looked to see what Calvert was going to use this year and I bought the Communities book and workbook, Famous Americans and their Gods of Greece book from Amazon. Also from Amazon, I got several workbooks to accompany and challenge her with Math, Vocabulary, Grammar, Spelling and Geography. After looking them over, I’m really excited that I bought them, and I know they will make the perfect accompaniment to her other curricula. She also has been continuing with her Rosetta Stone Homeschool Edition Italiano. All of this is on top of my intermittently teaching her piano, lap harp and rhythm skills, as well as keyboarding & computer skills.

Cinderella is pretty new to the concept of “school”…although, not to the concept of learning. I decided to formerly start her with Preschool this year, mainly to just keep her busy. She’s been showing an interest in “school” over the past year as she watches her big sister at work. In fact, she lit up like the Fourth of July when I showed her that I got some workbooks just for her. We’ve been subscribing members to “Montessori by Mom” for a few months now. It’s a Montessori mail order program in which she receives a box once a month of a new unit to explore. It is geared towards children ages 3-5. So far, we’ve gotten Shells & Starfish (counting & fine motor skills), Mad Scientist (colors and science), Shoots & Sprouts (plant-life) & Helping Hands (domestic skills). It’s something that she looks forward to every month and she squeals with joy every time the package with her name on it arrives! I also incorporate puzzles, free (unstructured) play, helping Mommy, lots of art and reading to her into her education.

I will just say now, that I’m not one for phone/tablet apps, leapfrog-like devices, computer games…or video games for that matter, movies or TV cartoons/shows for educational purposes. It is my belief, that our girls learn best by means of hands on experience and not using electronic devices. That is just my opinion, however, so please don’t leave me any hate mail. Lol. I have had some of the “Hot Dots” cards and the pen since MHG was younger than 2, however. Occasionally, Cindy gets them out to play with, but it doesn’t occupy her attention span like puzzles or coloring do.

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Math time. Cindy begins learning her #’s with the #0 and MHG refreshes her large number addition and subtraction skills.

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MHG works on Vocabulary, Grammar and Geography as Cindy does more number practice.

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Numbers (Melissa & Doug) and a Tree puzzle (Montessori by Mom).

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Counting with Sea Stars and MHG begins reading Charlotte’s Web after she finishes her workbooks.

The scooping of the Sea Stars not only helps her practice counting, it also helps develop her fine motor skills.

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Someone is all tuckered out and ready for a nap on her first day doing Preschool!

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(She finished that whole book in less than 24 hours!)

Finishing Charlotte's Web

Here are the workbooks that MHG is using in conjunction with her Oak Meadow third grade curriculum:

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  • Word Problems, Geometry & Measurement, Addition & Subtraction, Multiplication: all Grade 3 by Kumon
  • Vocabulary for the Gifted Student (1 1/2 grades advanced): Grade 3 by FlashKids
  • 3rd Grade Spelling Success by Sylvan
  • Maps, Globes, Graphs: Level C by Steck Vaughn (Calvert uses this, too)
  • Grammar: Grade 3 Skill Builders by Carson-Dellosa Publishing
  • Social Studies Communites by Scott Foresman & the accompanying workbook
  • Famous Americans by Calvert School
  • Gods of Greece by Calvert School (that was hard to not through them)
  • For Reading: Smiling Hill Farm & Tales From Far and Near/Tales of Long Ago (Calvert reading requirements for 3rd grade)

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For Cinderella:

  • Learn the Alphabet & Learn Counting by Playskool (ages 3+)
  • Trace Letters & Trace Numbers by Big Skills for Little Hands (ages 3+)

 

After Cindy got up from her nap, I dolled them both up and got some wonderful First Day of School photos!

1st day of school MHG   1st day of school Cinderella

2014 girls school pic holding hands   2014 girls school pic hug

My little Preschooler!!!

2014 Cindy school pic   Cindy cute

2014 Cinderella   mad cinderella   Cindy dancer 2   pretty Cindy

My little Third Grader!!!

2014 MHG school pic   MHG curtsy

pretty MHG 2   MHG sunbeam   pretty MHG

Racca girls bw

beautiful girls lying down   girls covering eyes

beautiful Racca girls

girls school pic 2014                sunny girls ring around rosy

Racca sisters

I can’t believe how fast my little girls are growing up. It feels like just yesterday, that I was babywearing my little 6 weeks old Cinderella, as I picked MHG up from Kindergarten (back in the days of public schooling) in the hot days of August. Stop growing girls…Mama still wants to have so much more time with you!

Their smiles, their laughter, their little beautiful selves…I love them so much. I am so grateful and blessed to be able to stay at home with them, and to be able to tailor their education to meet their individual needs. I am so blessed to be able to watch them grow into the young women that they will someday be. I am honored that my Husband trusts me to shape and mold them into kind, loving and thoughtful human beings. (I’m also glad that I can be here to keep our home in the nice, clean and orderly home that I believe it should be!)

Thank you Nic for providing us with that opportunity. Without you, none of this would be possible. I love your face.

We had a marvelous first (second) day back to school! I hope yours was just as fantastic!

Until next time…

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