Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Bioethics- designing our own homeschool course

A has developed a deep interest in the questions modern technology and biological advances raise. It all started with this Usborne Book. Genes and DNA is a great book and address the surfaces of these biological advances. A started reading this one night and we dove into a deep conversation at 10:30 at night.

The next day I gave her the Jodi Picoult book, My Sister's Keeper. She LOVED it and the intense questions it raises.

I then pulled out some books from my college freshman seminar class and gave A an article from it to read.

This is the paper she wrote after reading it. I am loving the conversations she and I have over these topics.

So now I am designing our own homeschool curriculum to count as a half credit for high school.
For the spine I am using the NIH Exploring Bioethics curriculum. You can take a look at it here.
It is a great curriculum. We started with examining types of questions and researching what exactly bioethics is and why it is needed.

I will be posting more about this later once I have the curriculum more fleshed out. We will be using lots of extra books, both fiction and nonfiction books, to round out our curriculum. Stay tuned for the complete list!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A Little Nature Study

The weather has turned cooler, but in the past month we have had some great days to get out and enjoy our world.

A still enjoys playing and dressing up. I love that, and her imagination is incredible. I know at 9.5 these years are moving so quickly. Here she was dressed in her fur trapper outfit. We were in the front yard observing the many grasshoppers that were around in the beginning of September. A loves these little creatures.

A few weeks ago, we had the privilege of meeting this little guy.

He flew right into our big front window and we found him in the grass lying still on his back with just his legs twitching. We took him and gently held him until he seemed to regain his senses.

After about 10 minutes or so, he flapped a few times and off he flew. It was an amazing experience for the kids.

And of course no summer nature study can be complete without ..... ladybugs!

Ladybugs have been everywhere! Little W now searches for them everytime we go outside and he has a keen eye. We captured about 30 to observe and released them all back into the yard.

Our orb weaver spider friend from last year is back and has been busy. He makes the most beautiful webs and it's a pleasure for us to go outside each day and see what he has created.

I will leave you with the dragonfly W and I rescued. We observed it for a while and noticed it didn't move. Then ants came and the dragonfly started twitching but still did not fly. We lifted the pine straw and found it's leg was stuck. Shaking it gently it was able to dislodge and off it flew. He was a beauty!

I love seeing the natural world though my children's eyes.

Monday, September 12, 2016

A peek into our tot school- 26 months

We are a month into our school year, although last week we really didn't do much as all of us were under the weather. So far this year has been pretty AMAZING! A is LOVING her curriculum and I will be posting more on that tomorrow. For now, I want to focus on little W. He is 26 months old now. He is constantly on the go, amazingly smart, and makes me laugh all day. He's also stubborn and headstrong just like his sister.

Somehow, just like A, he has learned all his letters. Yes, at 26 months he knows all letters, both upper and lowercase, and their sounds. He is constantly pointing out letters in everything he sees. This morning he stretched and crossed his legs and said "look legs make x". He reminds me of A so much.

This weekend I was busy making this awesome tot school board for W.

He had a blast today choosing the weather and dressing the bear.

Just like I did with his big sister, we have lots of Montessori trays out. This one is currently his favorite.

I finally ordered some dot markers and they have been a hit. He loves dotting pages upon pages of paper. Thankfully DH brings scrap paper home for us.
Today he used the markers to identify capital and lowercase As.

Of course with Fall on it's way. We have been reading about apples!
 More dot marker fun!

File folder games keep him busy while I help his big sister with her school work.

We've been exploring patterns as well.

Working on number recognition is fun when you get to play with rice.

Anything to keep this little guy busy.

This is his favorite game. He tells me to write letters. I write a bunch on a page and he takes a dot marker and marks them as I say the letter or the sound. It's so adorable and of course the grandparents have received many a video of this.

These puzzles are now to simple for him, but he loves them just the same. *and I love to hear his cute little voice naming the vehicles. Helicopter, just so cute! It's time to order some more complex puzzles I guess.

Well off to bed. Morning comes early, but I hope you enjoyed a peek into our tot school.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Farm School!

It's Harvest Time here in Montana! It's amazing to see all the work that goes on. We were lucky to be invited out to spend the morning on one of DH's board members farms.

W was in HEAVEN seeing all the big trucks, tractors and farm machinery.

I think the favorite part for both kids was getting to actually ride in the combine harvester while they men harvest barley.

A had fun catching grasshoppers and this little guy even got to catch a ride in her shirt pocket.

Our host couldn't let us leave without taking us out to her garden and letting the kids help pick vegetables.

Such an awesome experience for both kids!

Corn and carrots....

potatoes and onions...

Even a few strawberries that they devoured immediately and a large head of cabbage!

Such a great day. We went home and made a giant pot of cabbage soup with all our goodies. A bubbling pot on the stove perfect for the changing seasons.