Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Sea Monkeys

 YUP!! It's official! I'm aquatically challenged!! Austyn got some sea monkeys for this birthday. We followed the directions and ended up with 3 surviving sea monkeys and in only a couple of weeks we killed them! Ya... this isn't the fist time we have had trouble with aquatic animals. We may try again.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Homeschool Dance Class

 Zoe took dance class with her homeschool group. Her instructor was an actor on a children's show! 

Zoe seemed to have a good time. The program is finished now. These pictures were taken on the last day.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Kids Photography - While putting up tree

 While tree decorating, the kids took some pictures with my camera.

I think their dad took this picture.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Florida Again

Since we have been back from vacation, I've really not blogged much. Here is what our last trip to Florida looked like. We have been to Florida 3 times this year so far. Each time we drove. One thing I like about driving is that it gives us family time together while we see interesting things. We learn where we'd like to visit someday. For example, I'd like to stay in Kentucky for a vacation someday. I think it's the most beautiful State we travel through. The air feels so fresh to breath there! One place I like to stop off at while passing by is the Kentucky Artisan Center. They have local art, clean facilities, and good food at a good price!

 The kids learn to cope with the long drives by making their own little rooms with blankets. They don't do this the whole way. It's something they do when they are tired and want to be alone. Also it's when the traffic isn't so bad. 

 Although I bring books to read, games to play and we have DVD players, Austyn usually spends much of his time on his iPod. He's on there more then we'd like while we travel to our destination and sometimes pays for it with a stiff neck and a headache. We have seen a maturity grow in him over this year. Each time we drive between Florida and here it gets easier and easier to tell him it's time to do something else.

Zoe sometimes naps in the car. She likes to play car games. I use two books to come up with fun, educational games to play while on the road. One book is called Car Games by Jo Pink and the other one is Carschooling by Diane Flynn Keith. You can subscribe to her Clickschooling website and get educational internet links.

While we were at the hotel on the way to Florida we had Austyn open his birthday gifts. Zoe thought it'd be funny if she wrapped the presents from her in pink paper. She is always joking like that!

 When we arrived in Florida Austyn had a cake ready for him. He isn't a big Cars fan anymore, but he didn't seem to mind at all. 

 We like to go to Florida while Magic Kingdom holds their night time parties for Halloween or Christmas. Sometimes we go for both! This trip was Halloween. Zoe dressed up as a gymnast because the weather was warm. 

 Austyn was a grim reaper. He tends to go with this kind of costume every year.

 Since we have been to Magic Kingdom so many times, we have pictures of all of the main rides. 

 I find that the more we go, the more we focus on the smaller things and I tend to take pictures of those moments instead of the things that someone might be more excited about if they have never been there before.

 No matter how many times we go to Florida, we always have fun. I don't just mean the kids.

This is a musical wall while waiting to get into the haunted house.

 The 3D movies give such classy glasses!

 There are a few new things this year and next year there will be more new attractions.

 After trick-or-treating at Disney, they got to spend Halloween night on our resort. The resort staff always put on a good party for the kids. They had stations set up to get candy and meet scary people. As you can see, Austyn had a scary mask on this time and Zoe wore her bundled up raccoon costume, but she later changed into her gymnast outfit and Austyn took off his mask. It was just too warm. By the way... Zoe did her own make-up.

 The swamp monster took over the hot tub!

 They have had the opportunity to pet an alligator before at the resort. They never pass up a chance to touch one again. We recognized the man who brought this soft, little guy. He is from Gatorland and we watched an educational show he put on earlier this year at this same resort.

The kids did a bunch of contests and danced the night away!

It was a fun trip. Florida never gets old, but one day, we'd like to expand and go to other places. When the weather is cold Florida is an easy destination to get to warm weather for a few days!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Book of the week - In Flanders Fields

 Everyone knows the poem In Flanders Fields by John McCrae. This is the poem and everything you'd want to know about the poem and war.

 Every other page of the book is a detailed description or account of some of the events that happened around the time the poem was written. 

The poem is well illustrated and gives a gimps of life during the war.

Six Flags - Read to Succeed

Six Flags is doing it again! They have opened up their Read to Succeed Challenge. Your kids show that they read for 6 hours and they win tickets to Six Flags. We did this contest last year and won tickets, so I can post this confidently knowing that Canadian Homeschooling families are welcome to join.

I couldn't find an ad for it so I just shared their commercial. Enjoy!

Friday, November 8, 2013

High-Tech Homeschool Links - Gymnastics

Last night I wasn't just researching for Austyn. I also was looking up links for Zoe.

I typed up a Gymnastics page on my High-Tech Homeschool Links website. She wants to learn more about gymnastics. Who are the athletes? What is the history of gymnastics? I think she will like the links.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

High-Tech Homeschool Links - Dinosaurs

After visiting our local museum a couple of times this month, Austyn has taken an interest in dinosaur fossils again. So, here I am searching for anything dinosaurs. BBC has some great videos available online for free!

I keep two links pages for my use and sometimes I share with others to help make their lives easier. The one website is Our Pace Links which is all of the main webpages that I want to keep handy for information or homeschooling. The other website is High-Tech Homeschool. It's a new website that I've not filled up with links yet. I only fill in the links that my kids get interested in. This week I filled up a page on Dinosaurs. High-Tech Homeschool is full of links that are more specific.

Our Pace Links would have the main links that may have the subject I'm looking for in it and High-Tech Homeschool is much more specific. So as my kids learn things online or are interested in subjects I fill in the links for it in the appropriate section. I'm hoping that I can more easily return to our favourite sites by knowing the direct link, instead of having to figure out the parent link and going from there. The title High-Tech Homeschool was inspired by the idea that much of what we are interested can be found on the internet and so homeschooling in this way is high-tech.

I hope Austyn loves his links and movies in the morning. They will go nicely with our library of books and his fossil collection that we can look more closely at.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

We Love Science!

 We may not do math every day and we may not read... oh wait, we do read every day! Well, we may not do the traditional subjects that school kids do each day, but one subject that is a huge hit in our house is Science. I don't think it has ever been something that they dreaded doing. They love it and so do I! We sometimes follow instructions and our science may look pretty traditional some days.

 Some days it looks a little less traditional. We may even do something that just pops in our head that answers a question.

 Sometimes it looks like an interest or hobby. This is Austyn looking at rocks with his magnifying glass.

 We like to do experiments out of our books. We have gotten through many experiments and have come across repeats. When that happens I ask them if they want to do that experiment again or not. Sometimes we do and sometimes we don't. In this picture the kids are growing a mold garden.

Some experiments are fast and some take time. Sometimes it's a fast experiment, but we expand it into something else entirely. Here the kids are using their homemade hydrometers to compare the density of different liquids. 

 We grew our own sugar crystals. This is a repeat experiment. It's too much fun to not do again.

Plus, they get to eat the outcome!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Book of the Week - Can we Save the Tiger?

I know that the name of this book implies that it's only about tigers, but it is actually about many animals and about their vulnerability. It highlights some animals who are extinct, those who are endangered, the ones who used to be endangered and came back, and why each of them was/are in the state that they are. 

Can We Save the Tiger by Martin Jenkins is a nice introduction, with specific examples, to animal numbers and how we affect them. It really does give the feeling of how complex each situation is and how hard it may be to bring numbers up for some animals. Sometimes humans have to go way out of their way to help save a species.


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