Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Magic "C" Bunny

My dear sweet sister-in-law in the Czech Republic sent the boys puppets of the fantastic show Krteck for Christmas. One of his friends is this adorable bunny. In the Handwriting Without Tears program, there is the magic "C" bunny. They suggest wrapping a papertowel around your fist to make a bunny face. I suppose this lil' guy did a much better job teaching Turbo how to make Magic "C" letters much better!

Really? Spiderman? This Early?

Our new mornings look something like this:

Turbo wakes up. Tank wakes up. Mommy and daddy "lock" them in their rooms until at least 1 cup of coffee has been consumed.

This morning, instead of 2 boys emerging from their room, this is what came out of the black pit of toys:

Tank - dressed as a Fireman-Spiderman

Turbo - Spiderman complete with action hero poses

Oh wait, we aren't done yet: We now have a "Captain Spiderman" in our midst:

Who wouldn't want to start the day with strawberry pancakes? It's the breakfast of superheroes.

Finally, in preparation for Easter, Spiderman showed his softer side and became the "Spider Bunny".

These boys will make my hair gray before my time is due. And although it is now 7:36 in the morning, and we have had multiple costume changes, breakfast made and eaten, dishes cleared, and mom a blog entry posted, I will want to cherish these memories. For I know that in the short time of 10 years, I will be the one putting on a show to just GET these kids out of bed in the mornings.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Handprints in Time

With the weather LOOKING nice, but really ISN'T nice, we've had to find things to do that will entertain a 5-year-old and a 1-year-old BOY! Ahhh who we kidding...we didn't find anything to entertain. We just found something that they could do and not break for about 15 minutes.

Using our sand from the make-shift sandbox on our patio we added some water to the pan of sand so that we could make imprints of anything we wanted. Turbo wanted to imprint a dinosaur and his hand. Tank was up for it too; although, the hand part wasn't easy as he continually grabbed the sand instead of just placing his hand ON the sand! Figures.

After we mixed the Plaster of Paris and poured it in the "molds". Now, you would think that this would be the easy part, yes? WRONG! I could not get the plaster thin enough to just pour in, it was quite thick and lumpy. But we did it. We even made letters to match their first names and hand prints. I was thinking of creating shadowboxes for these.


This morning, we worked on lables. We labled body parts in our work book and then proceeded to lable things in house.

We now live in a very labled home "just in case someone comes over and they don't know this is a T.V. or a door." ~via Turbo.

School Work Portfolios

I know that it is becoming "that time of the year" in school, and we begin to think about what the kids learned, making sure they have learned what is needed, etc. With homeschool, I have contemplated on how to "show" work for Turbo and subsequently, Tank. I've used portfolio work in the public schools before, and I liked the idea.

With Turbo doing Kindergarten work, but is technically not in Kindergarten simply because of his birthday. I haven't kept actual records simply because they are not needed, but come next year, records need to be kept.

I ran across this site and thought it would have some good insight and info on how to build a portfolio for each year the boys are homeschooled.


Friday, February 18, 2011

TOT School: Music Class

Today we went to the zoo.

~~~Tank was introduced to animal names and sounds; sounds provided by his brother Turbo.

~~~Turbo was introduced to a foreign concept: The world does not revolve around him (He DID NOT want to go to the zoo today. But after explaining that when he was Tank's age, he enjoyed the zoo, so today was Tank's day to enjoy something that he liked. He wanted to go to the Museum instead today.)

~~~Thinking that a successful school week had come to a close, I was introduced to something on the way home; Music Class. be more exact.

TOT School: Art

Recently, Tank has discovered writing utensils.

Recently, Tank has discovered how to take off items of clothing.

Recently, Tank has discovered parts of his body.

End result: Body Art

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Turbo's First Rock Climbing Class

In an effort to save my couches, furniture and sanity, we have enrolled Turbo in a 5 week introduction to rock climbing course. Today was his first day, and I was asked by the instructor if he had ever climbed before. My response, "Not responsibily or with permission."

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Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Chore Chart

You know how sometimes you are just blessed with Mommy AH-HA moments?

Yesterday, Turbo kept begging and pleading, ok really he was just annoying asking, "Mommy, can you play StarWars Legos with me?" Now, before you start thinking, "Sheesh, woman! Play with the child!" This was after I played with him for 1 hour straight and it was only 11:00 in the morning! I sat him on the bed and explained to him that mommy has chores to do. If I don't do my chores everyday, then the family won't have clothes to wear, food to eat, or live in a clean house. Our house would be filled with germs and we would all be sick! Then with some prodding, he suggested that if he did some of my chores, then I would have time to play with him! AHH HAA!!! Finally! He got it!

So we sat down at the table and made a chart of 5 chores for him to do. Since he is 5, that is where we started. He will do one chore a day, Monday through Friday, much like school, and have Saturday and Sunday off, much like school. I cannot play with him until his chore for the day is done. If he completes all the chores for the week, he receives a quarter. At the end of the month, we will give 10% to church, 10% to savings and the rest he can spend however he wants. Granted, this is only his second day, but he seems to be interested!

KEEP WORKING, KEEP WORKING! (good thoughts, good thoughts!)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Afternoon Plan, Part 2,509,386: SUCCESS

So this morning, I was bound and determinedto NOT have a psychotic episode from 3:00 until dinner. Fortunately for me, dinner was easy today, Pasta Fagoli with fresh bread, so I was able to focus on the plan!

Many attempts have been made to see through some sort of functionality in the afternoons, none have been successful, until today! The boys are happy, the toys are picked up, dinner is ready, daddy is about to come in, and me...well, I got a shower today and now I am in my second set of jammies for the day...I guess I'll work on me tomorrow....

Where Have We Been?

Aside from frigid temperatures, snow drifts taller than Tank, and by comparison, slightly larger than Turbo, I kid you not, we have done some school!

Turbo seems to be enjoying his Handwriting Without Tears, and is now beginning to identify sight words. He is attempting to read SPOT books, but I suspect memorization rather than actual reading, but I am not complaining as this is the start of reading. His letter and number formation is coming a long nicely as well.

He continues to be excited to do mazes and connect the dots. I seem to be going through those things like water! I suspect by the end of the month, I will be doing some more printing/shopping for these kinds of activities. He mainly does these while I am cooking dinner. Which leads me to another thing. Our afternoons. These seem to be chaotic the minute they both wake up from their naps. From then until baths are drawn, I grow 2 gray hairs everyday if they are not plucked out by the sheer madness. I have offered a few PLANS, which all have come to ruin, each in their own right. But as the snow is falling out my window, I sit here sipping my cold coffee, amongst school papers, books, and crayons, I am bound and determine to make a PLAN for the afternoons while Tank sleeps and Turbo works his magic fingers at the keyboard for the next 30 minutes.

I have been reviewing some of my toddler books that I used in Children's Ministry lately, and I realize that Tank is growing up way to fast for me to keep up. So part of my afternoon PLAN will consist of TOT SCHOOL for him. By taping down paper to the table and offering him some crayons, I would like to encourage him to scribble while his brother works on mazes or connect the dots. I would also like to implement a story time after wakeup, rather than them hit the ground and start running. We do storytime 2x a day, but those are mainly at sleep times. I believe this may facilitate a "GREEN" environment for him to stay at that level of activity. As for Tank, he will just eat the books, but I'm sure will come to realize that there is more to life than eating one of these days!

I was also blessed with a sweet friend who offered me much of her homeschooling curriculum that I am just ecstatic about! Although most of it is above where Turbo is at, I am confident that we could begin this stuff in the fall when he begins to attend H.O.P.E. and we are "FULL ON" Kindergarten mode. Although I suspect that he may begin 1st grade work somewhere in mid-year.