You know you're a homeschooler when…

…While shaking the real apple cider to distribute the “mother” during your holiday meal, your hubby asks “Okay kids, is this a solution or a suspension?”.

And your four year old knows! 🙂

We have a tradition in our family of having our holiday celebration together on the Solstice (the shortest day/longest night of the year) on December 22nd, and then Christmas Eve and Christmas with Grandma and Grandpa out of town. That way we have our family holiday with our tree and family presents, plus get that special Christmas time with Daryl’s family. It is so much more relaxing for us this way!

We spent all day yesterday opening presents, playing, lounging in new comfy clothes and making a fancy meal. There were no chores, no obvious homescooling, etc. Homeschooling happened anyway, of course.

Daddy talked about why white meat is different (sugar is stored there for energy for flying but is rarely used) and why ducks don’t have white meat (they fly a lot and don’t have the stores of sugar built up). Victoria got a book about the human body that talked about everything from how cancer forms to why people have vision problems. Jack and Anna each got Leap Pad books that touched on various subjects.

Other subjects that came up– schizophrenia, simple and complex carbohydrates, seasons, famous women artists, sea animals, catapults and business law…

Now I’m lounging in my new leopard print pajamas (Victoria explained they are leopard and not cheetah because the pattern is one way or another) with a wiggly baby on my lap and am psyching myself up to tackle the holiday mess. Homeschooling is easy. It’s housekeeping that I’m unqualified for!

Thursday

Just logging this for my own records….

Today we did:

Science- We all watched a show about the locust plague that hit the midwest in 1875, which the girls knew about from Little House on the Prairie. Learned a lot about locusts and how to control them. Victoria studied taste buds and cross section microscopic images of parts of the tongue in one of her anatomy books.

Math- Played Blackjack (21) with Victoria. Jack played with the calculator. I threw out random math problems like “make 3 piles of 4 pretzels for each of you, but first tell me what that will equal.”

Reading- I read two chapters of _The Best Christmas Pageant Ever_ to all the kids. Daryl read more Sadie Rose to Anna. Anna read _Art_ to the baby and read part of a gigantic Cheetah Girls book on her own. Victoria read an anatomy book, several picture books and who knows what else. Daryl read picture books to Jack.

Social Studies Talked about American history with the locust plague and how it affected farmers. Anna watched a show about Mt. Everest with Daddy.

PE- The girls and I went on a walk to drop off a card and had a snowball fight.

Art- Jack, Anna and Victoria made cards. Victoria made a discovery bottle for Alex with blue water, oil, dragons tears, plastic smiley face confetti and glitter.

Writing/Spelling- Victoria and Anna blogged. Jack, Anna and Victoria signed holiday cards and the girls wrote out messages in them. Anna got out a handwriting workbook and did a page of writing. I helped Jack blog and he wrote a handful of words on his own, and figured out how to spell hi.

Misc- Jack and Victoria played PBSkids.com games. Anna played various computer games. All 3 big kids played together a lot of the day.

OOO (one on one)- I played Uno and Blackjack with Victoria, and helped her make the discovery bottle. Lots of cuddle time with Alex. Jack and I made white chocolate covered pretzels. Anna and I sang Christmas carols together and tried to get Alex to go “la la la” at the right time in “Deck the Halls.” 🙂

Where to start?

Hmmm. It would seem that I have far too much free time and need to take on yet another thing to do every day. Or not! This just seemed like a fun way to track our progress as a homeschool family.

Welcome to our life. We are:

Victoria— Age 9, book lover, animal lover (especially endangered animals and very especially tigers), doctor wannabe (since she was 2), nature lover, soccer enthusiast, social activist, poet, artist, classic oldest child

Annalee— Very nearly age 8, fairy wannabe, lover of all things pink and girlie, math whiz, book fiend, nature child, drama queen, artist, singer/songwriter, tenderheart, little girl with a curl right in the middle of her forehead

Jack— Age 4, whirlwind, goofball, athlete, lover of all things green, book lover, artist, mama’s boy, daddy’s boy, animal lover, rough and tumble kid, sweetheart, comedian, songwriter, crazymaker, peanut allergic boy

Alex— Baby, big, bouncy, happy, hooting, climbing, curious, opinionated, loving, charming, breastfed, co-sleeping, darling, in-arms, toothless, blue-eyed, talkative, lightning fast, joyful, perfect haired darling little surprise present

Daryl/Daddy— Older than he’d like to be. Daryl teaches people to throw with the atlatl (ancient spear throwing tool), makes juggling sticks, writes, manages web sites, volunteers for various historic sites and helps HS the kids. He likes everything from Sappho to the Simpsons and knows Everything. Really. It’s sometimes annoying but mostly really cool. I adore him but I don’t let on. 😉

Me (Alicia)— Getting up there in age despite my best efforts, I am a former domestic violence advocate and poet/author. I run Magical Childhood and too many e-mail lists. I love crafts, reading, learning, travel, gardening, art and cooking.

I figured I’d just toss up fun stuff we did here, along with using it as another way of keeping track of where HSing takes us. Speaking of which, I should get off the computer and get to it!