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  • Gender
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    North East

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  • Biography
    Obsessive organizer/planner, former middle/HS teacher, prefer homeschooling & tutoring :)
  • Location
    Northeastern US & Canada
  • Interests
    Lifelong Learning (via books, NPR & internet)
  • Occupation
    Homeschooling Mom, ESL tutor
  1. Thanks everyone for sharing what has worked for your families! It will be of great to help to me as I prepare my presentation. If anyone else has anything else to share, I'd be most grateful. Thanks again!
  2. I have been asked to do a workshop at our local homeschool conference about integrating second language instruction into our homeschool. I thought this would be a great place to ask for successful strategies you have used in your family. I'm looking for approaches, strategies and resources. 1. Suggestions if introducing the language to young students/beginning readers, and how you progress over the years 2. Suggestions if introducing the language with upper elementary/middle school students and how you progress from there 4. Strategies particular to living in a community where the target language is spoken (how take full advantage of immersion opportunities, to integrate your kids into activities when they don't speak the language well yet, etc.) 3. Specific recommendations for teaching French (curriculum, resources, etc.) I'd appreciate any ideas you can share!
  3. In your case, I would absolutely use MM topical books. Use the ones with or without instruction, whichever you think would be more appropriate to your situation. That way you can use the books that only focus on the topics they are struggling with, in a mastery approach (since you said the spiral wasn't working well for them). The MM review books would be good as well, but they are a bit "spiraley".
  4. We will be using Meet the Masters for the first time this year. I read somewhere to do one lesson per month, so we're planning to do 2 tracks per year. I have a lot of art books with artist bios, etc. so I figure I can flesh out the lessons a bit to extend them if desired. It covers everything I wanted: art techniques and artist bios/art history. I wish there were actual online videos that included the script audio, along with project demonstration/instruction, but I can deal with doing that myself if it's only once a month. We are also doing Home Art Studio along with it. My daughter enjoyed the sample lessons, but I felt they were more like artsy craft projects than actually teaching techniques and only made passing references to artists. But, it's very affordable, independent, and she enjoys artsy craft projects. So I'll pop in the DVD, give her the supplies and let her at it for the Home Art Studio, and once a month I'll do the in depth lesson with Meet the Masters. Both are currently on sale at Homeschool Buyers Co-op.
  5. I have an app called "Easy Bill Reminder". I enter the names of all of my bills, their amounts and their due dates, and it sends me notifications x days before it's due (you choose the number of days ahead), then it continues to notify you every day until you mark it as paid. It also provides a total at the top next to the name of the month, so you can see the total cost of all your bills for the month (helps with budgeting), and will keep a running total of how much you've spent on the bills you've paid. You can set recurring bills or add in ones that are for that month only. It is really helpful to see all my bills and their due dates at a glance, and I can stop worrying about remember when everything is due. Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
  6. Hmm, honestly surprised by all the comments, I couldn't imagine there being much not to like about Thanksgiving food! But, fried onions, casseroles and marshmallows have never been traditional for my family. We have turkey, simple gravy made from the drippings, Bell's stuffing made with broth, celery and onions, mashed squash, mashed turnip, mashed potatoes and possibly mashed sweet potatoes, all seasoned with butter, salt and pepper. We do have store-bought rolls, but it's the only white bread we ear all year, so a bit of a treat. My mom used to make her own cranberry relish with orange zest, but my kids prefer the canned jellies type, so now she just buys that. Oh, and salad. Love feasting on all those goodies for days!
  7. I've also used Pocket Cast for years. Does everything I want it to, no complaints.
  8. 70 during the day, 71/72 at night. During the day, we're active and busy, plus the sun is beating in. We need it warmer at night or we can't fall asleep and breathing cold air makes us cough.
  9. I use Pocketcast for Android. That probably won't help on your PC, though.
  10. I threw a surprise party for my parents' 25th. We reserved a room in a local restaurant, which catered it, and had a DJ. I invited everyone I knew from their address book, so people we hadn't seen in a while, etc. I also blew up photos and made collages from over the years, so one of all the houses we'd lived all, all their cars, pets and of course wedding photos. I purposely held it about 6 weeks before their anniversary, so they were appropriately surprised. I am their only child and had just graduated from college 4 months before and was about to start my first job, so dh and I had no extra money. Everyone pitched in a bit, I think my grandparents ended up paying the DJ. I don't know how I got the idea I was supposed to do that, I just thought that's what you do for 25th and 50th. DH and I had our 25th last year, but certainly didn't expect our kids to do anything (still in school, no jobs at the time, etc.) They wouldn't have had a clue where to start in planning such a thing anyway, the only relatives who could have helped them are my parents, who live in a different country. Personally, I had always imagined DH and I going on some kind of wonderful trip for our 25th, but that was before the great recession and a stagnated standard of living that we expected to have been higher by this stage in our lives. Still counting our blessings. The fact that our family is intact is the greatest reward. Maybe for our 30th in 2021. This reminds me that I do have to think about planning something for my parents' 50th in 2020. Considering both of their health issues, it will definitely be something to celebrate if that milestone comes to pass. To answer your question, yes, I expect most people do some sort of celebration for at least the 25th and 50th. That could be a special trip planned by the couple themselves, but if not, I would think it customary for their family to plan a gathering appropriate to the couple's interests and preferences. It is less typical to have a celebration for the intervening years, but really any round number between 25 and 50 (30, 35, 40, 45) seems appropriate, especially if nothing was done for the 25th, for whatever reason, or if health issues etc. make it wise to celebrate earlier. I find it a great excuse to get people together who rarely see each other, for a happy occasion. Basically, the same people would probably attend a milestone anniversary party as would attend a funeral. Much prefer the guests of honor get to see and enjoy their family and friends while they're still here. Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
  11. Interesting. I think you might have gotten more nuanced responses if you had asked us to compare all 3. Shindig is definitely more formal, or at least more "refined" than a hoedown. I think of a shindig as any type of get-together that involves some amount of planning, inviting, etc., so formal in that sense, although the atmosphere could certainly be casual. I would say, "Sherrie is having a shindig on Saturday night," meaning she's invited people over and there will be food. If I said, "There's a big shindig going on over at the Waterfront Hotel," it would likely mean a wedding or some sort of formal, bigwhig event. Personally, I've never heard or used the term "little shindig", it feels like an oxymoron. The purpose of using the term "shindig" is to emphasize the festive or party nature of that gathering. A hoedown, to me, means a barn dance. Country music, cowboy boots, drinking, loud and boistrous. I have vaguely heard the term hootenanny, but have never used it or heard it in conversation and always considered it historical or regional, as in historical fiction set in the south. Imagining it might be similar to a hoedown, perhaps a bit more refined? Not sure. Born and raised in New England. Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
  12. You ladies have some great ideas. My first thought was to make sure everyone in the world who needs it has shelter, sufficient and high quality food, education and healthcare. Education would cover forgiving student loans, healthcare would cover mental health, prosthetics, elder care, respite care, etc. Obviously there are many more specific needs that many of you have mentioned, but this is a good start. ETA: Currently, I think guaranteeing safety and security would be right up there with the life essentials I listed. Unfortunately, I don't think this is an issue that can be fixed with money.
  13. I grew up rurally, so we either brought our trash to the dump ourselves (my parents still do this) or pay a company to come haul it away once a week. Now I live in a large suburb. We each have a large bin on wheels (I've heard British people call them "wheely bins", love that!) that we put at the curb once a week. If we have additional trash that doesn't fit in the bin, we put it beside it. They take most everything, except wood, lawn debris, toxic items like paint, and electronics. Even large furniture items and appliances will be picked up. We have another identical large bin of a different color for recycling, which is picked up bi-weekly. There is also a municipal drop-off center where we can bring our trash on off-days if we are going out of town, moving, etc., or to dispose of items not collected in the weekly pick-up (as listed above). Having grown up without municipal pick-up, I realize how lucky I am and greatly appreciate the service. Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
  14. This reminds me of the 2 kindergarten boys (1 white, 1 black) who decided to get the same haircut so their teacher couldn't tell them apart. They were so excited about tricking her, lol! My daughter's best friend in religion class is of Southeast Asian (India/Pakistan) descent. They love it when they both show up to class in the same dress, etc. One day on our way home my daughter (age 6) said, "She was wearing the same dress! We're twins...except for skin tone!" Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk
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