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About medawyn

  • Birthday October 6

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  1. We call grilled cheese "cook cook sandwiches" courtesy of my oldest at age 2. We now have non-family members saying it, too 😂 My kids all still ask me to "blow down" the window in the car, and I'm never correcting them.
  2. Yes to this! I have four, and I limit the amount of running around we have done as much as possible in the early years. Swim lessons have been non-negotiable; it's an area that frustrates me to teach but we live in a place where the kids have access to lots of pools and water. Since we can afford it, swim lessons year round! As my kids have gotten older (and they are all still pretty young), I have let the older ones pick an activity and then (if budget and time permits), I usually sign the littles up too. For example, our rec soccer league guarantees siblings can practice on the same night and offers a really generous sibling discount. My oldest LOVES soccer, so boom, all four kids play, because it's one night of practice and one of three game times on Saturday. Predictable and still gives us plenty of family time. Dance for my girls works the same way. The oldest really wanted to try ballet at age 9, and class times were also available for her younger sister simultaneously. My younger kids have definitely done activities earlier than my older. We didn't start until 8 with the oldest, and then we signed up siblings because it was easy and fit in our budget. I'm all about supporting a passion or extreme talent, but I mostly just have kids who enjoy it enough for a season, like the friends they meet, and move their bodies in a structured way once or twice a week. ETA: My oldest didn't start baseball until he was almost 10, and most of the boys had already played for YEARS by then. He really wanted to play, so we practiced in the yard, warned him that most of the boys would have lots of experience, and went for it. The first few practices were rough, but he enjoyed it enough to stick with it despite having less experience. You wouldn't know this season that he started 4-6 years behind most of the other kids. I'm sure there's an age where jumping in to a sport might not be possible, but it's definitely later than today's super busy kids might lead you to believe. And trust me when I say that my kids are not athletically gifted!
  3. My last kindy 😞 Math: Math With Confidence (finish K and start 1) Phonics: Logic of English Foundations B; I See Sam readers, Dash into Learning readers Handwriting: Dash into Learning Science: BookShark B Science Whatever she absorbs from hanging out in the school room with her big sibs.
  4. Yes, my little miss wants to do school LOVED the Gakken workbooks this past year. She felt very important doing a few pages with me each day. That plus Kate Snow's Preschool Math and AAR pre-read was more than enough. She hangs out with the big kids all day and gets plenty of read alouds that way. Also, each of my older kids is assigned 10 minutes with her for school time; this takes a lot of crafts, puzzles, games, and read aloud practice (for the bigs) off my plate.
  5. It's a favorite with my kids as well. We'd love to participate again. I've been offline a lot lately, so I'm grateful I happened to pop on just now 🙂
  6. I'm on my third round with I See Sam. It's worked for my three very different learners. I do teach all the letter sounds a la Spalding-style programs when they are introduced in the books. One of my kids went through the first three levels of Sam in 3 months; one took a school year; the current one looks like he'll be through in a total of 4-6 months. I find after the first three levels they are ready for "real" books, and we move on to spelling for phonics and lots of Elephant and Piggy or Frog and Toad or Henry and Mudge, etc.
  7. I use and like Libib. It helps me keep track of what I have and lets me sort books into very helpful categories. Even though my books are organized, Libib lets me do a quick scan of our home library and alerts me to where a book might be shelved if it could have multiple locations. In our house, I have my children's books (picture books) sorted into bins by subject, with labels on the bins and colored stickers on the books to help my children re-shelve them (kids are ages 3-8). I have about 25 different bins, all with books sorted in ways that make sense based on my children's ages and interests. We have shelves devoted to early chapter books, middle grade novels, and young adult novels. I keep books I would rather my children not read yet on the higher shelves. Outside of my picture books, all of our books are shelved by genre and then by author, with the exception of the adult history books, which are shelved by country and then time frame. Libib shows me having around 4,800 books at the moment. Between three reading-heavy degrees and ten years teaching in elementary and middle school classrooms, we have an extensive library. Homeschooling has not help reduce that.
  8. My favorite books to teach in 8th grade? To Kill a Mockingbird Ender’s Game The Book Thief Macbeth I miss teaching middle school!
  9. Hoo boy, that last thread you linked.... I felt like Alice down the rabbit hole, and I remember it from the first time around.
  10. We just changed things around because we added DS5 to the mix last week. I'm also homeschooling two extras this year, but I'll just share what's working with my kids. DS8 is working his way through Beast Academy 3D. For a long time I sat with him while he worked, but I'm realizing now that I was doing that based on my own insecurities in math and that I don't have time during my actual teaching period to sit with him for every pencil stroke. Instead, I work the whole chapter before he starts it, so I'm confident I know the math, the methods, and anything I might want to highlight or explain differently. He's a diligent worker, but the nature of BA means his progress is unpredictable. We read the guide together when applicable, and then I assign him the relevant pages in the workbook. He works on those independently but in the room, so I can make sure that he's focused. I check his work frequently and then I either sit with him and rework incorrect problems or have preselected a few problems to discuss and have him orally explain his answer/method. This means some days we work together for 20 minutes and others just 5-8. I also have 2-4 problems I write down for him to work daily to keep certain skills fresh or keep working on areas that I don't think BA gives enough time for the concepts to develop. DD6 has a mix of independent work and work with me. Her written work is all independent (although I check it daily with her for mistakes), and we usually have 10-15 minutes together to discuss whatever topic we're working on. She needs a long time with a concept to really internalize it, so I keep two topics going simultaneously to keep us moving forward and her not bored. I give her 1-2 more challenging problems on a whiteboard to solve after we work together, and she often uses manipulatives to show her answer. She spends some of her math time working with DD3, who is obviously not in school but loves to do "school time". They play Hungry Numbers from Tiny Polka Dot or simple counting or patterning worksheets. DS5 is just getting into the school routine and struggles with perfectionism. I sit right with him for his 15 minutes of math. He does all of it orally or with manipulatives; he's still working on writing his numbers correctly and we do that during his penmanship time. I have lots of math games for him to play; they are more busy work than serious learning, but they help re-enforce concepts and keep him busy but still in the classroom. I probably wouldn't use them if I didn't have other students (not my kids) to also work around, but that's how it is this year. We start our day with math, so I get DS5 started on a math game and DD6 started with her sister, and then I work with DD8 if he's doing a parent intensive lesson. If DD8 is going to be working more independently for the day, I work with DS5 because we're less likely to be interrupted by someone. As soon as DS5 is done, he either goes back to a math game or is dismissed from the classroom. I pause to check DS8's work and make sure he's on track, then I work with DD6, who has probably started her independent written math by this point. We go through my lesson plan for the day, then I let her loose to finish the problems I've set/independent work. I check back in with DS8 and work a few problems orally. When we're done I glance over the work DD6 has finished, call her in to correct anything or explain anything if it's necessary, and then get myself a cup of tea and make everyone play outside for 10 minutes before we do Language Arts.
  11. Chicken breasts in a single layer in a baking dish. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Meanwhile heat 1/2 cup apricot preserves, 1.5 tbsp soy sauce, and 1 tbsp whole grain mustard until melted and combined. Pull off the heat and melt in 1 tbsp butter. Pour over chicken and pop back in the oven for 10 minutes. Then broil on high for 2-4 minutes. Super quick and easy for week night dinners.
  12. RightStart has an app with their Go To Ten game. It's mostly for making pairs of 10, but that's a start. https://rightstartmath.com/our-curriculum/apps/ ETA: Their corners app would work sums of 5, 10, 15, and 20. We play corners with other sums as well, but I don't know if the app has that flexibility. Corners is on of my kids' favorite games.
  13. My parents gave me the wedding. I actually gave them gifts as a thank you/commemoration.
  14. Activities that have been very successful at consuming hours here lately include building mazes for hex bugs and racing them (occasionally videoing the races) and building Gravitrax. Kids are 5, 6, and 8. I think “themed” camp in a box weeks could be great, if a little exhausting for you to pull together. Another line for a nanny might be finding an older high school age boy who would get your DS outside and active a few hours a week. I think that’s the element of camp I would be missing most - opportunities to move his body
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