Thursday, December 4, 2014

Big Changes

Well, there's no time like the present for changes to occur. Especially unexpected ones!

In a nutshell, my husband will have to spend the better part of next year away from us, due to work, school, and retraining for a new job [insert sniffle]. We had talked before about any changes we would have to make while he is gone - if you know much about the military, you will know that a lot can be involved in a temporary duty assignment, and when you have a family in one place and you are in another, it can get tricky all the way around. On account of that, my husband decided the best and easiest thing in the long run would be for my children and I to stay with family, where I wouldn't be alone and it will make some important things a little easier. 

So, about two weeks ago, we began preparing to relocate the kids and I and what we can fit in with my mother, and have been feverishly trying to pack, clean, organize, and dispose of unnecessary items. This also brings a big change to our school, because I will have exactly two shelves and a couple plastic drawer units to store our school materials on/in. I have thought it out, and instead of trying to cram too much on them and make a big mess instead of order, I am going to temporarily move to Montessori inspired unit studies. Actually, somewhere in-between unit studies and focused learning. Which sound almost the same anyway.

That being said, I may be on a small blog break for a little while, giving us time to adjust to the changes, settle in, and get through Christmas together!

I will try to make sure we at least take pictures to give an update on what's going on whenever I get the chance :)

I do hope everyone is having a wonderful Christmas season, and that you all spend it with family, cherishing the moments!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

What's In The Pie?

Months ago, when I began making free printables for personal use and sharing on the blog, I made a few for Fall/Thanksgiving time. 

Thanksgiving Puzzles

Cornucopia (with miniature fruit pieces to cut and glue inside the 'horn of plenty')

These can be found on my FREE PRINTABLES page.

These have yet to be printed off, and may be something we use for Thanksgiving day while visiting family, so they can have something to keep their little hands busy while giving my husband and I a chance to enjoy ourselves as well :)

One that I have printed off and put on the shelves so far, though, is our 'What's In The Pie?' printable!

I have a fun, simple printable for you today!!!!

These cards are approximately 5 1/2 inches in width, 3 1/2 inches in height.
 I altered the way it looks for the post, but in actuality, it's going to print out like this:

with four cards to a page.

 The set contains six different types of pie: pumpkin, apple. peach, cherry, blueberry, and chocolate. Six pictures show the pie itself, then another six show what is 'inside' the pie - cherries for the cherry pie, pumpkin for the pumpkin pie, chocolate for the chocolate pie, etc.

I also made labels for these, for any readers who want to label them independently, or for you to read to your child and let them match the word with the correct pie.

These would be great for any Fall/Thanksgiving/Food theme for young children, or for a 'What Goes Together' pre-reading activity. Maybe it's my love of all things Thanksgiving that prompted these, but for whatever reason, they were one of my favorite and simplest printables to make. Here's what they will look like after printing and laminating (I always suggest laminating if you want to re-use them, and I am a little addicted to the feel and shine of laminated materials hahaha!)

Some *original flavors* like:



Apple and Cherry

Then a couple slightly different, but super yummy! Blueberry and Chocolate :)

I made the name labels for them using uppercase letters, which doesn't follow the Montessori general rule of lowercase, but I intended for them to be used by someone already reading in  my house, and any children that can read are also very able to recognize the uppercase letters, even in different fonts. However, you could make your own labels with plain white paper/cardstock and write the names in lowercase, or print your own to match.

I hope someone can use this and get some enjoyment and new vocabulary opportunities out of it, like we are :) 

For this free printable, check HERE or go to the Free Printables page (link above in post) and find it under Tot/Preschool Printables/Thanksgiving.

In case I don't get back around here until after Thanksgiving, I hope you all have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving holiday and spend precious, fleeting moments with those you love!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Update on Life

Oh, I've been such a bad blogger!

In truth, we have been very busy this past month.The last several weeks have seen a lot of work, some 'school' related, some 'life'. I've been leaning on my favorite term, life-school, here lately. 

Bug working with the stereognostic bag.

We have had many school days since my last post, and started some fun new things.
Little Mama has *finally* begun to use the multiplication checkerboard that I made last year, and is working with five digit multiplicands, and  two digit multipliers. Due to her tendency to get overwhelmed, she generally tends to do only one equation when sitting down with that work, and I'm usually with her or close to her. She moves slowly with it, but I am glad, because she is seeing it work. Since she is already a second year/fifth grader, I wasted no time, and showed her how to use the board and how it looks to work it out abstractly on paper, all at the same time. I didn't push, but just wanted her to see what we were doing on the board, and how that was going to look on paper. She is not required at all to do an equation abstractly yet. She is also reviewing division with larger dividends, and refreshing herself  before we begin with long division.

Hoss and Miss Priss have been spending a lot of time with fractions lately, subtracting, adding, and working with mixed fractions. Fraction work is one that can tend to be 'forgotten about' here if we are not careful, myself included, because there is just SO much we can do, and only so much time in a day/week/month. Miss Priss is also enjoying working through multiplication with the bead bars, and they both have been working a lot with the squaring and cubing chains.

Hoss has been dedicating himself to his piano more lately!

Music has been a great deal of our busyness! We have choir on Mondays for LM, piano on Tuesday for LM and Hoss, and General Music on Wednesday for Hoss and Miss Priss. I've already said before that LM does wonderful with the piano and is playing more and more by ear. Hoss, however, tends to sometimes be reluctant with playing. Then, just a week or two ago, he brought home the sheet music for a song they are learning for the Christmas play this year. That particular piece apparently struck a chord (pun intended) with him, and he played it more than he did the music he was supposed to practice! It was fun to watch him get so excited, unless that excitement hit at night and he wanted to play late in to the night :)

We've taken a small break from Parts of Speech over the last month, while Miss Priss was introduced to alphabetical order and she and Hoss have done a lot of work with compound word practice - a new one for her, an oldie but goodie for him (that gives him a little bit of spelling practice that he doesn't realize was my intention from the start *heehee*). I love this picture of MP. Apparently, upside down in the recliner is the best thinking position for your work, although it's undoubtedly the pits for handwriting! :) 

I will be sharing about our compound words work soon, and also our History packets, and offering freebies! Stay Tuned!

Those little flying pigs keep showing up..... you know, the ones that Buddy Boy likes so much? So I keep these little guys all together in a drawer and he can get them out anytime he wants. It's fun to listen when he doesn't realize it, and hear the different scenarios he makes up for them. 

Bug has been enjoying cards and counters here lately, and I can't wait to show her the fun counters for Fall/Thanksgiving time! She's going to love it! She's also been working at a slow pace through the math charts for addition. Where Miss Priss was attracted to these greatly, she isn't so much. I have chosen not to make her use them, but she is getting the concept nonetheless all on her own and will be getting re-introduced to the addition snake game soon so I can *test* her to see where she is at. 

And then, towards the middle-to-end of October, things got a little crazy. LOL - There's no better picture than this to give you a visual. I spent a few weeks slowly helping my mother clean out a house and prepare it for the second and final estate sale. After that, we had a short school week, another yard sale of our own (For the record, I do NOT overly enjoy having them. There was so much left over from the estate sale and the owners of the house, friends, said we could do whatever we wanted with it. Where we live is a good area for them, so I flipped the leftovers and made a profit of my own!). 

Then we went on a mini-vacation visit for a few days the first week of November,l and came home to a train wreck of a house, due to some interior work being done that now has to be cleaned up from.

Thankfully, as of today, we should be able to settle back in for a couple normal weeks of school before having a few days off at Thanksgiving. :) 

Life never fails to keep up busy and on our toes, but we are enjoying it SO MUCH and God's still good, all the time!

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