I asked last week whether it was spring break yet. Well, unfortunately the answer is the same. No! However, I think my daughter is trying to send me a strong message. Spring needs to come now!

Sassafras (2nd Grade):

In history this week Sassafras studied about William Penn and the founding of the colony of Pennsylvania.  In science, she and the Z-man worked on finishing their model of the solar system. Frankly, it was nice to have a little break in science this week. Next week we’ll start our last science unit on water and weather.


In grammar this week, we continued to memorize our long list of prepositions. Spelling focused on different ways to spell /er/ and how to spell /war/ words. We only have 3 steps left in All About Spelling 4, so I went ahead and ordered level 5 this week. Latin was about conjunctions this week, and we learned another line in the Lord’s Prayer. In literature, she started reading The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit.

In art and music this week, Sassafras finished up her study of Leonardo da Vinci and Beethoven by completing notebook pages on both. She particularly liked this website about Beethoven. She read Diane Stanley’s Leonardo Da Vinci (beautiful book!). In piano this week she started moving around with C, F, and G chords. I thought the learning curve would be high, but she seems to be catching on quickly.


At our monthly Africa enrichment class today we learned about Kenya. As I was the one giving the presentation this month, one of the books I read to prepare was Facing the Lion: Growing up Maasai on the Africa Savanna. This is a fascinating book, and I highly recommend it! (Disclaimer: Even though this is a book for children, there is a chapter on circumcision that you may want to pre-read to decide if it is appropriate for your child.) Another great Africa book that we read in December was Ryan and Jimmy: And the Well in Africa That Brought Them Together, which takes place in Uganda.

Z-man (Kindergarten):

OK. So I’m trying to understand this kid as far as math is concerned. If I leave him alone in math (assuming that he actually does it– a HUGE assumption!!), then he’ll get every answer right. I think he’s counting up in his head since I know he isn’t using his fingers or anything else to count with. When we did money a few weeks ago, he couldn’t remember that a dime was 10 cents, a nickel 5 cents, etc. However, once I told him the coin’s value, he could count any combination of coins easily. But yet, if I hold up a flashcard that says 2+3, I get a nonsense answer. 7??  If I ask, “What’s 4+1?” 6?? So, this week I let him spend some time playing with c-rods. He obviously understands those. For example, he gets the 7 rod and puts a 4 rod next to it. I can ask him what rod he needs to make 7, and he immediately says the 3 rod before he even has the second rod in his hand. But if at a separate time I ask what’s 4+3, he may say “5?” He’s completely guessing. Anyways, I don’t know if that makes any sense, but that’s what’s going on at the moment. My best guess is that he needs to work with manipulatives A LOT!  We played a few games of Sum Swamp, and we added a lot of Yodas and droids in our heads this week. I think he just needs some REAL Yodas and droids! I’m sure he would agree with me. 🙂


Little Man (3 years old):

Little Man realized this week that “reading lessons” take place during his naptime. He asked if he could have reading lessons. Of course, I knew right away that his request really meant, “Can I skip my nap?” Not yet, Buddy!! But that was a good try!


Doodlebug (23 months):

On the days when you get the mean reds, the best thing to cure them is having Doodlebug crawl up in your lap, grab your nose, and yell, “HONK!!!”


Tis the season to start shopping for next year’s curricula. Well, it will be once the IRS gets the lead out. I like to start early so I have plenty of time to buy used materials. Then when I go to the homeschool conference at the end of May, I can find the last few things I need without having to pay shipping. I’ve decided that I’m going to try Apologia science next year, so this week I was able to find the first zoology book used. Yay!

In my reading this week, I’ve been working through Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment. I remember loving this book in high school; I just don’t remember the book being so long! And on a Kindle, it’s kinda hard to know until you’ve read for a while and your progress bar only shows 2%! Anyway, I’m finally on the homestretch now and hope to finish the book this weekend. It’s just as good as I remember it. 🙂