While our school year was less than optimal (mom on limited activity/bed rest/recovering from surgery/knee injury and lots of doctor appointments), our children completed their year end testing and did well - some of them skipping several grade in some subjects! I can not take credit for that, it's just kids learning at their own rate, some years it's slow progress, and other years it's stellar! Some kids learn to read early, other learn late. Some kids learn to read over the course of a couple of years, others take to it like water and are devouring books their second year of reading. Some kids struggle with math for years, and then suddenly something clicks and it's easy and fun for them. Our philosophy for homeschooling is to teach the kids to learn. We want our children to be capable to learn on their own. When something catches their attention, we want them to have the skills it takes to learn about it - whether it's reading a book, doing on line research, going on a tour, joining a club/group...whatever. When you learn something because you are interested in it, it sticks...learning facts and figures because someone somewhere determined that certain materials are the *right* materials for a given grade level does not automatically mean that your child will do best learning that material at that age. Our homeschooling never seems to look the same from year to year, and some years it is very minimal due to situations beyond our control that keep us in survival mode for weeks or months.
|The house Rachel and Elizabeth built!|
|It's Esther size, but they all enjoy it!|
So enough about school on a summer blog post!
What does our summer look like? So far the children have been working very hard around here on large projects like weeding, rototilling, clearing out brush and soon will be putting in new lawn outside. On rainy days they have been doing the spring cleaning (they got the downstairs finished last week). I have not been able to be of any assistance due to my knee injury and caring for Carese. You may be wondering how in the world we have been able to get our children to accomplish such great feats, and I'll tell you - BRIBERY!
Last April Daryl and I attended the Christian Heritage Homeschool Conference and we were shown a long trailer for the movie "Captivated." It inspired us to severely limit our intake of media. We shut down all our electronic games (Wii, Xbox, Facebook, computer games), and packed up all our videos into the attic. This has led to quiet evenings doing crossword puzzles, lots of board and card games being played, and lots of outdoor fun - including the kids building a house out of mill ends!
|Esther hanging out with her Daddy|
at Seattle Children's Hospital
June's calendar is blissfully empty! We took Esther down to Children's Hospital for a cardiology check up this past Monday (you can read about it on Esther's Story). We started the summer reading program at the library today, and the kids have spend literally hours reading today..they want to win the pass to the Birch Bay Water Slides like nobody's business!
July has every weekend booked - BBQ on the 4th, Daryl's work camp out, my 30 year class reunion, my family reunion and our week long camp out that ends with the church camp out!
|The girls goofing off on the way to the library!|
|Serious reading after our visit to the library!|
And, finally, an update on our newest little Einfeld! Carese is 3 months old, and as of last weekend she has passed the 11 pound mark! She's still tiny, but she makes her presence known around here. She has learned to smile and talk. Her latest accomplishment is blowing bubbles. She is learning that she has a tongue and by playing around she makes bubbles! It's weird, but so cute! She also loves to bounce when you hold her in a standing position - never had such a little one enjoy bouncing like that!