Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Family Mission Statement

It's taken me a LONG time to feel comfortable enough that if I made a family mission statement that we would MISS something. Oh no!! because then it wouldn't be... Perfect, complete, all I wanted it to be??
Go away PERFECTION MONSTER!! So it was time for a change in that area. I was talking with a friend who's AWESOME at goal setting and she asked me some questions and said: Boom these are your focuses. I was astounded! She did it in 3 minutes fault. She IS a good friend and knows me well, but still! I want that skill! So I'm working on it! Our Family Homeschool Mission hasn't been written yet, but these are the things we decided we will include:
 Family homeschool mission statement OR answering the Question(for those of you who can't figure out a mission statement to save your lives!!) Why we are homeschooling (simple right?! I can't believe it's that simple!)

 Here's our family's answer:
My husband and I want to see our children come out of our homeschool with the following instilled in their hearts
Love of learning
Converted to God(not our choice, but our responsibility)
Know how to learn
Be physically healthy and aware of Gods natural medicines- food and herbs, as well as conventional medicines
Know how to work hard and enjoy it
Become servants of God and have a serving heart.
Become helpful strong parents who can parent well and clean a house, and cook delicious healthy meals
Have been taught financial skills and can follow a budget (no matter how small! )
Can set and follow through on goals
Be prepared with a skill set to earn money in this current environment
Have a marketable skill coming out of our homeschool (EMT, Hair cutting, something they can do to earn more than minimum wage as they got to college or whatever their next learning adventure is after our home)
All of this is basically Luke 2:52. Which states, " And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man."

 That's what we are now trying to squish into a mission statement. But for now a mission list has been quite helpful as we work our way back into routines!
Do you have a mission statement? What is it? I'd love to hear!


Starting up a new routine

We have been doing the basics Rs in a laid back fashion. Our 4 Rs include Writing, Reading, Religion and 'rithmetic). Now that the house is "nearly"decluttered and we are able to find nearly everything we need and the house is starting to run on routines again after the (bigger than I ever thought) move, it's time tog et back into the ful school routine. We will be working on it slowly, but I'm giving a list of what we are working up to. If htings go well, we may actually get to each of it, but I want to be prepared for a slow return to routines.
 After consultation my oldest has switched to a file folder with her work in it for a week. She has a weekly chart and daily chart. We may end up with just a daily chart, but we are working with it and will see how it goes. Her subjects are:

Scripture study- Bible, Book of Mormon, 1 page each
Math worksheet- a review of a previous skill
Math activity- introduction of new skill or more in depth activity with current skill
Handwriting- quote
Spelling- Spelling Wisdom
Reading- biography or classic- 1 chapter or more daily
Dictation 3 days a week
Teaching  2 lessons a day to sisters
Drawing- Draw Write now Book 1 your choice
Household learning- one chore a week, learn and master
Handiwork- Currently she's working on a sampler with her name
Chinese- video, work sheet and listening to children's songs. This is a new focus for her. She's done Spanish before, but now there is a split interest. W ewill see how long we are able to study both spanish and Chinese! So far so good!
Daily meeting with Mom- I check up on her work and see what questions she hads and if we need to adjust at all. I'm available throughout the day as long as I'm not working with the other girls. But this helps make sure we actually do talk about school! ;)
Faith in God goal- 1x a week: She's working on one focus each week. THey aren't different, but its a way for her to work through it
Participate in Family school work

This may be too much. She's 8 and really likes school. We will see. I know she's going to want to participate in her sisters centers too and that's fine with me.
 Her sisters activities are Montessori Centers. Right now we are focusing on hand strengthening and body strengthening for my 6 year old. She has low tone as well as a form of Cerebral Palsy and we need to focus on strengthening these areas with her. She has plenty of exposure to other academic areas as well. For now this is what we are focusing on with the younger two. These are out on shelves Montessori style or are done during family learning(Physical Therapy and Speech):

Finger strength Activities 1-6- These are the Montessori style activities that are out for the kids to use each day. Some change daily and some stay the same, depending on interest level and need to focus on tem. I change them up if they are a needed focus, but no one is interested in them.
Book of Mormon Read with mom- we read individually with the kiddos. I read and they repeat. We usually do about 2 verses each
Water Activity- My kids really love to play with water, so one activity a day involves transferring water. This stays int he kitchen and is well respected. It goes away when its not.
Dictation 3 days a week
Physical Therapy exercise 1-3
Speech game- focusing on one sound. We are working on G this week. We use Super star speech, Tiga talk app and other various on line activities.
Household learning- Helping do a chore and learning how to do it along side mom
Spanish- Speekee videos, audio books, listening to songs

Our family subjects daily are:
Song- hymn or Children's song
Scripture Mastery- Basic method shown here. However we use a notebook instead of index cards.
Memorization (will be a school memory- right now focusing on scripture memories)
Picture study- From the Gospel Art Kit, we read the story on the back (oop version) and talk about artistic elements
Exercise- (either a walking video or playing outside or going for a walk depending on weather and the overall health of the family). We also do some sort of exercise with Physical therapy each day.
Learning games- Learning happens when you are relaxed and accepting of learning, not when tense and ready to say no. My children learn best through games so we have quite a few homemade games, some we have from yard sales and plenty we've been given at holidays or on birthdays. I tend to customize them to fit our kids specific focus.
Math- We use Living Math. We are always talking about math and we also play a lot of math games during this time. We also do a lot of reading that includes many  books about math concepts.
Read aloud- we spend free time listening to audio books or listening to mom or oldest sister read. We've been spending lots of time with Little House on the Prairie and the Melendys. Johnathan park, Adventures in Oydessy, and Skippy John Jones have been currently found in the boombox frequently. I cant wait for Skippy John Jones to go back to the library!! It's fine especially since Daddy brought it home for them, but the voices are a bit annoying- especially when they are on a good portion of the day!

Our family subjects that we cover two a day include:

Nature study- an outdoor walk or bringing nature in depending on the weather
Art study- combined with devotional, but also we focus on famous artists as well.
Music Study- classical music, we are studying one composer and listening to classical music though out the day. We found a set of out of print, but it seems that they are back in print here That makes me happy since it's awesome at character building and teaching kids appreciation of classical music
Craft- sometimes in co-op, sometimes on our own. If I don't make time for it, I tend to forget it, and my kids really enjoy it.
Geography- We study a state or Content or country depending on what read alouds we are doing at the time.
History- covered with read alouds and discussion, we also have a time line on the wall
Chemistry - learn one element and do 1 experiment weekly
Violin -Lesson weekly and practice daily. Still working this one in!

These lessons are all shorter than 20 min and are a part of our day. When we are in routine it doesn't seem like we are doing anything more than normal. looking at it on paper though, it is quite the list!

It's taken me waaay longer than I wanted, but now the shelves are ready for the morning! I'm excited! Hope to have pictures loaded tomorrow during quiet time!
And these don't always happen. We take plenty of rabbit trails and such and do lots of service and other things, but this is our foundation and then we take it one step at a time. What does your homeschool look like? How do you best organize yourself? I'd love to hear from you!


Saturday, January 12, 2013

Family GAPS diet recipes

For Various reasons I have switched a non grain diet. I keep trying to do the intro to GAPS diet and fail miserably. Thats because these recipes looktoo good and I skip ahead!! I will get there eventually ;)
 This is a collection of meals that either look good to me or are family friendly

Fruit juice Caramel Sauce 
Grain free pumpkin pancakes TWO ingredients!!

GAPS Slow Cooker Apple Pie Filling

Browned Butter and Cardamom Carrot Pudding

Crockpot Acorn Squash



 Other recipes for the home:

Homemade deodorant

Coconut Berry Delights: A Tasty Way to Eat More Coconut Oil!


GAPS Intro diet Links

 Here are some links to help our family get started with healing our  guts through the GAPS diet

GAPS introduction diet

Bone broth

 What bone broth should look like


Recipes and Ideas for What to Eat on the GAPS Introduction Diet

 GAPS Diet Recipes & Resources