Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Quick Halloween fun - card game and cupcakes!

Its been ages but here we go....

Just in time for Halloween some of our new favorite things that we've tried out from Pinterest.

Pumpkin Life Cycle War Card game -
We tried this out for free at our homeschool library group (below) and everyone enjoyed it, as of this writing its still available for free download (you do have to sign up for an account but its also free) from TPT also known as Teachers Pay Teachers. It's quick to print out and have on hand.

And here is the link to go and grab it for yourself - Pumpkin Life Cycle War card game

Here are three great designs for pull-a-part cupcakes, we made the ghost one and the whole tombstone. Kids seem to LOVE  these things...and there's no right or wrong way to decorate them.

Curricula we use - Our spines

What we use for each grade level each year.
(***UPDATED*** 10/30/2013
The Red Ranger is now in 5th grade and we still use the same spines for our homeschool. We have added a couple and those will be noted below. )

I've been chatting online in many areas with new homeschoolers and I can remember how lost I was when we started as accidental homeschoolers. I decided to add a post about our spines, our starting points for our studies. Over the past couple of years its been hit or miss with some curricula out there but these work for us. Having said that, I'll warn you that not everything works for every student or family and to top it off each child learns differently even in the same family. The good thing about homeschooling is that you can find what works for each individual child instead of just using a blanket system for all.
These are just our base line we add lots of other materials both at home and online.
I'll also add links to future blog posts about how we use some of the below as they are written.
NOTE: If there isn't a link to a company website it usually means that those resources are out of print and must be obtained used. I find my used materials through Ebay, Amazon, PaperBack Swap and Barnes & Noble used sellers.

Complete Curriculum -
Learn at Home Series - /
available for grades kindergarten through grade 6. Gives you a weekly schedule/map to begin with and you can tweak it from there.

Flashkids Complete Curriculum - /
we use this with the Learn at Home series, they seem to compliment each other.

What Your ? Grader Needs to Know series - E.D. Hirsch / Core Knowledge Website

History -
Story of the World - History for the Classical Child - Volumes 1-4 - Susan Wise Bauer /
Story of the World - Well Trained Mind Website
Volume 1 - Ancient Times: From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor - 5000BC to 400AD.
Volume 2 - The Middle Ages: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of the Renaissance - 400AD to 1600AD.
Volume 3 - Early Modern Times: From Elizabeth the First to the Forty-Niners - 1600AD to 1850AD.
Volume 4 - The Modern Age: From Victoria's Empire to the End of the USSR.

Each set has a text book of stories, an activity book, a test and answer book, audio tapes or CD's.
We use only the first three items for each era/age. Each Volume Set has grade levels associated with it, however prior to us starting The Ancient Times in January 2013 we've been using parts of all volumes for our history studies as certain days approached on the calendar or if we've done a unit study on a certain time period.

Math -
Math-U-See - Steven P. Demme / Math-U-See Website

English -  Language Arts - Grammar - Reading - Spelling - Writing -
Reading -
McGuffey's Reader's / McGuffey's Readers World/Ray's Arithmetic
Along with many books of choice and classics.
Language Arts and Grammar -
Easy Grammar & Daily Grams - Wanda C. Phillips / Easy Grammar Systems Website
Used along with the components from both complete curriculum books listed above.
Spelling -
All About Spelling - Marie Rippel / http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/all-about-spelling
Writing/Handwriting -
Handwriting Without Tears - Jan Olsen / http://www.hwtears.com/hwt

Geography -
Currently studying countries with Little Passports.
Little Passports / Little Passports Website
Great World Expedition - WebQuest / Brodie Education Consulting available through CurrClick.com. CurrClick - Brodie Education Publisher Page
Our Homeschool Geography Club

Daily Skills -
This is a daily warm-up or skill building review area that I've added using the following resources each day. Each day there are 3 or sometimes 4 sheets in this folder depending on the content from each source.
Daily Grams from Easy Grammar above - /
Daily Learning Drills - Brighter Child Series - /
Flashkids Summer Skills and/or The Summer Bridge Series - / Flash-Kids Products - Barnes & Noble
Carson Dellosa - Summer Bridge Activities

Please Note: We use CurrClick.com for a lot of subjects. The site is searchable for many materials and also has some free materials each month.
We also use lots of supplemental materials for each subject and we also use online sites.