Friday, July 19, 2013

Curriculums.....where to start?

When I started homeschooling Booger he was about 3. I would just sit with him on the floor and do puzzles and repeat letters and letter sounds etc. When he reached the age for kindergarten in our state the hubby and I decided to keep going with homeschooling. Thinking we would take it year by year. The first year I purchased different curriculum's,1 for math, 1 for reading, 1 science, 1 health,1 bible, 1 social studies/history. Adam and I worked together great for the first 2-3 months then it became a struggle and I decided to step back and reevaluate my approach. I was trying to re-create a school environment because that's what I was used to. I bought him a desk and everything. When I relaxed and let him lead me he was able to learn more.

The next year I decided to use a different curriculum that was a little more all inclusive. It included a full lesson plan book for science, social studies, geography, bible, art, and music. I only needed to add in language arts and math. I have enjoyed it. I would be lying if I said I haven't. And the kids have done well with it. But the kids and I like rabbit trails. I like rewriting the curriculum because I like to teach what the kids want to learn. Don't get me wrong there are some things that we HAVE to learn but if we spend a few weeks on something that should've taken a day or so there is nothing wrong with that. I want to let my children's interests drive us to learn more. So, here is the question? How to get more without spending a small fortune, or a large fortune for that matter. I mean really, curriculum is SUPER expensive.

This spring and summer I started thinking about what it would look like to write my own curriculum, to utilize the friends and free resources around me. Then I learned about other moms who do the same thing. One mom even makes her curriculum available to others for free online, I have taken a lot from her. I have just a few more days of writing and preparing and our first two months will be drafted. I say drafted because being part of the Crazy Criswell's means that plans will change and life will get a little hectic. And there will be some, okay a lot of rabbit trails. Wish me luck. Our 6th year of homeschooling starts in a little over 2 weeks!!!!!

Monday, July 8, 2013

The start of a 4 year olds Party

So my little Beanie has been pretty open with what kind of party she would like. She wants a Minnie's Bowtique party. She wants the colors to be pink and purple and she doesn't want me stray from that plan. She is quite the little party planner.

So far I have made some cute centerpieces for the tables for under a 1$ each. I have made a Minnie mouse banner for under 3$ and a super cute Bowtique sign for 2$.

These were made from stuff I had around the house. Black poster board, pink and purple construction paper, small terra cotta pots, and popsicle sticks.

simple little invite:)

I picked up these super cute foam signs at the Dollar Store and wrote on them with puffy paint.

For 97 cents at Walmart you can get this plastic garland. Add some Minnie's silhouettes and cut out happy birthday letters.....all for under 3$

Close up of one of the banners.
Could she really be any cuter?
I get a little emotional thinking of my sweet Beanie turning 4. But, she is so excited and so happy looking at all the fun decorations. So, I am trying to be excited too, it's a bitter sweet excitement though.

Kind of a boring summer so far.....

We have had a very laid back 2013 so far, and it's dragging into our summer. It's not that I don't want to do super fun things. It's just that I am honestly enjoying being a home body....I never ever for one minute thought I would say that.

We have gone swimming and and done a few hikes but it's really been pretty quiet around here which is really nice.

On a side note,
This year I decided to write my own reading/language arts curriculum using a combination of different curriculum's I have found. I feel way more involved than I ever have, and now I have decided to go ahead and plan my own curriculum for science, social studies, bible and health too. I am using a combination of curriculum's that I have found but it's pretty exciting to be putting it all together. And the best part's going to cost WAY less than it ever has!!!
I will keep you updated on writing and preparing your own curriculum but so far so good.