Homeschool Discoveries

Sharing a few things I've discovered along the way…

J is for June and July (aka…our summer plans!) May 29, 2013

Filed under: Fun Stuff and Extras — kirstenjoyhill @ 12:06 am
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We’ve been on “summer break” from our regular academic-year homeschool schedule for just a bit over a week now…but it hasn’t felt like summer yet.  Last week was busy with a flurry of special activities, then we went out of town for four days…and today was cool and rainy.  It’s looking like a cool and rainy week here, but hopefully by the time June and July roll around, we’ll really be enjoying some summer weather!

Last year we went all out and made a huge bucket list at the beginning of the summer.  We haven’t done that this year (at least not yet), but I’ve been forming a general outline in my head.  I’ll be using this to sit down with the kids soon to fill in a few more details and find out what they have been dreaming of doing this summer.

Big Plans for Fun, Recreation and Travel:

  • Lots of Swimming (swimming lessons + a pool pass…I really hope it warms up soon!)
  • Visiting MN Historic sites with our Minnesota Historical Society membership
  • Park and rec sports – Tennis for the two older kids, soccer for Mr. K and maybe Mr. E as well
  • Vacation Bible Camp at church in August
  • “Mission to the City” for two older kids (along with mom and dad) — 3 intense days of service projects with our church
  • Long weekend trip to Chicago in June and a two week vacation out west at the end of the summer
  • One or more weekend camping trips
  • Visits to Grandma Karen’s house for each of the three “big kids” individually

“Summer School” plans:

While all those activities will keep us busy, I want to make sure we fit in some intentional learning and review, mainly for the two older kids.  Here are a few things I have in mind:

  • Summer history/geography theme of learning about our state (Minnesota) — We’ll read some fiction and non-fiction, and Miss M may make a lapbook or notebook…plus the field trips of course!
  • Math review — Miss M and Mr. E will focus on math fact review with RightStart math games, iPad games, and maybe some “fun” worksheets (as fun as worksheets can get, I guess! I bought a few interesting e-books from the dollar sale at Scholastic Teacher Express that might come in handy).
  • Daily reading — Reading aloud is almost always part of our routine, but I want to make sure that Mr. E continues to practice his reading skills often, and that Miss M finds interesting books to read on her own
  • Learning to type — Miss M will work on learning to type this summer, and Mr. E may join in on this too
  • Interest-led science/nature study — Miss M in particular is really interested in nature study at the moment, and Mr. E often has a science topic in mind to learn more about…so I will be encouraging the kids to pursue these interests

Beyond that…we’ll find plenty of ways to have fun, I’m sure.  Water gun fights, ice cream outings, field trips to other local attractions and time to play with friends will definitely be on the agenda.

I’m linking up with…


Blogging Through the Alphabet


Collage Saturday: Summer Fun, Weeks 3 and 4 June 23, 2012

Filed under: Weekly Highlights — kirstenjoyhill @ 8:08 am
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We’ve had no shortage of things to keep up busy the past couple weeks! Last week, we spent three very full days doing service projects with Mission to the City.  This week, we accepted an invite from a friend to do Vacation Bible Camp at a neighborhood church, so I had quality time with Mr. K each morning while the two older kids participated in the camp.

Last week Mr. E started a once-a-week-for-six-weeks evening soccer class.  And this week Miss M started a month of tennis at our neighborhood park.  That’s every day (weather permitting), but luckily it is first thing in the morning (8am!) and she can walk to the park with her best friend from across the street (thank heavens for the S. family, so I don’t have to get everyone out the door before 8!).

And on top of all of this, I’m nearing my quarterly editing deadline (July 1st) for Faithwalkers Journal, so I’ve been taking advantage of summer break and arranged several hours of daytime babysitting for the kids so that I could actually get my work done while I’m fresh (aka not editing late into the night while the kids are sleeping). That has been wonderful!

As crazy as this sounds, I haven’t felt too stressed out.  🙂  I feel like overall we’re still having a pretty relaxed and fun summer.  Here are a few other highlights of our “summer fun”:

1. Have you heard about the Little Free Library project? It’s a grassroots movement to put small tiny lending libraries in neighborhood everywhere.  Individuals create the library boxes and put them in their yard (I’ve also seen one at a neighborhood school yard).  It’s a lending library for everyone — you can take a book or leave a book any time! Neighbors just down the street installed a Little Free Library about two weeks ago. Our LFL has one shelf for adult books and one shelf for kids books.  The kids love to visit and exchange books.

2.  To help with the initial stocking of the Little Free Library, we donated a stack of books we selected at the thrift store (including some classic kids chapter books I picked out for the neighborhood kids to enjoy!).  But this is the stack I picked out for us!  I just couldn’t go browsing books without picking out some for us!  A dollar a book is just too good to pass up when there are lots of classic chapter books to be had.

3. Dinner picnic in the front lawn before Mr. E’s first night of soccer.  To be honest, the dinner picnic was more due to the fact I had gotten the dining room sparkling clean that afternoon and didn’t want to wreck it right away than due to me being so much fun as just letting the kids eat in the front yard.  😉

4. Watching big machinery is always entertaining.  Here the boys are watching a tree stump being dug up across the street.

5.  Big bouncy fun at the “Neighborhood Street Fest” at the church where the kids attended VBC this week.

6.  As always there is lots of arts and crafts going on around here.  Here Miss M and friend Miss L  create a sort of tye-dye effect on old rags with tempera paint.  They came with this themselves, with some inspiration from a craft book!

7.  Mr. K pushes baby J at the park swings

8. and 9. Our “very hungry caterpillar” grew to be very large…and made its chrysalis a little over a week ago.  Now we are patiently waiting to meet (and then release) our butterfly.  This is one of my favorite parts of summer.  Metamorphosis is such a miracle to see and I am amazed by it every time!

Hope you are having lots of summer fun too!

I’m linking up with Collage Friday and the Weekly-Wrap Up:

Homegrown Learners