Thursday, November 21, 2013

Christmas School


So this afternoon I kicked the kids out of the schoolhouse and locked the door!  They are not allowed back in until December 2nd!!  When they come in on December 2nd they will see that it has been transformed into Christmas School!!!!  :-)  I had so much fun decorating and getting it all ready!!

It has taken a couple of weeks to get everything planned out and I am so excited! 

First off - I purchased Truth in the Tinsel and am so excited!!  I have adapted it to work for our schools days (we have 12 school days before Christmas break) and have figured out some other activities to do as well.

I purchased an advent calendar - actually this is the one that the kids picked out.

To make it go with Truth in the Tinsel I used label sheets cut up to stick over what they have so that we could put our verses and pictures... as seen on one of the windows below.

We are going to do the ornament templates (and we will be making a few of the ornament crafts as well).  So I printed out templates for each kid, colored copies of the picture clues and notes to go with the scripture readings and put them in an envelope for each day.  Here they are all ready in a Christmas basket, along with our bible.

You will see in the next few pictures the tinsel that is hanging around the room.  I thought I would take Truth in the TINSEL literally and we will be hanging our ornaments we make on tinsel.  I went to the dollar store and got 3 different colors of tinsel (so each child will know which one is their's) and hung them up on one side of the room.  Each day when they color and cut out their ornament we will attach it to their tinsel.  (So by Christmas their tinsel will tell the Christmas story)

This is a view from the door of the whole room but you can see some of the tinsel on the right upper side of the picture.


It's hard to get everything photographed - I didn't get a good picture of showing all the tinsel stretching from one side of the room to the other.

So - here are some other school stuff that I we are doing special for Christmas!!!

I am so excited about our read aloud for December - we are reading a book I remember as a child - "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever".    We will be finishing up Charlotte's Web the first week of December (and we have so so enjoyed it) and then we will read this one! 

I made several Christmas packets for the kids to work on for Christmas.  The first one are their verse tracings!  For Thanksgiving I did thanksgiving verses where I wrote the verse with a highlighter and then they traced them - Seth doing cursive and Aaron and Alyssa doing print!  This worked really well!  (especially for Alyssa - I was so proud with how well she traced her letters.  For Aaron and Seth I thought it would be a good change of pace for practicing their handwriting and cursive).  Since it went so well for Thanksgiving I decided to do the same thing for Christmas!  Their verses each day are from our scripture readings from Truth in the Tinsel for that day.

Here is the cover I made for each one of them.

Here is an example of Seth's cursive tracings.

Here is an example of Aaron's print tracings.

And here is an example of Alyssa's tracings.  You will notice her letters are bigger and it is not the full verse...just enough for her to practice tracing her letters. :-)

I have really been working on trying to get Seth to write more.  We have been working on fun short creative writings.  I thought it would be fun to do some Christmas stories and found a great resource on  I decided to make Aaron a copy too and see what he can come up with!!

Here is the cover...

And here is one of the pages...

I also made special math packets for December!  I decided to find some Christmas themed worksheets that would be review for what Aaron is learning.  For Seth, we will be introducing multiplication and working on 2 and 3 times table with fun Christmas worksheets!!

Both of their covers look like this...

Here are some pages from Seth's book...

And here is a page from Aaron's book.

And I also made packets for the boys that were just fun activity pages - mazes, dot to dot, word searches, coloring sheets, etc...

I even made Alyssa a book of fun worksheets for her to work on!  Letter tracings, dot to dot, what is different/what is the same worksheets, color by number, etc...

We will still be doing our normal reading lessons!  I want to stay on track with them, especially since Aaron is scheduled to finish his 1st grade reading on December 16th!!!  (remember he started in January last year with 1st grade reading).  He is so excited!!!  He was jumping up and down at the library the other day because I was getting him 2nd grade level books and some of them were chapter books!  

Here are some more pictures of other decorations I have done around the room!

Here is the white board above my desk!

Here is a view of the big white board.  You can't tell in the picture well but those are jingle bells strung across the top.  There are ornaments down each side as well.

Here is a close up of my Santa - he is hanging in the middle of the white board!  I thought he was quite appropriate for the school room.  :-)

 Also I put up around the room the handprint Christmas trees that the kids all made at church last year  as my Christmas gift :-).  Here is Aaron's...

 and Alyssa's!

Here is our angel sitting in the window (which is covered right now so that there are no peelers!)

Here is our truth in the tinsel basket with a couple of goodies in front of it...

A basket of fun Christmas erasers...

and a mug of fun Christmas pencils, sharpened and ready to use!

Here is a cute sign on the door!

And this is not Christmas - it is just our good 'ol Scentsy warmer - but it will be filled with Christmas scents making the room smell like Christmas!!!

I think it will be a very fun month of school!!

Until next time,

Wednesday, October 2, 2013's been a while...what can I say

Hey everybody!

Yep! It's been  a while since I have posted on here!  That should tell you just how busy we have been!!  Things have been crazy!!  School is going great - we are trucking right along!

Things are fixing to start getting really fun because my mom-in-law has offered to be a "teacher's aide" for a couple of days a week - and I have gladly taken her up on that offer!!  She is on vacation right now but plans on starting when she gets home and we cannot wait!!  She will truly be a lot of help!

Too much has gone on to tell you everything.  And I have not been very good at all at taking pictures.  But here is what I have pictures of to highlight.

At the end of August we took a field trip to River Legacy Park.  This was a nature center nestled in the city of Arlington!  It was a really neat place.  They had a lot of trails to walk on and explore.  They had tons of turtles too!  And thankfully we had a break in 100 degree weather that day so we didn't melt!  YAY!!

We are having so much fun with our Science curriculum!  I am LOVING Apologia!!!  I am also throwing in some "fun".  We are drawing some animals (using Draw Write Now) and the kids are loving that!!  They make such a cute addition to their science notebooks!

We made an Animal Kingdom flip book that we are completing as we go through the book!  

Here is our grizzly bear.  (They thought that mine needed to go on a diet LOL)
 Here is Seth's grizzly bear.
 Alyssa's grizzly bear
Aaron's grizzly bear

 Here is our panda bear
 Alyssa's panda bear (she said her's needs to go on a diet LOL)
 Seth's panda bear
Aaron's panda bear (he decided to draw mountains around it since we wrote that Pandas lived in the mountains.)

We have started co-op again!!  Unfortunately we missed last Friday's co-op day due to Daddy and I being out of town.  But we had a blast on our first day!!  Here are some pictures of the boys making SUPER bubbles in Mad Scientist Class.

 We are doing a fall reading challenge with our co-op friends!!  There are a couple of fun challenges involved.  One of the challenges is to see how many different places you can read.  It is a bingo sheet of all different kind of places and you have to see if you can complete the whole page!  I got some cool pictures of Seth reading under a tree and in his favorite "chair" (which is in a tree that he loves to sit in).


 And Alyssa enjoyed reading to her doll one morning!!

We are planning a super exciting field frip for April 2014!!  It is an interactive concert with the Dallas Symphony!!  The curriculum was written by Carnegie Hall.  There are several songs during the concert that kids will be involved with - either by singing along with, or playing recorders.  I took this as an opportunity to teach them (and myself) the recorder.  We are having a lot of fun with this!  :-)  I know they will for sure be able to at least play one of the songs with their recorders!!  It is quite possible they will be able to play all of them though.  They are catching on to it that quickly!

One day I wanted them to all go find a place by themselves and practice the notes that we were learning.  I got pictures of them in their "spots".

 Alyssa practicing on the porch
 Aaron practicing on the swing

 Seth practicing in his closet

We finished Mr Popper's Penguins!  We all LOVED the book!  We watched the movie one evening and decided that they probably didn't read the book at all before making the movie!!  Everything was so different!  I think the penguins was the only thing that was the same in both!!  Kids did giggle during the movie and the movie was very clean but afterwards we all decided that we liked the book much better than the movie!

We are now reading The Jungle Book.  Here are some pictures of some of the artwork that the kids have been working on during the reading.

 Aaron's watercolor lion
 Seth's watercolor Mowgli and Baloo

Alyssa's lion mane she is working on

I thought I would also show a watercolor picture Seth did one day for his Proverb lesson (from Draw To Learn Proverbs - which we are LOVING). 

 Unfortunately our cub scout group has dismantled due to the latest ruling from the Boy Scouts of America.  We were very sad about this at first but have since decided to join 4H.  We are very excited about the possibilities with this organization!  There are so many different things you can do through this organization.  I am still very much a newbie in trying to figure it all out.  One thing that I really like about it is that it is for boys and girls so I won't have to find something separate for Alyssa to do. 

Ok - I think that is all I have for now.  I have come to the realization that it will not be possible for me to update this blog weekly.  I will just try to update as I can!

Until next time,