Strewing, I’m a Strewer, Are You???

I love to strew activities around for my kids to find and explore. Today I caught a few photos of strewing in action!

My daughter was painting earlier while my son was totally engrossed in history channels documentary Ancient Aliens series. Painting was the last thing on his mind.

After a while I noticed my daughter had moved on to building circuit boards with our snap circuit kits. (Which were conveniently set out)

(Side note: awesome toy alert!)

I hated to waste the paint she didn’t use up, so I took it outside and put it on a table near the sand box. (I knew they would be our near the sand box this afternoon)

One of the kids chores today was to remove old sand box toys for goodwill. As they started removing toys, they decided they didn’t want any of the toys, just the sand, some rocks, shells and the water hose. (Another moment that supports more natural simply play over plastic crap toys!)

And I digress a lot! Such is life as a masterful multitasker haha! 😉

Point is, there was that paint, just sitting there while the kids cleaned out/played in the sand box. Not noticed at first.

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Then after a little while…my son discovered it and decided he wanted to paint some rocks….

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My daughter was engrossed in flooding the sand box and making her own sand creations.

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But it wasn’t too long before she discovered her pet rocks needed some eyeballs! And the paint happen to be right there.

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I love how activities lead into others so smoothly. My son was clearly still processing the earlier documentary’s information when he decided to build ancient alien inspired cities, walls, artifacts, etc in the sand box.

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A quick toy tidy chore with cleverly places supplies turned into nearly two hours of fantastic creative personally inspired educational play.

Strewing is such a fantabulous way to give mama a quiet moment to sip some tea and the kids a chance to love learning. All I did was set the paints outside and assign a tidy up chore. Win win for all!!!

As I type I overheard the kids making plans to become paleontologists and the adventure of finding a freshly painted dinosaur tooth (aka stick) in the sand box, who will hide it, who will find it, the outfits they need to change into first, who will wear what, etc…the plans are almost as much fun as the adventures….oh to be a kid again! 🙂

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Our Reading Tree

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We have this years reading tree up and ready to go. This year we are using a paper tree from amazon. We are hoping my very talented sister will one day paint a beautiful tree with a child swinging in a swing sweeping over the wall. But for now the paper tree is perfect. 🙂

This particular tree comes with leaves, acorns and animals. We have decided to designate the acorns for level readers the kids read out loud to me, leaves for books the kids read on their own and animals to chapter books we read as a family together. (At least that is the plan as of today) 🙂

We are looking forward to seeing how full our tree gets over this next year. I hope to blog about our full reading tree next summer around this time.

Back to mental planning and getting things ready for our next year ahead. 🙂

Spunky Summer Hair

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My daughter decided to go pink this summer. Every time we go out people compliment her and gush over her hair style and color. How cute, what fun, she looks so good with pink hair, I wish I could get away with that, I wish I could look so cute in pink, I love it, I wish my daughter could do that but school starts in two weeks, it’s darling!, etc..etc..etc..

Then I am often asked: What will they say when she goes back to school?

I can only reply with a chuckle and “not much!”

Of course dying ones hair pink is not the reason why we homeschool, but it is one of the many extra benefits that have popped up over the years. Like traveling in the off-season! So many little benefits to homeschooling one doesn’t even realize exist until you are enjoying a peaceful life as a homeschooler! 🙂

Documenting is Draining

Documenting our week was draining after a while because I realized how often my kids are off doing their own independent amazing creations and then bringing the said creations to me afterwards for their explanation or questions…following them around with a camera took away from their independent creative process and they were sick of me snapping photos…

Today is Monday and I’m realizing we do more school at home text-book things on Mondays, Tuesdays and then it slows down and becomes more active play, experimental, type learning and less sit down book learning…life of Fred math pretty much happens every day at some point in the day, we read together every day and the kids read to each other out loud nearly every day…but story of the world, language, grammar and other text books we use slow down by Wednesday.

I learned a few things over the week doing a more intensive observation…so as draining as it is, I will for sure do this again in the winter and recommend all homeschoolers to give it a try. I’m convinced that most homeschoolers have a good idea of what goes on with their kids, but the conversations I normally would have missed were hilarious and so worth hearing! 🙂

Sunday – Day Seven

Today I was lazy for half the day, then I got up and cleaned house. These are the types of random things I find when I go about cleaning.

A home-made kazoo

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An erosion experiment on paper clips

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A collection of rocks

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Nearly dried purple paint, and some random bit of packing foam painted purple

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All of these things are of course treasures that can not be tossed.

Here are some crystals we grew during a science experiment a couple of weeks ago, I’m finally finding a new home for this display.

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Coloring time

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Finished artwork

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We went for a family walk

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A couple of friends who loved my daughter’s hair, stopped by to have a little pink added to their hair.

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After the kids played for a LONG time outside and their mama and I enjoyed mama tea chat time, somehow they turned the evening into a dance party. (Horrible photos, iPhone flash is not the best!)

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Their dance party got so wild they broke one of my favorite antique bowls. 😦

Luckily no one was hurt! That is most important!

Once the bowl bits were cleaned up they resumed their dance party.

I think we can glue the bowl back together…I have hope! 🙂

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Kids are in bed listening to an audio story. Hubby and I are going to snuggle up and chat the night away.

Goodnight Zzz

Friday – Day Five

Well today daddy was home and that is always a nice treat!

He started the day off with a hilarious question…he is scanning the terrarium that still does not have a lizard in it, but does have a rotting strawberry and a dozen crickets.

We decided to leave the strawberry in there and do a science experiment on mold…haha…seriously, it was a decision the kids and I made on purpose…haha…that sounds so homeschooler. haha!

Anyhow, as I’m making a cup of tea, I hear him ask kindly:

Honey how long has that strawberry been in with the crickets?

It is very difficult to type out his tone of what he’s really saying thru his sweet gentle question: what he is really saying is more on the lines of…are you aware there is rotting food in the tank here? (As if I honestly would have no clue) and Do you plan on cleaning it out or just leaving it there? He is pretty disgusted…lol…

I can’t help but laugh when I reply, yes I know it’s there we are doing a science experiment, please leave it alone…haha!

My son woke up and immediately wanted an audio book.

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Today the kids had horse riding lessons. They are learning Western, English and Vaulting. Today they practice Western.

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Some stretching exercises first…

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My daughter was still sleepy…lol

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Time to ride…

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Piano lessons…

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Random playtime…

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Both my kids found this toy interesting, when they are generally geared towards a much younger audience…however, I will admit I found myself sliding the beads around a few times myself and all we need to say is I’m MUCH older than the audience that typically plays with these haha!

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After piano, my daughter wanted one on one time with daddy at the shooting range. So they went off to shoot targets and I took my son out for a frozen yogurt treat.

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When we all gathered back together, my daughter once again (has been asking for months now) asked if I will please dye her hair pink. I think about the kool-aid trick and there is no way I could get her roots with boiling hot kool-aid…so I swing into the drug store and poof there it is, her dreams of pink in a box!

Daddy misses her sweet blond hair…but girls just wanna have fun! Haha! I figure its best to express ones self under parental supervision than explode with teenage rebellion one day.

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Book time…

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A basher book on creative writing arrived in the mail and the kids were checking it out. My son will be working on creative writing a bit more this coming year.

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They always find time for jumping…

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When my husband put the rabbits in for the night, he noticed a toad trapped in the rabbit hutch. He got the kids to come see the toad. After they got a chance to pet the toad, then they released it back into nature.

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And that is all I have for you today…kids literally read themselves to sleep tonight. Everyone is out like a light…

Goodnight! Have a great weekend!

Thursday – Day Four

Well first thing this morning neither child had forgotten I promised a BEN 10 episode, so they started their day off with a cartoon. When the one was over, they were hooked and wanted more, more, more…so I figured if they worked together to clean my daughter’s room (which looked like a tornado blew thru a hoarder room) Then I would agree to another Ben 10.

 A few minutes later they came out and said they were finished. I’m pretty sure this is not the case. I ask, did you really clean up her room in that short of time? And they said, OH I THOUGHT YOU JUST WANTED A NICEPATH THRU HER ROOM…ha ha! So I look, they had neatly shoved everything to the sides so one might have a lovely path threw the disaster zone.

 With a little guidance they did a beautiful job on her room and they also worked on compromise, working together to tackle a fairly large job (giant really for a kid!) I could hear them deciding who would do what. It was pretty cute!

 A few jobs needed to be accomplished before our play dates arrived today.

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 We had two separate play dates today and to be honest I got way side tracked chatting with my mama friends to document much of today. I do have photos to share, but not a lot of “homeschooling” stuff other then SOCIALIZING…today was SOCIALIZING DAY! Ha ha! 🙂

 A little dress up time:

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Breakfast time:

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 My son is researching Ben 10 alien costumes and preparing himself for HALLOWEEN already! He will most likely change his mind a billion times, so we have a rule, I will purchase ONE costume, but if you decide you want to be something else, then you have to make the costume yourself using stuff from our dress up bin….or literally MAKE IT yourself with card board or whatever you have to use.

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 Contemplating life I suppose? I wonder if school kids get much quiet time to just think their thoughts. I know when I have a busy day it takes a lot of quiet practice to come down and feel grounded and able to just think my thoughts, so I love seeing my kids pondering life or maybe Ben 10 costumes ha ha!, but just having quiet moments to think their own personal private thoughts.

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image Son: Did you know your body is complex? You can eat upside down! (as he puts a handful of popcorn in his mouth upside down…apparently one can defy gravity in some ways)

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Play time: (trying to sort out weapons, game rules, costumes…all really important stuff!)

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Lunch Time:

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 Playing after Lunch…(mama is starting to loose steam and forgetting to document…sorry!)

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 Kids came in the room where the mama chat was going on, so I have a few photos of the games they pulled out and played…

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Then back to base camp to plot some more weapons, war tactics, game rules and strategies for conquering the other team!

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 Little break to jump on the trampoline (and it is hard to see but one kiddo is up in the tree)

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These magnets are still fascinating to him. He has had three days of processing these magnets. I know more is going on up in his brain regarding the magnets then just positive negative charges…he had that mastered when he was two! I’m guessing Thomas Edison type stuff, so I’m glad there isn’t fire involved and it’s just magnets! ha ha!

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A bit later one set of friends left and another arrived…The girls were playing with the doll house and it wasn’t really my son’s gig, so he played this game by himself in more of a puzzly way.

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 This is where I failed on documentation miserably today…I was having a nice time visiting with friends and the kids happily playing. The day got away from me… 

Dinner time… 

Bath… 

I took the kids out for an ice cream. As much as I dislike them having ice cream right before bed, I had promised it to them two days ago. I figured we should just get that promise over with and hopefully the sugar crash happens in their sleep. Ha ha!

 I’m going to snuggle up with hubby and watch whatever show he’s watching then head for bed…I hope to do a better job tomorrow. 

I’ve been thinking about it, I think I will try this again in the fall/winter when we are doing more schooly things then we do during the summer. We do school year round, but we are relaxed schoolers and the month of July we are SUPER relaxed schoolers…lol…might not be the best week, oh well, hind sight is alwasy 20/20 we’ll do it again some time down the road… 

Good night!