Happy to announce…

That I’m quitting my job on 9 August!  It was going to be on the 10th but next month they are changing the pay week.  Whatever, as long as I’m out of that place.  I will be homeschooling full time once that happens.  DH got accepted at NSU and starts classes on 18 August.

We have done a few days of homeschooling for the 2014-2015 school year already.  We aren’t doing it full time yet, I just want to be ahead of the game.  Hurricane season just started and there has already been some minor activity in the tropics.  Nothing threatening to us YET but I’d like to be ahead so I don’t have to worry about conducting school from a hotel room and packing workbooks.  And I can also count those road trip days as field trips if we manage to find something educational to do, like an exhibit or something.

Looking forward to what’s in store.

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To IEP or not to IEP…

My youngest has his IEP meeting coming up.  He hasn’t been to a speech therapy session since this school year started.  I want to withdraw him.

Background:  3 year old’s speech services were taken over by the public school system when he made 3 years.  Playgroup for this is twice a week with a speech therapist, teacher, and a handful of other kids for 2 hours each session.

Anyway, with common core’s hands all over the school system, I am trying to find an easy way to pull him out without offending his therapist and most especially his teacher who loves him to pieces.  I don’t want these people to take it personally that I don’t want my son involved in the public school system, at all, but I have to look out for my family first.  I called his therapist today because she and I have been playing phone tag due to my work schedule and told her we’d be moving soon and tried to use that as an excuse to withdraw him and she says “oh when you find out what school district you are moving to just go to enroll him there and they will contact me for his info.”  *sigh*  I am not confrontational with people who have done me no wrong; it makes it worse when these people have shown nothing but love for my son and I don’t want these people to think that I’m not giving my son the help he needs.  He has made more progress over the summer than he did the entire time he was with this program last year due in large part to the private therapist we had before he made 3 years.  She knew she was losing him to the school system so she put together a huge binder for me with all the tools, lessons and advice I’d need to continue working with him on my own.

If the principal at the lower elementary where these playgroups take place decides to ask me why I am pulling him, THAT is a whole different story and I salivate at the idea of telling her about herself.  Primitive and petty?  Maybe, but I avoided the confrontation with her when I pulled my child from her school because I knew I’d still have to deal with her about my youngest.

I suppose, when I am eligible for insurance through my employer I can always look for another private therapist if he still needs it.  I have until Dec 3 (the date of his IEP meeting) to come up with a way to deal with this.

Vowels a-go

Today I wrote many sets of words on the whiteboard like met/meet/meat, kit/kite, man/mane and whatnot.  I think this visual comparison is really what made it click for E, and the fact that we were just off our game yesterday for some reason.

Today was a good homeschool day 🙂

We haven’t gotten our geography program in yet, and when we do it, it will lengthen our school day a little bit.  Not sure how they will handle that haha, but it’ll all work out I’m sure.  Even A got involved today, he came to the table with colors and his spiderman book so he could be with us and be involved.  It’s good to see him working with his hands, it’s something he really hasn’t ever showed an interest in.  When we tried signing with him when he wouldn’t speak he showed no interest in it.  He hates having anything on his hands at all, won’t even lick chocolate off his fingers.  It looks like he may be getting past this sensory issue finally!  Might try to start signing again if this keeps up.

Progress!

Was working with A today on some preschool work, not really focusing on him learning the color blue but just to get him to SAY it, or anything for that matter.  Not only did he say it, but he colored the page himself!  This has been an issue with him.  When tracing things, I always have to do hand-over-hand with him.  If I removed my hand, he motions that he wants it back.  He will appear to attempt to do it himself but it’s almost as if he loses his confidence and has to have me move his hand for him.  A few weeks ago, I started putting my hand on his but wouldn’t move it just to see if he’d move it himself.  I think the security of my hand being there is what the issue was because as long as my hand was there, he would put crayon to paper.  Well, today while coloring our blue worksheet with blueberries, I move to put my hand over his and he told me no!  He colored one all by himself.  I know this isn’t a big deal to a lot of people but this is HUGE for us.  I hope this continues.

Ending and Beginning

Our last day of school was the 24th.  Since then, I have been caretaker of my mother who had knee replacement surgery and also A who stubbed his toe so badly it got infected, the nail separated from the skin and he required an injection.  It has been some kind of week, I tell you.

E said to me yesterday that he was “so bored” and wants to do some school work, when the public school hadn’t even let out yet (their last day is today).  So I agreed that we start on Monday for the coming school year, and will work 2 or 3 days a week for now.  Tomorrow is the first day for hurricane season so it’s probably a good idea to start off with extra days in the event of another evacuation or week-long power outage.  Our first lesson will be planning hurricane packing lists!  This is something I am an old pro at, but I will let them use some websites like this, this, and this to get ideas and make their own.

We have finally decided on a geography and history publisher!  I was so excited when I made that decision, and a huge deciding factor was their work against the CCSS.  We are going with Knowledge Quest.  We have ordered all 3 of their geography courses together so we won’t get them for a bit, the 3rd is still in production but you are able to download samples and I am impressed with what I see.

Science fun

I didn’t manage to get any pictures of our science experiments yesterday, sorry.

We are in chapter 3 of Real Science 4 Kids Chemistry pre-level 1 (seriously, look at the covers of those books, they even LOOK like so much fun).  Thankfully, I had the foresight to put big trays underneath our clear plastic cups (we call those big trays “crawfish trays” down here) because if I hadn’t, I would have had a huge mess to clean.  We are studying chemical reactions and how molecules trade atoms.  E was so excited when he mixed two cups and it bubbled over all into the tray.  We took our science outside and used baking soda and vinegar to kill fire ant hills.  I call that a practical application!

And as requested (since it’s not often they actually ask for something educational) they now own a periodic table shower curtain. 

We still have not had any success in choosing a history curriculum.  Perhaps I am being too picky about it, but I don’t want to use something that I’m not okay with.

That marketing project I was so worried about.. I got 100% on it.