challenge · family · home-school

How Word Search United Our Family

You read that right.  Word search puzzles have now become a daily event in our home.  It all began on Father’s day.  I didn’t have a card for my husband, so I printed out a Father’s Day themed word search puzzle.  I didn’t really know if he’d do it, as he’s not really the word search type. I was just having a little fun.   At first he just set it aside, but later he said, “I’ll do it if you will.  Hey, let’s all do it and see who finishes first.  We’ll make a contest out of it.”  So, extra copies were printed out, and we all sat down to do a word search puzzle.  Of course, I crushed them!  Well, this “loss” stirred up the competitive spirit in both my husband and son.  “I want a rematch!”  My husband said, a smile on his face.  So began our daily word search time.  I continued to print out more word search puzzles.  So far, I remain the champ, with a total of four wins out of six.  I don’t know how long this will last, but so far it has been a daily event in our home.  Amazing how a little competition can get a man (and boy) to want to do something that they don’t normally enjoy!

You can find these puzzles at  https://worksheets.theteacherscorner.net/make-your-own/crossword/  Have fun!

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Boys · DIY · home-school · Memories

His Own Dictionary!

Hi, Everyone!

For today, I thought I’d share with you an idea that I had when my son was younger.  He had been having some difficulty with putting things in “ABC” order, so instead of the usual dictionary work, I decided to let him have a little fun with it by having him create his own dictionary using his list words.  Rather than explain, I think I’ll let the pictures tell the story.

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He had fun decorating the cover and finding (or drawing) pictures to go with the definition.  And he actually looked them up!!  For anyone who has boys that dislike dictionary work, you know how huge of a thing that is!
As much fun as he had doing this project, he had an even better time showing it to Daddy!

I hope this gives someone out there an idea, and if not, it was still a fun post to write! 🙂

family · gratitude · home-school

Why I Home-schooled my Only Child

Being one of six kids, I just always thought that I’d follow in my mother’s footsteps and raise a large family as well.  When my husband and I were first married, I used to imagine our home filled with excited little ones running through the house, tracking up the floors.  I dreamed of settling squabbles and making sure I divided desserts up equally so as not to cause an argument.  I looked forward to being the mother of several children.  However, as we all know, things don’t always turn out the way you want them to.  Sometimes, God’s plan for our lives differs from our own plans.  I knew from the beginning that, because of my epilepsy, I would not be able to have children naturally.  I was on way too much medication for that to become a possibility.  So, my husband and I had planned to adopt.  That was over twenty years ago.  Since that time, we have adopted our son, who is now fourteen.  We have tried over the years to adopt more kids, but adopting is not as simple as one might think.  So, long story short, we never were able to adopt more than one child.  That one child, by the way, was a God-send.  He is loved and cherished more than he’ll ever know.  We were introduced to home-schooling very early on, and had planned on home-schooling our children.  I was excited, and was looking forward to setting up my home-school room and all that goes with it.  You know that feeling, right ? It happens every year.  I had so much fun teaching my boy over the years!  Yes, we’ve had our share of struggles as well, but I wouldn’t change the time we’ve spent together for anything!  Well, as I’ve mentioned, we never did have more children.  That is the answer to why I home-schooled my only child.  We thought we would have more kids, we wanted more kids, but God had other plans.  Was I going to change my plans for home-schooling simply because my son didn’t have any siblings ?  Of course not. I wouldn’t deprive him of that.  So, God’s plan for my life was different than my own.  But that’s okay – I trust that God knows exactly what He’s doing, and He doesn’t make mistakes.

home-school

When the Teacher Learns

I’ve been a home-schooling mom for about ten years now.  For some that makes me a veteran home-schooler, to others, I’m still a rookie.  Whatever the case, I have learned an awful lot over the years, and am still learning.  In the beginning, I learned that teaching is much more than assigning worksheets and grading papers.  I learned that each child has their own individual learning style, and that my son was a hands-on learner.   I learned the weaknesses and strengths of my son, and have implemented a variety of teaching methods over the years.  I learned, also, that some days, kids may not want to learn, or rather, they don’t want to be taught.  It was on days like these that I put my imagination to the test!  I had to think of ways to make learning fun.  I’m referring to a “hands-on, let me do it, when can we do this again?” kind of fun!  And that is just what I did!  In kindergarten, it was pretty easy.  I mean, hey, it was kindergarten!  When we began first grade, my son wanted a second round of kindergarten!  That’s when learning to read was turned into a game and learning to spell required a tray of salt.  Yes, over the years this home-school mom has learned a lot.  I’d like to share with you, through pictures, just what kind of “fun” we’ve had over the years.       I will begin with some of the ways this “hands-on” boy of mine learned about different countries in third grade Social Studies:

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We have come a long way since third grade, but I have always tried to make learning as much fun as possible for my son.   Unfortunately, the older he became, the more difficult his studies became, and having “fun” while learning became something that seemed to be almost impossible.  However, we have recently managed to make learning fun once again, even in eighth grade, thanks to  http://www.elearningk12.com    It is all online, student led, and covers all subjects.  Finally, my teenager is having fun while learning once again.  I, too, am still learning.

epilepsy · home-school

A Unique Individual

Being a home-school mom, there’s always the occasional negative comment, or the stare that seems to say, “Why don’t you send your kid to a ‘real‘ school ?”  I find that it isn’t even worth it to explain to certain individuals, because they’ve already made up their minds about home-schooling, so I just don’t bother.  With home-schooling, you either believe in it or you don’t.  There’s no in between.  Well, now let’s confuse the issue a little further.  Add to this the fact that I have epilepsy.  Now there’s something that really gets the stares and the comments going.  I don’t even have to be having a seizure at the time to cause the staring.  Here is what I mean:  I could be feeling just fine, and others around me will start staring at me as if they’re just waiting for me to have a seizure.  I wonder if they realize how ridiculous that makes them look.  Some people have even had the nerve to come up to me and ask me if I’m going to have a seizure!  Of course, I don’t mean to compare home-schooling to epilepsy, and I don’t mean to give the impression that home-schooling is a negative thing either.  I chose to home-school my child from the very beginning.  I chose it because I believe that it is the best thing for my son at this time.  I’m proud to be a home-school parent.  But you know something else ?  I’m also proud to have epilepsy.  Having epilepsy has made me into a stronger person.  It’s because of my epilepsy that I am a mother to my son today.  That’s right.  If I didn’t have epilepsy I would have never even considered adoption, and therefore, someone else would have been the mother of my dear son.  God does work in mysterious ways!  Now this doesn’t mean that I like having epilepsy – nothing could be further from the truth.  I can’t stand it!  But, I accept it, and I am grateful for the positive outcomes that have occurred as a direct result of my having epilepsy.    Home-schooling and epilepsy – just how do these two things tie together ?  What makes one similar to the other ?  The answer ?  Nothing.  There is nothing about home-schooling that has anything to do with epilepsy.  Nothing, that is, other than me.  I have epilepsy, and I’m a home-schooling mom.  I’m the tie between two things that otherwise have nothing to do with the other.  That is one thing that makes me unique.  Oh, there are plenty of other home-schooling moms out there, and there are plenty of other people with epilepsy out there as well.  But a home-school mom who has epilepsy and suffers from daily seizures, well, there aren’t too many of us around.  At first, I felt alone because of it.  I felt isolated.  No longer.  I am not alone, but rather, I am a unique individual.  Unique individuals.  That is what makes up this world.  God knows what He is doing, and He doesn’t make mistakes.  God made me to live the life that He has called me to live, in the way that He has called me to live it.  He has given me free will to choose right from wrong.  In His wisdom, God has left that choice up to me, as He has for every individual.  Where our choices lead us is up to us.