Powered by Blogger.
This post may contain affiliate links. For more information, visit our disclosures page.

A Winter Storm

I deleted over 800 messages in my hotmail inbox it took forever but it was worth the time.

Lupe, might have tomorrow off. Yippee! We are having a cold front or winter storm as they call it.




Of course my Sweets, will work from home, but at least he'll be home .

Although, I don't like that every thing will be icey. I get scared my dad might slip and fall down the stairs. Keeping him in prayer.

Computer Help

There comes a time when I need to not feel guilty because I need the computer to help educate my children. Life can get pretty busy for a homeschooling mama of 6.
I'm trying something new with Brent. His math time consist of 20-30 minutes of DreamBox Learning and Math Rider.

I have Lance, Ethan, Brent and Caleb using DreamBox Learning for extra math practice. All children are using Math Rider for daily math facts. It sounds awful, but I don't have time to do flashcards with all my kiddos, so when I found out about Math Rider from another bloggy friend (thanks Jesse) I jumped at the chance. I was waiting for Timez Attack's addition, subtraction and division games to come out but they are taking too long! Anyway, the children really enjoy using Math Rider.

Annette, continues to use Saxon Math but I have added MathWhizz to her daily math time.

I like that I can keep track of the children's math and gauge where they are at. I don't know how long we'll use these programs because it is costing $40.00 a month. Math Whizz is $20.00 per child. DreamBox Learning is $20.00 for 4 kiddos. For now these programs are a HUGE help

Day 93

Last night, Brent, said he was old enough to have his own school planner, so I scheduled his schooling out. He was so excited. Look at him work away using his planner.
 Pictures don't lie, we had marshmellows this morning  
Here is what I scheduled for him today:
  1. Spelling Workout, practice words on p.10. Do pgs. 10 & 12
  2. MCP Phonics pgs. 16-17
  3. Math, 20 minutes of Dream Box and 15 min. of Math Rider
  4. Bible; James 1:1-14
  5. Cursive First Penmanship 19A
  6. Saxon Phonics with mom.
Here is Ethan, doing some online math.

 Lance, completing his first page of Spelling Workout A

We are still on Week 1 of Easy Classical K.


Lance and his buddy Jackie, playing with her DS.

Can you Find Ethan?

This past weekend we took our CHRISTmas tree down. Took all the decorations off (not that there were many, we only put some lights on this year). I was sad to see our tree go. It smelled so nice.

Saxon Phonics 1

I think I may be getting my blogging desire back .

I have been wanting to write about how Saxon Phonics level 1 is going. We are on lesson 65.
I would like to say that we are not always having fun and some days I feel like Ethan, is not getting it. I don't know if that true or not but he is reading words like, beefy, guppy, my, Rome, sty, fishy, hike. This is one of the short paragraphs that he as read from Saxon Phonics.
"Let's have a fish fry," said Mom. "We can invite Pam and Fred," she said. "I will get Ann to dry the spoons and plates. Jo can help set the table and I will get the fish."

2nd paragraph.

The table was set with plates and napkins for the fish fry. Pam and Fred came with a cake. We ate until we were stuffed. We had fun!

I have tweaked Saxon Phonics a little. I'm really trying to keep the program as is.
What I have tweaked.
  • We don't go over all the letter cards, picture cards, sight word cards and Spelling Sound Sheet daily.
In the beginning I did do this every day as written in the teacher manual. Now that Ethan, knows all his letter sounds and names and put the letters in order, he knows vowel and consonant combinations, he can code and now read many words without coding, so I don't feel the need to do this every, single day anymore.
On Monday, we don't do a lesson, so this is when we do go over all the cards and we will write all the sounds down. I do have to help him with some of the sounds like 'o'. He knows the sound but is suppose to write 'o-e, o ll ow (o consonant e comma o final digraph ow).
Through the week I choose a different deck. Tuesday we may go through the picture and sight word cards. Wednesday the Affix and letter cards. Thursday, Picture and Sight Word cards etc.
  • Accent mark.
I don't drill the accent mark. I do introduce it and mention it but I figure he'll get this later. Right now it's a bit much (even I have a hard time with the accent mark).

  • Worksheets
For the most part we do complete one side of the worksheet. There is a side to be completed during our lesson and then there is a 'homework' sheet on the other side. I will pick a homework sheet to use on Monday or any other day that we don't get to a regular lesson.

That's about all the tweaking. They are very subtle. Nothing major but it helps keep our lesson under 40 minutes.

I still have a small issue with sight words but I'm not stressing over it. I do introduce them as sight words. For the word 'friend', I'm not isolating the 'ie' sound. The word 'into', I do show him that the 'o' is making it's 3rd sound "oo". I guess I'm doing a combination with them (it's hard to let go completely of OG method )

The spelling test in Saxon Phonics has at least two sight words. So, far I have been skipping them. I would like him to learn all the sounds, then next year or this year too, I can show him the phonogram sound for most of them.

I like the Rule Book that comes with Saxon Phonics. I have been learning a lot about the English language and how it works. Very neat!

I already purchased Saxon Phonics 2.

Saxon Phonics is not an Orten Gillingham method. Saxon Phonics, does introduce the schwa and introduces the long /E/ sound in the vowel 'y' and of course it uses sight words.


The children and I have been watching the Christy series for the past three weeks. A friend from church gave us the series. I thought that was very kind of her to think of us.
I guess the series didn't do to well at the time (1996), so the ending left us hanging. Thankfully she gave us the book as well, but I wasn't sure about the ending in the book. It looks as if Christy chose the doctor.
In another book called Julie, also written by Catherine Marshall; a book more about Catherine's life. In the book Julie, her father was a preacher, so this got me thinking more about who did Christy (Leonora Haseltine) choose???? From further research it looks as if she married the preacher.

Back to the movie. There was one episode called 'The Hostage'. Christy is kidnapped! Before we start the movie, all my boys have to go get their rifles and guns. They are silly like that. So here we are sitting watching Christy, snuggled altogether with five boys holding their rifles ready to shoot.

I have a picture of Lance and his rifle that I will come back and insert, but at the moment my camera and PC are not working like they should.

Here are those pictures of Lance, getting ready to rescue Christy! Lance, noticed me with the camera, as you can see with the first picture, he is looking at me.

Week 18

Not only were the kiddos having fun opening a package, so was I! Yesterday, the remaining books for Easy Classical K, Saxon Phonics 2 and MCP Plaid Phonics and Spelling Workout B came in.

Caleb and Brent, were actually excited to start their two new workbooks (Spelling Workout and MCP Phonics). They got started right away. Today, they took their first spelling test. We are going to write any 'troubled words' on a separate piece of paper for them to study but continue to the next lesson.

I still haven't gotten back into my blogging mode. It's so weird because I LOVE blogging and writing about our homescooling adventure. There is so much to write but I just don't have the desire like I did before. There is much I want to write about too.

Yesterday, when Lupe, got home from fixing my dad's house he gave me the usual hug and kiss. Some how Josh, got trapped and he couldn't pass us, unless he went right past us. Of course they don't like seeing any kissing, so Josh, tried to pass quickly by and on his way out he said, "Ewww, caught in the cross-fire."

I'm sorry, I don't feel like writing about our whole week, but we did get it done.

(I like this little log cabin)

Walkie Talkies

Caleb and Annette have been saving and researching Walkie Talkies. Once they narrowed it down to a few that they liked on Amazon, the asked their dad for his thoughts. It's so fun watching them do their research and read comments.

Here is what they settled on. They payed $50.00.
Midland GXT760VP4 36-Mile 42-Channel FRS/GMRS Two-Way Radio (Pair)

It arrived yesterday . There was excitement in their eyes as they opened the package and read the instructions. They got those Walkie Talkies going all by their self.

Easy Classical K

Today was Lance's first day with using Easy Classical K. I haven't purchased the schedule yet, because I want to try it with the four weeks sample pages first.

There are a few bumps that need to be smoothed out though.
  1. Lance, can't read very well yet, so how am I suppose to use Spelling Workout A with him. I did purchase it but not sure if he's ready for it. If not he can use it next year.
  2. I was able to purchase Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. I bought it used for $8.00. I haven't seen it yet, so not sure if we wil use it but I'm open.
  3. Instead of using Basic Phonics Skills B book, which is expensive $24.99, I also purchased a used copy of MCP Plaid Phonics for $6.00. I thought this would work better since it's made to go along side Spelling Workout A.
  4. I had my mind set on finishing with McRuffy Math K, but Easy Classical uses Saxon 1, since I own both, I'll go the Saxon route and hopefully add in McRuffy K as we go. Thankfully McRuffy K's lessons are not long.
But other than those few wrinkles I can see us using it (don't laugh).  We have all the other books and the ones that I didn't have I had enough in my paypal to purchase. Look how fun they look.

 A bloggy friend gave me her Literature Pockets.

So, today Lance, gave me his first narration.

They was waiting for their food to cool and they was taking a walk. Then the dad bear said, "Someone has been eating my food."
Mama Bear said," Someone has been eating my food."
Baby Bear said, "Someone has been eating my food."

She peeked in the house. She saw some food. She saw the chairs next to the fire and she sat on the bears chair. Mama's was too soft. Little Baby Bear's was just right. The baby chair made a loud crack and broke!
Then she went upstairs, she saw the beds. Papa's was too hard. Then she pulled the covers and went to mama's. It was too soft. Baby bed was too perfect.

The three bears went up in the rooms. Saw his bed. Papa said, "Someone was in my bed."
Mama said, "Someone was in my bed.
Baby Bear said, "she is still there."
She ran off down the stairs. She ran all the way back home. She never stopped.

I thought the did pretty good for the first time. I wasn't sure if I was suppose to correct him though, with using 'was' and the beginning his narration is out of sequence.

This week we have been working Catechism Questions.

Anyway, if anything (even if we don't use Easy Classical K) I'm having fun. Lance, and I have spent an hour a day on the couch going over his lessons (read aloud, Bible and Phonics).
I thought if we do use EC K, we can take a week and a half to complete a week. If he read better I think we would be able to accomplish a weeks worth in a week but since he's still learning it may take longer to finish.

A few more things about Easy Classical. I like that everything is scheduled for me. I think it will keep me more accountable with Lance. I like that I can check things off as we go (even if it does take longer than a week).

Having Fun

I'm having way too much fun collecting things for next year. I think it kinda helps me to keep going with finishing this year. Usually about this time of year, I get the homeschooling, winter blues, so researching and shopping in my opinion helps.
But, since I can't purchase everything, I just hang out at the website and just look.
Today, I did receive a few books I ordered for Ethan and Lance that we'll use next year.

Looking Up Verses

My Brent, is in his bed, comfy and cozy looking up verses in his King James Bible that his Sunday School teacher gave him last CHRISTmas. I love that he does things like this on his own. I don't have to pay him or nag. He does it because he wants to and loves his Lord.

Lance School

With my little Lance, I'm really going to concentrate on:
  1.  his letter & number writing. I want him to be ready for Easy Classical 1st Grade.
  2. learning all the letter sounds and blending (today we where trying to blend some words and oh my goodness, we have a long way to go)
Well, those are the two areas that he needs some major work. You should here him trying to read 'tap' he said, he doesn't like hard work.

That wasn't much to write but I felt like blogging it anyway. I also want to write how Saxon Phonics is working for us too, but I guess that'll be for another day.


Wikpidea:Toodles (not Tootles) is a term which may mean several things:

A shortened, more casual version of the French expression à tout à l'heure (Anglicized as "toodle-oo"), meaning goodbye

Day 88

I've been a bit of a grouch the past few days. I try so hard to be a good mother with a meek and quiet spirit. I really do. Sometimes I let things get to me, like the maze in this house. It's so small, everything is everywhere. I am really trying to be content in this season of life. It's not that I'm not thankful because I am. I have so much to be thankful for. Sorry, I hope it doesn't look as if I'm having a pity party. It's hard to be transparent without sound ungrateful for what the good Lord has given me.

Okay, now on to school. I'm happy to report that I did Phonics with Lance and read him a story.
The Little House and of course I cried when the little house was, once again going to the country.

I completed some reviewing of 'final, stable syllabuls' with Ethan. We reviewed [ple, [ble, [gle and so forth. Ethan read a short paragraph about King Max and his scribe. Ethan is doing so well with Saxon Phonics. We also did a Learning Language Arts Through Literature lesson. I still need to have a math session with him.

Caleb, completed two math lessons today, copied a verse from his penmanship program (A Reason for Handwriting)

Brent, weeeell, I still need to do some math with him.
This week Spelling Workout and MCP Plaid Phonics should be here and they will add that to their day. I can't wait! Although, I'm sure they can.

Josh and Annette, started their first Elemental Greek lesson. Annette, is really excited about this. Hopefully we continue. I would like them both to start Latin next year but we'll see because Bob Jones comes with a Spanish course.

Easy Classical

I know for sure that I would like to use Easy Classical for history and science next year. I decided to use their Animal, Human Body and Plants. This looks fun and it's for grades K-6.

History is what I'm having trouble with. I was thinking about starting at the beginning with the Old Testament and Ancient Egypt but then the American History looks good too! We are currently studying American History but it's slow going. I think to start over could be a good thing for us. I like Easy Classical's book selection. Plus I already own the writing program for Early Modern Age.


Yesterday, Joshua slept half the day. He hardly ever sleeps the day away, so I know he was fighting something. He reminds me of his father. It's rare to see my Sweets in bed for half a day. It only happens when he is plum tired or really sick.

Lance, is feeling better. Lance, may be a silly-willy but he's a smart cookie. He will tell me, "I'm sad, you hurt my feeling." or, "But, you made me sad." He will say this when he doesn't get his way.

Caleb, is still his cautious self. He notices everything. The other day I said, "We don't own the Edison company, turn the lights off." Dad, had mentioned something about the lights being on too. Since then all lights have been turning off. I leave my room to put something away only to return and my lights are off. Hee, hee.

I Made A Few purchases

Last night, when all the children went to bed I shopped. It was fun. I had some money in my paypal account. It took me a while because I thought long and hard about the purchases. I can't afford to make mistakes :)

At this time I'm thinking and planning for next year. For those of you who have read this blog from the start, might remember that last year at this time I was so, not sure of what to use for this coming school year. I went back-and-forth over and over again. This time I don't feel that way and am hoping/praying I made the right choices. I went to bed talking to God about what I purchased (hopefully he agrees with them).

It was hard to take the plunge and buy, because once I pay, my money is gone. I know I  need the items but still. I also talked to my Sweets before I went shopping. Let him know my plans and such. When I talk things over and let him know what's going on I feel better, I guess part of it is having his blessing.

It took forever because I was searching for the best prices. I went over and over about buying used, but didn't go that route. More than a few times I've been disappointed. Not saying that I don't ever purchase used because I do, but when I do I have to feel 100% comfortable. One item had too many pieces and the other had a cd. I think part of me just wanted new.

So, what did I order. It really wasn't much but it took forever. I went to bed past 2:00 a.m.

The best price I could find for Shurley English was at http://www.swhomeschool.com/. I purchased, Shurley English 1 and Shurley English 3 and 1 practice book for 3rd. (still need another 3rd grade Practice Book for both grades and Workbook for 3rd). If you order  $100.00 you get free shipping. My order was $105.00, so I just made it. I have purchased from this company once before.
It took me a good hour to hit the submit button because I'm scared of Shurley English. From what I read on one site; it's teacher intensive. I have also read that once you get the hang of it it's not so bad. This is why I'm ordering early, so I can read, read and read. Finally I just took the plunge and hit that 'submit' button. My stomach doesn't hurt, so maybe it's the right choice.

Second purchase was Saxon Phonics 2. I wasn't sure that I wanted to continue with this because of the time it involves BUT, it is working so well for Ethan. His reading is taking off. He can read words like struggled, friend, ticket, tooth, wood and so forth. It feels so good. I really feel with my Caleb and Brent, I could have done better, anyway, so I searched and searched. I was going to purchase it from CBD because it's on sale for $94.00 (normal price $145.00) but with shipping it came out to 103.37. I tried finding a coupon code but you all know how it goes with those shipping codes. They are usually used up! I needed to save that $9.43 because I was using my paypal, my money that I made from selling a few things. The search was on. I did find a used one at an online consignment store for a total of $93.00 but they didn't take paypal. I did a bing search and up came Rainbow Resource. I checked and guess what? The price (insert drum roll here) $86.95 with shipping it came out to $96.00.

My last purchase was from Easy Classical. I bought in digital format the 1st grade schedule for Ethan and Lance.
If we continue with Easy Classical with Ethan, my plan is to purchase the 2nd grade the year after but bump him up with Shurley to the 3rd level but that's for another time.

Week 17

Week 17 completed. January 17th-21st

Ethan, still waking up. He's drinking some hot chocolate.
Working hard. He's doing well with Saxon Phonics.
Annette, working on Learning Language Arts Through Literature.
We both like this program. If we were not switching to all Bob Jones next year, she'd use LLATL again.
Annette's work from Bob Jones Heritage Studies 5.
Annette's spelling from Megawords 3.
Next year she'll use Bob Jones for spelling.

I can't believe we are half way through the school year. It seems like yesterday that we just started. In some areas, I would like to be further along but all-in-all, I think we are doing a-okay ;)

Have a Blessed weekend.

Day 86

I love blogging but can't seem to get back to writing like I use too. So, many things on my mind and plate. I thought I'd blog today, even if I don't really feel like it. The best way to get back to it, is to start.

Today I:
  1. Had a Saxon Math session with Brent.
  2. Saxon Phonics lesson 57 with Ethan. 
  3. McRuffy math with Ethan
  4. Bob Jones Math with Caleb
  5. Penmanship with Lance
Doesn't look like much today but it had me tuckered. I didn't put all the potty breaks, kiddos interrupting and so forth. Believe me, there were a lot of fires to put out today. I don't know what it is but some days the children (usually Lance) act up.

It was another cold day. I had the window opened to let in some fresh air. It was 29 degrees but sometimes I just need some air. When I first opened the window, I was talking to Josh, and we laughed because you could see my breath as I talked.
 Ethan, working on a McRuffy math lesson.
He had to fill the shape with pattern block three different ways and record what he used.

 This was his last one. I told him I wanted a picture for my blog and of course he smiled and said, "A smile like the one I made."
 Can you see the smile in his design?

His Bob Jones Penmanship and a Saxon Phonics 1 lesson. Today he spelled words like puddle, fable and ample. I'm really pleased with Saxon Phonics. His reading is coming along very well.
Brent, learning about volume in math today.

Lance, not being his happy self.

Lance, getting over a cold and I think Joshua, is getting sick. He said his throat hurt earlier today. Annette and Josh, both finished all their school work.

Changing Things Up (at school)

I've been changing things up here at Homeschooling6. I'll start with Caleb and Brent. I started them with Phonics Road 2 this year but we are changing it. I really dislike letting go of PR, but I was not being consistent. I was explaining to a friend that my brain works weird. If it's not scheduled out like Lesson 1, Lesson 2 or Day 1, Day 2 etc. for some reason it's hard for me to get it done with my kids.
Secondly, as much as I believe in Mrs. Beers program I have six children ages 6-12 and many of them still need me to teach them math and phonics (the two main 3R's). It takes time. To teach math alone takes over 2 hours of my time.
Thirdly, because I'm so inconsistent with Phonics Road, I believe I'm hindering their advancement. They know all the phonograms but still are not taking off with their reading. I think part of it is they are not reading enough.
I chose to switch them to something that they can do more on their own and don't have to wait for me.
For spelling they both will use Spelling Workout B. To keep refreshed with their phonics (until they become more interested in reading) they will use MPC Plaid Phonics. I was going to add Shurley Grammar in as well, but thought to wait until the fall; when it will be scheduled in with Easy Classical.
I believe this will be a good change. The boys really do need to move on. All that they have been doing is math these days. Switching wasn't really in the budget but some Christmas money from my Grandma helped out.

Changes for Josh; Saxon Phonics Intervention for spelling was not a good fit for Josh. He himself said it was too confusing. It wasn't the program but the way Joshua's cute brain works. Too many rules=too much confusion. I strongly believe that not every child needs to learn so many rules and phonograms but I really thought it would be a good thing for Josh, but come to find out it's not. I wanted to cover two bases with using Saxon Phonics Intervention. I wanted to make sure he new all the phonics rules to ensure that he can continue to read bigger and harder rules as he progressing. I don't want him to be at a 7th grade level forever. This is why I wanted to make sure the phonics portion was covered.
He's older and my prayer is that learning how to spell better and learn Latin will help him progress in reading. He is not behind but I just want to make sure he continues to move forward.
I am going to try A.C.E. Word Builders. He'll start with Pace 1025 and go from there. Next year he will start his Latin studies and continue with Greek. Hopefully this combination will keep him learning.

Changes with Annette, just a few miner ones. Since, Josh is not using Saxon Phonics Intervention, I had her stop too. She was just along for the ride. She is continuing with Megawords. Next year she will use Bob Jones Spelling 6.

I'm happy to report that Ethan's studies have stayed the same. We are chugging alond. Although, our Learning Language Arts Through Literature is slow coming. I'm happy if we get in phonics and math.

Lance, is slowly getting there. I might start him on Reading Made Easy. I was able to trade for this (not that I need anymore phonics programs) and continue with McRuffy Phonics.

Still Thinking About Bob Jones

I still have my head in a cloud with my Bob Jones choice for Josh and Annette. There are a few cons though.
  1. I can't order early to drool over everything because one is leasing them for 13 months
  2. Many of the courses are using their older editions. Most 2nd edition. I don't like that because eventually they will update the dvds too and I'm left with a whole lotta 2nd editions.
The 2nd edition thing is really bothering me. With Josh, almost with the exception of Bible and Science are the older versions. I like new. Plus by the time Annette, uses some I'll have to repurchase a whole complete package because by then the dvds will be updated.

Maybe if I don't have the kiddos write in any of the books or test, I can resell them for a little bit of money to pay for the next year. For instance with Bob Jones Math 7 (which isn't current if using the dvd) if I keep it all looking nice maybe I can sell if for $40.00 if I have all the test unused and teacher packet to go along with it.

Other then the two downfalls, I'm happy!

Week 16/Day 81

Week 16. January 10th-14th, 2011

This week it's been cold. Temperatures between 30-40 degrees. Ethan, has been finding icicles left from the dripping snow. I forget to mention but last week it snowed.
Because it's been cold, the younger children haven't done as much school as I would have liked. I did make sure that Caleb, Brent and Ethan, did math everyday. Josh and Annette, have been completing all their studies. It's mainly Lance, that hasn't had much.

I do have an announcement to make.
Lance, read his first words this week. He sounded them out all by himself.
The words were cat, can, at, and an. Yay, Lance.

Caleb and Brent made a ship out of cardboard boxes.
 A new stove! One of our apartments that we are getting ready to rent, needs a stove, so Lupe, took ours to the apartment. At Lowe's he found one on sale to replace the one he took. I'm so happy with our new stove. Look at all the space to cook!
 Ethan, being Ethan.
 Lance, working on McRuffy Phonics.
 Don't you just love homeschooling.
 It was so quiet one day. I went searching for the children and found them schooling together in my bed. I forgot what they were playing, but I'm sure it has to do with the Arm or the wilderness (survival).
 Another, fort or ship.
 My school space during the day. By night it's a dinner table.

Brent was telling me how the neighborhood kids didn't like to use a stick when they played war and such. Brent, said, "A stick can be many things. A gun, sword, paddle, cane..." he went on to name more but I can't remember. I thought it was very imaginative of him. My kids love playing with sticks. As mentioned, some days they are rifles another day it may be a sword or a pole to hold up a blanket (tent). I love that my children can make a plain old stick into something so fun.