Category: Our Classroom

Enjoying the Weather!

So far this week we have enjoyed some beautiful weather.  This led to the boys and I spending a lot of time schooling on the front porch.  Have I mentioned how much we enjoy our front porch.

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Have you enjoyed schooling outdoors?

{Our Homeschool Classrooms} : 2014 – 2015

Our homeschool room has changed over the years.  Back in 2011, we started with a small table, a few supplies and lots of cozy sitting areas.  Then not even a month later I changed our homeschool area again.  Oh, and I changed it one more time two months later.  In 2012, I not only updated our school room again but I also made our homeschool mobile by having our classroom fit in a bag.  Last year as Thing 2 joined our school on a more routine bases, I moved from the bag to using notebooks.

As you can see as our homeschool has changed so has where we homeschool.  Well, this year we are in a new house with a lot more room and a whole new set up.

Like our school room in a bag and notebooks, I still like to keep our homeschool easily mobile.  We have moved from notebooks to large accordion files for each boy.  The boys are able to easily carry these and I can put almost all of the teachers manuals and such in each kiddos file.  For those things that don’t fit, I have a bag that I can easily put them in to take them with us.

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Since the main pieces of our homeschool is mobile, we like to spread out when we work.

Each boy has a desk in our playroom.

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There is also a bookshelf with reference materials and a place for them to store their accordion files.

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Next to my desk, which also holds the boys’ laptop, is the printer as well as paper, coloring books. extra supplies and the printer.

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Our playroom/class room also has a huge closet, which I have two bookshelves that hold past curriculum and manipulatives.

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They also have a desk of their own in their bedrooms.

Thing 1’s

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Thing 2’s

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Thing 3’s

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Thing 1 and Thing 2 also sit in their window seats to do some of their work.

Thing 1’s :And yes, he does sit on the swing to do school too.

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Thing 2’s

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I have also spent a some time creating a science and art lab in our basement.  I decided that the basement, which has a full kitchen  was the best place to let the kids create and to do messy science and art projects.  So using several shelves that were left in our barn by the previous owner, the boys now have easy access to all of their art and science supplies.

Painting shirts and science googles

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Science supplies, art supplies and paint supplies, from left to right.

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Recyclable materials corner.  Clean stuff that can be used to create with.

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Most of the room.

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When the weather is nice we also have come to do a large amount of school on our front porch.

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Where do you do your school?

 

 

This is What Our Homeschool Looks Like

Everyone’s homeschool looks different at different times. Some people have “school” at home, where they have a room dedicated to school.  Everyone has their own desks and that is where they do all their work.  Others gather around the kitchen table to work. Still others do school on the couch.

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This week Daddy Cameron was home with us and the weather was amazing!  We spent almost every day outside and we did most of our school while sitting on the front porch.  It was awesome.  We soaked up some sun, listened to birds and got our learn on!

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What does your homeschool look like during the spring?

{Our Schoolroom} in a Bag

This year we have been trying something a little different with our school room.  For the past year, we have mainly conducted school in our “schoolroom” aka our formal dining room.  I spent a lot of time getting this room set up.

We have a large table for everyone to sit around.

In this picture it is covered for a home learners co op class.

I have two large bookcases.

One bookcase holds all our craft supplies (paint, paper, play dough, pipecleaners, paper plates, popsicle sticks, etc.)

The other holds the more “school” supplies like math manipulatives, magnifying glasses, science supplies, reference books, small whiteboards, calendar pieces, etc.

Although this room gets used daily for the boys craft adventures, it is no longer our primary school room.  Instead, we have had school…

in Thing 1’s room,

in the living room,

in my bedroom,

outside,

in the breakfast nook,

in the playroom.

and, of course in the classroom.

We have moved away from workboxes, which tie us to one room and I have created a classroom all in one bag.  One reason I am able to do this so easily is because I do not use the teacher’s manuals for any subject on a daily basis, so I don’t have to carry them around with me.  Instead, like I shared in my lesson plan post, each boy has a notebook, that contains their lesson plans, worksheets, and books they may need, for the next 4 weeks, as well as crayons, paper, pencil, whiteboard, and markers. Thus, I only have to pull out their notebook and we can start.  For those weeks when we made need some special supplies, like sugar cubes to make a replica of the Great Wall of China, I just throw them in a zipoc bag and put them in the bag.  (On a side note, we don’t do a lot of worksheets, I like to try to conserve paper, so we use our dry erase boards a lot, but the boys love them.  I usually take pictures of their work so that I have a copy of the work without all the extra paper.)

Besides the boys notebooks, the inside of the bag also contains a couple of clipboards and any books that don’t fit inside the boys notebooks.

In the outside pockets of the bag I have added extra supplies like, pencils, pens, dry erase markers, dry erase eraser, scissors, glue, stapler, rocks (math manipulatives), letter tiles, measuring tape, calculator (for me), and anything else we might need.

Thing 1, Thing 2 and I have really enjoyed being able to do school where ever we want each day.  I am hoping that as it cools down some, we will be able to go outside to do school more and all I have to do is pick up the bag and go.

Don’t worry, all those manipulatives on the bookshelfs, we use them regularily when we are at home, but I always have the bare essentials in my bag.

What does your schoolroom look like?

Our Schoolroom Update

Surprise, surprise, I rearranged our schoolroom again.  However, it was for a really good reason this time.  Our previous table was just not working for us anymore.  It was a 2ft. by 4ft table, which is why it was moved from the table we actually ate at to our school table.  It was just too small.  It worked great for two boys, but Thing 3 had decided that he is ready to join the fun, so we needed more space. 

So as I was talking to my husband last Monday I was angling for a new table for or schoolroom, and then the house was stuck by lightning, ending our conversation.  However, this weekend I was able to work towards getting the new table.  Well it is actually two tables from IKEA put together.  Also, while I was at IKEA, I picked up new chairs to go with our new table.  

However, because the table was over double the size of our last table, I had to rearrange our schoolroom to make it all work and here is the finished product.

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Workboxes and Kids Work

Tables

Bookshelf

Desk Area

reading nook

We are loving the new tables.  We have spent more time in our schoolroom than anywhere else in the house this week!

Lions : Day 1

We started our L is for Lion Theme this morning.  The boys were ready to go right after breakfast.  While I was cleaning the kitchen, I found Thing 1 and Thing 2 in our classroom reading the books about lions that I displayed on top of the cubby shelf that houses Thing 3 distractions.

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Once I finished cleaning the kitchen, I headed to the classroom so that we could do our morning time and read a couple of the lion books.  All three boys enjoyed the books about lions.  It amazes me how much Thing 1 has remembered from reading the book only once this morning. 

Next up was our lion craft.  Basically we used a paper plate and rotinini noodles to make a lion face.  Thing 1 did an awesome job on his.  Thing 2 just wanted to play in the glue.  Thing 3 wanted to get in on the action too, so I gave him a few of the noodles to explore while I helped the boys. 

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We finished up our “school” later in the afternoon.  I started with Thing 2, who really got into the feeding the lion pre writing activity that I had made.  I am so glad that I had put it in a sheet protector, because he did it at least 4 times. 

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We then worked with the pattern blocks.  The first design was the letter L.  Once we talked about what we were going to do, he took off and completed the L.  The next picture was a lion.  This definitely was a much more complicated picture.  However, he figured it quickly.  He was so happy each time he would figure out where a shape went.  This is how he finished his day. 

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Next up it was Thing 1’s turn.  He reviewed the numbers 1-10, by lacing beads onto a pipe cleaner with a number taped to it.  I think he liked it at first, but then he grew a little tired of it. 

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Then we worked on his reading.  We are covering the sight words: my, in, big, jump, down.  These are the sight words in the Ready to Read : Unit 3.  We are also working on the –at family words.  We covered all of these words using the sight word train that I had made especially for him.  The caterpillar that came with the Ready to Read Units, just wasn’t working for him.  So I made him a train, one of the advantages of home school. 

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We were soon finished with all I had planned for the day, however, Thing 1 wasn’t done.  So I looking into tomorrow’s folder and let him pick out what he wanted to do.  He chose the math activity.  In this activity he rolls two dice and adds the numbers.  I even let him choose which dice he used.  He chose the two 12 sided dice.  Figures. 

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To end the day, the boys and I played with something else that Starts with the letter L, Lincoln Logs. 

Learning with the Cameron Clan!

Handprint Keepsake

Last week, as I was going through some of the home school blogs I read, I came across this cute keepsake idea at Live, Learn and Love Together.  I thought it would be perfect in our “class room.”

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The only supplies were, card stock, glue and a picture frame.  Easy Peasy!

Our Classroom, Again

Anyone who knows me, knows that I like to rearrange room/stuff in our house all the time.  Every week when my husband gets home from out of town, he goes on a hunt to find what all I have changed over the course of the week.  Well, this week I rearranged our “classroom.” 

Yes, I know that last Tuesday I posted pictures of our classroom.  However, by Thursday, I had changed it and I spent some time this weekend tweaking it.  I am not pretty happy with our “new room.”

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Above is the new reading area, that now includes our “morning board,” cork boards to hang the boys work and one of our white boards with our theme for the week, Spanish word of the week, each boys objectives for the week, and our field trips. 

The popasuan chair was in our bedroom, and the boys loved it, so I decided to move it into the classroom.  I am hoping that at times when I am working with one kiddo the other could sit in this chair and work on something that I don’t have to help them with or read a book.  All the library books and the ones that go along with our weekly theme are still in the little box between the two chairs. 

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I made the three hanging cork boards out of the cork board squares, which I hot glued to some foam board.  I then hot glued some cute ribbon to the top and hung them from push pins.  I love the way they turned out and it will be a great place to hang all of the boys work for the week so that they can show their daddy when he gets home on Fridays.  I am also thinking I might take a picture of it every week as a way to show/document the things they have done.

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Our “morning board” is where I put our calendar, the pledges, the yesterday, today and tomorrow information, our address and phone number, what’s the weather like?, and what season is it?  I found most of the pieces from the blog Confessions of a Homeschooler.  This is where we start each day.

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As you may have noticed, the wall with the cork boards was where our table use to reside.  However, the lighting in the “classroom”/dining room is not the best, so I decided to move the table to infront of the window.  There is much better light and it is natural light.  It is also much closer to our desktop computer, so it makes are great space for me to work on all my “stuff.” It also allows me to help one boy while watching the other one if they were using the computer.  Lastly, the view is so much better and it has already sparked some great conversation as we look out to our front yard. 

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Welcome to our “new” classroom.  Hopefully it will stay like this for a while.

 

 

 

 

Our “Classroom”

Since the boys thought that waking up at 5:30am was a good thing, we had a rough morning, since they were all a little tired.  So, we didn’t getting any formal schooling done today.  Although, Thing 1 and Thing 2 did work on fine motor skills, prewriting, and cutting skills, it just didn’t go along with our official theme of the week.  So instead of a boring post about nothing, I thought I would share with you our “classroom.” 

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Below is the bookshelf that holds a portion of our “stuff.”  On top of the bookshelf are three buckets.  The yellow and green contain our science stuff and the blue one hold my laminator.  The top shelf holds all of “mommies supplies” and the things that I do not want the boys to have free access to.  The second shelf down holds my binders in which I store all of the ideas and pages that we have used with our different themes in the past.  The yellow, green, and blue notebooks are going to be portfolios for the boys work this year.  Following that shelf is the a shelf that holds our cd player and the paper that the boys always have access to. Second from the bottom is the workbooks (that we rarely use) and our math manipulatives.  The bottom shelf holds some fun games, random craft supplies and a few more workbooks.  I also have a whole closet up in our playroom that houses the rest of our craft supplies.

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Next is our table which holds, two spinning towers that contain crayons, markers, pencils, glue, scissors and a pen for each boy to use.  This way they both have their own supplies, especially since Thing 2 doesn’t take as good of care of his things as Thing 1 does.  I also have a little basket that the boys use to put their trash in.  {Thank you Target dollar section.}  In the middle is the folders that I uses to put our activities in each school day.  I also have a copy of my lesson plan in the middle for quick reference as I am working with each boy. 

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This is our calendar/storage area.  I put our calendar on the china cabinet so that we can see it every day.  To the side I store our two white boards, which we use in different places all the time, and our morning board which we use every morning. 

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This is a little reading area I have created for the boys.  They each have a rocking chair and in the middle is a little table/storage box, where I house our library books for the week.  This allows Thing 1 and Thing 2 to get to the books and keeps Thing 3 out.  It also has allowed me to keep track of most of the library books a little easier.

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This is our desktop computer desk, which I use part of the time and it is the computer the the boys can use when they are playing games on the computer. 

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That is about it, this is our official “classroom,” but honestly, we do stuff all over our house. 

Just a note, a lot of the yellow, green and blue storage/organizational stuff was bought at Target in the dollar bins.  I love their back to school organizational stuff.