Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Greek Myths CD

I was so lucky this week to receive a new CD that tells the stories of some of the Greek myths through story and song. It happened to be a bit of a harder day for me, and I was the only one in the kitchen making dinner which actually doesn't happen that often, when the cd came so I went ahead and put it in the CD player. I LOVED it! It made me so happy. I really like Helen Slater's approach to the myths, in the beginning she talks about why the Greeks had these myths and how the myths helped them to understand the world around them and explain so many things. Her explanation is set to happy, uplifting music, and then after each story or part of a story she sings a song to go along with it and it was just so refreshing and fun. My spirits were instantly lifted, and it makes me happy just thinking about the songs now. My husband and kids all wanted to know what it was and we all enjoyed it and have listened to it a few times. I have a greater appreciation for the Greek myths now and I feel like I understand them a little better because of the CD. One of the songs is called "It's Never Nice to be Mean", and it goes along with the story of Echo and Narcissus when Narcissus was so mean to Echo and then Nemesis sings this song to Narcissus. One of the most valuable things I think I can teach my children is to always be kind, and apparently the Greeks also thought that was a good lesson to learn, but I didn't really realize that lesson was there in the myths until this CD. So I even incorporated this particular story and song into our family home evening lesson this week which was on kindness. It's nice to have different ways to share the stories, I am going to have to buy another D'Laires Greek myths book for the kids and brush up on it ( our first book was very loved and pretty much in pieces now). Very fun and very fun to be learning Greek along with it, really a fresh approach to the old myths. A big thumbs up from me! Here is the website if you'd like more info!: http://helenslater.com/moag/

Monday, November 11, 2013

Events Website -- happen.io

So this post is just to let you know that there is a great brand new website out there where you can post your own events to the public or make them private, you can even make your own group for whoever you want to join, it's easy to communicate through the comments and it's easy to use and search. It is brand new, been out about a week, so most of the public events so far are in Utah, so definitely if you are in Utah, go check it out! Http://happen.io

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Happenings-- #4 goes to school and other stuff

#4 was disappointed when his older siblings went to public school last year, at the girls' concerts as we were walking out of the building he said how he wanted to go to school. We told him he would get a chance. Then the following Friday he ran over to the park near our house because he saw some friends there, but they all left when he got there and never said hi. He told me he thought it was because he wears glasses. I assured him it wasn't. But he told me how much he wishes he had friends. Later when I talked to my husband about it, he said, well, let's send him to school. I of course don't like sending my babies off not to mention getting up super early every day, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized it probably is the best thing for him. He is super smart although short for his age. His eyes are working pretty much normally now and his reading is consequentially better because of it too. He is ahead in all his school work and very conscientious about everything, so it did seem that it is time to let him grow socially and have fun at school. Our school and the teachers have been outstanding, so on Monday I got all the paperwork ready, and on Tuesday, he went to school for the first time. So far he is loving it. There were four boys in his class that he already knew and his teacher seems really nice. The only problem he had is that he was supposed to ride home on the train bus, but he forgot his lunch bag and thus got separated from his classmates after school and could not find a bus that looked anything like a train. Fortunately he had his cell phone and called home, but his sister answered and by the time I got there he had started walking home. But all's well that ends well. I do miss him, but he doesn't miss me and I am proud of him. It is also giving me some extra time with his older brother who got a little behind academically when he went to school last year and was getting frustrated that his younger brother could memorize faster and easier and may soon overtake him in Greek. So that has been nice. He doesn't have anyone to compare himself to anymore and he can feel good about learning and persevering which is what I try to emphasize. That boy is incredibly stubborn, but he will do just about anything to play screens, so it ends up working out fine. I also set the timer for him and tell him I need his undivided focused attention for the set number of minutes and he actually gets through his work pretty well that way with the promise of it only lasting a set time with an instant reward when he's done. It's also nice to have one less student to worry about, although #4 was pretty self motivated and easy, every little break helps. I bought the whole collection of Roald Dahl books at Costco the other day. All my readers love them and my new reader even read his first chapter book by himself that way! He is reading everything now it's great. My girls are enjoying part time school, but have expressed the desire to take more classes. I looked at the classes to see if it would be worthwhile for them to at least stay one whole day instead of one half day, but they just didn't appeal to me. Finally yesterday for the first time this year, they both got their school work done early and spent some time working on other projects. This whole year, they have just kind of lazed around and barely get their stuff done. The oldest spent a bunch of time adding music and special effects I to a movie the kids made last year. That's what I hoped my homeschooled kids would do eventually, I swear they don't appreciate the freedom they have, but maybe just maybe they are finally going to take advantage of it. It does help that we are more settled with the baby turning into a boy-- sad, but good. The twins are really into coloring. I bought a subscription to www.education.com, they sent me a discount email and I signed up. I'm so glad I did. I love their coloring pages and their online workbooks. I am also using their state maps for geography. It helps that I am feeling better, I was sick last week and we didn't do hardly anything beyond the basics. I really love homeschooling even though it is dang hard sometimes, days and weeks like we've had this week make it all worth it. I hope it continues this week!