Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Getting together the school "year"

Even though we school year-round, things always feel like they are "starting" in the fall. It's probably the fact that my shopping cart gets filled with wonderful school supplies. I do love some school supplies!

In truth about half of our subjects begin in the fall, the other half in the spring. In some ways, that makes things a little bit harder because I'm always adding in new curriculum and needing to change and tweak things. In other ways, it is easier because I don't have to prepare so much all at one time.

My printer and copier are very busy going through reams of paper as I print out and prepare for the coming quarter. I used to love being the teacher's helper, and I still enjoy doing my own preparing. It allows me to get  to know the curriculum, and gives me time for things to settle in my mind how everything is going to work together. I do admit that I wish I could clone myself for a few days to get all caught up though!!

This year I am teaching 8th, 7th, 5th, and 2nd grades. From Algebra to phonics. I'm thankful that I am a multi-tasker through and through. That helps a lot getting through so many different kinds of tasks every day.

Every year I make mental notes on what each student needs to accomplish. This year I am writing it down and posting it on my cork board as goals to make sure that we are keeping on track. I've been spending a lot of time making goals and really thinking about what the most important things to accomplish are.  This is the last year that the oldest has before high school and I want to make sure that I have met goals and filled in holes.

We took 2 weeks off of science to celebrate our accomplishment of finishing BJU's Life Science. One week just to relax, and the other to do a unit of Forensic Science, which they really enjoyed.

 I agonized over which middle school science to use, but I really feel like I made a great choice. The courses are very challenging, and have really stretched both of them. They have learned so much- not just about life science, but also about how to read a textbook, how to pick apart the most important parts of the text, outline it, and use those notes effectively for a test. Such valuable skills for them to have. Even with all of that workload, they've still managed to develop and maintain a love of learning science.

Showing Daddy what they've learned:

Looking at blood:
These pictures were the very last lab that we did (and we did all of them): dissecting a heart. We had a sheep's heart, but it just so happened that we slaughtered a beef. Knowing our experiment was coming up in a few days, we kept the heart and also used it. It was great having this giant model to use!

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