Aug 30, 2012

One Moment

Golden Hills.

Shortly after we moved to the bay area our green surrounding hills turned gold with the summer.  
Our weekend drives through these golden rolling hills are often full of surprises.  
Ranches, small farms, eucalyptus groves, creeks, and vineyards all sharing a secret.  
Their secret is that tucked away in their quite spaces you forget that less than 20 miles (in any direction) thrives a major metropolis.  
Here, away from the cities is another place.  
A forgotten place.  
A place where weekend country drives are still possible through golden hills.

I wish that I could also share the forests, and the creeks, but they don't photograph as well from my passenger window.  So, hills it is. 

(this area is Alhambra Valley between Berkley and Walnut Creek)

Aug 29, 2012

School time with Sol

As I look back through the (over eleven hundred) pictures that I took in August, I noticed what an important presence Sol has in our school days.  He's here with us, working in his own way beside us.   Everyday he finds something to work on.

Nature Journal
Math tiles, and cars
Salt Dough

Finding the balance of two in school, with one toddler who only wants each of our undivided attention as close to always as possible, it can feel a little overwhelming at times.  But looking through these photos I'm reassured.  We are making it work.  With love, and laughter, together. 

Aug 28, 2012

Library Love

It hasn't been easy to leave behind the Phoenix Public Library system.  It's taken a few weeks but I'm learning to accept the changes, and find my library love again.

Of course, it helps that my library has amazing community programs, a beautiful location, and art art art everywhere!

Aug 27, 2012

Gratitude Monday

Today I'm so very grateful for two children who taught each other how to ride their bikes with out training wheels this weekend. 

Ice cream, and frozen yogurt

Accidental trips to a farmer's market

Beautiful drives though the forest, hills, and country all a few miles from our own front door

A baby who makes up his own songs, and really bad knock knock jokes


Singing WAY too loud. 


A partner who takes our babies on lunch dates.

Aug 26, 2012

Week In Homeschool #3

The theme of the week :
~We read:
How Now, Brown Cow?  A book of cow poems with lively illustrations.  Some of these my children thought were knee slapping hilarious.
It's Milking Time  A story of a girl and her father as they set about with the twice daily task of miking.  My children seemed to like this book more than I did,
Farm!   This book has been in our house for almost 8 years.  It's illustrations are the real treat.  On each page you read a riddle to discover what is the hidden image. The picture changes into the solution as you flip the flap.  (that doesn't make any sense does it?)
Butter a nonfiction look at the history of butter.  The book talks about the different ways that butter is made, flavored, and eaten all over the world.
I just happen to have cow hide on hand.

Our Letter of the week:
~Snack:we made Butter and Biscuits, and had Blueberry muffins 
~Flower Fairy Poem: Song of the Bugle Fairy
~Book : Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

 Our Poem of the Month:
    Little Boy Blue.  Here they are singing the poem to this tune.  It's pretty silly.

In Art:
We made cow art.  We used black construction paper and chalk to create cow print, then we flipped the page over to draw and cut out our cow shapes.  The next day we painted a water color scene to glue our cows on to.


Art Study:
we examined an illustration depicting a game of polo with a Persian Prince  Siavush from The Book Of Kings.

Cyrus:  "There is a prince about to hit the ball that they are playing with and the prince is on his horse.  And what they use to hit the ball with is a type of stick.  I like it, that there are a lot of horses."

Ava:  "I like the gold swirls in the sky.  They are really pretty.  And I like the details in the horses and the clothes.  And I like the tree back there."

In History:
This week we talked about how ancient Egyptians and Sumerians created hieroglyphs, cuneiform, and later papyrus.  It's very fortunate that we have a (modern) piece of papyrus in our continent boxes to use as a visual aid.
We had some fun using the provided dictionary to make our own messages with crayons and pencils.  When Ava became frustrated with the quality of her hieroglyphs  I searched online for a message generator  and found this site.  From there we made these secret messages:


In Science:
we learned about sound vibration, tone, and pitch.  We used the rubber bands, and the silver bowls to be able to see and feel sound vibrations.  The marbles were used to demonstrate how sound travels.  I also used DK Guide to the Human Body to show pictures of our vocal cords, and ear drums.

In Math:
*add four digit numbers on paper
*arrange addends into columns
*adding large numbers (adding the same nine digit number 10 times.  Ava loved finding sums with reoccurring patterns, and the 'surprise' answer at the end)

*worked with the concept of zero as nothing
*learn to write the number 3, and 2
*learn the meaning of row and column
*practice recognizing quantities on the dot cards
*experience ten as a unit
*work with equilateral triangles

In Music:
This week we chose Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky.  Ava thought that one of the pieces from last weeks composer reminded her of Swan Lake, so we though we'd explore more of Tchaikovsky's other works.  We listened to Symphony no 6, violin concerto in D major, piano concerto no 1, 1812 overture, the Nutcracker Suite, and of course,  Swan Lake.
 composer cards, (Montessori Materials)

In Our Nature Journals:

In Peace
We read through A grateful Heart looking for new blessings to add to our meal time blessings basket.  I anticipate this to be a project with several steps.

Field Trip:  
This week I thought about all the fun and educational farm locations that we could go to.  And then I decided on frozen yogurt!  mmmmm. 

This week was pretty fantastic.  Watching Ava add 9 digit numbers was absolutely amazing.  At the beginning of the week she wouldn't have thought it would be possible.  It's not just the skill, it's the confidence that I love. 

Aug 23, 2012

Muir Beach Revisited

It was going to be hot at home.  So.  We left home.  We went to watch the sun move lower in the horizon, and rest, and eat, and play, together.


What a great day.

About Me

My photo
East Bay, California, United States
I am a thirty something mother of three. Hoping to raise my little ones to love the the slower things in life.