Sunday, February 7, 2010

Weekly Wonders #1 - 7th February 2010

Welcome to the first instalment of "Weekly Wonders". Every week is full of various wonders of one kind or another for us, as I am sure it is for you too.

I am going to try and do a weekly wrap up of sorts for all 3 kiddos in the one post. So yes it will be a huge post but I will break it down into Tot School, the Preschool Corner, followed by Grade School stuff for B.

It definitely has been an effort to compile this but I really want to try and start breaking things down and writing things down more each week so fingers crossed for me here. Not only does it show what the kids have been doing and what they learn without me even intervening at times, but it also shows the weaknesses, the areas we need to cover more, this will be come very obvious over the next few weeks, so my hope is to use it in a positive way to bring more into our schooling weeks.

Circle Time

I've been wanting to start circle time/morning meetings for a while now. Finally we are under way with this, albeit only in a small way. We'll grow our circle time over the coming weeks. I did an initial post about circle time here >>>

Tot School

I am linking up to Tot School for C, he is currently 18 months old. It seems like forever since we have done a Tot School post.

Physical Activity

C had the opportunity for lots of swimming practice due to us going away for the weekend. He is just about swimming between two adults (a couple of metres) just needs to remember to always kick his little legs. But considering he has had no formal swimming lessons (just lots of practice in various pools) he is doing really well and absolutely loves the water. Sorry no photo's I forgot to take my camera.

Language Arts

Lots of books, stories and songs. His favourite of the week is Toot Toot Beep Beep by Emma Garcia.

I purchased this book a little while ago and it got lost amongst a pile of stuff and totally forgotten, until I found it this week that was! C loves it, lots of simple repetitive language and noises from all sorts of things that move (what boy wouldn't love this book). The illustrations are adorable as well, they appear to be painted by children. I'd really like for us to have a go at doing some of our own Toot Toot Beep Beep type illustrations.

We've thoroughly enjoyed this book and I have decided to link it up to What My Child Is Reading over at Learning With Mouse.

Life Skills

C had a morning away from us during our first day back with our home school network classes program. Although he is never a problem I wanted to be able to have my full attention available for K this term to ensure that she was settling into her classes well. This is an 8 week term and C will spend a fun few hours with his Nan during that time slot. He was a little apprehensive when we were leaving this morning but by the time we had all gotten into the car he was happily waving goodbye. We’ll reassess the situation for next term.

We baked a batch of Chocolate Brownies during the week. This was the first time C has been involved with the whole cooking process, he was so keen to get in and give things a stir, but licking the spoon at the end was definitely the most enjoyable part of the process.


C had his first shaving cream experience this week. I covered the table with just plain shaving cream, as it was his first introduction I wanted to keep it simple. He was a little unsure at first and just poked and touched it with only a couple of fingers, but once he saw his brother and sister jump right on he was ready to go. It only took a few minutes before he had shaving cream right up to his arm pits. Shaving cream is cool, squishy and smelly and is quite invigorating on the senses. As long as you there with your toddler (especially for those that put everything in their mouths) this is a great first introduction to things like finger painting.

We did this in our messy room (garage) as it was showering on and off today but I would recommend this as an outside activity so you can easily hose down the table and the children!!! More photo’s and the full post about his shaving cream experience is here >>>

He also spent quite a bit of time with these Fisher Price blocks. We have had them for years and he has had access to them for some time now but this was the first time he actually sat down and went through most of them, touching, feeling and listening to what was inside.


He loves being outdoors in nature and thoroughly enjoyed doing the Paperbark Trail this week. Full post is here >>>

The Arts

C got to join in with a few live productions that B and K had put on during the week. It was very difficult to grab a snap of him as he didn’t keep still for any longer than one second. However in this one he is the Prince from Sleeping Beauty. He loves it when the big kids include him in their games and activities, just like he is one of them. It’s these times that remind me what he would be missing out on if they were away at school every day.

Block Construction/Technology

As is every week he spent a considerable amount of time building blocks with his brother. Or should I say B spends a considerable amount of time building and C spends the bulk of his time destroying B’s creations!!

That's our Tot School for the week, to see what other Tots got up to visit 1+1+1=1.


Preschool Corner is hosted over at Homeschool Creations and I am happy to finally be joining back in with this Linky.

Since we are getting into Montessori in a bigger way this year I have decided to link up to One Hook Wonder and Montessori Monday. Our Montessori related posts will increase as we (I) either gain/present or make more materials.

Language Arts

K continued to work with the Reading Eggs software, she really does enjoy this program and is working on Level 1 discs 1 and 2, although currently I am unsure if she is actually learning anything. I’ll reassess this in a few weeks time. I’m still working on Montessori inspired materials for her for letter/sound recognition. It really is time consuimg work, but at least when it comes time for C all the work will be done!

I also introduced her to the Metal Insets (aids in pre writing skills and pencil grip) this week (one of our many new Montessori Materials that arrived over the summer holidays). At first she didn’t like this material, said it was too hard and that she didn’t want to do it, but once I left her alone she went on to complete a few insets.

She has also been grabbing various picture books and writing out words from them. This has come completely from her, definitely a sensitive period happening here at the moment.

We always have lots of read alouds and I am trying to add them to the reading log as we go along. I saw somewhere in the blogging world a family keeping 'book journals' and I love this idea. I hope to introduce them soon.


K completed more of her Singapore Preschool Math, this week was filled with counting, individual items and counting groups of items, number recognition and number writing practice. She also got an introduction to picture graphs, even numbers and making pairs.

Sensorial Work

She enjoyed all of the sensorial materials presented to her this week.

Colour Sorting Task, at first she found slightly difficult but she trudged on and got there in the end.

The Knobbed Cylinders, as this was the first time she has ever seen these I wasn't sure how many to present her with. I decided on 2 knowing that 1 would be far too simple. She breezed through the 2 of them and when I suggested we try and add a 3rd she jumped at the opportunity. For a moment or two she wasn't so sure that she had made the right decision, but this was perfect for her, still a challenge but one she could complete.

Fabric Sorting, was fun, slightly beneath her level but she wasn't up for trying the blindfold out just yet. I'll leave it on the shelf and see I guess.

This is a Charlie and Lola Balancing Game, made of timber. You have various sized wooden cylinders that you need to balance on the U shaped 'holder'. The kids used this indpendently this week, which is what I liked about this material, you don't have to play it as a game.

Practical Life Skills

K is continuing to be very eager in the kitchen and almost daily comes and asks to help prepare dinner. We made a quick batch of brownies and some easy Mango Ice Blocks this week.

She has also been doing really well with her daily chores, making sure her room is tidy and her bed is made. In fact completely out of the blue this week she tidied an entire room that was pretty much covered with toys, all without me knowing she was doing it. Those little things bring tears to my eyes to see my children growing into beautiful, thoughtful, caring, people.


K watched two documentaries, one on Tornadoes and one about Whales.

We also had our Paperbark Trail walk this week. She truly is an outdoor girl. Most mornings I find myself nagging her to get dressed and organised for the day. However on this particular morning I mentioned that we were heading to the bush and no sooner had I turned around and she was dressed and ready to that's saying something lol!! The full post of the nature walk is here >>>

Physical Activity

To celebrate dad’s birthday and Australia Day we spent the weekend at Grandma’s and Grandad’s Unit at Mudjimba on the Sunshine Coast. We actually did the same thing last year, do I see a new family tradition emerging!!

The unit is situated whereby you open their gate and your toes are touching the water so when we stay there the kids are water babies and spend hours upon hours in the pool. I do attribute these extended times swimming to greatly improving their skills in the water. Katelyn had a fabulous weekend and has very nearly perfected her diving skills from being able to practice so much.

K had her first Gymnastics Class this week with our home school network. What a success that was for both her and I! She was very keen to go and super excited the night before (generally she is walking around the house saying she doesn’t want to go to activities). I reminded her that she wouldn’t be able to wear a dress (K is a dress girl) and was prepared for the argument that would follow but she simply chose a pair of shorts and shirt to match.

When the time came to head into the Gym class she just went off with everyone else as if she had been participating for weeks. Mummy had a grin from ear to ear, I was so very proud of her, she really has grown up so much and her confidence is growing in leaps and bounds.

She also mastered the Moneky Bars this week and was so proud of her achievement with that. She really doesn't like it when things seem to be beating her so that was a big notch on her belt.


We began history this week, I have already written about that here >>> I was pleasantly surprised to see that K was happy to participate in this. I never expected her to so that was a bonus.

The Arts

Our first Art Lesson for the year with Miss Liz (our teacher we used last year) focused on colour theory, using colours, how colours make us feel, blending colours, making patterns with colours and using various art materials (paintbrush, rollers, tips) to paint and create with. The class also touched on the artist Kadinsky as their inspiration for this week’s art class.

The following was created from her collage tray and felt pens. She has really put a lot of thought into the use of the stickers and papers in this picture.

K and B also prepared a couple of 5 minute skits for me during the week. These things are generally always K’s idea but B is ever so obliging and most of the time goes along with it. First up was Star Wars. One guess why she chose that as her topic? She knew full well that B would never refuse her! No pics of that one but as you can imagine, lots of light sabers and ‘forcing’ each other, as they call it.

Then she turned on the charm and wanted to do Sleeping Beauty, B wasn’t impressed and I did have to remind him that she chose Star Wars earlier for him. He of course was the prince, complete with his homemade sword to chop down all of the vines to the castle tower. He wasn’t so impressed with the kissing, getting married and living happily ever after part. That was when C decided to join in and so he was quickly given the role of prince, after all he is generally more than willing to give plenty of kisses and hugs!

If I took pictures of K every time she danced I would have enough to fill entire blog just on dancing alone. However dancing in the rain is a little special. Our outdoor tiled area is generally always the stage for her dance productions. Currently it is not under a roof so when it rains it is the perfect spot.

You can see in the backgound our (in the process) pool and deck area. I keep forgetting to do a post on this, maybe this week I'll find some time.

That brings us to the end of our Preschool Corner for the week.


Following is B's week in review.

Physical Activity

Loads of swimming practice over the weekend at the unit for B. His current love is seeing how far he can swim underwater so he’s building on his lung capacity at the moment and has also decided that he’d give Butterfly (the stroke) a go. I was pretty impressed as to how well he did, he hasn’t been shown butterfly at lessons and has really only seen the stroke from watching his dad in the pool.

B is taking a Mixed Sports Class this term with the homeschool network. This class was so much fun, he had a grin from ear to ear the entire time. One of the best things about it was the ages of the children. (7 – 14) normally B is one of the oldest but in the class he had quite a few that were considerably older than he was. The class included ball handling skills, trampoline, using the gym equipment, tennis skills etc definitely a hit.

He also chose to take Gymnastics this term and is the age group above K. I wasn’t sure how we would find gym but loved it, he concentrated really very well and enjoyed the balance beam a lot.

Language Arts

B began a new level in his Fitzroy Reading program this week. It is really just a review of the previous level though and practice on learned sight words. This reading program covers phonics, sight words, comprehension, spelling and grammar all in one and all the work for the week is related to the one reader so it all ties together well. We have found this to be a thorough program and although we don’t jump up and down with excitement it appears to have gotten results for B.


Watched two documentaries, one on Tornadoes and one about Whales.

He enjoyed the Paperbark trail, you can see the post here >>>


B is still finishing off his maths book from last year and is currently working on single digit addition and subtraction problems. This week he also covered lessons on area, time and patterns in the hundred chart and money problems. He has roughly 2 more weeks left in his current Targeting Maths book and has his Year 3 waiting and ready for him.


We made a start on our history work this week. Beginning with the formation of our universe. You can read the entire post here >>>

The Arts

B’s first Art Class also focused on Colour Theory, just at a slightly different level than the junior art class. B loves art and I am sure he will continue to do so when we have such a great teacher.

B and K put on a couple of little skits this week. I have already detailed them under K’s week in review so I won’t do that again here. Just wanted to add that I was not allowed entry unless I had my tickets, one for the doorman and one to give to the star of the show, on request of course and all tickets cost 50c……yes I had to pay real money to see the shows!

The following are a few random drawings from the week.

This ones grea from just the little shooting star sticker that he found.

This little masking tape masterpiece is different. I have no idea where he got his inspiration from for this, in fact I didn't even know he had done it until I saw it hanging on the wall.


I'm not sure how or why but the Beenleigh Show came up this week as a topic of conversation. Remember his entry from last year? He has already decided on his theme for the Lego entry for this year - The Fair - and has already begun work on it. Keep in mind that the show is not on until September so that's very keen, even if I do say so myself.

Here is what he has so far. A couple of rides, the quad bike arena and has started on sideshow alley. It really never ceases to amaze me how kids can come up with this stuff from plastic blocks. As you can tell building with lego is not my forte!!!

Practical Life

General care of one self, his bedroom and belongings.

And that brings us to the end of B's week.

Wow did you make it this far?


To see more weekly updates from other homeschoolers and really cool blogs visit:

1+1+1=1 for Tot School Posts

Homeschool Creations for Preschool Corner Posts

Learning With Mouse for What My Child Is Reading Posts

One Hook Wonder for Montessori Monday



Susan said...

I really enjoyed reading what all the kids were up to...even though my little one is 21 months and closest to your C's age. I can not wait to see what other activities you have planned for the coming weeks.

Kylie said...

Thanks for stopping by Susan. :)

Raising a Happy Child said...

Thanks for joining WMCIR with a book review. I really liked to read what your kids are up to. K and B's drawings are pretty impressive, and the picture of little C with his shaving cream made me smile. I am missing this time of very first discoveries already. It looks like new school year is kicked off nicely in your home school.

Melissa: Mother to 3 Little Sprouts said...

wow! what a busy week! I really like the fabric picture~ how cute!

Nicole {tired, need sleep} said...

Wow, Kylie, you are a busy busy mom! This was a great post - I like reading about all the kids. And I especially like the part about how it's nice to have them home together and they would miss out on so much of each other if they were going away for school. We love to bake brownies here too, and the shaving cream is always a hit!

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