I am still busy with finishing up school with my son, but I want to write a short post telling what I have been doing. I returned the Jump In writing book because the Spectrum writing book is working out fine for him. I have a bad habit with purchasing too many resources to use for school (which may be exhibited in the photo). It was best that I go ahead and return the curriculum before too much time had passed so I could get a full refund. Otherwise, it would just sit on my shelf until the fall. It is a stocked item so I will purchase it again later.
I couldn’t leave the bookstore without browsing through their used homeschool section. I bought several things to add to our homeschool library for next year. You see, it’s OK that these items sit on my shelf until the fall because they were on sale. Buying anything on sale is acceptable! Nothing makes a homeschool mom more excited than to find materials second-hand for school. Ian has been studying the U.S. presidents from George Washington to William McKinley, and I found this cool set of President jumbo flashcards. The set was originally from Barnes and Noble. I also bought a set of 600 Sparknotes U.S. History study cards…and then dropped the box on the floor when I got home. I spent a couple of hours sorting them out by period.
The stack of books on the right in the photo include a WWII history book for kids, a science experiment book, a bird field guide, a book of presidents, a U.S. states book, and a drawing curriculum. I think I did pretty good!
Currently, I am working on a review board game, and I am taking a break as I write this post. It’s turning out to be more complicated than I originally thought. The questions are simple, but creating it is painstaking. I have made games before, but not like this one. It must be more complex due to the material we have covered. There is so much history to review (300 years), and I thought playing a game would help Ian retain the highlights.
I created the game using influences from Cranium, Sorry, and Trivial Pursuit. I drew two circles with a large plastic salad bowl lid and marked repeating color coded squares and labeled in four subjects: language/vocabulary, math, science, and history. I already know Ian isn’t going to like it when he lands on history. The history section is divided into seven historical periods from 1600-1900. Each historical period has 5 questions (asking highlights from each period). There is also a section to “Name that President” for each period. I will use the flashcards for that. When his token lands on history, he can choose a period. All the other areas are straight forward. If he lands on a space, he is asked a question from that subject. The object of the game is to make his way around the two loops, trying to answer the questions correctly. He will get special prizes along the way for correct answers. I am going to use some presidential dollar coins and regular coins for prizes since they have the presidents on the them. The idea is to make the review fun and he will more likely remember it this way rather than studying for a test. We will spend next week reviewing and then play the game when we are finished. Playing the game can take a couple of hours to play, spanned out over a few days. I will write in my next post if it was a success or not.
A friend asked me recently why I was trying to make school fun, she said that school isn’t supposed to fun, it’s supposed to be hard. I kind of disagree.
OK…back to work.