Week in Review: Week 4 Aug. 25-29

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Morning Routine: Calendar, Virtue, & Chores

Greyson is doing a great job at remembering to do all of his chores.  I never even have to ask him to work on his chore list.  I am very proud of how well he is doing.  The other two boys still have a little ways to go.  They can never seem to remember to do their chores without being asked.  I am hoping within the next few weeks it will be more of their routine. Our virtue this week was helpful.  The boys were all very helpful this week.  One morning the boys prepared their breakfast while I was getting around.  I came downstairs to make them something and they said they had already taken care of it!  One less meal I had to prepare that day! Greyson has also been setting the table and picking out my coffee mug every morning.  They are doing a great job with their virtues.  

Sensory, Hooked on Phonics, ABC Mouse & Writing

Britton is doing a great job with his Hooked on Phonics.  He is sounding out words and really surprising me at how he is able to sound out his words.  He is loving the Hooked on Phonics app.  He is also still working through the next level of ABC Mouse.  The boys have been working on summarizing short stories in writing.  Greyson has been working on writing a letter to one of his friends that moved away.  

Sensory was fun this week. I found a fun sushi clay set that went along with our FIAR book this week.  The boys made clay sushi and Britton made Rescue Bots out of the clay.  I made them oobleck one afternoon.  That is always a hit at out house.  Britton made a blueberry pie out of play dough this week to go along with his BFIAR book.  

Theme of the Week: Five in a Row

Britton read Blueberries for Sal. This was a fun story about a little girl and her mom that go blueberry picking and end up meeting a Mama and baby bear.  We had great time learning about blueberries, bears, and making a few blueberry pies.

Greyson and Lincoln read Grandfather's Journey. This was a story about a man from from Japan who travels to the US and ends up feeling like his heart is in two places.  We loved this book because it could really relate to our lives here in Thailand.  We also learned a little about WWII and the atomic bomb, Japanese culture, and had a great lesson on tolerance. 


Greyson and Lincoln started learning about birds this past week to go along with our FIAR book.  We learned about the characteristics of birds, how they move and listened to bird calls.  We will be learning about birds for the nest two weeks.

Britton did a few lesson with water this week.  We looked at how water has a "skin" and tested it.  We used our Usborne Science Activities Vol. 1 book.  These are awesome books.

100 Book Challenge

We finished up reading The Borrowers this week.  The boys watched the BBC movie this weekend too and really liked it.  Although, they are never happy when the movie is not the same as the book. 

Math, Reading & Art

The boys are all doing great in math.  They are moving right along.  Britton did a fun color matching project this week.  I drew colored circles on a page and he had to match the colors with water color paints.  We used it this past weekend as wrapping paper for a friend's birthday gift.  

Story of the World

We went back to Rome in Story of the World this week and learned about Romulus & Remus.  I found a great history series to read to the boys and we read the story of Romulus & Remus. We didn't really do any other projects this week, other than the map & coloring page that were included in our curriculum.  

Extracurricular Activities

Extracurriculuars started up in full force this week.  The boys all had piano on Monday and Greyson & Britton started up swimming on Mondays.  Greyson is excited to be in the Olympic size pool this semester.  Tuesday Lincoln's lessons started back up and Grey was also swimming again.  Greyson has lessons 3 nights a week and the other two have lesson 2 nights a week.  Soccer started up for the big boys on Wednesday, but unfortunately Lincoln had to miss due to a fever.  And Friday, Greyson & Lincoln had chess club.  It's going to be a very busy semester!

Special Moments

Greyson (9 years) taught Britton (4 years) how to ride a two wheeler.  I was making coffee and the boys came in the house really excited yelling that Britton could ride a bike!  It was a super exciting day for Britton.  My baby needs to stop growing up so fast!  Britton also had a special night out with just me, one of his friends, and her mom.  They had fun going out to dinner, playing arcade games & getting donuts.  Britton wore his Krispy Kreme hat all night! We also headed to IKEA to pick out new desks for my growing boys.  No more little tables for them.

So, we made it though week 4!  Bring on week 5.  

Linking up with Weird Unsocialized Homeschooler's Weekly Wrap-up
Weekly Wrap-Up
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Blueberries for Sal {BFIAR}

This week, Britton and I spent time reading Blueberries for Sal  By Robert McCloskey.  This book is such  fun book to read through with your children.  I loved watching Britton's face while he was experiencing the book for the first time.  He was so worried when little Sal met up with the Mama bear!

Britton spent a few days working on parts of the lapbook from Homeschool Creations.  He worked on tracing words from the story, sounding out words from the story, and tracing. I know I have said it before, but I love the lapbooks from Homeschool Creations!

All About Blueberries

We read a couple other fun books on berries and also learned how blueberries grow.  Britton made a blueberry bush out of construction paper for his art project.


We read a book on brown bears and talked about how bears hibernate in the winter.  Britton did a fun math game.  He had to roll a dice and then count out the gummy bears to put them in the cave for the winter.  Of course, he had to have a few gummy bears too.  He also made a cute hibernating bear craft.


I found a cute story at the library about pies, so we decided to make a few of our own blueberry pies. The first blueberry pie was our practice pie made out of play dough.  Britton loved this! He even baked it in his oven.  Then, we made our own real blueberry pie.  So much fun.

I am so thankful for finding Before Five in a Row.  This curriculum has made some of our very best homeschooling moments. I love spending the one on one time with Britton each day, reading our stories together.

Up next, Ask Mr. Bear.

Linking up with Delightful Learning BFIAR Link-up

Blueberries for Sal Printables
Blueberry paper craft
Bear Counting Game
Hibernating Bear Craft
Blueberries for Sal Pinterest Page

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Grandfather's Journey {FIAR}

This week we rowed one of my favorite books, Grandfather's Journey by Allen Say.  Before I read this book with the boys, I didn't think I would really enjoy it. After we read it, I realized I should never judge a book by it's cover. I could really relate to this book and it brought up some great conversations with the boys.  My favorite line in the book is :

"The funny thing is, the moment I am in one country, I am homesick for another.

That pretty much sums up our lives as expats.


We started out the week learning about Japan and finding where it is located. We have not spent an extended period of time in Japan, although we have had a layover there, so the boys knew where Japan was located.  We read another page from our "Children Just Like me" Book to get a glimpse at life in Japan. We read a book on Japan and then did a really cute mini book about Japan.  We also looked at Japanese art and made our own Japanese fan.  The boys watched a clip about Kendo, which they thought was interesting.  I also found this cute playdoh sushi set and the boys worked on making plates of sushi.


The book has a few pages referencing WWII and bombs.  I read My Hiroshima By Junko Morimoto  . You may want to preview this book before you read it to your children.  It really does touch on what it would have been like to live through the bombings.  There was one page I ended up skipping, but the boys took most of it really well. I also found a great clip about what damage the bomb created.  This would also be best if previewed first.  It was very informative and very eye opening.  The boys had a lot of questions and it made us realize we do not always have to agree with what is happening with our home country.  We also read Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes. The story is about a little girl who gets cancer from the radiation from the bomb. That was a hard book to get through, but a really great story.



In the story, Grandfather meets people of all different colors and shake hands with them.  We read a great book on appreciating people's differences.  One reason I love living in a different country, is that we are the minority.  I think everyone should have to have that experience at some point in their life.   Being a minority is an experience you can never fully understand until you have experienced it.  We talked about how having friends of different colors, religions, and backgrounds makes our life so much richer.  We have learned so much from having friends from all over the world.  We also did a Peace project and I loved how they turned out.


We spent an afternoon going through a few of our Nancy Larson science lessons on birds.  We learned about birds bodies, identifying how they move, & listening to bird calls.  We will continue working on this unit for the next two weeks.


On our last day reading Grandfather's Journey, we discussed all the different type of landscapes Grandfather explored before he finally settled down.  We read a book about landforms and then did a fun poster project showing a few different types of landforms.

We had a great time reading this book and had so many great conversations after talking about different topics brought up after reading this book.  We also read Tea with Milk about Allen Say's mother.  His books are all wonderful.
Japan Mini Book
Paper Plate Fans
Landform Poster
Peace Project
Grandfather's Journey Pinterest Page

Linking up with Delightful Learning Vol. 1 Link-up

Up Next: Another Celebrated Dancing Bear.

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Week in Review: Week 3 August 18-22

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Morning Routine: Calendar, Virtue, & Chores

Our virtue this week was diligent.  The boys practiced being diligent all week long and did an amazing job getting through our entire week of school work.  We were even able to accomplish all of our lessons with a few more after school activities thrown into the mix.  Hoping we can continue to be diligent next week as we will have after school activities everyday!

Sensory, Hooked on Phonics, ABC Mouse & Writing

Britton had a great time searching through a box of "bunny tails" to find the alphabet.  His brothers even enjoyed this activity. It always makes me smile when the big boys want to help their little brother out. Greyson and Lincoln are working more on their Writing with Ease program.  They are really focusing on summarizing short stories.  Greyson has taken off with his writing and finally seems to be enjoying writing!  Britton also worked on writing his alphabet this week.  He also completed Level 1 of ABC Mouse and we all were excited for him to get his certificate.

Theme of the Week: Five in a Row

Britton read The Little Rabbit this week for his Before Five in a Row program.  We had a great time reading this story together.  We learned all about pets and how to take care of them.  Check out my post on our time rowing this book.

Greyson and Lincoln read The Glorious Flight about the man who designed and flew the first plane across the English Channel.  We learned about airplanes, inventors, France, and about the Wright Brothers.  I did a separate post on this book too.


Greyson and Lincoln were continuing to learn about light.  We read about the color spectrum and talked about transparent, translucent & opaque.  The boys made rainbows by shining light through a prism.  They also finished up the chapter this week with the unit test.  A's for both boys and a perfect paper for one of them. They did great!  We also watched a Magic School Bus on the Color Spectrum.  We also watch one of our favorites, They Might Be Giants: Roy G BIV.  


Britton had a couple fun experiments this week.  He tried blowing a balloon up with baking soda & vinegar, but our reaction was so strong that it blew the balloon right off the bottle. We thought it was pretty funny after our hearts stopped racing!  He also watched ivory soap turn into a soap cloud in the microwave. This didn't work great for us as it is very difficult to find Ivory soap here.  I found it at a market and who knows how old it actually was, but it didn't feel very new.  Our cloud didn't grow to the size I was finding online, but we still thought it was fun.  

100 Book Challenge

This week we are reading The Borrowers by Mary Norton.


Story of the World

This week we focused on North and South America, learning about the ancient Americans.  Last week, we learned about the Inuit culture in our FIAR book, so this week we focused more on South America. We learned about the strange buildings and mounds that have been found in Peru.  We watched a movie on Netflix about the Nazca Drawings. (That was really interesting.)  We read the story Rabbit Shoots the Sun, a North American story about why rabbits are so timid.  We also made tapioca pudding like the ancient South Americans used to make.

Extracurricular Activities

Back at Clayworks again this week.  Greyson made a Jack Skeleton, Lincoln made a Captain America, and Britton worked on tints and shades again. They all had piano this week.  Britton also had a fun little alphabet lesson with a friend.    Next week, we start up full force again.

Special Moments

Ben left all three boys a note of encouragement this week.  It was a great surprise for the boys and they all really appreciated finding them at breakfast. We also made semi-homemade toaster strudels this week. We had relay races this week to burn some energy for the very active boys.  They had so much fun and I think I will be adding that into our week.  Now on to week 4 of our school year!

Linking up with Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers weekly Wrap-Up
Weekly Wrap-Up

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