Friday, February 24, 2012

Let's Hear It For the Boys - All Five of Them - Our Week

Oh what a fun week we had! We've participated in the Great Backyard Bird Count this year, but just because it only lasted for a few days doesn't mean we are finished with counting bird. We've enjoyed it so much, and I like the idea of logging our bird count and using a scientific method of doing so, that we've decided to just keep right on counting. 

Standing in awe of gulls who are desperately seeking crackers! 

The littles had crackers and got them all stirred up - Like a scene from The Birds 

Suffice it to say - we got an up-close look at these gulls! 

 People We're Seeing & Places We're going:

We had a visit this week from some special friends - Hyacynth Worth from UnderCover Mother 
and her two adorable little "helpers" came for a stay and a "field trip" to the beach. 

It was nice to have younger boys around again - mine are getting big so quickly. Being with her boys made me realize just how quickly that is. I don't want to miss a moment of their growing up. I'm so thankful to be homeschooling our three boys and proud of the little men they are becoming. 

Hyacynth and I enjoyed listening to the vivid imagination of this all male crew as they played a bustling game of Pirates. We were impressed with how well the boys played together even though there was a significant difference in age. 

We found fossilized sharks teeth - the boys excavated several crab holes - and Hyacynth and I took turns chasing after her active, curious two year old. My oldest was awed by the fact that the toddler obviously understood everything going on around him and even mastered ipod skills in a short time. 

The social skills and character training of this particular crowd is progressing rather well. 

We are learning: 
Cooking 101 - Our Cooking class at home includes science, math, home economics, and critical thinking as we explore recipes, plan meals, budget the shopping, and even use coupons to get the best deals. The boys are enjoying the time we spend together in the kitchen and learning about what it takes to feed a family, learning kitchen safety, and to follow instructions. 

Be sure to join our Link UP on Tuesdays (open all week) 

Kids in the Kitchen - Link your family friendly recipes and/or posts of your cuties cooking

Carrie Raab from Young Living Oil Lady  is joining me as we host this weekly link up

Earth and Animal Science:
We are always busy Exploring God's Creation - in our nature study during the backyard bird count
 - we discovered this American Kestrel - He continues to visit our yard - we like that A LOT
he is "North America's Littlest Falcon"   You can read about him here on the FREE site by Cornell U. 

Exploring God's Creation- How we do it: We used the Cornell site (link above) to help identify other birds we found - We gather nature journals and pencils - We bring cameras and binoculars - We find a spot to sit or walk (as quietly as possible) We put on our "listening ears" to hear bird calls - We bring a bird field guide - and we watch carefully. The boys can draw/ sketch while we sit - we talk quietly if no birds are present - When they show up we get quiet and still - We observe - take pictures - and watch carefully. Later we finish looking up information and adding to the nature journal/ sketch books. Even when we are not "bird watching" or on a nature hike - we keep our eyes open for special bird species. Today a Great Blue Heron landed in the back yard. We all ran to see it excitedly. Yesterday we saw an Osprey flying by with a fish in his mouth. We've even had Bald Eagles land in the yard! 

(I'm hoping to get a better picture this week - he's high up on a dark cloudy WINDY day) 

History - Geography - Language Arts - Science:

We are using the Trail Guide to Learning Series from GeoMatters and loving it! 
You can WIN a full $150 Set of the Paths of Exploration 
which covers 2nd - 6th grade 
(although I'm successfully adapting it to fit even my Kindergarten and 1st grade students) 

Win a set on Adventurez In ChildRearing Here - Easy entry! 

We are also learning about the History of the United States by reading the Constitution, the Mayflower Compact, and other critical documents forged by our Nations founders. You can gain access to this information through MomsMustardSeeds and Founders Academy on the link here where you'll find access not only to the documents  themselves but FREE video feed discussing the reasons behind them and how they are still vital in today's society. If we do not understand our past and from where we have  come - how can we understand where we need to go in the future? I do hope you'll join us for 
Freedom Fridays and link up with MomsMustardSeeds to share what you're learning.It's Free

My boys continue to be awed by the likes of Ben Franklin, Thomas Paine, George Washington , 
John and Abigail Adams  more as we study documents like "Common Sense" 
and read through supplemental books from the Trail Guide to Learning Series. The combination 
of these resources is really bringing home the big picture for my boys. They're "getting it"! 

I'm proud of my boys! We're starting the day with Scripture - filling the day with exploration and adventure - and ending the day with Scripture and love. I'm happy watching them grow! 

Joy Pockets & Thankful Thursday: 

Watching them grow * Seeing gentle spirits form (even when they have to back up and try again)
Birds and the look of awe and utter amazement in the eyes of my boys seeing them close up * Enjoying the interest of my children as they learn to value their Freedom * Hearing them recite Bible verses I too learned as a child * Healthy boys splashing in the water and digging on the beach * Friends 

3 in 30 Goals: 

As you can see - we've been busy! I'm still drinking my water and getting more exercise. We are spending more time in the outdoors on our bird watching and beach walks.
My blog is going well - I got my Linky up and running for Kids in the Kitchen 
My devotional time with the kids is awesome. We're opening up more and more dialogue in our home through our studies and I love seeing the boys grow spiritually. My personal devotional study in Ephesians is going well - my post was featured on Good Morning Girls! (I'm counting that for both quiet time success and blog success) ;)

Linking with: 

Mustard Seeds
   5 senses tour 3in30

 The Homeschool Mother's Journal 


Monica said...

what a fun week with birds.

"Enjoying the interest of my children as they learn to value their Freedom"

yes! i hope to see the same in our home.

marisa said...

what beautiful photos and sweet boys! thanks for sharing your story!

p.s. love the shells in the vase on your island. wishing i was that close to the beach on this cold and blustery day. be blessed!

Robin said...

I'm a friend of Hy's and I wanted to stop over and say your kids are sooo cute! Glad you two had a good time hanging out. She is a sweet spirit and I bet you are, too. :)

Jen G said...

Thanks for linking up! Will be back on Tuesday to linky with you...Kids in the that idea! =)

Lisa said...

Wow! What a great week! I just love your photos on the beach. The closeup one of the seagull is an awesome shot! :-) I am enjoying the Freedom Fridays, as well! We must pass on these values to our children, especially today. Have a blessed weekend, friend!

Jeanine Byers Hoag said...

Sounds like a great week! And what wonderful pics of the birds!!

We do cooking in our homeschooling, too, although my son does not enjoy the meal planning part. Wish I could think of a way to make that more fun, because including it in our homeschooling means it is much more likely to get done, LOL.

Stephanie said...

Your photos are so gorgeous. We meant to participate in the bird count last weekend, but we missed it. Kudos to you for being a part of it!

Mama Bird said...

That sounds like LOADS of fun! My kids did the bird thing a few years ago and they really enjoyed it.

Jen @ Forever, For Always... said...

I really credit the Backyard Bird count that we did several years ago for really getting us interested in nature. I'm amazed at the different types of birds that my older boys can identify. I would love to live near the beach!!

Susan said...

We really like bird watching, too, and isn't the All About Birds site just great?!
You have so many great resources listed in this post...thanks for linking up with Favorite Resources!

Desiree said...

It's so fun to see your boys in the kitchen! I think I may try to get my kids in the kitchen more so we can link up. My boys are always wanting to help me.

Sherri said...

Fantastic job on the goals!!!!

Amy said...

wooohooo What a FABULOUSly FUN looking week !!!! jampacked with BOY fun! :) hahaha

Anonymous said...

Great post! Great pictures! Thank you for linking up!! you live in such a beautiful area!

Deanna said...

You had an incredible week! My little guy loves to be in the kitchen so I just might have to link up with you on Tuesday.

The Adventurer said...

WOW lots going on. LOve the close up shot of the sea gull, great photo. Thanks for linking up to the Home school field trip hop

Jenn said...

What a beautiful week! I love you thankful list and the bird photos:) And you are right...they grow up fast and we have to be mindful or we'll miss it! Have a great week:)

momto8 said...

your boys look wonderful!! good for seem to make learning fun.
we are still having winter here..I am ready to see some spring birds!

Rebecca said...

I can't wait for some in real time in two weeks!!!!!!

k balman said...

Great post love your pictures cannot wait to see you in a few weeks!

Jen said...

thanks for visiting my blog

pleased you had a fun week