...or "I Really Didn't Have Time for This, but Here You Go."
We started our school year here at our house. It's always a little crazy at the beginning of the year as we all get back into having a daily schedule and get a feel for how our days will work out best. This year we jumped in with both feet and added another student (my youngest). The tweaking of our days will be ongoing. Right now I would be glad to just have a little while with myself and a nice tall Starbucks caramel frappe. Mmmmmmm...
Ok...so here are a few resources that we used this week. It occurred to me that someone else might think these helpful. So, here you go.
After my little tirade about maps in my last post, I thought I would go ahead and share what other sites I found free outline maps on. While I initially didn't find exactly what I was looking for, I do find these sites helpful and use them often. Some of these are a repeat. Others are new.
Worldatlas - tons of information regarding Geography as well as some maps to print off.
Education Place - Along the bottom it says "resources for teachers" and then lists "outline maps."
d-maps.com - lots of free maps to print.
Pearson-Prentice Hall Online - click on the letter of the type of map you are looking for. Example: click E for Europe. Outline and historical maps are available to print.
Free World Maps - the name pretty much says it all.
Books play a big part in our homeschool especially when it comes to history. I try to always incorporate a read-aloud so we can all learn while the kids have a little "down" time during the day. Right now we are studying the Louisiana purchase and the explorations of Lewis and Clark. For this, we are reading Of Courage Undaunted by James Daugherty. Its perhaps a little clumsy to read aloud because of the way some of the sentences are constructed (or, perhaps I'm just a clumsy reader), but its interesting and so far keeping the attention of my 11 and 8 year-old.
My 4 year-old and I are reading My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett. This is a cute story about a boy who encounters a talking cat then decides to run away from home to help a dragon trapped on an island. With his knapsack full of odds and ends, Elmer travels to the Island of Tangerina to save the baby dragon. I've read this to all 3 of my children now and it just doesn't get old. I've found this to be a great book for pre-schoolers / K aged kids because the chapters are short yet interesting. Kids must pay attention to figure out what in Elmer's knapsack can help him through whatever fix he's in. We are using a unit study from Homeschoolshare - this one on My Father's Dragon, along with our reading. This book is one of a series so if you enjoy this book, you may also enjoy the other two.
With my 4-year-old I'm also using some of the free sheets I printed off from 2teachingMommies. This past week we used the Monster themed ones to help with tracing, letter recognition, and various other skills.
My son, who is in Boy Scouts, needed to attend some sort of drug, alcohol, and smoking prevention program at school or in the community in order to move up in rank. Well...he's not in school. We were told he could substitute by doing a similar program online. But, all I could find was information for parents and teachers - nothing really for kids to go through on their own. But, one site did stick out to me as one pertinent for our use. So, if interested, the site was NIDA for teens (National Institute on Drug Abuse). There you can find all kinds of information on how various substances affect the body, peer pressure information and training, and other helpful information to use for talking with your kids about drug, nicotine, and alcohol use. It was actually timely that I found this information. During the Olympics, my kids started asking what steroids were. There's a handy fact sheet on steroids on the site complete with reasons why you shouldn't use them.
Added: We also visited The Cool Spot which addresses underage alcohol use. The sections dealing with peer pressure went very well with our topic.
Now to get ready for week #2.
Links: I no longer consider myself an Amazon affiliate (honestly, I forgot how to even access my account, its been so long since I used it). The links to Amazon in this post are really only to show you the books I was talking about. I don't get any sort of bonus if you decide to click on the links or buy the books.