Friday, 8 July 2011

Winter

Nau mai, hoki mai, שלום and welcome back!

Not sure why I'm using the Hebrew when I'm failing to get any study done :-)  In fact, I'm struggling to keep up with much of anything ... least of all this blog.  I don't know if I can blame it on the winter blues, but my lack of enthusiasm needs a jolly good shake up.  For once I'm really hanging out for the school holidays.

Most of this term we have been busy with book clubs and earth science.

I'm very proud of tamāhine 1 with her efforts to read so much.  Her next Narnia book club starts next week (Prince Caspian).  We've just raced into the Library to pick up a copy so she can read the first three chapters before the first class!

As for Little Women and Anne of Green Gables, this class is awesome!

Tamāhine 1 will definitely have both books read well before the last session.  In fact, by reading two chapters per day she will have Anne of Green Gables finished this weekend and Little Women will be read (yes, the unabridged version) by next Thursday.

In this morning's class Mrs Rhodes (Loretta) had tamāhine 1's answers to last week's questions on Little Women up on the whiteboard; we were both pleasantly surprised!  I was worried that we hadn't given good enough answers, but luckily we were on the right track.  But just as exciting was when the class broke off into mini discussion groups towards the end.  Tamāhine 1 was absolutely buzzing after this class!!
By next Thursday, she and tama 1 also need to have six chapters of Little House on the Prairie read.  Tama 1's favourite part of Little House in the Big Woods was the making of maple syrup.  Tamāhine 1 also liked that, but she also liked Grandpa's Dance.  I liked the Christmas time with their cousins, especially the idea of being bundled up and sleigh bells ringing.
Tama 1 couldn't join the Swiss Family Robinson book club because - if I remember correctly - the time zones would have meant a 4am start or something like that?  Not to worry because he's looking forward to the commencement of:-
The most AWESOMEST (yes, I realise that's not a real word!) thing about this class is that it starts at 11 o'clock in the morning New Zealand time!!  Mrs DeYoung (Dina) created a second class just to accommodate those of us with different time zones.  I had to do a double-take when I looked at the email because that's the first time I've come across a LIVE class for the children that doesn't require getting out of bed before sunrise, or having a class when dad's eating breakfast and heading out to mahi.  Plus, it means I don't have to get up at 4.30am or 5.30am to light a fire in order to heat up the downstairs to make it cosier.

Now, just to point out, I am NOT complaining about early classes!  To the contrary, we love them.  I'm simply saying it's going to make a nice change to not rise out of bed quite so early.

Oh, the other brilliant point is that tamāhine 1 will be in this class with him.  We really enjoy being in the same class together.  This simply wouldn't happen if they were enrolled in a regular school.

Come to think of it, here's something else that wouldn't happen at a regular school.  A class would not go over the allotted time for any reason other than a child was perhaps sent to detention?  The teachers happily run over time, and the children don't complain that it should be finished.  The children are encouraged to have a korero before and after class times and ask whatever questions they wish so you tell me how we don't get our money's worth?!

Okay, before I go on much longer, I'll pop this little flyer in. Just in case you're interested in finding out about any live classes. 
Don't miss this year's CurrClick Live Meet and Greet Open House, July 19-21st.We'll be giving away a $40 live class gift card in every open house session. Must be present to win.

If you've not yet signed up for a class, here's your chance to learn more plus check out our fantastic and ever expanding selection of classes and clubs, available in the fall.

SAVE THE DATE: July 19-21 starting at 7:00 CST

Choose the teachers or classes you are interested in and attend their sessions. There, you can meet the teacher, experience our teaching platform, ask questions and get enrollment discounts.
Our family will continue to participate in online classes because we find them to be fun, educational and a great way of utilising the technology we have.

There may be some who think it's no different to sending a child to school, but I disagree.  They're not on the computer 6 or 8 hours, nor are they away from me.  I get to sit in with the children, we learn together, we get to watch and re-watch any lesson(s) we want.  There is also a strong Christian-base to all the classes we have been involved with to date so we are in the company of like-minded people and best of all, I have a very close relationship to the children's teachers!!!  There's NO WAY you'd see me emailing a teacher at a regular school about something the children learned in class!!! Or to ask questions, or to discuss the latest earthquake experienced in New Zealand, or how our friends have celebrated a recent national holiday.

At the end of the day, everyone's reasons to homeschool vary and our methods/styles/techniques vary.  We are all comfortable with our choices, otherwise we wouldn't be doing the things we do, right?  Well, we're happy with ours.  Whaiāipo is very supportive, and we encourage ideas we think will benefit the children.  He understands that if I am to be successful in my role, then I need him to entertain my eclectic ways :-)


So anyway, back to another online LIVE class.  This time I'll talk a little bit about Earth Science with Mrs Mackin (Debbie).

I managed to locate and receive the textbook in time for class:
As for the Teacher Supplement, well, that took a little longer.  I ended up purchasing it directly from:
Just as it arrived, I learned who the NZ Distributor is!!!
I'm enjoying the class because it feels like it's challenging for the children.

The challenge is not in waking up in time for the 5.00am start time.  Nope, the children JUMP out of bed for this class!!

It's a challenge because the children don't have all the answers.  They are learning or expanding on their current knowledge base.

Check this out: we settle in for nigh on two hours!!!!  How COOL is that?!  The children and I are learning something during EACH lesson and that feels great.  We have a lot of reading to do, but there are also some very COOL activities to go along with each chapter.  I wish we had enough hours in the day to get all of them done.  We've managed to do a number of them and I'm quite sure we'll catch up with the few we haven't quite got around to.

Here's a question for you ...

Are you a creationist or an evolutionist?

I think it may have been the second lesson where I stopped and acknoweldged how much my upbringing has had on my thought-process.  I've never questioned the existence of God, let alone Noah's Ark, the Flood, Adam and Eve etc.  Yet I have no idea how I was taught about the beginning of mankind.  I mean, how many ice ages was I taught about?  One or many?  I have actually sat there feeling rather dumb for not remembering.  Because I'm revisiting subjects such as science with the children I'm finding I'm relearning all over again.  It's like reading a great novel as a child then re-reading it as an adult.  You pick up different things, have a clearer understanding on other things and question a lot more about the whys and wherefores.

Just so you know, these particular classes are slightly more expensive, because the required text are an absolute must.  But, I don't mind because I have all the children to share the resources with. We are all getting to utilise material and activities for one superb price.

Anyway, as much as I wish I could speak of specifics from class, I simply can't and I would feel ashamed if I did.  The time, effort and attention all the teachers put into their classes is phenomenal.  I have such high respect for all the teachers.  I feel that by highlighting which classes we enjoy in my blog posts is the best way I can honour and share their individual talents.

I am simply a mum, trying to do the best for her children and family.  I love online classes for myself, so it was a no-brainer I would move my homeschooling into the realm of online for the children.  We all tap into people who can provide a deeper education for our children.  I'm 100% satisfied with EVERY single class and book club we have used or are currently using.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

1 comment:

  1. Hi Maree,
    just popping over to say, "Thanks for posting a comment with a link to the grammar-land audio book." Much appreciated.
    I'm definitely book marking your blog so I can come back and read - it's great to find other kiwi HS blogs!

    blessings & smiles,
    Chelle

    ReplyDelete