Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Awww, the Olympics are over :(

Nau mai, hoki mai, and welcome back!

I know I haven't written a blog post for a few weeks.  Two main reasons:
  1. Basically, once the Olympics start that's me done.  Not that I'm a total couch potato!  But all the same, I have the television going all day and keep up with whatever I can on the computer.  Getting up in the wee hours some nights certainly takes its toll too.  
  2. I worked on tamāhine 2's exemption - um, with a LOT of interruptions I must say, like:
  • watching Olympics; 
  • toddlers needing attention; 
  • watching more Olympics; 
  • getting out in the sunshine enjoying it with the tamariki; 
  • stopping for even more Olympics; 
  • keeping up with all domestic chores;
  • did I mention watching Olympics?;
  • homeschooling lessons (okay, they were pretty sparse!!);
  • oh, and of course, watching too much Olympics!!!
To celebrate getting the exemption away, the children and I finished reading our book for the next meeting of the National Homeschool Book Award Club:
We thoroughly enjoyed the assigned July-August book.  (Would you believe my incentive to finish the exemption as quickly as I could was to get back to this book?  I liked it as much as the tamariki and having less than 90 pages left, you can imagine how it feels to want to finish a book eh?!, lol.)

The next book club isn't for another fortnight so we'll be looking forward to taking part.  :)

Having finished the exemption I worked on curriculum plans for the next semester.  Everything is recorded not only in my hardcover diary, but Microsoft Outlook and Google Calendar.
  • I like that I can check our Google calendar from any computer whether at home or away.  
  • I like Outlook because it gives me a ding-dong sound to remind me of upcoming events.  (Very handy for when we are busy working and need a reminder an online class is about to start, or if we are in an online class I get the reminder another class is about to start.)  I also print the Outlook calendar for whaiāipo so that he has an idea of what we are doing or where we might be at a particular time.  Whenever things get altered I can quickly grab his folder and write it in when he gets home.  It is my way of having him feel connected to kura.  I only print it out once to save on ink!!!  I end up scribbling lots of new entries but I like having it there for him.
  • I like the hardcover diary because I still prefer things in written format; there's just something about being able to physically turn a page and feel it in your hand.
Yes, it's probably overkill, but it works well for me.  Yesterday I even made separate calendars for the three older tamariki under their individual email accounts as well.  This will allow tama 1 and tamāhine 1 in particular to have more ownership of their studies.  (It was easier and cheaper; i.e.  FREE, than trying to find a 2012 diary in bookstores at this time of the year.)  They can check what's coming up throughout the week, write up any homework in the Task section and hopefully get a better understanding of time management for themselves.

Although we watched a lot of Olympics, we did keep up with the very basic school work.  Plus, we have completed a few online classes with Ms. Lindsey of Musical Thoughts.  We have enjoyed all the summer workshops with Ms. Lindsey. The very last workshop ends this week :(

I could easily have allowed ourselves to take a two week break because we didn't stop while NZ enjoyed a term break back in July or whenever it was.  But there was no real need.  We just flagged a few subjects and I think we did well really, plus the tamariki learned a few things about different sports which they haven't seen or known much about before.

We attempted revising español as well, but will need to step that up a notch this week as our efforts were pretty abysmal.  Our Fall Elementary Spanish II classes with Señora Schere start next week.  Yay!!!
Lessons will be awkward because español will clash with a new class for tama 1.  He will only make an appearance in español when it's an oral exam or as required by Señora Schere.   He will need to watch the recordings so I do hope it works out okay. Of all the classes to have a clash with, grrr!!! We will also need to decide whether we should shift one of the computers because in a few weeks, the three tamariki will each be in different classes.  I shall have my work cut out for me moving from one child to another; but, hei aha (never mind), it's not like it's any different to book work with multi levels eh!?

Tama 1 is rocking along with Mandarin and by the end of the year he will be rather fluent I think.  I just hope he can cope with everything as his timetable increases.

As much as I'd like to register tama 1 and tamāhine 1 in Music Theory III with Ms. Lindsey, I know they don't feel confident at this stage. So, there's no rush, we can simply try revising Music Theory II and be ready to continue in a later semester.  I wish I could help them, but they can read and understand more music than me!!

Speaking of CurrClick, have you taken advantage of the super savings happening yet (not just classes)?  There's still time ...
Tamāhine 1 continues to read, read, read.  There's so much she has read I'm bound to forget some, but I'll try to make a quick list:
Tamāhine 1 has also completed one of the reading text for Adventure Through Literature Class with Mrs Rhodes. As is usual, I cannot share the specifics of classes, but I can at least say that tama 1 and tamāhine 1 love these classes:
From the first time I registered for these classes, I have always made a point of registering for the following semester as early as possible because upon receipt of registration I receive the reading list.  For the most part the books aren't available in New Zealand, and you know me, if they are, I'll always check to see if I can get it into the country for cheaper - which nine out of ten times it is!!  So point is ... I register early to get the reading list in order to purchase from overseas so they arrive in plenty of time for the first class.  

As for what tamāhine 1 is reading right now?  Well, she has just started the last of the American Girl series I purchased:
I haven't been able to find any more of the series for the same cheap price I paid a month or two ago, so once she's completed these books, I'm afraid she will have to wait until I can find another bargain.  The other book she has picked up is:
Oh, art-wise we now have a year's (discounted) subscription to:
Tamāhine 1 has enjoyed drawing at least one art piece per day.  She really loves it.

Updating now where we are in Math-U-See :
  1. Tama 1 - Epsilon completed Lesson 27 - he will do the test āpōpō.   
  2. Tamāhine 1 - Delta completed Lesson 27C
  3. Tama 1 - Gamma completed 18B
Well, there's more to talk about kura-wise but I shall leave it there otherwise I'll never get this post done!!

Very quickly before I go:  Work on our house is very slow, but one can't expect too much when whaiāipo works 5-6 days a week and takes ngā tamariki to Cubs, St John, Scouts and Taekwondo in the evenings.  We're ever hopeful that whaiāipo can get some time off soon to make a big push.  It's the plastering and sanding that's going to take the longest time.  Pointless sharing any photos at the minute though, but hopefully soon ...

Anyway, to finish off I'll just pop in some things that grabbed my attention over the last week or two ....
Pretty nifty wee website to explore Rangatira Island created by Canterbury University.
If you're looking for penpals:
A free download I came across at Heritage Store:
Loved this cursive copy work; just had to get it from CurrClick:
Well, I'll leave it there and kōrero another time.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano
Naku noa, na

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