Sunday, September 28, 2014

Forces, Friction, and our Awesome Library

Well, I feel like school's in full swing now, but no history got done. I just don't know how to make time for it yet.

I'm starting to learn how to cope with things that were "freaking me out" at the beginning of the school year.

First of all, Abraham.  It's still hard, but I have learned how to nurse and teach at the same time, and just put learning on hold for the moment to focus on the littlest member of our school.  Having his bumbo chair in the middle of our school work helps his moods.

William likes to draw while his brothers write and he loves to be in the middle of the action, and hasn't been more exasperating than usual.

I've decided that I have to condense my tutoring. I just don't have an extra eight hours a week for other children.  But I can't NOT teach them, so I'm teaching then all together=two hours instead of eight. Better than nothing.

And Hyrum got his cast off. He still can't walk properly or be in gymnastics, but things are progressing.

I have now done two weeks of science.  The first week was our introduction to physics. We learned about forces and gravity. We learned all about "push" and "pull" and as part of this, we had a tug-of-war.

I have more kids in my club than last year. We even have a couple girls this year. I don't think they've noticed they're the only girls.

This week we learned about friction. I was thinking that maybe next time around I'll teach inertia first. That makes more sense to me. The friction/lubrication lesson is always one of my favourites. We had kids pulling each other around the floor on sheets, and we skated on shaving cream to show what happens when you get rid of friction.

Last time around I did this inside, and it ruined the finish on my floor. This time I did it in the garage and some kids got bonked on the cement. Maybe next time I'll do it on the grass….

I haven't gotten much history done, which bugs me. I have had a lot of mental space still going towards this dumb political nonsense. We've also been actively trying to inform our community through things like flyers, and that's taken up a lot of time.

Blah….and it's not over yet.

Thank goodness my community ended up teaching my kids social studies this week. We went to an awesome story time. (Our library always has awesome story times.) The native Blood Tribe came and the elementary did some dances and the middle school preformed some songs. This was PERFECT for history this month. Serendipity is wonderful.

We've also had culture days here. Some of my friends put together an awesome Guatemala experience. Here's my nephew at one of the booths.

Also, the alternate school has started their co-op.  In addition to gymnastics, Crystal has been teaching the kids book making, and Heather Burton has been doing creative writing. The creative writing especially has filled a hole in my kids education. So grateful to be a part of this group.

Yes that is Hyrum with his tongue stuck out. Yep.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Politics-----ugh----and Native Americans

Remember this post? and this photo?

Yep, Things are out of control again here in our tiny town.

A few years ago, an employee of Dustin's said "I'm so glad I wasn't homeschooled because I wouldn't have learned how to deal with bullies." Dustin just laughed at him and said "Yah, but who bullies as an adult?"

Well, we've learned who bullies as an adult. We've apologized to that former employee and told him he was right.

Last year when politics blew up, I got severely depressed. I knew I needed medical help it was that bad. But right when I was about to go to the doctor, I found out I was pregnant. This kicked my psyche in the behind.

I was not cured. Not by a long shot, but I was much better than I had been. I knew that I needed to pull it together for someone other than me.

This time I've hardly been depressed at all. I can't sleep, but whatever. This time I have just lost so much respect for some people that they can't hurt me like they once did. I'm sad, not hurt.

I'm sad, and quite a bit furious. I want to shout from the roof tops all the hypocrisy, lies, bullying, and power grabbing, but Dustin coaxes me back down to the ground and helps me realize how it will solve nothing. Eeeerrrrrr I wish he wasn't right. It would be so fulfilling.

Because of politics, I've had a one track mind, and school has suffered.

We did get almost all the reading writing and arithmetic in. William is liking it that school is back in session:

No science. No devotionals. No Robotics.

But we did do a bit of history. We learned a bit about the early native americans. We made totem poles and tepees. My sister-in-law has moved into our basement, and is joining us for history, and it makes it twice as fun.

Maxwell made the biggest tepee, check it out:

So---NEXT week I'll be in full swing------I hope.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Slow but Steady Beginning

Well, This week was not the amazing Full-Blown first week of the year that I would want, but it was what it was.

In fact, I hardly have any photos. While  we did read some history, I ended up not getting to the activities. So no photos. Also, even though I got ready for science, when it came down to it no one could come, so I happily cancelled it.

We DID do reading, writing, and arithmetic. That felt fulfilling. We also did devotionals and EXERCISING! I was so proud of myself.

A friend of mine was saying how when she talks to public school teachers, they admit that it takes a couple of weeks before they are going strong. So there.  I have an excuse.

The homeschool association had their annual track and field day.  I almost didn't go. Hyrum has a broken leg, Daniel's too young, and Maxwell....Maxwell's not really excited about athletics. But in the end, it all worked out wonderfully:

Maxwell was a crack up. He comes up to me and says "I got a second place and a fifth place, now all I need is a third and fourth place." He had a blast.

Here's something cute: Three years ago, I took this first photo and I thought "humm I don't know those two kids very well, but whatever." and this year I took the second photo and I thought "those two kids are so awesome, I'm so glad we know them so well."

The homeschool organization was so sweet and totally included Daniel in the first grade group. He felt so accomplished.

And HYRUM!!!! Hyrum trumped them all. I wish he was wearing shorts so you can see how huge his cast is, but cast or no, he was amazing at the obstacle course. Check it out!

So that was our first week. Last but not least, Dustin and the boys convinced me to let them buy a kitten at the country fair.  Yippee (I say VERY sarcastically.)

Friday, August 29, 2014

School's Starting---and I'm Freaking Out (a bit)

School is supposed to start in a few days, and I feel more intimidated about it than I ever have.  This is why:

Freakout Reason #1: Introducing Abraham

Isn't he the cutest little bundle of newborn you ever did see? Isn't it obvious that he's a delight and joy?  But he's also a TIME-SUCKER! Because of my super hero amazing husband, I've had what should have been the least demanding summer of my life; except I had Abraham. I can put him in his swing for 5 seconds before I need to hold him for 5 minutes before I need to nurse him for 15 minutes before I need to rock with him for 5 minutes before the whole cycle starts over. He has no daytime schedule I can give him and he loves SHORT power naps.

This post-this short post-has already taken me a half hour to do because of Abraham breaks.  How am I suppose to accomplish ANYTHING nevermind everything I want to? AAAHHH

Freakout reason #2: Terrible Twos

This is William. Typical William. Add in a super loud and long WHINING soundtrack, and you've got the 24-hour jist of this jem. He has no interest in movies or electronic devices. I was happy about this for the first two years since babies are not supposed to be exposed to all that, but now it would be a bit convenient to have some sort of break.

Freakout reason #3: Tutoring

I have agreed to tutor four kids in the Barton Reading and Spelling System. The tutoring training says that each child needs one-on-one time, and that they need at least two hours a week. So that's eight hours out of my week not focused on my own kids. I really truly love these four kids and really hope I can help them. That's why I'm doing it, but I'm still a little daunted at the idea.

Freakout Reason #4: Frustration

Yep. Hyrum broke his leg. Not only will he NOT be able to go to Westwind Co-op because he can't do gymnastics, he won't be able to do the exercises I want to do everyday either. But more than that, Hyrum (who isn't the most even keeled child anyway) is easily frustrated at the world because of the overall frustration of being a cripple.

So yah, freaking out a bit.

It doesn't help that apparently, the Homeschool Organization told the new homeschool moms that this blog is a great example of how to homeschool. That's just intimidating. I feel like a flibberty jibbet pretending to be awesome. I fool some, but my kids know the truth.  Hallelujah  my husband works at home. It helps my psyche a bit.

Well, here it goes regardless of anything. SCHOOL STARTS ON MONDAY!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

U.S. History and Canadian History Activities Outline

I did it! This year's outline is done! I read all about Canadian history, but I still feel like I don't know anything. It was interesting to hear Canada's view on the revolution and the war of 1812. The activities with  * denotes something Canadian.

It was really neat to make this year's outline and use my own website as my main resource. When there's a link that just says "link" it's not my website, but all the other links are :) Also, this year is the best book from Teri Ebert's Four Year Plan. All the page numbers are from that book, Filling Our Lamps.

week 1
activity 1 Bering Strait and Book of Mormon Native Origins -Teepees from paper bags p81
activity 2 Culture of Ancient Natives -Paper cup totem poles p24
week 2
activity 2 Marco Polo-spyglass link
week 3
activity 1 Columbus-make boats p25
activity 2 Conquistadors -scare crows p84
week 4
*activity 1 Samuel Champlain/ North West Passage- origami boats
activity 2 Lost Colony- candle holders

week 1
activity 1 Jamestown- thatched roof huts
activity 2 Pocahontas -Kachina Dolls/clay pots
week 2
activity 1 Whites' effect on Natives/ Smallpox-make native musical instruments
activity 2 Plymouth Rock-"planting" candy corn in pudding/oreo dirt w/ fishy crackers p32
week 3
activity 1 Dutch West India Company- popcorn balls p34
activity 2 Spread of Slavery/ Tobacco -act out ship and selling of slaves
week 4
activity 1 Pirates -dress up and treasure hunt
activity 2 Witches -halloween activities (pintrest ideas)
week 5
*activity 1 Hurons and Iroquois -play la cross
activity 2 King Philip's War -beaded necklaces

week 1
activity 1 William Penn --taffy pull p34
*activity 2 Filles du Roi -rag dolls p97
week 2
*activity 1 Hudson Bay Company -faux beaver hats
*activity 2 Seven Year War -hoe cakes p94
week 3
activity 1 Williamsburg -cardboard stockades
activity 2 First Great Awakening -game of graces p54
week 4
activity 1 Ben Franklin -kites p85
activity 2 Patrick Henry -fruit pyramid p98

week 1
activity 2 Boston Massacre/ Tea Party- have tea party p37
week 2
activity 1 Paul Revere -make hobby horse p67
activity 2 Declaration of Independence -homemade ink  p39
week 3
activity 1 George Washington- batting wigs p90
activity 2 Revolution/ migration to Canada- yankee doodle kazoos with hobby horse p89

week 1
activity 1 Thomas Jefferson -pomander balls p83
activity 2 Constitution- government mobiles p46
week 2
activity 1 Bill of Rights -jack-wax p99
activity 2 President's Job- hats and US pres. vs Church pres. worksheet p52
week 3
activity 1 Louisiana Purchase Lewis and Clark -salt dough mountain continental divide p48
activity 2 Tecumseh -dress up like natives
week 4
*activity 1 Guy Carlton aka Lord Dorchester -nine pin bowling p96
activity 2 War of 1812 --make flag w/ candle wicking knots p 97

week 1
activity 1 Monroe Doctrine -american tree craft link
activity 2 Trail of Tears -run around in the snow with rags on our feet p46
week 2
activity 1 Chief Joseph- dreamcatcher  p101
activity 2 Fredrick Douglas -corn husk dolls p109
week 3
activity 1 Eli Wittney -take seeds out of cotton
activity 2 Missouri Compromise/ Nat Turner -rag rug or weaving p51or 58
week 4
activity 1 some part of canada's history -umm yah
*activity 2 Lord Durham --homemade soap p65

week 1
activity 1 Daniel Boon -candles p61
activity 2 Johnny Appleseed -apple stamps and apple juice p102
week 2
activity 1 Tall Tales -yarn dolls p102
activity 2 Davy Crockett -tin can lanterns p62
week 3
activity 1 Alamo/ Mexican American War -quetzal bird link
activity 2 Oregon Trail -giant pretzel log house 
week 4
activity 1 Brigham Young -wagon craft
activity 2 Handcarts/ Donner Reed Party -butter and jam p67 

week 1
activity 1 Cardston Pioneers -pioneer easter eggs p 68
activity 2 Gold Rush -bath tub panning
week 2
activity 1 Compromise of 1850 -pioneer game peashooters and wheel rolling p105
activity 2 Dread Scott Decision -make paper chains 
week 3
activity 1 Underground Railroad to Canada -quilt
activity 2 Uncle Tom's Cabin-junk band p108
week 4
activity 1 Abraham Lincoln -hats and beards
activity 2 Clara Barton -first aid p74
week 5
activity 2 Mark Twain -play marbles p107

week 1
activity 1 Jim Crow Laws -oreo recipe (together is better)
activity 2 W.E.B. Du Bois/ Booker T. Washington -k-5 projects link
week 2
activity 1 George Washington Carver -make peanut butter p111
*activity 2 Dominion of Canada -make canada flag link
week 3
*activity 1 Differences in Government of U.S. and Canada -igloos out of ice or sugar cubes
*activity 2 John A. MacDonald -mountie link
week 4
*activity 1 Canada and Natives -make an inukshuk
*activity 2 Canada's Railroad -candy trains link

Also, I want them to learn these songs (in this order)

The States locator song
The Province locator song (that I think I'll have to make up :P )
The Classical Conversation's Timeline song (from 6:14 to 10:03)
The Star Spangled Banner
Oh Canada
The Pledge Allegiance to the Flag

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


Hahaha! It's early out in the McKay household this year. I am three weeks away from the baby's due date, and we are DONE!

For science two weeks ago, only one boy (in addition to mine) came. I was SO tired that even though I had everything planned, I was happy to see just one easy going boy come by and said "How about we watch Brain Pop for science today?" Of course they said yes, and we had an easy fun time.

We DID do one experiment. The time before, we had tried to do the classic egg-sucked-into-bottle experiment, but I had used a bottle with a neck too small. So we tried it this time. It worked, but it sucked it so hard, that the outer layer of egg got shucked off. Whatever. I say it worked:

So this week we learned about storms-lightning, hurricanes, and tornadoes. Not all of my experiments worked. Including the one I took a photo of. If you blow between two balloons, you should make low pressure and the balloons should come together. Didn't work as well as imagined.

Everyone loved Taylor's tornado though. He had already made one for the science fair.

The boys (all but one came) seemed to have more energy than usual. Maybe it was because they knew it was our last club of the year, but it was fun to get together.

Geography. Well, we we didn't do any more crafts or activities. This was not very impressive to Maxwell, but we did read lots of books. That counts for a lot,----right? I do regret not memorizing the last two geography songs (I never posted the middle east song they memorized, but they DID memorize it.) Other then that, I don't really have any regrets.

I'm so glad we did geography this year. I don't feel horrible about not covering the WHOLE WORLD because, well, there's a lot of world, and I feel like they know a lot more about that world since the beginning of the year. As a pregnant mama who needs to start nesting for this baby, that is enough for me.

And after all, when you look at their passports that we made this year, that's full of all the flags of the countries that we studied, it's a pretty impressive sight.

We certainly studied Japan. We had another Geography Fireside. Heather Burton came to share about her experience in Japan as a missionary. I don't think the kids will ever forget how Japanese people sit (she had a contest to see who could sit on their knees the longest-I think Liam Peavoy won.) And they will never forget all the bowing that's required in their culture. Heather really cracked them up when she made them all bow a million times.

We got fancy with the refreshments and made chocolate covered bananas. Well DUSTIN made chocolate covered bananas. Dustin had been the most supportive husband in the world this pregnancy. I am truly blessed.

The all-knowing Pinterest said chocolate covered bananas where Japanese, and Heather said they were very fitting. Much better than sushi to me.

Okay now for

Geography- Loved our experience. ESPECIALLY the geography firesides. I think next time I'll start them in September. I loved going to the Jewish Synagogue and to the Hare Krishna temple. More experiences like that is what I would like to see the next time we do geography. I love geography because it was so undemanding. If I missed a country or two, it didn't really matter.

Science-Science was awesome this year. Maybe it was because I love our group of boys so much. Maybe it was because I found learning astronomy so fascinating. Maybe it was because it was pretty easy to find most of the supplies for the experiments we did. Whatever the reason, it went smoothly, and it was good.

Devotionals-I finally started to get back in the rhythm of doing devotionals. I decided they needed to be easier or I would put them on the back burner, and I didn't want that to happen.  We would start by memorizing an article of faith or scripture, and then we would watch a bible video. We've actually watched a ton. They are found here.  I'm not sure what we will do after we run out of videos, but I'm sure we will manage.


Drum roll please---We have done an entire FOUR YEAR CYCLE!!!! Yep. I am done teaching my fourth year of homeschool. One would think that next year would require a lot less planning since I've already taught all the subjects before, however it is not that simple.

I started with U.S. History (from Native Americans to Post Civil War.) We were conveniently living in the states that year. I am NOT living in the States next year. Quite the conundrum.

One thing I know, I am still going to teach my kids U.S. history. We may live 15 minutes north of the border, but the founding fathers, Lewis and Clark, the Civil War etc are things I want my childrens to know about. After all, these things really affected Canada. I figure I will teach three out of four weeks about U.S. history.

That still leaves every fourth week for pure Canadian history. Ummm.  I don't know anything about Canadian history. I haven't even taken a citizenship exam yet, so ---yah---nada. I bought these books:

Hopefully I will know what to do by the end of summer. ----Moving on----

Daniel's Reading Writing and Arithmetic.-As far as reading goes, he knows all his letters and sounds, and that's all I'm worried about. And math-he knows his shapes and how to count, and that's enough. And for writing, he's dones with Handwriting Without Tears. Here's a sample of his work:

not too shabby for a preschooler eh? Well, I think it's sufficient enough.

Hyrum's Reading Writing and Arithmetic-With reading, Hyrum has done the first level of the Barton Reading and Spelling System. I will repeat it at the beginning of next school year anyway though.

For writing, his journal has been done very neat and tidy. He can have tons of dexterity when he wants to.

Math-I have seen so much improvement this year. It is very encouraging. Math has never been a huge strong point with Hyrum. Rightstart has been the right program for him. I've been proud of how far he's come. This worksheet below he did without the help of his abacus and without counting. He understood the concept and quickly answered the questions. This says a lot- believe me.

I've decided to have it on official records that he is doing Grade One again next year. Hyrum is still six years old, so he is the youngest in Grade One this year. Repeating grade one will mean he will be the oldest in the grade instead. This will be good with any standardized testing he might have to do, as well as city athletics, which are arranged by grade.  It will also make me feel a little more at ease about his academic achievement.

Maxwell's Reading Writing and Arithmetic: Reading and writing-He is half way through Level 3 of the Barton Reading and Spelling system. I feel good about this. I will write an extensive post about the Barton system later when (WHEN) I see more success.

It's kind of funny. I think I haven't mentioned on this blog about Maxwell's dyslexia, yet this is what I think about the most when I think about homeschooling. This is what I talk to other moms about. Maxwell is very intelligent, however, reading is so difficult for him.

I have a lot of hope and faith in the Barton system. It is rated as the best program by the American Dyslexic Association. I've heard so many success stories. I hope our family will have them as well. Especially since I know Hyrum is showing all the signs of dyslexia as well.

Anyway- Arithmetic is of course going really well. Maxwell passed off all his multiplication in the middle of the year. He memorized most of it using stories he learned through Times Tales.  But then, after going through the Rightstart program, he has stopped using the stories when ever he can. I hear him under his breath when he is trying to figure out 4x8 he says "16 plus 16 is 32" instead of saying "the snowman went on the chair...blah blah blah." That's what I like about Rightstart. It really gives kids an understanding of how math works. Not just memorization.

So there you have it. We are done with the year. I might have a few posts this summer though. We are going to have a homeschool scripture camp, and we still have our end of year homeschool organization fieldtrip.

This summer I will do the Barton system with Maxwell, and the other two boys will do Explode the Code online, and THAT'S IT. Baby time for our family.

PS (a long one) I just realized that I should say that I really liked all the extra curricular activities we've done this year. Gymnastics, the Westwind Co-op, the Play, Robotics (THANK YOU CAYLEEN!,) Soccer (still going on-love talking to all the moms while the boys play,) and piano (even though I don't make Maxwell practice as much as I should) have been what my family needed.

Also, I thought I would include these few stories that Maxwell wrote. I showed him a picture, and then he wrote a story to go along with it:

The Adventure of the Hidden Hole

Lucy and Jack were walking along one day in the forest. They saw this old rickety house. They decided to go in it. They were looking around at all the engravings on the wall when suddenly the floor underneath Jack cracked. Jack and Lucy decided to see what was under the floor board to see why it was cracking. 

When they looked under it, there was nothing but a black deep hole. They ran back to their house to get a flashlight, so that they could see what was under the floor board. When they went into the hole that they made by lifting up the floor board, there was a tunnel. They decided to walk along it. Then they saw a ladder going up. They went up the ladder.

When they came out of the hole, they looked around,and there was a big castle wall. They got out of the hole.They walked up to the castle's wall and knocked. Then a drawbridge went down suddenly and they walked across it to see what was in the castle. All they saw was lots and lots of big chests.

There was only one living thing that they could see: a crow.  They decided this would be a great place to play. 

They started to play. While they were playing, they played hide and go seek. Lucy was opening a chest to hide in, but as she was opening it, she saw that it wasn't empty. It was full of clothing. She said to Jack "Jack come here, I found something we can play dress up with."

Jack quickly ran over to Lucy to see what she had found. When Jack got to Lucy, he was so excited that he started opening lots of chests. Lucy did too. 

Jack was opening a chest. He was expecting to see clothing, but instead he found treasure. 

Then they started to open the chests more fiercely to see if they could find more treasure. Lucy found ten chests full of treasure. Jack found nine chests full of treasure.They decided to bring home one treasure chest every day.

When they picked up one of the treasure chests, they were expecting it to be quite light, but instead it was heavy. Jack ran home to get something to put the treasure chest on to make it easier to move. Jack was very fast. He got his wagon. Jack and Lucy lifted the treasure chest onto the wagon and then is was very easy pulling it to the hole.

Lucy decided to to get her wagon so that she could bring it into the tunnel and Jack could put the treasure from his wagon, down the ladder to her wagon. Her wagon was much better on bumpy roads then Jack's. They decided to use Lucy's for the tunnel and for the forest.

They quickly got home. They were very glad that they had gotten the treasure chest. Jack decided to get some really pretty rocks to make a trail to the old rickety house so that they could find it again.

The War Between Cats and Dogs

King Fuzzy's hair was prickly as he thought about the war outside. His tail was stiff as a bone. His whiskers were as straight as arrows. Instead of his usual purr, he growled. 
Then his butler came running up to him saying "The south tower got hit."

King Fuzzy jumped up from his chair and picked up his sword. He ran to the south tower saying "Evacuate! Evacuate! Take all your needs. Guards, put the bacon in the bomb shelter!"

The Guards said "Yes sir. We will put the bacon where the dog army will never be able to get it." 

The guards quickly ran to get the bacon and put it in a safe spot. King Fuzzy ran back to his throne and the butler came running up to up him saying "We hit the draw bridge of the dog army's castle."

The king ran to the closest window and looked out. Yes, they had hit the draw bridge. King Fuzzy told the butler "Tell the army to run into the castle."

The butler said "What about back up?" 

"I think we have enough." then King Fuzzy thought out loud, "Hum, I wonder if we could hit their south tower."

The butler said "I'll tell all our catapults to aim at their south tower." The butler ran quickly down the stairs.

The king decided to make a double catapult. He got paper and oil. He made the catapult that he thought about. He called for his guards to come and aim at the south tower of the dog's castle. Two guards came running up to him and aimed it at the south tower. They put the paper in the oil. King Fuzzy grabbed a torch and lit the paper and oil on fire. King Fuzzy took out his sword, and cut the rope. It fired at the dog's south tower. The wall exploded into flames. 

One of the guards ran down the stairs and then came running back up saying "The butler is killed!"

King Fuzzy's eyes turned narrow. He growled the angriest growl he ever had. The king said "Let's get this war over with." 

Just then, one of his villagers said "25 of our people have died. One of them was the butler."

"How many dogs do you thing we have killed?" King fuzzy asked the villager.

The villager said "One of our spies said 25 including Queen Jewel."

King Fuzzy said "Raise the flag that says 'We will share the bacon.'"

When the dog king saw the flag, he said "Raise our flag that says we will share our milk. There has been enough death."

The solders saw the flags and quickly ran to each other's castles to share the milk and bacon. King Fuzzy wrote a letter to King Ruff, the dog king and this is what the letter said:

"King Ruff, I heard that your queen was killed. I am sorry, Let's make sure that there's no more wars between us by sharing everything that we have."

A few days later, King Fuzzy got a letter from King Ruff saying "I like the idea of sharing our stuff so that there are no more wars between us."

The kingdom of the cats and dogs lived in peace forever more.

Faith and Tim's Castle Adventure

Tim and Faith were on a school trip at the ruins of a castle. They had wandered very far from the rest of their class. Tim was looking under stones for treasure. Tim was lifting up a rock when he saw a little bit of gold. "Faith! Come here." He said. Faith came running up.

Faith said "Let's unbury the gold all the way." Tim agreed. They started digging around the gold.

Tim said "This looks like a golden box. Let's open it." 

Faith said "Let me open it. You always get to open stuff." 

Tim said "Okay. I'll let you open it."

While it was opening, it creaked. Tim saw numbers and a button. One said "In a war." and another one said "After the war." Tim said "I think this is a time travelling machine." Tim pressed some buttons and asked if Faith wanted to press the last button. Faith nodded her head. She pressed the button that said "After the war."

There was a flash of light and wind was whistling in their ears. Then everything was still. They opened their eyes to see the golden box was in Faith's backpack.

Then they looked around. The stones beneath their feet looked newer. They quickly ran to the drawbridge of one of the castles and walked across it to look inside. 

The first thing that they saw was bones on the ground, mice, and vines growing up the walls. They decided to look around some more. They were walking along a hall, when one of the suits of armour moved. 

Tim said  to Faith "Did you see that?" Faith nodded her head. "Is anyone there?" Time asked. Then the suit of armour let go of the spear he was holding, and took off his helmet.

There was a face that had freckles and blue nice looking eyes. He had a hat that was pointy and dark blue with lots of yellow stars on it and one moon in the middle. He said "Hello young lads. Where did you come from?"

They answered saying "We're just here on a field trip." 

The wizard asked "Have you seen the rest of the castle?"

"No. Will you show us?" They answered.

The wizard said "I would be glad to. Just let me take off my armour, so that I can move faster."

They helped the wizard take off the armour. Once the wizard was out of his armour, he showed them the treasure room. He had them stop right outside the door. Tim saw some gold, and asked the wizard "Could I have some gold?" The wizard nodded "yes." Faith asked if she could have some jewellery. The wizard said yes.

Tim asked "Where do you think the best gold is?"

The wizard pointed to the far corner. "That crown comes with a golden suit of armour." 

Faith asked where the best jewels were. The wizard pointed in the middle of the room at a different crown. The wizard said "No one is allowed in the treasure room. If you go in there, there are booby traps, but I will be able to get your treasures with magic." The wizard pointed at the gold crown, and it floated up into the air. Behind it, was another crown made out of jewels that started floating as well.

The crowns came floating to Faith and Tim who grabbed them and put them in their backpacks.

Then the wizard showed them to the throne room.

When they got there, there were two figures in armour with swords pointing at each other. The wizard said "These were once two mighty kings. Now they are dead. Their kingdoms were taken by two other kingdoms after they died. I hid here because I did not want a different castle. I was born here, and I love it here.

Tim and Faith asked "What do you eat?"

The Wizard said "Oh, I eat the vine's fruit."

Tim and Faith said "We better go home." 

The wizard said "How are you getting home?"

"Oh, all that we have to do, is use our golden box, and press a few buttons to go home." Then they showed the wizard their golden box and said "We will see you later." They pressed a button and after  two flashes of light and whistling wind  in their ears, they were home.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Two weeks down, Two weeks to go

A week ago when we had science where we learned about the atmosphere and air. One of the experiments that we did was to show that air has weight. The balloon with air outweighs the balloon with no air.

This week we learned about air pressure. We did lots of experiments that showed how air kept cardboard on full glasses of water and how air pressure can suck up water. Changes in air pressure crushed our milk carton, and here it blew up (sort of) a balloon.

We also made our own fake barometer. (Real barometers take too long to get results from.) With ours, when you pushed down on the balloon top of the big jar, the little jar's balloon would go in too, and if you pulled the big one's up, the other one would go up too.

Notice how all the experiments I took photos of used BALLOONS? Ya, I kinda thought I would prove my point that I made in my last post about how useful balloons are when doing science.

Anyway, only two more weeks of science, and last science class we only had one boy missing, so I thought I would take a photo of them all.  They sure get along really well, and I think they have liked coming to science as much as I have enjoyed putting it on.

For geography we learned about Africa----ummm----only two countries in Africa. But hey, we've already learned about Zimbabwe, so really THREE countries----yah, pathetic I know, but I'm big and pregnant and that's enough of an excuse for me.

We learned about Mozambique (our World Vision child is from Mozambique if you were wondering why I chose to study such a random country.)  We played mancala as our activity. I really like mancala. I had never played it before. It's simple enough for Daniel to play, and if you lose any pieces, it doesn't matter because you can use something else for pieces (like lego....which we have in plentiful supply.)

We also learned about both Congos. I chose the Congos, because that's where their cousin is on his mission. We wrote him (and all the other cousins who are on missions) as our activity. Daniel's picture was especially cute. It was of Jesus on the cross with two guards and Mary:

Well, that's it. Two weeks, and that's it. We have also had our home visit from the homeschool organization and I've had some mom meetings, but yep, that's it.

Two more weeks. In fact, I might get done sooner. I told Maxwell that as soon as he was done with his math book, all we would do for school during the summer is reading. He is now pretty motivated to get done with his math book ASAP. Two weeks of lessons might be done sooner, and Hyrum's school could certainly be condensed, and Daniel is pretty much done with his Handwriting Without Tears, which was my goal for him. Whoo Hoo!