Monday, August 10, 2009

First Day of School Pictures...

I decided that just because my kids don't have to leave the house to go to school they still need a 'first day of school' picture. So today I rounded them up and we took a 5 minutes to document what all the kids looked like on our first academic day of the 2009-2010 Martineau family school year.

It was to hot to go outside so I did the best I could inside...I guess they turned out okay. The important thing is that we took them...right?!

Hyrum 4 years old...enrolled in the Martineau Family Preschool! Currently using the Slow and Steady Get Me Ready book as his guide for the year!

Rebecca is 1 year old, and currently enrolled in the Martineau nursery class. She is focusing on learning how to walk right now!

Cooper my big 5 1/2 year old is a proud Kindergartner (although we don't really call it that) . He's my little core phaser who's focus is learning how to work, read, write, do a little math, and learn about science and ancient history with his older siblings.

Brea's my big 2 year old is also a core phaser. Brea really just needs to learn to stop screaming! If she can learn to just talk and not scream this year I'll be happy!! :)

Megan is my big girl in the house. She's 7 and is officially in 2nd grade, but to me she's transitioning from the core phase into the Love of Learning phase. SO EXCITING! She wants to focus on reading, writing, science (she can't wait to learn about bugs this year), history, and oh yes she wants to learn Latin!!! Gotta love a girl who is as excited as Megan is to learn everything.

Jarom is getting old way too fast. He's officially in 4th grade and is 9 years old. However, I prefer to think of him as being in the Love of Learning phase. He's becoming an amazing reader and is always excited to learn anything about plants and animals. He's also a great helper around the house and is super excited to get started with this new school year. He's also started to make big plans for what he wants to learn this year. WOO-HOO!!

This is our first academic school day. It's been great so far.

Our binders for the year!! This was such a great project to do with the kids. It took a few hours for them to do, but now they understand what the different noteb0oks are for and I think they'll be more likely to use them. We created three binders for Jarom and Megan. A Literature Binder, A Science Binder, and A History Binder. I got the idea to do the binders from a couple of different sources...A Thomas Jefferson Education book, Charlotte Mason, and The Well Trained Mind. They each had a little different approach to how they implemented the binder system so I took bits and pieces from each of source to create a customized binder system especially created for the Martineau Family! I think its going to be great!!

Here's the plan for today (and so far we've actually stuck to it...its a miracle).
Today's Schedule:
8:00-8:30 breakfast
8:30-9:00 devotional
9:00-9:15 pictures
9:15-12:00 create school notebooks and plans with Jarom and Megan
9:15-12:00 little kids free play (no electronics)
12:00-12:30 lunch then little girls down for naps
12:30-2:30 quiet time (kids up in rooms reading books or playing with toys in playroom)
2:30-4:30 family time (play games with kids...100% focusing on kids doing what they want to)
4:30-5:00 dinner prep
5:00-5:30 clean up/pick up house
5:30-6:00 final dinner prep/free time
6:00-6:30 dinner with the whole family
6:30-7:00 FHE
7:00-7:30 family activity
7:30 Brea and Becca in bed
7:30-8:00 bedtime routine for the 4 oldest kids
8:00 Lights out for Cooper and Hyrum
8:00-9:00 Quiet in room reading time for Jarom and Megan
9:00 Lights out for Jarom and Megan
10:00 Lights out for Mom and Dad

Well quiet time is over in just a few minutes time for me to get off the computer!

Homeschool Nesting continued

Until this last week I'd only felt that crazy unstoppable urge we fondly call nesting (you know the urge to clean every nook of you house and organize every single item you own) when I was pregnant and a month or so away from delivering. So it was CRAZY WEIRD to feel like I was nesting because I'm not pregnant!! I couldn't shake the urge so finally I just went with it.

Of course having a room that looks like this can sure help bring on that nesting feeling!! Here's my 'school' room's before picture. We had to much furniture in here and lots of stuff that had been piling up all summer long.


I thought it would take a day or two, but I ended up getting so detailed and particular it took a whole week...LITERALLY!! I started Monday and spent a good chunk of everyday all the way through Saturday. Scott actually took Tuesday off work to help me out because I was so neurotic and needed help with all the organizing projects I'd put on my list! By Saturday the list seemed to be growing...but thanks goodness with a TON of help from my amazing family we actually got everything done. It was a miracle.

Here is what we organized and cleaned last week...
  • The Pantry
  • The Fridge
  • The Kitchen
  • The Laundry Room
  • The School Room
  • The Craft Room
  • Everyone's closets
  • Everyone's rooms
  • The Bookcases
  • The Toy Room and Closet
Scott cleaned, fixed, or put up:
  • Our family picture
  • A broken door nob
  • A broken kitchen cabinet
  • Replaced a missing cabinet nob
  • Put up our huge new world map (with wallpaper paste)
  • Fixed the broken Garage Door opener (I can now use my clicker)
  • Fixed a broken light in my Laundry Room (so now I can see the clothes I'm folding)
  • Fixed the central vac
  • Cleaned out the Garage and organized the bikes
Some of our projects...

The MAP was quite the project. When I purchased it from National Geographic I had no idea what I was getting myself into. In the end it's pretty sweet and I'm glad we got it, but hanging wallpaper is not my thing!!

The NEW and IMPROVED Craft Room. I didn't take a before picture...too bad because it was pretty awful. We had one little table from Costco piled with random stuff. So to create the Craft Room I moved about half the furniture from the School room into the Craft room. So this is a new room with NO cost!! LOVE IT!!

The Closet
The Craft room had this great closet that was just another junk area. So I cleaned it out...took like 4 hours with Scott's help and turned it into the perfect homeschool storage closet. Just what the doctor ordered!!

The Kids...were actually really great during our crazy work re-organize the entire house week. They all helped out as much as they could, and when they couldn't help or were taking a break they found things to keep themselves busy with. We were trying to keep the electronics off so they really had to entertain themselves, and they did a great job!

Among other things they of course built a fort or two...

Brea discovered ways to keep Rebecca happy for pushing her in the wagon. They had a really great time for about an hour...shocking. :)

In the book Leadership Education they talk about the need to do:
  • a purge of all your stuff every 6 months
  • a inventory of where you are spending your time every 6 months
Of course the 6 month purge is basically an organizing de-junking session. I do mine every July/August and December/January. A 6 month inventory is a precursor to my 6 month NO and 6 month YES! I give myself permission to say NO to things that are getting in the way of my personal and family BIG goals. The 6 month YES is helping me identify the things I need to be doing to help me achieve my personal and family goals.

Its an amazing process! So now I'm done with my 6 month purge and can feel myself naturally now being ready to do my 6 month inventory!! Leadership Education articulated this process so well. The idea of every 6 months doing a physical and mental inventory, purge, and plan is a great way to keep life in order and in harmony.