Monday, August 17, 2015

Homeschool Room Tour 2015: Part 4 ALL VIDEOS now uploaded

Here are the last and final sections of our classroom tour!  Hope you enjoy them and be sure to subscribe!

PLUS!  I have uploaded a new video of the "whatever" and art cabinet, which is now reorganized.

Friday, August 14, 2015

School Supply Haul 2015-16 Part 1 and 2

HI!  I now have both videos uploaded on my YouTube channel. I also have it posted here for you as well.  Be sure to watch part 1 and 2!  Nothing earth shattering as far as supplies go-but maybe you can glean a few helpful hints on how to save money by using coupons stacked with sales, and by being alert to current sale prices! It's always good to save money!

Also-if you don't already, be sure to subscribe.  I would love to see my channel grow.  I have lots of ideas for videos and want to share them, so keep checking for those!

Friday, July 31, 2015

2015 Not Back to School Blog Hop: Classroom

This is always my favorite part of the blog hop.  I love seeing how others set up, and use their space to educate their kids.  I have lots of pics/posts on ours all over my blog.  I am excited to share that I have a YouTube channel where I am (albeit slowly) adding videos of our room for you to actually take a tour.  I have the main wall to finish.  I have a part of it done but YouTube was being annoying so I will re-shoot that and get the others done soon.  It's been a very busy summer. We just returned from a week long trip and have been running ever since.  Please head over to my channel and take a look at what is there and be sure to subscribe so you will get the updates.  I now have ALL VIDEOS (this is the post with the videos shown) of the classroom uploaded!  Yeah!!!!  SO be sure to check those out!

My classroom has not changed at all from last year.  I will only pull out books/stuff that we finished and reload it with new goodies.  I may rearrange how I have the desks but that is yet to be determined.  Head here to last year's post to see the pics.  Otherwise-click here to see the YouTube tour.  


2105 Not Back to School Blog Hop : Curriculum

OK, so they started the Not Back to School Blog Hop early this year!  Of course, I didn't think to look when it actually started-but because we were gone for vacation for most of it-it wouldn't have mattered.  So, here I am a bit behind and so I do not have all of our curriculum ordered yet.  I usually wait til mid-August.  I try to find stuff used first, so I wait until folks are selling before I go the new route.  I have a few items pictured BUT it is by no means all of it. Look for a YouTube video (hopefully soon) where I will show what I have.  I may wait tho until I get the rest of my ordering done. Anyhoo-

I have one student.  He is 7/8/9 th -ish.  I hate to put a grade on it because each subject is different for him. This is my "hope to get to this coming year" plan but as with this past one-nothing is in stone. We have learned to go with the flow (last year was a hurricane)-this is what I hope to cover:


Continue studying great artists-Monet, Seurat, Chagall and Tiffany.  Using a variety of materials to do this.  Including See the Light Art Projects DVDs, calendars, stickers, various books from library and my collection. Notebooking is a part of this as well.


Confirmation class.  Finishing God's Great Covenant.  After that-??? I haven't decided yet. Also, memory verses.


Car/Motorcycle and small engine repair:  various books from library, notebooking and a ton of hands on training from his teacher, Mr. Dad.  


Continue with the study Around the World from last year. We have completed Australia, Antarctica and most of Asia.  There about 15 countries left to do, then we will move on to the others. Variety of materials.  Includes: Mapping the World by Heart, maps/atlases, Continent Boxes (see all my posts on those), notebooking, various books from the library on each country/continent, Around the World in 180 days curriculum and Uncle Josh's maps.  


Basically, not planned this year. He will finish the couple of books from the SL 5 series we haven't finished-then we will take a break from the regular history.  Actually, the Beautiful Feet Books History of Science is history but I am categorizing that under the science section.

Literature Arts: 
(writing, reading, spelling, handwriting, etc.)

LLATL: green and tan levels.  He is finishing up the green then we will move on when done.  
HW:  Getty-Dubay Italic (whatever he hasn't completed in book g) and Italic Character HW
Grammar:  Winston supplemental (finishing) and Advanced
Writing:  IEW level B
Reading: various books
Spelling:  IDK  yet (I have a few guides to use, like the one posted but nothing official)
Vocab:  Marie's Vocab flashcards, reading


Saxon Algebra 1/2 after he wraps up a bit from last year's text


One or two composers.  Still debating which ones.  Using various materials I already have and The Young Person's Guide to Composers.  


Beautiful Feet Books:  History of Science guide/books
includes experiments
Archaeology with some fun hands-on activities

I want to do a foreign language (I have some things about) but not sure we'll get to it.  I may wait until next year as this one is a heavy load.

That is what I hope to use/cover this coming year. Looking forward to seeing what you all are going to us too!

Nature/Art Idea: Crayon Rubbing build right into the table

So this is part II of the really neat art ideas I saw at the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum in Wausau, WI.  This little ditty was a part of the children's area.  I have seen my share of crayon rubbing ideas-but this one takes the prize for being totally awesome.

They made a rough (but smooth-sanded) looking table for kids to sit around, then some crafty person(s) etched in all sorts of nature related items.  Like a leaf and a dandelion.  So cute and convenient.  The kids simply grab a piece of paper and sit down where they want to create a picture. There was also chair rail/thin book shelves around the corner for the kids to leave their art work for display.

For a home/daycare/school application-I should think this could be done on wood boards if etching a table isn't your thing.  This would be great for a Nature Center idea too.  I have been to many and have never seen this.

The best way I can figure out as to how they did this was to first create/build the table (they told me it was made in house-so I guess that is what she meant), then they obviously sanded and smoothed it before they etched in designs (thinking maybe with a wood burning tool) that was either free hand or traced.  Then it looked to be coated with clear a clear coat of stain-or two.

I had to share-this was just too good not to.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Art Puzzle Wall decor/activity Idea

So we were tagging along with the hubby on one of his business trips and the gracious folks he was working with, asked us if we'd like to visit their museum (their family started an art museum based mainly around birds) which is open to the public free of charge.  Being that we love art and birds it wasn't a hard decision to make.

The museum recently opened a large, new section and part of it is a great area for children.  Frankly, it was adorable!  Anyway, as I make my way through it (mind you I do not have littles anymore but it was fun to look about), my eyes spied the cleverly done art/puzzle wall. I had to investigate and thought I would share this cute idea.

Basically, it is an art easel [theirs were from Dick Blick, but any good easel would work] with a magnetic sheet mounted behind a painted art frame. This was all securely attached to the wall.  I wish the people who put this together were there for me to get more details on how they found/did this.  I would have been able to get a better grasp of how they constructed it all-esp. the magnetic board.  I will do some research (and of course let you know what I find) to see if I can find some already painted white. I guess if it's not white-one could paint it that to give the whole thing a "white paper" on an easel look.  Then off to the side they had a picture that was a visual guide for the child to follow. I would actually have the picture printed a bit larger, it seemed a wee bit too small but alas-that is my unsolicited suggestion on that.  Then below the easel was a large box (presumably made by someone-but there are tons of storage pockets like this on the market so one could wing it a bit) that held the puzzle pieces.  The parrot picture was printed right on the magnetic sheet, with the birds being the puzzle part.


I think they just had a larger version printed out or used a poster of it, to make the puzzle.  I know you can go to most photo places and get larger prints made of whatever picture you desire.  Then they attached it to either wood or a very sturdy foam board.  I cannot recall exactly now-but I think two were wood.  Whatever you decide to do (should you make this) just be sure it can withstand the kids putting it up and taking it down repeatedly.  My guess is that they were Modge Podged to it (?) That would be a simple and effective way for us folks to pull this off anyway.  Then someone cut out puzzle pieces to form a giant puzzle of the art work.  To hold the project, they put magnets on the back.  Very securely.  One had magnetic strips which I felt stayed up better.  The others had something I haven't seen before (but again, I am not routinely searching out magnetic devices such as this)-it was like a dual magnetic bar strip (sorry no pic) where it had a magnet on each end sunk into this plastic strip thingy.  Sorry, not real good description.  Go with the self-sticking magnetic strips.  Easier to use and less likely to be swallowed.

This one had pieces that were slipping (two magnet on plastic strip backing) 
so I pointed that out and they promptly sent their fix-it man to take care of that. 

Then when not in use, they were stored in that "easel" pocket.  Very adorable.  I would assume they change out the pictures occasionally too.  And there you have it-a great way to invite children to look at and build a piece of art. You could do so much with this actually, but the puzzle is just an adorable idea.

Basic Supply List

*Art easel that is large enough to hold your framed magnetic piece
*Frame of your choosing that is slightly larger than your magnetic board
*Magnetic board -painted if it is not already white
*Paint for the magnetic board (be sure it will adhere to it, and for the wood backing for the puzzle-if you go that route)
*Box to attach below that is large enough to hold big puzzle pieces
*Magnetic strip that is self-sticking
*Art work that can be cut up (or there are some big sized puzzles that you could simply attach magnets to and cut the cover out as their guide)
*Smaller print of the artwork for the guide
*Backing-whether it is a thinner wood or sturdy foam board (wood should be painted for a more finished look and to prevent slivers and such)
*Modge Podge to attach the puzzle to the board
*Someone to cut the pieces, my guess is a band saw would do the job perfectly or some very sharp, precise cutting tool that will give you nice clean puzzle edges.

If you decide to do this project, please come back here with a link to your picture so we can all see how yours turned out!

Thanks to the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Museum for this great experience!
Info on the children's activities is found here.

The museum is located in Wausau, Wisconsin.  If you are nearby, be sure to check it out.  There are some really nice pieces of art, and the kid area is fun too!

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Back from a week long getaway and have lots to share

I hope to get back into a routine here soon. I saw a great idea for kids at a museum we went to, plus I wanted to share a few things we saw/experienced on our little work-related, tag along getaway.
For now, just touching base to let you know of future posting plans (hopefully I will  be more consistent posting them).

While you wait for me to get away from being a non-blogging bum, thought you might like to know that I joined Instagram. So if you also do that- look me up. I am under my name. Don't forget to check out my YouTube channel (Home Schooling on a Wing and a Prayer) too. My goal is to wrap up the classroom videos real soon. That is if YouTube is not annoying and such. Anyhow til then my friends. Enjoy your summer.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Reader Feedback

I have a question for ya...well several....

Please leave a comment with your thoughts.  I am looking to do a few different types of posts/videos.

My questions:

1)  I wanted to post about how I organize my shopping lists/pull coupons and put it all together to save at the grocery stores.  Interested?  Boring?  Obviously, I understand no one needs to do it 'my' way but wonder if you all are wondering how I do it.....

2)  Interested in seeing a typical grocery haul of ours?  I could do a post and/or video.  I actually scout through YouTube to see what others buy/how they do it/what it costs....esp. since I am unable to shop a variety of stores in a variety of different states.  I mean I do shop a few stores here, but it is fun to see what others can buy at different stores and what their costs are.
Research people.  That is what I call it. 
Anyway-the biggest concern I have is that there are 'weirdos' who troll such videos and just rip the receipts out of the person on what they spend, and what they buy-esp if it is not all organic or super healthy.  I do not want to have to deal with that.  I mean I will write an entire post on those thoughts but my goal would be to show how we saved to get what I bought and hopefully, it will spur others on to try some of the saving methods.  I still need to really pray over that-but if I see others are interested, I may just give it a whirl.  Thoughts?

3) If any of my readers have done a video like that-please comment on it in your response.  I am really on the edge of not putting myself/fam out there like that b/cuz too many feel they can just be vile on said subject. I mean frankly here-what works for me or you or Joe Schmoe is not going to work for the next dude. Its's called grace-sadly, too many have missed the memo. Not sure if I wanna swim in that shark infested pool-unless there is a real interest from folks who truly would like to learn some tips.

4)  Want to see some of our family favorite recipes?  Can't guarantee they will be super healthy tho-LOL.

5)  I am still going to get the final classroom videos done.  YouTube was being jerky, so the one I did finally manage to film would not load.  I became so irritated that I had to walk away for a time.  So hopefully by the end of the month I will have that completed.
But the question is-would folks like to see more videos on certain HS products and curriculum? Other ideas?  Lay em on me sistahs!  I need ideas.

I really want to grow my YouTube channel into a little oasis of help and encouragement for the homeschooling families out there-well any family minded folk-but need to know what people would like to see.

So leave your comments and I will see what I can do. Spread the word too.  More feedback means a better blog/YouTube channel for you.

Not seen my channel?  Stop on by.  I have a few classroom videos uploaded, one on my Nature Study supplies and hope to add many more soon.

Thanks and I look forward to reading your comments!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Family Updates and miscellaneous stuff

OK, so here it is almost the end of June.  How'd that happen?  We have been up to our armpits in baseball season, so many things we wanted to accomplish simply haven't yet.  On top of that-we had a nasty two week plus cold/flu run through our home as well.  It was one of those annoying, low grade ones that keep you down so long instead of just stopping in and leaving shortly after.  Which means we missed two weeks of school.  So our timeline was pushed out further than I wanted. Oh well,  we simply did the little bit I figured we needed to do to get us to a point of stopping until we start up again.  I simply cannot go on.  I am exhausted from all the things that have come our way this year-and the boy is 'checked out' for the summer at this point.  So we are done til I figure we can start up again. Maybe late August.  Maybe after Labor Day.  I cannot think of that now.

Also, our oldest son purchased his first house. We are very proud of our boy, but it also has meant (and still does) lots of runs out to his homestead (40 mins or so away) to bring him things he needs to set up the house properly.  We don't mind, it just has meant many a weekend has been dedicated to other things than our majorly long "to do" list. Oh, and it's his birthday this weekend (so have some presents and cards to bring him too), plus the baseball finals, plus we have to go on a huge bug killing spree because I found that my usually gorgeous Dinner Plate plants are infected with sawflies.  My gosh those jerks can chow down a plant in no time.  I am just sickened by the destruction.  I wait all winter and spring to see those gorgeous flowers and now I am not so sure the plant itself will even survive.  So that is top priority.  Then we have the 4th of July (of course) to celebrate, and our youngest son's 14th bday.  Who planned two kids with bdays so close?  Oh, I guess that'd be us. Actually, both were due on the 4th of July but one came early and the other late. We have a busy July ahead of us. Maybe-just maybe near the end of it I can start working on painting, landscaping and visiting with some pals I have not been able to schedule in.  And you know-homeschooling planning...maybe.

I also have to wrap up the final installments of the classroom video tour.  I am currently trying to pull out things we finished and add in the new stuff before I do.  So once I have that done I will be sure to let you know.  I am wanting to do a few other videos on some different stuffage we have about the classroom and maybe a curriculum choice one for the coming year.  SO lots to think and plan on.

Hope your summer is going smoothly and you are not under any sawfly invasion either.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Science: Geology Notebooking Activity

I have a fun idea to share.  You don't need to be doing a full blown geology study to do it either.  Just a few goodies and some kids who enjoy such things.  

Mineral Experiment Activity  

Supplies Needed

Scale that can accurately measure lighter weights
-think below an ounce- 
(My son used our good postal scale)

(they also sell a rock kit* too)
*these are linked to my Amazon affiliate code
Several minerals you have about, a nail and a streak plate

Pencil, eraser, color pencils, glue stick

Ruler with centimeters on it

 Experiment worksheets from the Crafty Classroom


Basically the student works thru the listed activities on the worksheet to figure out different qualities/traits of the mineral. My son truly enjoyed this activity.  I hope your student(s) will too. Be sure to have them place their worksheets into a binder/notebook or little booklet.  

The Crafty Classroom has a very detailed post on how to set up fun activity stations for exploring rocks/minerals. Actually, I was so excited to come across this site.  There are lots of great ideas to help you homeschool.  

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Nature Study Materials and Ideas Video

I posted a video on YouTube highlighting the main books and materials we use for our nature study. I wanted to be sure to link it for you. I have a few posts regarding nature study here on the blog too, but thought a video would be a fun way to see it. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Artist Study: Charlotte Mason Style

If you are unsure of how to do an artist study or just need some other ideas to add to your repertoire,  hopefully this post can help you out.

I really love how Charlotte Mason incorporated the study of famous artists into the children's education.  The nice thing is that one does not have to go into some super, in depth investigation in order to learn about them.  Basically, you give it about 6 weeks of coverage.  That is all.  Folks have different ideas of how to go about it, but following the basic CM way-you do a brief intro to the artist (life/style/time frame), then have the student choose 6 pictures to study.  They will then narrate to you what they remember about the painting, along with stating it's title and when it was made.  Not too difficult.

How we study an artist:

I get a boat load of books via the library and pull what I have from my shelves/supplies. After reading a few of the more informative books on the life of the artist, I then have the student fill out a notebook page noting general life info, what their favorite media/techniques were and then have them add 3 little pics of different pieces to the page. When completes, we file that into our Artist study notebook.

During that time, the student will have already selected 6 prints to focus on.  Their task is to really look at it.  Study it and note any details they find. Also, they have to learn it's title and when it was made. Each week, they do one print. Of course, if they want to do more, they can. They will simply come to me at the end of the week and tell me everything they can recall about the painting (I will have the print in front of me to confirm the existence of said details) then place the print on a wall somewhere in our classroom. 
We also try to do an art project that reflects one of their well-known or more commonly recognized styles. Thankfully, I won (via a blog giveaway) a whole set of art projects from See the Light that we are currently using.  I also have the Spears Art Studio CD series with several different art project ideas that we can do as well. Usually I can find a craft/art project book (check your library first) that pertains to the artist  which I can pull an idea from, if the project sets do not have something that will work.  And for heaven's sake what would I do without Pinterest? Yes, I get oodles of ideas from there too.  If the project is small enough to fit the page protector pocket, that too will go into the Artist Ntbk when the study is over-otherwise, we proudly display it until we move to our next artist. 

So where do I find the pictures for the study? I mainly use the library because they usually have some big artist books to choose from. Helpful tip here: be sure to go thru it first and see how much nudity is in it. Some are more child friendly than others. I also go to sites like Amazon to find stickers, coloring books, and calendars highlighting the artist of study.  There are also some nice online sites too. Usually I go to Olga's gallery to print the wee little pics we place on our notebook pages, and Wikipedia for a pic of the artist.

In a perfect world, I would do two artists a semester.  But life happens.  So usually I do two per year. Which for us is actually perfect.  I try to choose folks that coincide with the era of history we are studying but that doesn't always work out.  Since I have that DVD set, we are simply going to study the artists she focuses on. I have done quite a few of these studies-so I can pull together a unit fairly quickly without much effort-even without having a base to start with, like the DVDs. There are plenty of dudes and dudettes out there to ponder so finding one or two to match what history we are covering isn't too difficult. Of course, as you go further back in time-it's a bit more challenging to find artists/material, but I know I do not have to have them correspond to do this. The kids (OK so I am down to one 'kid now) will eventually come to that time and place in their/his studies and it will just be one of those, "Oh yeah!  I remember him/her." moments of recollection. Studying even just a few here and there [some years we simply didn't do so swell covering artists] has proven to be beneficial.  I cannot even count the amount of times we will see a pic or ad that is from one the artists we explored, and my children will go, "Hey that's a ...." One of those 'ah yes' smiles will cross my face then. It's all good really, it truly is.

Anyhoo-for detailed posts on a particular artist, go to the artist tab at the top and click it.  I have a run down of the ones we have covered so far. It highlights what we used for the study, including supplies books and ideas.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Tiger Eyes Art Project for Geography

So as we move through our world geography, I try to find some fun art projects relating to the countries within the continent we are studying.  Currently we are on Asia.  We have made a wind sock and Origami animals so far.  I wanted something fun and different but wasn't sure what we would do next-until somehow, someway I came across this from the Crafty Classroom.  It's a really cool activity.

Tiger Eyes (India) 

I chose to do a Bengal Tiger and 
my son chose to make a White Tiger

Love this Two-Part Tutorial. I did notice the pics seemed a bit out of order when filling in the eyes, so read through it first.  We ended up adding the other colors prior to the black lines, then went back through it to adjust the look. This is an oil pastel project so you will need those and a nice pastel paper to complete it.  I only have a black construction paper backing on them right now because my card stock was not long enough.  


Saturday, May 2, 2015

Planning and Purchasing next year's curricula-how I do it (usually)

So it's that time of year again, when we moms dive into websites, catalogs, stroll vendors at conventions [if you attend] and poke through various blogs to find all sorts of neat goodies we could purchase for our cherubs.  Usually this is a fun activity-especially if you need a break from the every day schooling to dream upon what you want to do next year.  I do that and actually enjoy it.  Crazy but true.  I love the thrill of the hunt and the planning of new things to study.  Others tho, may not.  I am not sure which category you fall under but if you need some 'how does that old gal do it?' kinda advice-continue on dear blogger pal.

If you have just started homeschooling or you can't seem to get a handle on it-maybe something here will help you out. For those out there that are can do this with mind-boggling precision, then perhaps this is not the article for you.

Now,  I know that some folks are all super organized with everything done all computery like-but  I do not go that route. Too old fashioned I suppose.  I like the ole pen and paper approach. Only after I have that done, I will go ahead and click the goodies onto the 'wish list'  for both Rainbow Resource Center and Amazon.  Mind you-that doesn't mean I will actually purchase it all there or even buy everything noted on it. I do that so it gives me a good visual of what I need to be on the look out for (of course, I can add to it as well) so that I will be ready to order when our pocket book is willing and able.  Plus, having it finalized (in loose terms) I have a list I can cherry pick from when I am out at local garage/library book sales, local shops and such.  I will also scan the resale online sites before paying full price on most things.  Not workbooks tho-I almost always buy those new unless there is a sparkly, spanking new one with the set.  I also make my book list (at least for the first semester) so that I can cruise the library website to see what I can find that way to help save money, then note what I cannot get and just order those books.

One thing I have learned over the years (mainly it's our funds for purchasing which have played a major role) is that you do not need to get everything new!  Seriously-unless you have a lot of kids coming up behind where you know for sure the program will work [for all] then a new item purchase would warrant forking over the larger sums of cashola. Less spency things are not necessarily in this category-I am talking the big bucks stuff. Of course the exception to that would be if it were a new program that just came out on the market.  But you get my drift.  I have also swapped books/materials with good pals from time to time to help save too.  But beware.  You should be sure they are responsible and loving toward your stuff (same goes for you) so that it isn't returned damaged or worse-destroyed or not at all.  Know who you trade with.

Here (finally) is my super simple but effective for me way of doing this.  

Step 1:  Write out some simple educational/personal growth goals you have for each child [and/or for the fam as a whole] for that coming year. Nothing deep or too wordy but just simply what you want to see accomplished. This is your first paper.  This is what you can pull out as the year progresses and see how you are doing. You can always add/delete to it, but by having this you can easily see if the fam is hitting those noted milestones. Remain flexible.  Life happens. I did not know we'd experience the death of my brother this year, so a lot of what I had hoped to cover, simply was not.  And that is OK.  I just carried a few things over to the new year's list. Actually, I was able to add a few things that we didn't think we'd cover too.  So it evened out. *No pic here.  I feel this is a very personal thing and don't feel the need to share-I believe you get the point by the above advice.  This is meant for our family and is something that should remain private-I suggest the same for yours.

Step 2: Take paper-fold into three sections with paper's long side horizontal-write out list. This one can be modified or just scribbled over as you double check and clarify. This is the messy, preliminary list that will be pitched once I am all done spending/creating and organizing this stuff. It's after all that when I make one final (nicely printed) list of the subjects and main curricula/materials needed (sans the have/order list) to refer to throughout the year.

Here is my chicken scratch list-made quickly. 
I went back to it later and noted a few changes 
as you can see with the pink pen. Again, it isn't
super detailed. I don't even have the artists/musicians listed yet.

First up: list each subject and main curriculum choice
and various other little additions. 
Do this off the top of your head and don't worry until you get to the have/buy sides.  Just list away. Sometimes when you over think it-you forget or miss stuff that the 'flow as you go' method catches. You can go back over after to find gaps or make corrections.
Middle-list what you already have.  
Third-what you need to buy in each category.
Once completed-go thru your stuff!  I found I had listed a workbook I actually purchased last year that we hadn't used yet.  I would have re-purchased it-not cool. Actually-I saw I had a couple repeats on it!  Yikes! So double check every nook and cranny first before finalizing 
the wish list on your favorite sites.
  Seriously, that is it!  Nothing too complicated. Just the facts ma'am. Just the facts. 

*When I had more than one student I would simply jot down each child's name at the top of the page and list what was needed for that year.  Then I converged all the 'to buy stuff' onto one big order list.

Step 3:  Once you feel you have the things you want to purchase noted, head to your favorite sites and start your wish list.  I didn't say 'buy list' because sometimes you can find them cheaper somewhere else or you may decide you don't want that item after all.  For example: I am still on the fence at this point for our Bible studies. I don't need to decide right yet-so I listed two curriculum choices that could work.  I have a noted list so I won't forget and I can pick one of those when I go to order or go with something completely different.  It just gives me a visual and frankly, it's a reminder that I need to spend more time figuring out that subject.
**I use Rainbow Resource Center mainly because they seem to have the largest selection and I can make and print a wish list quite easily.  Then I hit Amazon.  But there are plenty of other merchants that offer this as well-so the choice is yours.
For some reason the RR list didn't delete the geography art book had crossed off, so I did it after.  I also noted a few things to refer to later.  I also listed the Amazon and other companies here too.  I can go onto Amazon and see in my saved Wish List items in more detail and move them to my cart later.

This is my newly updated list-I just placed an order for a few things and could remove them. I figured I should type up a new one so I could read it. LOL
I also decided to print out a purchased list because I am already starting to get things for next year. I had to place an order now because we need the Monet calendar and a science kit (was already in my Amazon cart) immediately-hence why I have already made a dent in our next year's list.  I wanted to be sure I wrote those items down so I didn't repurchase or forget I have them.  The art list is for my shopping at JoAnn, Micheals and Hobby Lobby this summer or when I see sales on those items. I got ahead of myself (not sure why) and noted the math download as purchased-but alas, it is not.

Possible Step 4: If you plan on attending a convention then have your list ready to go. BUT for all that is good and gracious-save yourself the "UGH! I could have bought that for $$$$ less!" scenario. List the things you want to look at and or buy at the convention but only after you spent some time online/catalog researching to compare prices.  WRITE the lowest price you found next to the name of the source selling it with some sort of key like A for Amazon, or SL for Sonlight or RR for Rainbow Resource, so you can refer back to it later when you finish your shopping. AND for extra good measure, walk the circuit a couple times and 'window shop' jotting down prices as you stroll about because you may find things cheaper at other vendors or by ordering online later. Most vendors usually have convention sale prices/deals so watch for those as well. That way you know who has the best price for whatever it is you are looking for.  DON'T panic if you come back and it's gone. They usually give you the sale price on an order you can place right then and there which will be shipped to you. That way you don't come home having overspent.  Also beware of the 'bug eye' convention syndrome.  You DO NOT need every cool and dazzling thing out there.  Write down the name/brand/price and who is selling it. Get catalogs.  Think about it! Then after the fuzzy haze of convention wears off you can make a more informed purchase.  I have some books that are pretty much door stops now because I was careless (at first) and didn't follow that plan of attack.  Money gone for something that was an ill fit for us, that we never even used.

Possible Step 5: Now for giggles-I make another paper where I denote anything I need to make/put together for the coming year and that just simply helps me during the summer break.  I will pick and choose my point of interest and work on it as time allows.  Again-nothing elaborate or too detailed.  I don't need to drown myself in the nitty gritty but just give my ole brain a quick reference from the 'do it woman' list.
After I took the picture I wrote down the names of the artists and musicians. That way I can be on the look out for activities and materials to work on specific to them.

And there you go.  That is how I figured out a simple and easy way to plow through the planning of curricula and materials we'd need for our schooling.  I tried the super organized, super detailed way and all it accomplished was to kill the thrill of planning.  So I came up with this easy-peasy way that seems to be working. Hope you can glean a nugget of goodness to help you with your planning/shopping too.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Homeschool Room Tour 2015 Part 3:2 and 3:3 Whew-finally done with that area!

Well folks-after many, many retakes, stalls/stops and a kitty cat that just couldn't stop trying to be the star, I have uploaded the last two sections of the 3rd part of our tour.



and in case you missed the first one:

I have two other posts noting the geography wall and the basic pan around intro video too!