Friday, November 17, 2017

Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter

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Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


Welcome to Homeschool Highlights! 
This weekly link-up is your opportunity to share some highlights of what is happening in your homeschool and in your world each week. If you write a wrap-up post at the end of each week, like I've been doing, we'd love to see what you're busy with from week to week. If you'd like to pick a favorite post from your week that spotlights a resource or activity in your homeschool that you'd like to tell others about, we're interested in those too. I'm keeping the guidelines as simple as I can, and they will appear at the bottom of each post, along with the link tool. I look forward to getting to know you, and I hope this will be a source of encouragement and good ideas for all of us.

Grab a cup of coffee and let's get started!


Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

I love free Starbucks, don't you?


 Homeschool news  . . . I noticed that it was the end of the first quarter recently, so I did a quick evaluation to make sure we were fairly close to being on track with everything. To my relief, we seemed to be very close! Although Algebra continues to be challenge, of course. Even so, as long as Kennady keeps on with it, she shouldn't have any trouble finishing that by the end of the school year. And with any luck at all, she'll get to write the SAT and manage okay with it.

From the High School Lesson Book - First Quarter Review on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

Co-op is going great, but guess which class is the one she tries to get away with stuff in? That's right - mine. She turned in one of her assignments late this week, and I'm hoping that won't happen again!

It really didn't line up with any class we're doing, but we went on a field trip this week. I arranged for those from our homeschool group who were interested to tour the greenhouse and see the poinsettias in action. Well, not much action exactly, but you know what I mean. Maybe I'll count it for Speech and Presentation, since her dad (our tour guide) got her to explain things to the other students several times.

Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


Other news . . . Y'know, if I could have a week where I wasn't running around like a crazy person every day . . . yeah, that'd be great. Not likely to happen any time soon. This week we went to work, we had choir rehearsals, we had Civil Air Patrol; plus we also had yearbook pictures taken, and I had to go to Baltimore to get the rest of our personal things and the tags off our truck before it was totaled. Sad. The good news is that the settlement the insurance company offered us is better than we'd been prepared for. And more good news is that Landon is buying a truck from a friend of ours so we will soon be back to three vehicles, which will keep us more or less sane until the hubster and I get the settlement money and decide on a vehicle that we'll purchase. Then I imagine we won't know what to do with ourselves, having the same number of vehicles as drivers! (Until Kennady gets her license . . . oy.)


What's Working . . . our auto insurance, sort of. Or at long last. They have taken waaaaaaaaay too long to get anything done on this accident claim, and the communication has been absolutely awful. We will probably be shopping for a new insurance company once everything is finalized.

Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

Funny, Flop, or Fail of the Week . . .  So this fail is not homeschool related in any way, but boy, is it a fail. I got a speeding ticket on my way to work this morning. Because that will be helpful in getting a lower insurance rate, right?!



I'm sharing this monumental mom Fail in the weekly link-up called Friday Funnies, Flops, & Fails hosted by Doodlemom's Homeschooling Life


I recommend . . .  SchoolhouseTeachers.com - today is the last day of their Flash Sale, and it's great deal! No coupon code required. Just go to the Join Now page and choose the Ultimate Annual BOGO Membership.


Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


On my blogs last week . . .

And on my book blog, Just A Second:

Wordless Wednesday - Bridge
Teaser Tuesday/First Chapter First Paragraph - India Black
What I'm Reading - November 13, 2017
Scripture and a Snapshot - Harvest


Just A Second is where I share book reviews and other book-related things, and update on what's on my bookshelf. This week I've been reading:

31 Proverbs to Light Your Path by Liz Curtis Higgs
The Sound of Rain by Sarah Loudin Thomas
Isaiah's Daughter: A Novel of Prophets and Kings by Mesu Andrews
India Black (A Madam of Espionage Mystery) by Carol K. Carr

A parting shot . . .

Homeschool Highlights - Week Eleven: First Quarter on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


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Homeschool Highlights guidelines:
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I will be linking up my own posts at the following weekly link parties that you may also be interested in: Weekly Wrap-Up hosted by Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers; at Homeschool Blog & Tell at The Homeschool Post; and at the Homeschool Linky Party on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.

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 ©2006-2017 Homeschool Coffee Break. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://kympossibleblog.blogspot.com/




Thursday, November 16, 2017

French - Foreign Language Studies (Blogging Through the Alphabet)

This post contains affiliate links - using affiliate links from Homeschool Coffee Break helps fuel this blog and our homeschool - thank you!
French - Foreign Language Studies (Blogging Through the Alphabet) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

After so many years of homeschooling, I've had plenty of opportunities to try curriculum and explore all kinds of resources, so during this Blogging Through the Alphabet tour, I'm highlighting some of the many homeschooling resources that have been stand-outs. Sometimes it will be a walk down memory lane as I share something we enjoyed many years ago, and sometimes it will be something we're using currently. Sometimes I'll focus on a specific curriculum, and sometimes on a subject area. And I imagine I'll have to be a bit creative with a couple letters of the alphabet! This week I'm looking at Foreign Language Studies, specifically French.

One of the classes offered in our homeschool co-op group this year was French I, and even when we were in the planning stages, I knew Kennady would jump at the chance to learn French from an experienced instructor. I was absolutely right! When I mentioned that French was going to be offered and asked if she would be interested, she immediately said "Oui!" We are fortunate enough to have a certified instructor teaching this course, and since it's a classroom setting, Kennady has the opportunity to learn and practice with other students. The textbook is French I for Christian Schools from Bob Jones University Press, and the students are also using a book called Un Ete Pas Comme Les Autres which gives them practice in reading and understanding a story written entirely in French. They practice a lot of dialogue in class, and the instructor does a little more of the class instruction in French each week. He starts the class by greeting the students and taking attendance, all in French, and then moving on to ask them conversational questions and quiz them on their homework. After a half semester in the class, he now encourages them after this opening dialogue by pointing out that they have just conversed almost entirely in French for twenty minutes or a half hour, or whatever it might be. 


Since Spanish is the second language most commonly studied by American students, and a Spanish class is offered through our co-op, you might wonder why we would have chosen French instead. Aside from it being just Kennady's personal interest and preference! Although we're from Canada, where French is one of the two official languages, I can't say that our family has any French background. My husband studied French more diligently when he was in school than I, and even went on an exchange trip to Quebec when he was in high school, but it's not like he speaks French fluently at home. Sure, Kennady was named for his favorite hockey team, the Montreal Canadiens, and we've often watched or listened to hockey broadcasts in French, but still . . . Yes, Kennady chose to learn French mostly because she simply wanted to, but I did a little research, and there are actually some pretty valid reasons to study French as a foreign language. 

French - Foreign Language Studies (Blogging Through the Alphabet) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

Turns out French is considered one of the easiest languages for English speakers to learn. Part of the reason is that so much of our English vocabulary has its roots in French. About half of our current English vocabulary, in fact. Because it is a Romance language (based on Latin), it makes it easier to learn Spanish (or Italian, or Portuguese) as well. Granted, learning Spanish should presumably make French easier too. 

French is truly a world language, probably more so than Spanish! French is spoken by over 220 million people on the five continents. It is an official language in 29 countries, including France (duh), Belgium, Switzerland, Monaco, Canada, and many countries in Africa - about half of Africa, believe it or not. In Europe, French is the most studied second language in schools. French is an official language of the United Nations, the European Union, UNESCO, NATO, the International Olympic Committee, the International Red Cross, and international courts; and it's also a working language, so the opportunities for those that may be pursuing careers in the international job market or international relations are obvious. Or how about studying abroad? Students interested in attending some of the world's top universities in Europe should be fluent in French to take advantage of those opportunities. Of course, with French spoken in so many countries all over the world, international travel will be easier for those who can speak and understand French. French is also the third most widely used language on the internet. Ahead of Spanish, by the way. The two more commonly used languages are English and German.

And of course, French is the language of culture. Think about cooking, fashion, music, dance, theatre, the visual arts, architecture, and so much more. Full of French terms, and France itself is a center for culture. Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to read some of the great works of literature in their original French, or to watch French language movies without needing to rely on English subtitles? How about singing or understanding songs in French? This is something that really appealed to Kennady, as she has learned a number of songs at choir in French, and knowing the language for herself instead of just memorizing relatively meaningless syllables to sing is clearly a richer experience.

French - Foreign Language Studies (Blogging Through the Alphabet) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

See more about good reasons to learn French at the website France Diplomatie.

Do you want to learn French? Here are some resources we've used or referred to that you may find useful.

You can learn French using SchoolhouseTeachers.com. It's one of the several foreign language courses offered, and it's suitable for all ages. (Now is a super time to check out SchoolhouseTeachers.com - no coupon code required to take advantage of their current Flash Sale. Just go to the Join Now page and choose the Ultimate Annual BOGO Membership.)





And a long time ago we reviewed French Essentials, a complete curriculum designed for homeschoolers, and suitable for students in Grades 2 through 12. You can read our full review here: French Essentials {Schoolhouse Crew Review}

French Essentials LOGO photo frenchessentiallogo_zps55e20538.jpg




Talking about study of the French language and all the countries where French is spoken has me thinking back to our geography studies several years ago, when I tried to include some foods from many of the countries as part of our experience. And as I wrote this, I was also thinking about my need to plan a menu, and then I got hungry as well. Which led me to hunt up these French recipes from my blog archives. 

 Tourtiere is a meat pie hailing from French Canada. And it's delicious. I love it, although my kids are less enthusiastic. Check out my post Eating the Americas - French-Canadian Tourtiere for more information and for my recipe. Now I'm really hungry.



Or you might want to look at my posts from the year we studied European cultural geography. In A Taste of Europe - Adding Some French Flair to American Fare I discovered that some of our favorite American foods are ever so similar to some French dishes. Just dress them up a little and refer to them with their French names, and they sound very fancy indeed. In fact, I'm making Bifteck Hache and baguettes for dinner tonight, and I think we'll have Croque Monsieur or Croque Madame for lunch on the weekend. Sounds delightfully high-brow, but it's actually fancied up hamburger patties and grilled cheese.

Food with French Flair @kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

You'll find the baguette recipe, and a good recipe for Chicken Cordon Bleu in my Middle School Monday - France post. I'm thinking maybe Chicken Cordon Bleu should go on my menu plan for sometime soon as well.

A Taste of Europe - Chicken Cordon Bleu @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

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Blogging Through the Alphabet again? Yes, I'm taking the challenge, along with several other Crew members, including our three co-hosts for this round - Amanda at Hopkins Homeschool, DaLynn at Biblical Womanhood, and Kirsten at DoodleMom's Homeschooling Life. The link is open from Thursday to Wednesday each week, so join in if you'd like!

This post is linked at Blogging Through the Alphabet for Week 6, Letter F.



This post is part of a #breakthrulinkup at Breakthrough Homeschooling - Join us! This post is also linked at the Encouraging Hearts & Home Blog Hop hosted by Apron Strings & Other Thingsat Homeschool Blog & Tell at The Homeschool Post; and at the Homeschool Linky Party on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.



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©2006-2017 Homeschool Coffee Break. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author.http://kympossibleblog.blogspot.com/




Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Virtual Refrigerator - Pumpkin

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Pumpkin on the Virtual Refrigerator  - share your art posts on our Virtual Refrigerator - an art link-up hosted by Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


Welcome to the Virtual Refrigerator art link-up! Thank you for joining us as we share what we're creating in our homeschools. We cordially invite you to add your link sharing artwork that's on your Virtual Refrigerator and then hop over to the other blogs and admire what's on their Fridges too! The Virtual Fridge link-up is open all month, with anchor posts planned for each Wednesday.

We've been crazy busy around here recently. I mean, what else is new, and yet it really feels as if we are seldom home. This also makes it challenging to keep up with schoolwork, and since co-op homework and academics do need to be prioritized, there hasn't been time for any artwork since the lovely snowman I shared last week. That's why I found something in the archives for today's Virtual Refrigerator. I always like these pastel pieces anyway.

Pumpkin on the Virtual Refrigerator  - share your art posts on our Virtual Refrigerator - an art link-up hosted by Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com
Thanksgiving Pumpkin by KAT, 2015

Today is the last day to enter my giveaway for a package of Thin Stix - See my review of the  Thin Stix Creativity Pack, and find the giveaway here: Creativity With Kwik Stix

Creativity with Kwik Stix (A Homeschool Coffee Break Review and Giveaway) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

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 ©2006-2017 Homeschool Coffee Break. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://kympossibleblog.blogspot.com/


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

From the High School Lesson Book - First Quarter Review

This post contains affiliate links - using affiliate links from Homeschool Coffee Break helps fuel this blog and our homeschool - thank you! 
From the High School Lesson Book - First Quarter Review on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com
Seems like we just got started with the school year such a short time ago, and here it is the end of the first quarter already. And today is yearbook picture day too! The time goes quickly! Since there's no report card to do, the end of the quarter is simply our opportunity to see how well we're doing with staying on pace. I knew my original goals were pretty optimistic as far as how much schoolwork I expected would get done each week, so I know we'll be behind that schedule. But not behind at all, when we look at what we've covered and how much time is left. Doesn't mean we can dawdle now though!

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The classes Kennady is doing at the co-op are the ones that she's right on target. Just makes sense - the schedule is set and everyone is the class has to stick to it or get left behind. We don't have the option of adjusting those due dates and deadlines.

Grammar and Composition

The co-op writing class is following The Power in Your Hands from Writing with Sharon Watson and I think it's going very well. It's been an interesting experience for me, as the instructor for the class, but the text makes it pretty easy on me. Kennady is doing very well with it, although writing non-fiction isn't her favorite thing. Obviously, it's something she needs to be prepared to do for college though.

(By the way, we originally reviewed this curriculum last year. Read our review here: The Power in Your Hands (A Schoolhouse Crew Review))

Writing with Sharon Watson Review


French I

Kennady is doing great in this co-op class, and since I'm sitting in on it, I feel like I'm learning a little bit too. The textbook is French I for Christian Schools from BJU Press, with some additional material added in.

Speech and Presentation

This half-credit class at co-op is Kennady's favorite. TED Talks is the main resource they are using, but as you might expect, most of the class time is spent practicing their speaking skills with both improv and prepared speeches. They have a lot of fun, and it sounds like most of their speeches tend to be humorous.

From the High School Lesson Book - First Quarter Review on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

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And now for the courses she's working on at home. These are the ones that are most likely to suffer when our routines are interrupted or we're short on time. I'm getting the impression that many homeschoolers struggle with this - sticking to deadlines and staying on schedule.

Math

After we reviewed No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials, we decided it was a good fit for Kennady, and decided to stick with it. Overall, it's been working out very well, but it's clearly better when she actually works on it regularly. If she skips a few days, then it's a bit of a challenge to remember what she learned last and get back in the groove. I'd like her to be moving through this faster than she has been, so stepping up the pace will be a goal for the second quarter.

(Read our review here: No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials (A Homeschool Coffee Break Review))

No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials (A Homeschool Coffee Break Review) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


History, Bible, and Literature

This year Kennady is doing the second half of Exploring World History from Notgrass with the addition of a few things along the way so it will still be a full credit in History. The Bible portion of this course will still be a full credit as well. I'm planning for the Literature portion to be a half credit. So far it's worked out that she's just had the essays and poetry to read for Lit, and the full-length novels will mostly be in second semester when she will have a bit more time.

From the High School Lesson Book - First Quarter Review on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com


Electives

Children's Chorus - Kennady sings in the upper level chorus and this excellent program provides a full Fine Arts credit with its outstanding music education in choral singing. She's also an intern with the Chorus this year, assisting the Director of the upper elementary age chorus, and also earns credit for that. The upper level chorus is one of the featured choirs at a Reformation celebration concert this coming weekend.

Guitar Lessons - Kennady also earns a full music credit with guitar lessons again this year, and she plays and sings on worship teams at church.

Architecture and Drafting - we recently reviewed an online course called Thinking Like an Architect, which would provide a quarter credit for high school. She's done some of the coursework leading up to the review, but I've allowed her to set it aside until after the holidays. We're considering adding some technical drawing and drafting, and maybe some of the Introduction to Architecture course at SchoolhouseTeachers.com in the second semester for a Tech credit. That's still to be decided exactly how we'll work that out.

(Read our review here: Thinking Like an Architect from Innovators Tribe (A Homeschool Coffee Break Review))

Thinking Like an Architect from Innovators Tribe (A Homeschool Coffee Break Review) on Homeschool Coffee Break @ kympossibleblog.blogspot.com

Introduction to Architecture on SchoolhouseTeachers.com

(Now is a super time to check out SchoolhouseTeachers.com - no coupon code required to take advantage of their current Flash Sale. Just go to the Join Now page and choose the Ultimate Annual BOGO Membership.)



Where are you in your school year? Are you on track? Leave a comment and let me know!

This post will be shared at Homeschool Blog & Tell at The Homeschool Post, and will be linked at the Homeschool Linky Party on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.

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 ©2006-2017 Homeschool Coffee Break. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://kympossibleblog.blogspot.com/