Thursday, December 8, 2016

Home Schooling 101: A Perfect Day


What is a perfect Home Schooling Day for us?

It would of course, start the night before when goals are set. Then,  starting the day with a prayer after the basic things are done.

Bathroom. Fixing of the bed and room.

One hour of chores while I prepare a hasty or deliberately special breakfast. Usually, it is  bread or crackers and spread.  Their favorite is peanut butter and jelly sandwich or  Nutella on Skyflake’s crackers.

Then we listen to the gospel readings for the day.

Then we do some worship songs and sometimes some wake up danceable tunes.

Then, while I am in the kitchen preparing for 2 meals ( hopefully) the girls start their seat work lessons. The target for the little one is 2 hours per day then lots of play time/ entertainment.

Our top favorite are Barney and Friends, Tea Time with Tayla and Peppa Pig.

Another option are the following for the 2 girls together or individually:

They have  one hour time with Joseph Hoffman on youtube for their piano lessons.
BBC  Learning Spanish.
Learning Arabic with Maya.
Katie Hill voice lessons.

Ruel comes home at 1:30pm  and that is the time we have lunch.

3pm is  Divine Mercy 3 o’clock prayer time with the chaplet.  Then more seatwork lessons until 6pm.

Marina should be clocking in 5-6 hours of home school time with one hour or more seat down sessions with me for quizzes and reviews.

Another one hour or so with her dad for her  Saxon Math 7 and her SAT reviewer.

We observe the Angelus at 12 noon and 6 pm and then Rosary time is before bedtime around 9 or 10 in the evening.

No TV time is the general rule for weekdays which runs from Sunday to Thursday.

We have movies on  Friday  or Saturday evening on the television depending on the load of activities for our weekend.

Thus, a perfect day for us would be a balance of  chores, prayer, academics and the music, arts ,games/dancing /exercise and  entertainment and rest while we attempt to achieve our targets.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Homeschooling 101: Life is a picnic in the park


Last Monday, Dec.5 saw us at the Aspire Park for a closing Picnic with the Doha Home Educators parents and kids.
I’d say, we were all in all approximately a group of 60-70 heads.
It was such a lovely day with a cool weather..the sun was not biting at all.
The green grass was so lovely and the sky so blue.
Picture perfect.
Marina had a chance to bond with some new found friends and strolled to a nearby bridge and had photos with them. She has been reminding me to ask one mom for copies. She told me also about a newcomer to the group who is Irish. She was so amused by the young lady’s accent.
My little one surprised me by her self confidence level. She went to the playground herself in search for her sister.
I had to remind her though not to do that without telling me…since I was busy chatting and did not realize she strolled away…anyway, it was a nice feeling for me to see her walking back from the playground after I realized  around 2 minutes that she was not around.
She also claimed her certificate of attendance under the big tent when her name was called without need for encouragement. Her big sister was beaming with pride and happiness too seeing her do this.
They are so looking forward to the spring Co-op next year.
Hope it does not run conflict with our March 2017 plans.
Hopefully, no more flu bouts that cost us 2 sessions.

Ending this blog with some photos and some thoughts on how to teach our kids to have  a good sense of self and yet truly humble in the face of adversity or rejection.

Life on earth has this mark; it cannot be without burden. This is normal. Faith brings no illusion of a life without consequences and demands. Being open to the imperfections of human nature — being subject to time; being limited by space; being affected by human emotions and relations; becoming vulnerable to pain and sickness.
Let us make (our kids) them experience our presence and concern. Let us share with them the gift of our time and attention, and the gift of our active listening and understanding.

Thus, although life is not always a nice walk in the park, we can still make the best of the situation by having a smile in the heart knowing we are loved and accepted as we are no matter what.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

HomeSchooling 101: Going Vananas! Let's build our Home School!

December 1,2016

My sleep was rested, but, many times, I woke up having extended thoughts of this and that and a dream of mom and dad.

Mom and dad were busy tinkering about their unfinished home. It was roughly finished but had a very good vision of things to come with the right amount of time, effort and resources.

Have been wondering the message since 5am this morning.

Dad’s first year death anniversary is fast approaching and I just verbalized to a good friend that I have been so sad and morose about it all.

It is only these past few days that I have been zealous to wipe off the dusty cobwebs from my mind and the gloomy rainy weather here in Qatar has not been helping much.

Anyway,  Marcelina and I are still trying to battle the nasty cough we have as a residue of the awful bout we had with fever. Marina started it on the 14th of November and battled it for almost a week while Marcelina and I had a long extended fight with it. It was most relentless and virulent.

I am on my 2nd bottle of cough syrup (made in France) which taste so heavenly like Vanilla Ice Cream while Marcelina is content with a bottle made in Jordan and tastes like green tea.

Anyway, today, the question I want to pursue is this:

Have you fully grasped your life’s purpose?

Contemplating on the past 6 weeks with Doha Home Educators and the wonderful photos of my kids and other home schooled kids, makes me really happy and grateful for the journey I have had with  the inspiration and then the decision to home school the girls.

It is not easy to stay on course especially when challenges come that almost always blows out your steam or steals the wind from your sail.

The almost decade of  pursuing education inside our home was not easy to say the least…but oh so worth it when  I see my 5 year old  so diligent to finish her seat work and   bask in their dad’s reaction to her work. He  thought it was Marina’s work…

So, yes, this morning, the sun is thank God shining so brightly, and  the course is still set at acquiring education within our home, with our own efforts and timetable whether  people around approves of   it or not.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Home Schooling 101 : Goin Vananas!

November 1,2016

Hi blogging sphere!!!

I am back!

Indeed, I am back with a new perspective and a purpose. Not that I didn’t have one before…but, I just got a bit derailed with certain events, that did put a damper on my days.

The dark nights are over. The storm clouds are passing. The rays of hope are shinning once again.

My blog format will change in tone and theme a bit.

I am waiting for my technical support hubby to work on a new button on my current blog site and in the meantime, will  put my 365 Days with the Lord to drafts while I refocus on Homeschooling with the girls.

I will continue doing my  daily reflections privately first.

The focus  is on  our daily homeschooling efforts.

Actually, months ago,  the girls and I gathered on my bed drawing plans for this coming December and new year.

We brainstormed for ideas and the why’s of our Vlog  on youtube and  the projects.

We finalized the reasons   and the name.

Going Vananas!

Our  tagline: When life throws you lemons,  what are you to do? Answer: make a lemonade! When life goes bananas, what do you do? Answer: Make a  choco banana milkshake, banana cake, banana fritters, banana Q, banana split etc. etc.

Cheesy? Corny?

But...the list is endless as the possibilities.

So why Vananas?

V stands for Victory and my first born’s first name Victoria Marina.

The first Ana is me, Angelli Anne.

Then the second Ana is my 2nd born, Ana Marcelina.

We hope to learn and improve our video editing skills which at present is zero.

We have a handful of videos already awaiting  editing and release.

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Marina is using second hand books for her 7th grade curriculum. She is trying her best to work out her irritation of seeing answers on blanks. I stress to her mastery over speed and to work on her attitude to determine a better altitude.

The best people did not have it easy. Abraham Lincoln had to   contend with one book and walk miles to borrow another one for his own education, I think? Hope I am not mistaken with my facts.

Marcelina on the other hand will be working on her old books and free curriculum until we get her 2nd set of grade one books. Hopefully real soon.

We are focusing currently on mental math and learning to speak 2 languages. That will keep us real busy till the new year.

**** *** ***

Last night and today, most people of the western world are busy with parties of costumes and fun. I like that, but this year, we have toned down that part. Instead we had an early tradition building of having our own brand of thanksgiving last October 21,2016.

The girls hand painted  the  HAPPY THANKSGIVING  banner.  I worked on the ribbed carton tree while Marina made the fall colored leaves where our guests would write their thanksgiving notes on. It was real fun!  Even beyond the date, anybody who would come in our home, would be asked to  add a leaf to our tree.

Ruel found it corny…but later on warmed up to the idea.

Gratitude is one of the best attitude one can ever have.

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Tomorrow I will blog more on  our participation on the Doha Home Educators Fall Coop.  A very wonderful experience for all of us to renew and refresh our own homeschooling efforts.