Thursday, September 13, 2012

Reading Aloud to Our Kids

shuckclod's stuff Back to School kit

     I love reading books to my kids. It's part of our daily routine.  I read books to them whenever I can, if possible, everyday. We read just anywhere and everywhere, in whatever position we want. 

Jan 2007

Jan 2007

There were times we would read non-stop through several chapters, there were times we would only read one. I  love to hear the kids beg, "Mom, just one more chapter please..." Reading aloud also makes it easier for the kids to remember history and people(like when we read 'Long Way to a New Land', Riding the Pony Express, and Keep the Lights Burning Abbie) It is also a good and better alternative to T.V and an effective means to  teach the kids new  words.   Reading aloud gives us a bond like no other.  it is a very special "mom-and-me" time.

     We started with Ginger Pye this quarter because I felt the kids would like the story.  It's about a kid and his smart dog. Though some twists made us sad - like Ginger being "dog-napped", we still enjoyed reading this simple, lighthearted story.  Riel was inspired to read his dictionary after reading Frindle.  We excitedly journeyed with Ralph in his little adventures in Ralph the Mouse and The Mouse and the Motorcycle ... we  even joked that maybe Aethan may be able to talk to mice because he also loves motorcycles.  We had a good laugh reading The Whipping boy...the names  of the characters were ridiculously funny like Hold-Your-Nose-Billy and Cutwater.Though  I skipped some lines/words which I think were not okay, overall, It was heartwarming to read how the two boys became friends.

     We don't just laugh when I read aloud to the kids. Many times I would cry while reading books like George Muller and The Missionary stories. My boys would tap my back and say, "Mom, it's okay...". 

     George Muller's story taught me valuable life lessons. As I read it, I knew God was talking to me more than He was talking to the kids.  It was inspiring to read how God transformed George -  from a lying thief, a rich brat who gambled and partied all night -- to someone who dedicated his life to help other people, carrying nothing in his pocket but his faith, trusting God to meet all of his financial needs.  I was reminded of how important it is to seek God's direction in every decision we make and everything we do and how important it is for a wife to support her husband in his calling. It's a book I want to read over and over again just so I can grasp and put to heart every nugget of wisdom there is.

     The Missionary Stories with the Millers showed us that missionary life is difficult but very fulfilling.  I was particularly moved with the story of  Tisese, a young African boy, who begged to be allowed to travel through the African jungles to share the gospel to his family, undaunted by the threat of lions along the way,  unaffected by the burning desert sands even if he was in pain.  With feet that are sore and covered with blisters and blood he must have repeated  these words over and over again, "My father may be killed in tribe fighting. My mother may be eaten by lions while she works in the garden. My brothers and sisters might die before next year, and never hear of Jesus!" His father was a witch doctor who killed more than six hundred people every year, poisoned those who oppose him and  buried people alive.  But  nothing is really impossible with God, He changes hearts. All we need to do is obey. Tisese's father and his whole family, and hundreds more in their village were converted and became Christians because of the faith and love of this young missionary. 

     As I read the last chapter of the book, Aethan said, "Oh no mommy, I love this book, I want more stories like these..."  The book ended with this line  "There is no better place to be than the place where God calls you." I took this time to remind them of God's great plan for their life. (Jer29:11) What privilege it is to be the one to read these books to my kids, and together  with them, see God's awesome power at work in our world.  Reading-aloud to our kids is an investment like no other. ;-)

Our other read-aloud books this year:

shuckclod's stuff Back to School kit

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Human Anatomy

        This school year, we are using Jeanne Fulbright's Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology.   I never thought my kids (7 and 8 years old) would enjoy studying the anatomy of a cell but they did!  If only I read this book when I was in school, I would have appreciated the subject more.  :-)

      As we reviewed why the Ancient Egyptians adopted mummification rituals. We practiced the mummification process by making an apple mummy. God also used this experiment to teach a very valuable lesson on obedience (but that's another story...) :-)

Template by Connie Prince and kit by WA World (gottapixel)

template by Sus Designs, Amy Dane designs - something beautiful kit, royGbiv flowers by cwpicket

The yummiest part was making our cell and eating it too!

noreimerreason template 9, paper by angie briggs, alpha by One of a Kind  Studio, notepad by kim meeder

      We ended lesson 1 by making their life size "twin".
andreagold696, let mescrapbook kit, alpha by karen diamond, back to school WA by Tina chambers

 Being a nurse came in handy.  Teaching the kids the Heimlich Maneuver.

We just went to this clinic to get Dad's back x-ray and what do we get in return? -a  free lesson about x-ray from a very kind radiologist technician, Kuya NapA :-)

Studying the blood using corn syrup, red nips, white jelly and sprinkles which represented blood's major components:  Plasma - RBC - WBC - Platelets

 Studied how bile breaks down those large clumps of fat into smaller clumps that are easier for our small intestine to digest  - using cooking oil, water and soap.

We tried to make Mr. Clay stand up without his bones ....

The chicken bone experiment: How does acid affect our bones?

and here are our lapbooks!!!

Riel and Aethan also made a human body gameboard

the template was downloaded - just cant remember the website :-(

Kids favorite: The making of the yummiest DNA...

We were disappointed at first when we found our Twizzlers cut in half so the outcome was not as I expected but the kids still had a blast - especially in the 'eating part' of the activity. It felt like the 'Marshmallow Test' as Riel and Aethan tried to resist the urge to eat their favorite gummies. I told them to wait until we have made a model of theDNA. As they were threading the bears onto the toothpick, I would see them smelling the gummies, resisting the temptation to eat. After our lesson, what a relief it was for them to finally enjoy their DNA.

My personal favorite is this cell community that my kids made.

here, Lysosomes are represented as policemen

Mitochondira as the power source in the community

The Golgi bodies as grocery stores

The Centrioles as "moms" who are clone makers

The Nucleus as the government

Praise God for homeschooling!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012


     Riel, my 8 years old son, made this short story book using Tangrams.    It was about the animals' journey to find a new land. I was touched when I read his story because the king (lion) reminded me of Jesus. In their journey, the king promised them that they will find the good land no matter how many hardships they encounter. Their journey lasted for 40 days and 40 nights and they were surprised to find the king on top of the mountain he called 'Mount Crescendo'.  The king said he never left them and that he was always watching them. Riel's last line in the story was: "When it's with the king, there is joy".
      I hugged him after I read the story and he said he was really thinking of Jesus when he wrote it.:-)

Designs by angel - kit -Reflect
bBrenda from Millstream - Best of all He's mine kit - fish
alpha by ronna penner