Posts Tagged ‘Homeschool’

Since I homeschool my kids, I’m always looking for ways to make school more creative…more fun…more engaging…more enjoyable.  Sometimes I draw a blank, but I often manage to come up with some fun ideas that the kids love.

One favorite activity is as follows:

1.  The mom/teacher writes activities on slips of paper and folds them

2.  After the child completes a problem (or 5 problems, or a whole page) they get to choose one slip of paper and do the activity on the paper.

3.  Repeat step 2 until all work is done.

pick a slip bowl

If you come up with a large list of activities (many slips of paper), you can keep them in a jar or container and re-use them as often as needed.  Here’s some ideas (not all of these are pure “fun” activities, but they do give the kids a break from school):

* build a tower out of blocks

* do one math problem on the computer (or math game) for 2 minutes

* eat 1 chocolate chip

* do 5 somersaults

* play 1 song on the piano, harmonica, kazoo, or tin whistle

* put away 5 things in the living room

* draw a Star Wars character (customize this one to your child’s interests)

* send a text message (my kids love to text my sisters on my phone)

* send an e-mail (grandmas love getting e-mail from grandkids!)

* go outside and scatter some corn or birdseed for the birds

* bird watch for 1 minute (we have active and busy feeders outside out front window)

* put away 10 things in your bedroom

* jump 30 times with the jump rope

* eat at least 5 nuts or seeds

* drink 1 cup of water

* play a tic-tac-toe game with an imaginary opponent

* read 1 page in a book

And so on.  The possibilities are really endless.  Of course, the kids have to be watched so they don’t “abuse” the game (so they don’t take too long doing activities or decide they don’t want to do something, put it back, and choose a different one); if they don’t like the activity they chose, they “forfeit” that turn and do their next set of problems.  But for the most part they really love this game and it’s a great way to get them excited about finishing schoolwork quickly and well.


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I’ve been trying to decide for a couple of days whether I should post on this topic or not.  More than likely it’ll bring even more “haters” down on my head.  But this is my blog and I have just as much freedom of speech as anyone else, so I decided to do it.

First, I want to give a little background to both myself and the Facebook group I started.  I’ve told the Facebook group beginning to numerous media sources but the general public hasn’t yet heard it. 

About me: I’m 34 years old, originally from northern Wisconsin, a beautiful land covered in deep green forests and thousands of lakes and rivers. 

county j9

County J, a beautiful road near Eagle River, Wisconsin

I’m the oldest of 7 kids.  I was homeschooled (except for one semester of high school when I attended full-time so I could take driver’s training) until college, which I attended in Utah.  I graduated from LDS Business College (LDSBC) with an Associate of Science degree, transferred to BYU, and graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Arts in English. 

I met my husband John at LDSBC in 1995.  We are both members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS church) and both of us served as volunteer missionaries from 1996-1998.  We got married in May of 1998 a few months after coming home from our missions.  We now have three children, which I homeschool.  My husband works as a computer programmer.  I fill my spare time with writing, reading, knitting/crochet, music, and time with family and friends. 

applied i-cord edging

Detail from one of my knitting projects

John and I moved into our current home in West Valley in 2003.  Since we had both recently finished college and had 3 small kids, we were excited to make new friends and meet people.  But most young people in our area were still in school and working and too busy to have time for friends.  In the spring of 2004, Josh and Susan Powell bought a house in our neighborhood and came to church.  Their first Sunday at church we introduced ourselves and told them we’d love to have them over sometime to get to know them.  They said “Sure, that sounds great!”

We thought that was the end of that, assuming they were as busy as everyone else and wouldn’t have time.  But we were proved wrong the next Sunday when they asked, “Is today good for getting together?”

Since that time, we’ve been very, very close friends.  The Powells came over to our house at least once a week, many times more often.  We went on picnics together, babysat each other’s kids, went to parades and movies and other activities.  We stayed home and played games, watched movies, went on walks and bike rides. 


Thanksgiving a few years ago with Josh, Susan, and my family

When Susan went missing three weeks ago, I was besieged with phone calls all day from members of my local congregation (called a “ward,” for those unfamiliar with LDS terms).  They knew I was in close contact with both Josh and Susan’s family and they wanted to stay in touch constantly.  I tried sending out mass update messages to my ward friends on Facebook but it just got too overwhelming to try to update everyone that way.

When Kayla Reed (ward member and friend) suggested that I start a Facebook group so we could all stay in touch easier, I thought it was a terrific idea.  I’d never started one before and didn’t know anything about it but the process was easy enough and took less than 5 minutes.  I started it at 6pm on Tuesday, December 8.  The purpose of this group was to give the ward members a chance to easily interact/comfort/share news with each other about Susan’s disappearance. 

I had no idea it would expand so quickly.  No idea that Susan’s family and Josh’s family would visit the page to update us all on the search for Susan AND to receive much-needed comfort and support.  No idea that it would become “Search Central” with a wealth of information on donations to Susan’s family, lists of people with specialized volunteer help, people willing to do a physical search, and many other topics.  No idea that thousands upon thousands of people from all over the world would join to get news, updates, and express their prayers and support for Susan’s family.  No idea that this little group would become such an invaluable tool for finding Susan.  Within days we were over several thousand members and now, less than three weeks later, the group membership is over 10,000.  The purpose of the group has changed a little, and I’ve had to “hire” additional administrators (these other admins are volunteers and doing hundreds of hours of behind-the-scenes work on YouTube channels, social media, and other things to help find Susan…and all of this in addition to their regular full-time jobs, families, and normal busy lives). 

Like anything in life, with growth comes problems.  We’ve asked—as have Susan’s and Josh’s families—over and over that no one posts anything negative, hurtful, speculative, or accusatory on this Facebook group.  99% of the group members have honored this request.  But some have not, and they’ve had their posts deleted and if they’re repeat offenders, we’ve had to ban them from posting to the group.  Also, I have found myself, to my surprise and disgust, bearing the brunt of many online attacks from anything from my physical appearance to accusations of “wanting fame” and “trying to get rich” from Susan’s story. 

These accusations are very hurtful.  They cause tons of additional pain to myself and those of us who are already hurting so much that it seems impossible we can feel any more pain.  People want to know, Why are you still friends with Josh?  Why aren’t you physically searching all day long?  Why don’t you ask Josh, if he’s still your friend, all the questions people want to know?

When I tell people the answers to these questions, they either 1) don’t believe me or 2) dismiss my answer as something they don’t want to hear and would rather belittle, criticize, and make fun of. 

Here, once and for all is the short answer to those questions: You don’t know all the details here.  There are many, many details of Susan’s background/relationship with Josh/etc. that have NOT been made public.  And you WILL NOT hear them from me, either.  My whole goal, focus and priority here is to find Susan.  This includes not telling the world things the police want kept inside the investigation

There are things the general public has never even thought of, about this investigation.  And it’s going to stay that way.  I’m not going to explain my reasons for remaining Josh’s friend or what I have or haven’t asked him.  What I will do (and have done) is tell the police any and all information I have that will help them find Susan. 

And as for physically searching?  Yes, I’ve seen the comments out there.  Some people think they can use the internet to spew poison and vitriol on anything and anyone they want to because they’re “safely anonymous.”  So they can say anything they want about anyone, no matter if it’s slander or libel or defaming someone’s character and reputation.  Not to mention, cruel, hurtful, and tearing someone’s soul to shreds.

Here’s the lowdown on the physical search: Chuck Cox, Susan’s father, has said that if anyone wants to do their own search, you must contact the West Valley PD.  Get their permission and register a record of where in the wilderness you want to search and then report back to them after you’re done.

As for me?  People are always asking me what I believe happened to Susan.  I’ve imagined many horrible scenarios but the one I believe most likely (for reasons I won’t share, but I will say they’re good reasons) is that Susan has been taken against her will and is most likely not in the state of Utah.  This is why I personally am not out searching the desert or mountains with my three little kids.  I won’t waste my time or resources fruitlessly looking for someone who may not even be in the state.  Instead, what I believe to be the greatest help here is the vast power of the internet. 

I’ve seen how fast something can spread across the internet.  It’s a very powerful tool.  I know the “haters” will keep laughing at me for doing this, saying I’m wasting my time and it won’t do a bit of good because they believe Josh has done the unthinkable and that Susan’s body is dumped somewhere close by.  So, according to them, I’m dumb and naive (and worse) for believing anything else. 

Well, guess what…as I said above, I have my reasons for believing what I believe and I’m not going to share them with anyone but the police.  So here’s a suggestion to all the “armchair detectives” and “amateur gumshoes” and all the rest who want to spend their day criticizing, defaming, and hurting others with their cruel words: why don’t you start using your energy to HELP find Susan instead of HURT? 

But I suppose I’m wasting my breath.  If you really cared, you’d be either joining our effort to post fliers in every state and city or spread the word online or else coming up with your own effort.  You see, unlike you, I believe and hope that Susan is still alive.  And even if she isn’t, I also believe that someone, somewhere, knows or has seen something that will help us find her.  So yes, I believe I am not wasting my time by doing everything I can do—especially online—to spread her name and picture to the far corners of the globe. 

I want my friend back.  More than anything else in the world.  If you want to find her, please help in a constructive way…not by tearing down and hurting others.

One last thing.  As to accusations of wanting fame and money from this?  Wow.  That is the most hurtful of all.  I would not take one penny from ANYONE in the media or anywhere else in this effort to find Susan.  And I know very well that I’m no model—I do not like being on camera and I hate the sound of my recorded voice.  Please believe me when I say that appearing on local and national TV are the last things I want to be doing with my time.  I would not do any of the media interviews if I didn’t believe it helps get her name and story out to the world.  And I can promise you that I have never, EVER contacted a single media outlet, asking them to come interview me.  They all call me…e-mail me…show up at my house unannounced. 

But I know you probably won’t believe that, either.  So go ahead with your time-wasting hatred that doesn’t do anyone one bit of good (especially yourselves).  As for me and my friends and the thousands of people that truly care about Susan, we’re going to spend all of our time and energy on helping any way we can to find our Susan and get her back to her family.

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Why whipped cream, you ask? Well, it’s because this is just a short, fluffy little entry…nothing too important…but kinda sweet and nice, like whipped cream on top of cake.

A few fun things about my day today:

* My husband is working from home, at least for now. It’s quite an adjustment but it’s lovely to see his handsome face all day!

* The kids did their first “Quills and Magical Writing” lesson. We made two kinds of quills…the “real” kind, carved nibs and home-made berry ink and everything, and another kind that we slipped ink tubes from pens into and then decorated. SOOOOO fun!! Pics available here.

* I haven’t read aloud from novels much to the kids, because the younger two have not been very interested up until now. However, we started reading The BFG by Roald Dahl last night, and they love it! They kept saying “just one more chapter” last night and tonight we read for almost an hour, till my voice was giving out. Bran drew the Bloodbottler spitting out nasty bits of snozzcumbers all over. I can’t believe he/they are so into it and I’m thrilled about it. Tomorrow: my favorite chapter…the hilarious whizzpoppers.

* I made plans with my lovely sis for the kids and I to go spend time with her boys at the Red Balloon toy store tomorrow while she’s doing a photo shoot, then we’ll have a fun afternoon together. Can’t wait to see my cute nephews!

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All week I’ve wanted to write a post here, but got busy and forgot or else didn’t have pictures ready.  So today I’m just going to play a little “catch up” game and write about several different events.

On Thursday, June 11, some of my sisters and I went to This is the Place heritage pioneer park.  I’d found out at the last minute that it was free that day, courtesy of John Huntsman Sr., and even though the girls had their ballet recital that night, we really wanted to go.

We prayed for good weather (rain/storms were forecast!) and off we went.  We had so much fun!  I’m sure we didn’t even see half the houses/pioneer things, but what we saw was great.  The kids and I have never been before, though my sisters Kaatia and Kimia had.  We rode the train around the village, went inside some tiny pioneer cabins (one tiny thing the size of my living room supposedly housed nine people! And I have a small living room), visited the baby animal petting area, had pony rides, enjoyed free ice cream cones, bought toys and fresh popcorn at the general store, marveled at a blacksmith at work making an intricate iron leaf in front of our eyes, and camped out in a tipi when it started to pour. 

b bath            b bran on path           b Bran skull      

Old wooden bathtub           Bran and cousins              Bran and cow skull

b coffin                b cousin                       b goat

Zombie Ciara             Nia and cousin enjoying popcorn            Ciara and baby goat

b lamb       b mill        b nia tipi

   Nia and lamb            In front of a mill             Nia in a tipi

b shawl                         b train       b wagon

Beautiful crocheted shawl             Kid train                 Nia “driving” a wagon

The rain never stopped, so we had to run/walk all the way down the long hill (the train was completely full) to try to find some shelter in a very leaky twig-roofed pavilion.  We ate lunch in the driest corner, only getting dripped on a few times a minute, then drove across the street to the zoo.  (Apparently they let you in for a half-hour guest pass for free if you want to visit the store.) 

After stopping at the zoo gift shop to get some top-secret things (new Hogwarts pets for the kids), we drove home—starved, soaked, muddy, and looking like drowned rats.  

Nia had fallen so much in love with a tiny barn owl she saw at the gift shop that she cried almost all the way home at having to leave him.  I told her, “Nia, you asked Hagrid to send you a cat for your new pet.”  She sobbed, “But Mama, I love that tiny owl!”  I told her that if she wrote Hagrid a letter as soon as she got home, maybe it wouldn’t be too late and he would get her letter in time to send her an owl instead.

The second we got home she ran into the house, grabbed paper and pencil, and wrote a new letter to Hagrid, complete with a quickly-drawn owl picture:

dear Hagred

I chaed my mind i wond a owel

Love Nia

Even though we were limited for time, I boxed up the three owls I bought at the zoo (Bran decided he wanted an owl at the shop also), attached letters from Hagrid, and left the packages on the doorstep.  I also got my own little stuffed owl wet and sat him on top of the pile (since, you know, it had been quite a storm that afternoon as he battled his way to our house with the packages).

brown paper packages

Brown paper packages tied up with string

When John came home from work, I asked him to ring the doorbell.  The kids ran to the door, shrieking and screaming.  When they saw the packages they screamed even more and ripped them open.  All three kids were in rapture, hugging their owls, but Nia’s joy was hilarious to behold.  She fell on the floor, she was so thrilled to be reunited with her tiny little friend:

nia owl 2

Bran was very happy with his great horned owl, and Ciara loved her absolutely perfect snowy owl.

Bran owl          ciara owl         nia owl

          “Bark”                              “Frosting”                           “Scribbles”

After a quick dinner it was time to put the girls’ hair in buns and leave for the ballet recital!

b ciara in costume

    Ciara in her “military” costume

b nia costume

           Nia as a forest fairy

We had a bit of a mishap with Ciara forgetting her red belt, but she bravely carried on and did a wonderful job dancing with her class to “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”  Nia was adorable, of course, and remembered her steps perfectly to “Entrance of the fairy king” from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

I had to sit in the balcony with the tumbling class and guide them to the stage in time for their number, but in between I was hanging over the railing, watching every step of my girls with more-than-misty eyes. 

On Saturday morning Owl Post delivered the kids’ first Care of Magical Creatures lessons—the first of 4 lessons about owls.  It was grand to see their excitement as they pored over non-fiction books about owls, looking for the answers to their homework.  This Hogwarts school thing is working out very well!

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Whew, this week has been quite the whirlwind!  I thought I’d put up a little summary of the daily craziness for those who are wondering why I haven’t written for a few days. 🙂


Actually a nice day, not too busy.  I spent quite a bit of time reading up on Hogwarts classes and ideas and did a bunch of research.  We visited the library and had a lovely time getting books.  I found several books on dragons and fairies for the Care of Magical Creatures classes.  Also: Nia got her first “big” books!  By “big” I mean pages and pages of words without many pictures.  She checked out several fairy books and I wondered if she would even read one, let alone all her stack.  She never has before…she’s just devoured picture books and Barbie comic books/graphic novel things.

Nia’s new obsession.

She proved me wrong, much to my delight.  She’s whipping through all those books and I’m so proud of her!  I can’t believe how well she reads at only 6 years old.

Ciara and I also ran to Michaels/Petsmart/WalMart before 9pm to get some supplies for Hogwarts.


More Hogwarts research + loads and loads of laundry.  I had also decided, on Monday, to do “House Points” as part of the Hogwarts school thing.  Ciara thought of using empty water bottles for the containers and we also got some bags of small, colored “fish rocks” gravel for the “gems” in the house points containers.  Tuesday morning the kids sorted a multi-colored bag into individual colors…green for Bran, pink for Nia, blue for Ciara (and dark purple for me, just for fun). 

We bought the multicolored pack.

In the afternoon I washed the bottles, tied ribbons on them, packed bottles/house points chart/bags of rocks in a box, addressed it and tied it with string, and left it on the doorstep.  I also got my little stuffed owl wet and set him on top.  I rang the doorbell and asked the kids to answer the door.

They screamed and shrieked!  They were very excited.  I asked them, “Why do you think the owl’s wet?  And why was he so late?  Didn’t your letter this morning say the package should be here?”  Nia answered, “Maybe he got rained on!”  (It has been stormy all day.)  All three of them immediately ran to start doing things to earn points.  They made their beds.  Bran and Nia knelt down and said their “morning prayers.”  (John said, “Um, guys, it’s 6pm.  That doesn’t count as a morning prayer!”)

I took pictures of the House Points containers and the owl but they’re still on my phone.  I’ll put them up later.  It is great fun to be able to say “5 points to Gryffindor!” and “20 points for Hufflepuff!” and such.  And wow, the kids absolutely love it.  Oh, and they can also get points taken away for bad behavior…which is very nice. :D   

At 6:30 I left to attend Enrichment night, which was hilarious and fun…a service auction.  We got points for doing things like reading scriptures, exercising, saying “I love you” to someone that day, making our beds, taking time for ourselves, etc.  I had 700 points to bid on things.  I bought two separate things of 3 hours of babysitting each (SWEET!!!  Dates with John!!) and a german chocolate pie for the kids.  As for my services, I auctioned off a pair of crocheted double-thick pretty hotpads as well as four services: 4 piano lessons (30 min. each), an hour of weeding, an hour of teaching someone to lead music, and 2 hours of teaching someone to knit or crochet. 

Marie Callenders: German Chocolate Pie.


Dress rehearsal day!  We ran around getting ready not only for being gone at dress rehearsal all day, but also Cub Scouts.  I knew the kids wouldn’t eat sandwiches if I packed any, so Ciara and I went to WalMart at 6:30a.m. to get snacks (granola bars, crackers, etc.  I was quite pleased to see that WalMart actually had wheat-free ginger snap cookies for Bran!).  We got to the rehearsal shortly after 11.  Ciara practiced her dance at 12:10 and did such a wonderful job.  Nia didn’t go on till 1:45, and in the meantime I had signed up for several hours of volunteer work so I sat at the picture/finance table and also helped put together 140 gift bags for the dancers.  My sister Kaatia came with her kids to watch the rehearsals since she can’t make it to the recital.  Thanks so much, Kaatia!  It meant a lot to the girls.

Bran and I raced to Scouts at 3:20.  It started at 4 and only 4 boys came (half our den).  It was pouring rain but they had fun making Father’s Day crafts.  Then we drove back through the “flood” to rehearsal and were there another hour before the girls were done.  They were so tired when they finished and we were all so starved that John took us out to dinner at a new restaurant.  We assumed it was just a buffet place, since that’s what it was called, but it was actually Chinese and not too bad.  It even had octopus and oysters (ewwww!!).  I probably wouldn’t eat there again but it was fun.


We’re heading off soon to This is the Place since it’s a free admission day and normally so expensive that we’ve never gone.  All of my sisters are meeting us there for a fun morning of exploring pioneer times and seeing lots of animals.  We’re praying the forecasted rain will hold off till noon at least.  Tonight is the dance recital.  The girls are excited! 

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I always do school with the kids year-round, but this summer we’re going to add something that will make school REALLY fun and get the kids very excited about learning.  A friend at our homeschool co-op got the ball rolling, and some others have joined in, making this a truly fun and awesome adventure (thanks Monica, Rebecca, and Tricia!).

What we’re doing: a term at Hogwarts correspondence school, with letters, lessons, and supplies arriving through Owl Post! 

How it works: I prepared acceptance letters for each child, and addressed them in true Potter style, such as:

Miss Ciara Hellewell

Large Pink Room, upstairs


The letters mysteriously arrive in the night and the kids find them the next morning.  Thursday night I left mine on a chair in the hall, complete with a little stuffed owl sitting on top:


Owl Post

They were excited (and a little confused) when they got their letters.  I had told them nothing beforehand except that “school this summer is going to be different and exciting.”  (Bran said: “School’s boring! How can it be exciting?”  I guess we’ve been spending a little too much time on worksheets and books.  My goal is to change his mind. :))  Once I explained a little about attending Hogwarts by mail, since we live in America, they started to get really excited.

“Do you mean owls will bring us stuff lots of days?”

“Will we even get WANDS?”

“What classes are we going to have?!”


The first letters: Acceptance to Hogwarts and Sorting Hat quiz

They do realize, underneath it all, that of course I’m the one doing it, but we are all having a lot of fun pretending.  After they filled out the Sorting Hat quiz on Friday and left the quiz for the owls to pick up that night, they were lying in their beds, wondering which House they would end up in.  Some “mysterious” hooting noises floated up the stairs, and I heard Nia say “Guys! I just heard OWL NOISES!!”

Saturday morning they woke up and rushed to the hall to see if the owls had left them fresh letters.  Sure enough, their House results had arrived!  The Sorting Hat sorted them: Ciara into Ravenclaw, Bran into Hufflepuff house, and Nia into Gryffindor.  The letters went into detail about why exactly they were chosen and what good traits they had that made them perfect for each house.  Bran and Ciara were a little depressed that they weren’t in Griffindor, but I’m hoping to capitalize on all their individual talents and abilities to really help them see how unique each child is.

Tonight’s Owl Post will feature a letter from Hagrid on selecting a proper magical pet to be their friend at Hogwarts, with instructions to write him a letter back letting him know which pet they prefer.  Future classes will include learning all about the care, history, and characteristics of these pets and how they have been viewed in legends and stories.

I’m still figuring this out, with the help of the wonderful moms who are already doing it.  They’ve posted awesome and clever lessons on Trolls (taught by Gilderoy Lockhart), Potions (taught by Theodore Nott), and others, such as several hilarious and un-grammatical Care of Magical Creatures lessons by Hagrid; also Nature lessons by Luna Lovegood and Hogwarts History with guest professor Hermione.  I’ve got lots of ideas boiling in my mind right now about more classes to add. 

Other lessons or ideas the moms have created so far:

* House elf Home Ec (cooking and sewing) taught by Dobby

* Quills and Magical Writing (penmanship, calligraphy, etc.)

* Divination

* Herbology

* Literature

* Astronomy

Please leave me comments or ideas of what other classes we could do and any other helpful ideas you have.  It’s a lot of fun so far!

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Nearly December!

Wow, time is going fast.  I just know there isn’t enough time with everything else to get all my Christmas projects finished.  I won’t say specifically what they are here, in case any of my family ever read this, but I can say that I’ve got two days to finish Bran’s crocheted ninja turtle.  It will stand about 18 inches tall and the stomach/chest plate opens to store all the weapons, etc. inside.  There is also an opening in the back shell to put your hand in and use it as a hand puppet.  His birthday is this Saturday.  I can’t really work on it except at night, though, or he’ll see it!  He asked me for weeks when I was ever going to finish it but it seems lately like he’s forgotten about it, so I am really excited to see his face when he opens it and realizes it’s finally done.

I’ve been thinking about Christmas traditions lately, especially with the colder weather and Christmas specials on TV.  As a child my sisters and I loved  Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town, that old stop-animation thing about Kris Kringle and Burger-Meister Meister-Burger and the Winter Warlock.  I’m so glad they still show it.  It’s the best!  We also loved the animated Grinch special.  For “real” people movies, there’s the unbeatable classic White Christmas.  I’m so excited that it was on TV the other day and John recorded it for me so I can finally watch it whenever I want. 

In other news, the kids and I are really loving the homeschool co-op that we participate in on Tuesday afternoons.  Next week is the last one before Christmas break for a month.  I’ve been teaching a crochet class for the last 12 weeks and I’ve really loved it.  I couldn’t have asked for a better group of kids–every single one of them is so bright, cheerful, and excited to learn.  Some of them are really excelling and it’s amazing to think that they had never picked up a crochet hook before September.  I’m going to miss them.

Next “semester” (each co-op term is 6 weeks), though, my kids are really excited about their classes–Nia and Bran will take Recorder while Ciara is in beading, and then Nia gets to be in a dance/movement class while Ciara and Bran take a crafts class.  Third hour they are all in a jump rope class, which should be really fun and different.  I’m excited for them.  I’m so glad we decided to be in the co-op this year again (we didn’t love it last year)–besides learning things that I can’t teach them from other teachers, they love playing with home-school friends that they normally wouldn’t get to see that often.

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