Our School Year 2011-2012, Kicks Off!

Well, forgive me for the delay with any updates about our new school year we’re in the midst of here!  Once we kicked it off at the beginning of September, we’ve been very occupied finding our groove, with our new schedules.  Things are quite different for us this year! With the kid’s respective ages and levels, life has opened up new and exciting opportunities, of experiences and learning, for all of them.  Not to mention new territories for us parents!  We have a high schooler now, for example, and with it comes all kinds of things.  But the younger ones are also following their passions and gifts, more so than ever.

Some of you may know this, but for those of you who do not, we are year round home schoolers.  We keep a lighter (academic) schedule in the summer, and begin a whole new school year/grade levels, in September.  It’s always a very, very exciting time, as we love to plan out and begin a new school year!  We’re really blessed that our kids are enthusiastic students, who love school and learning.  This coming school year, was filled with more anticipation than ever, and it’s been as CrAzY and exciting of a ride, as we expected.

I always take the kid’s new school photos on the first day of school.  This year, it was almost a week later, but we got it done.  We have also ‘always’ taken their portraits in the school room, at the side of the cabinets.  But if you follow our blog, you may be aware that we drastically changed our school room set-up, and those cabinets are gone!  You can see the  old and new set up of our school room, as well as the style of school photos we were taking in all previous years, in this recent post.

So this year, I did all of the kid’s school photos outside.  These photos will be in the sidebar quite soon, so that new comers can see the kiddos who make up our home schooling world.  In this post, we wanted to share with you a little about their (book) subjects they are studying this year, as well as some other little interesting tidbits of information.  In coming posts, we’ll be sharing a lot more, including activities/learning experiences outside of their academics, some deeper thoughts and observations I have had as a home schooling parent, and lots of other fun and interesting home schooling related posts. We hope you’ll join us for it all, with discussion and sharing of your own!

 

This is our oldest daughter/student, Alexis (14). Also known as {A} around the blog here.   She has been home schooled (not necessarily at home…right? lol),  since 3rd grade, and just started 9th grade this year. We can’t believe we have a high schooler now!  That means I worked hard over the summer, researching, and piecing together a serious 4 year college prep plan for her. And maybe panicking, just a little. The girl scares me, and excites me, and makes us all proud, all at the same time!  She has huge aspirations, and her heart set on really big name colleges.  We cannot let her down, and we believe in her, because she is so unique in her focus of her life at her age.   She is so faith-filled, determined, intelligent, tough, independent, and firm on the path she is laying out for herself.  What fascinates me, is it’s all a far cry from anything her father or I ever dreamed for ourselves, or were interested in.  But that’s why each one of us has our own calling, and why it’s important as home schooling parents, to help shape our children’s character, and foster the calling they feel God has put in their heart, as the work He has meant for them to do, in their life.   It’s all about guiding and supporting them, to be the people they are meant to be.

Throughout this past summer, Alexis taught the 4th Grade Religious Education at our parish (2 weeks), and ran the games activity for the kids of Vacation Bible School (1 week.)  She also earned herself a Catholic High School scholarship, that has covered all of the expenses of her academic and extra-curricular school year. We’re proud of her, and grateful as well!

This school year, as a high school Freshman, Alexis’ courses are:  Language Arts (Alpha Omega /LifePac),  Algebra (Math-U-See), Biology (Apologia), History/Social Studies (Streams of Civilization-Volume 2 Cultures in Conflict Since the Reformation), Latin (Latina Christiana), Spanish (All Bilingual) , Art and Music (Piano – private lessons, and the Recorder – all kids at home.).

Alexis is also playing sports now, for our town’s public South High School! She is really involved there. That is a whole other exciting post. I could easily ramble, so I’ll save it, but suffice it to say it’s been really wonderful for her so far, and exciting for us.  It is extremely time-consuming on a daily weekday basis.  But I’d say we best get used to it and keep making it work.

In the light of sharing all of their subjects in this post, I feel it’s important to mention, that we live our personal faith, which is Roman Catholic. So it’s not a subject the kids study for school, but more something we are always teaching them, and they are always living and learning it as they grow. Just as we still are as adults, actually. That said, they do begin each day all together, with a Scripture, discussion, and prayer.  As a tool, we still really love Living Faith-Kids!!

JackMichael(9), the first-born of the triplets.  Also known as {JM} around here.  He and the other 2 have the same academic subjects of course, being in the same grade level and age.   As I said, I’ll be posting more about what they love to do outside of their academic studies, and I’m excited to do so, because they are all so unique, with their interests and personalities. And yet, the differences from within their unique selves, meld together so well with each other.  It’s fascinating to me, to observe, frankly.  But anyway, for today, here are the subjects all 3 of them have this year:

Language Arts (Alpha Omega / LifePac),  Math (Delta / Math-U-See),  Science (Exploring Creation with Astronomy-Apologia), History/Social Studies (Christian Liberty Press / Our Nation Under God, and, History Stories for Children), Writing Strands, Spanish (All Bilingual), Latin (Prima Latina), Art and Music ( Recorder – all kids at home).

 

Olivia Faith (9), the second triplet born. {O}, which we tend to call her 1/2 the time, ourselves. The boys especially, refer to her as “O”, a lot. And you know what she calls them, when she’s talking to the both of them? “Boys”. It always cracks me up, because there is such a motherly air about the way she says it. So….our own little baby boom is “O and the Boys”, I guess. It has a cool little ring to it, now that I think about it. : )   Oh, speaking of their names, and {name initials in brackets}, I know we’ve been a little all over the place with it.  The thing is, using initials for any sake of privacy or protection, is pretty irrelevant by now, considering they’ve been on TV a few times now, (related to our Catholic faith) as well as the newspaper, for different things. All times with full names.  On the flip side, I have found myself continuing to use their initials in brackets sometimes, for the sake of brevity.  As you can see, my posts tend to be perhaps a little lengthy, so I need to use all the brevity tricks I can.  : )   The kids are all well aware, lots of people know who we are by name, but the reverse isn’t necessarily true. (Especially around our town, and the people we meet and run into in person.)



Shane Jacob (9), the last born of the trio.

(Reaching for ‘brevity’ now………..).  Shoot. I forgot what I was going to say. Ummmm. Oh yeah.  You see that beautiful little school desk in the background?  That is Michael’s, from when he was a little boy!!  What a treasure, huh?  That sweet and sentimental little antique is going to be another blog post coming up, that I am planning, as well. There’s some story to tell, and some specific things that are part of the desk, that you will not believe!!  Michael’s antique school desk, is not the only one we have to show you, either. So if you’re interested, be on the look out for that post too!

 

I am glad I thought of doing a quick ‘class picture’ of sorts, while we were at it.  I sure love my class!!

Honestly, I’ve struggled a little with this Home Schooling section of the blog, right along. It’s a lifestyle to us for sure,  but one that is just so normal to us, I think…”What is there to blog about?”.  But I know there is LOTS.  Lately, my realization of that has really broadened, and in the process, I have realized why I am not as active in this section. Which is crazy, because I so passionately love home schooling my kids, and living this life I do with my family, that it hardly makes sense.  But I see now where it comes from, and I think I’ll be sharing those thoughts very soon too.

So stay tuned!!  This home schooling section should be picking up steam, real soon!   You should know, we love comments and hearing from all of you! But if you are a home schooling blogger as well, we especially encourage comments with your blog-linked names, so that we can visit your stories and shared, comment, and connect with you all as well. Our hope and goal is that we are all an inspiration and encouragement for each other, in raising and educating our children, as home schoolers or not. Home schooling happens to be the route we have happily taken, with a deep love and passion for it. So our posts will derive from that life we live, as a home schooling family.  But proving a great education, however any of us do, is the more common thread.  So thanks so much for stopping by, and please DO again!  God bless you all!

Gosh, I promise I’ll work harder on that brevity thing, too.

******

 





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Comments

  1. Shannon velloza says:

    Your kids are gorgeous! I love reading your blog! LOVE it! So now I beg you don’t ever stop!

  2. Gina W says:

    Wow, they have gotten so big! They are pretty much all grown now. Shane is the spittin’ image of your husband. And the other boy looks a lot like you. I can’t really tell on the girls. Hoping you have a great year.

    • Laura says:

      Gina, I’m trying not to notice that they are growing up. Now, are you sure you don’t have the boys mixed up there? I see some of everyone, in everyone. But JackMichael looks just like Michael when he was little, and Shane has the same face shape as mine. But…stick to your guns if you’d like! lol. : )

      • Gina W says:

        Well I can only go by the pictures since you are the only one I have actually met in person. And based on the pictures I stand by what I said above. lol Maybe someday I will be able to meet all of you and then I can decide again. The Boston/Cape Cod/Plymouth area are near the top of my vacation list, so hopefully some day. How far are you from Boston? (I may have asked you that before).

        Hey, I just thought of something. Maybe you can take a picture of you with the kids and one of your hubby with the kids. Then post it here or on FB and I can look at them to see who looks like who.

  3. Josh Estano says:

    Thats great! My school is going good so far, I’m a freshman this year as well. The math is my personal favorite, Algebra 1, Algebra is considered to be much more advanced than basic mathematics, but all it is really is variables and negative numbers added, as well as some geometry, but its fun :) Hope everyone has a good school year down there. btw in case we don’t see you all, Happy Halloween!!! :D

  4. Laura says:

    Hi Josh! Glad you are having a great school year too. Yes, if we don’t see you, Happy Halloween…or, Hallowtide!, to you! 3 days of celebration, is always better than 1, don’t you think? lol. : )

  5. Josh Estano says:

    Yeah, it’s always been better to look at holidays from a religious perspective. Halloween has just become a vulgar holiday as ppl have broken it off from it’s real meaning :( I am going as a soldier from WW2 btw, I was able to find a real non-magnetic steel helmet from the war for a good price :) It has netting like they wore in the European theater. Hope the schedule lightens up for you guys, I guess it’s real crazy, huh?

  6. Smallgood says:

    The pictures are terrific! Your kids truly shine. I can’t wait for this section to pick up steam. I love learning more about homeschooling and lean more and more towards that as an option for my own children (when I have them). Your family is part of that inspiration.

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