Thursday, October 23, 2014

Homeschool Halloween party

   We had our homeschool Halloween party today and spent a portion of our morning preparing some snacks to bring with us.  It's supposed to be a healthy Halloween party and after making an adorable monster mouth fruit salad last year I was looking for something equally adorable this year.  We decided on making wizard hats.  While not really a healthy snack, I didn't feel like it was complete and total junk food like candy either, besides it was easy to make with few ingredients.  I cut out large paper circled and handed one to each boy.  I told them that to make our snack we needed to cut a pie crust into 16 equal triangular pieces so I asked them to see how we could do that.  They tried drawing triangles on their circles but I pointed out that they weren't equal triangles and that it might cause some problems when making snacks.  I encouraged them to think of math and all the ways circles have been divided into equal pieces in their math books.  They finally realized they needed to fold the circles in half and half again and the kept opening up the circles to count how many triangular pieces they were making.  They repeated the process over and over until one of them had 16 triangles.  We then applied that to our pie crust and cut it into 16 pieces.  I told the boys that this had been a real- life math lesson!  They helped me put the wizard hats together and bake them. 
They're experimenting with different folds

The circles we started with

our wizard hat snacks
    The older two boys took their math minutes today and Ian passed his 6's.  Alec made a great attempt at his 8's but definitely needs more practice with these facts.  Once they were done with math they moved onto science.  Evan wrote up two more names on his turtle page and Alec added three more facts to his board.  Ian went back to work dissecting our VCR.  We haven't been able to find any books on the workings of the VCR so I think he's going to stick with his original science fair project instead of switching over to VCR's but I still can't help think how neat it would be to display the whole VCR for everyone to see.  It would be great if we could label the parts!  I'm not giving up on this idea yet and offered to look for some adult books on the topic that I could help Ian read and learn more about them.  The boys also watched a Magic School Bus movie all about coral reefs this morning as part of school.  We got the complete series in the other day and they're anxious to watch them all.
Still working on disassembling it

Working on his display board

Looking for more screws

inspecting all the numbers written on everything and checking out the control panel

    Evan, Alec and I played Sight Word Bang! today as part of Evan's reading lesson.  We had a great time but I was dismayed to see how many words Evan has forgotten since we had taken a fairly long break from the game.  He had been getting bored with it but I'm wishing we had continued to use the words to play other sight word games.  Once we were finished with Bang!, Evan and I sat at the couch and worked on another few pages in his reading lesson book.  Reading was slow going and so painful today.  We tried both his lesson book and a real library book but I could tell he was just not focusing on reading at all; missing simple words like on and at.  So I told him we were done for today and we'd try again another day.  It's so frustrating to see giants leaps forward and then feel like we slid several feet back. I just keep reminding myself  that it will all click one day and he'll be off and reading but the painfully slow going in the meantime is torture for me. 

   We cleaned up and got ready for the Halloween party.  The boys all eagerly donned their costumes and packed some drinks for themselves.  We brought along our snack, a game, and a craft project to share with everyone and the kids had fun playing and checking out everyone's costumes.  We hardly broke into any of the crafting project and we didn't use the Bingo game I had printed off either.  The kids were content to mostly just break off into small groups and chat here and there.  The groups changed here and there and they did get a game of Simon says going at one point but mostly we all just chatted and relaxed.  There wasn't a super huge turnout this year and that made it more conducive for less structure, which was really nice since us moms just got to stick back, visit with one another, and observe. 
 
Evan was sword fighting with "Hazel Leveque" from the Percy Jackson series

Alec spent a portion of the party reading his Spirit Animals book

The kids playing and talking

Making spider crafts

Our homeschool friends
  

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