Thursday, May 21, 2015

Homeschooling History and the Power of Interest


As a kid (and even now as an adult) I loved history and learning about how people lived so long ago. I could hardly wait to explore history with my own children once we decided to homeschool. I loved the idea behind the Story of the World Series; teaching history chronologically in the four year cycle just made so much sense to me. So we began 1st grade with Story of the World: Ancients. I wanted to bring this awesome subject to life for the boys, so I went all out with the activities and crafts, trying to make it an immersive experience. Unfortunately, my enthusiasm and perfectionism took over before we were a third of the way though the book. If I couldn't do it the way I wanted to, I didn't do it at all. There was always something I needed to find or buy or print out that wasn't ready when I needed it. In the craziness of trying to figure out our first year of homeschooling and then becoming so sick with my pregnancy with Lady Bug and then moving to a different state, it got dropped.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Gifted Babies: Where are the Resources?

Looking back, Builder Boy was my "easy" baby. I had a baby milestone book that he never deviated from. He was always "right on schedule" and I never worried about delayed or advanced. Sure, he did a few things here or there that seemed a bit unusual, and he could stack blocks higher than the milestone list said, but other than that, no signs of giftedness that were obvious enough to make oblivious me think he was anything other than perfectly average.

Monday, March 16, 2015

A Friday at Sceleratus Classical Academy


I had plans for this day; plans for this blog post. I was going to do what a fellow blogger did and take a picture on the hour, every hour of one day to give a snap shot of the day. But nothing this day went according to plan....which is actually pretty representative of almost every single day here.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Congratulations to Tiffani W. for winning the DORA and ADAM giveaway!! I hope it greatly blesses you and your child. Thank you everyone who participated and helped make my first ever giveaway a success! And an extra big thank you to Let's Go Learn for sponsoring the giveaway!

While the giveaway was going on, I hit the 100,000 view mark! (All views since I first went live, not that many views in two weeks.) That milestone was very exciting to make, especially as I've been blogging so sporadically lately. Thank you to all the readers who stick with me through my dry spells. Monday I have a contribution going live for the next Gifted Homeschooler's Forum blog hop, and I've got some half started drafts that I hope to finish, polish, and post soon. Early Bird's birthday and party is also coming up this weekend; it's an American Ninja Warrior theme! And if the friends who helped us make it possible are further obliging, I may have some cool building plans to share!

And HAPPY PI DAY!!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Housekeeping Anorexia


Does this picture make you wonder if I'm having company over or does it make you think "I would never want a picture of my couch that messy on the internet!" If your reaction is the first one and you're a parent, then you may be more normal than you think. If you're a parent and your reaction is the second one, you may just have HDD, or House Dysmorphic Disorder.

Monday, March 9, 2015

DIY Cinderella Tu-tu Dress

When I first saw the new Disney Cinderella trailer, I knew I wanted to take the kids to see it in theater; and with Lady Bug dressed up as Cinderella! My sister and I started scouring the internet for Cinderella costumes for our toddler daughters then because we knew that when the movie was coming out there would probably be a shortage. But the dresses we found were either too expensive or not very Cinderella-y. That's when I decided I was going to make a Cinderella tutu dress. And I did it for only $10!

Friday, February 27, 2015

DORA Giveaway!

Hey guys, the cool people at Let's Go Learn gave me a certificate for two free DORAs (Diagnostic Online Reading Assessment which I've written about here and here) and two free ADAMs (Adaptive, Diagnostic Assessment of Mathematics which I mentioned here) to give away to one randomly picked reader! This is my very first giveaway, so if there are any bugs I apologize ahead of time. The giveaway will run for two weeks, no purchase necessary (which, turns out, would be an illegal lottery if I attempted that. My "learn something new every day" for the day.)

February is my choice of testing month (gives me time to figure out if I need to be fixing something) but the tests are good for much longer, so there's no need to test right away if it's not the right time for you. (You will need to redeem it before April.) Two tests give you the option of doing two years in a row and seeing the difference like we just did, or you may have more than one kid that you'd like to have take the test. I have gathered valuable information from having the boys take the DORA and Builder Boy taking the ADAM, and I recommend it. (Not getting paid to say that, either!)

Hopefully I have set up the Rafflecopter correctly.

Oh, and because blog posts can be boring without any visuals, here's a cute, completely unrelated picture of Lady Bug.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The DORA the 2nd Time Around: Not What We First Thought


It has been a year since I first had the boys take the Diagnostic Online Reading Assessment (DORA) from Let's Go Learn so we found a few good days recently and took it again. I remembered our experience last year and this time spread it over two days. Which was better for the kids, and worse for my nerves, as anyone who follows Sceleratus Classical Academy on facebook can attest to. But day 2 arrived and the boys finished and I eagerly/dreadingly looked at the results. Because it saves your account information and test results, I thought that being able to compare the results would give me even more information that last year's would. My biggest fear for Builder Boy was that his results would not show a year's worth of progress. My fear for Early Bird was that last year's test results were just a guessing fluke, and he'd score much lower this year.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Lilo: Dabrowski's Gifted Child in Reel Life

I've mentioned Gifted Overexcitabilites before, and linked before to the SENG page outlining them and the wonderfully-easy-to-understand-even-if-you're-new-to-this Jade Ann Rivera's posts about them. I was talking to my good friend Care from Homeschooling Hatters about our topic for this blog hop, and she pointed out that most media/books/movies/etc. paint either a positive, academically strong gifted ideal with none of the downsides, or make the smart kid the butt of jokes. As a result, very few people who aren't parenting a gifted child with overexcitabilites have never heard of them, and have a very incomplete picture of what being gifted really means.

Around the time I was researching about gifted overexcitabilites I watched the Disney movie Lilo and Stitch to see if it was something that would be a good movie for the kids. As I watched it I was struck by how much this little girl was acting like the things I had been reading about. And while Disney may not have intended it that way, they were clearly portraying a gifted child with several of Dabrowski's overexcitabilites, as well as other characteristics of a gifted child. (Spoilers ahead.)
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