Fall: Places to Go

What a wonderful time of the year to go out and explore! I had a friend that asked me for some recommendations and I thought I’d give some local ideas as well as general since not all my readers are from Southwest Ohio. ūüôā

Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical GardensРThe zoo is such a wonderful place to take a field trip for not only seeing the animals, but also the flowers and trees. I enjoy this time of year because of the cool temperatures that seem to make the animals quite active.  If you would like to get a group of homeschool friends together you can get a group discount and make it a fun, educational day.

ParksРEvery park has a variety of trees, which make for such a great opportunity for a picnic and an afternoon of a scavenger hunt for leaves. Your daughter can collect leaves and press them to make a fall leaf book.  If you are interested here is a website about making your own leaf collection book. CLICK HERE

Local Parks:

Hamilton County Parks Miami Whitewater in Harrison, Ohio has a large lake and two walking/ bike paths. You can make a weekend of it, and enjoy the camping and fishing at the lake. This is one of my favorite parks in the county as it has many things to do with your family.

Butler County Parks Voice of America Park has a small lake, boating, and a walking/ bath pike. Fishing can be done from the dock and if you want to take your dogs they will enjoy the dog park that is adjacent to the walking path.

Cincinnati Parks Eden Park and Smale Park are both downtown and are quite lovely. There is even a carousel along the riverfront walk that adjoins Smale Park the children will enjoy but do not plan on going on either Monday and Tuesday because it is closed on these days.

Ohio State Parks Hueston Woods has camping, fishing, hiking, and a 625-acre lake, large enough to take a sailboat on if you so desire. East Fork State Park is a nice getaway from city life and is one of the largest parks in the area, with nearly 5,000 acres. If you enjoy water sports and camping, then this is a great place for you and your family. I just returned from camping this past weekend and the facilities are quite nice. I took an 11- mile bike ride and could have kept going! The scenery is peaceful and beautiful as you can see by the pictures I took.

 

Indiana State Parks Brown County State Park is a favorite place to enjoy this time of year because it not only has a beautiful park and amazing lodge but also a quaint town nearby for shopping and restaurants.

Kentucky State Parks If you have never been to either Natural Bridge or Cumberland Falls then you really should consider going for the day or better still, the weekend. They each have a  lodge if you are not interested in camping. Cumberland Falls has a moonbow, that is worth going to see.

If you have a favorite place that you enjoy going with your family, please post as I am sure others would enjoy as well as my family.

 

Keep On Pedaling

This week as I was riding my bike along the Little Maimi Scenic Trail and I stopped to look at a large map of the spur that I had just ridden to see if it will be expanded any further. Because, at this point, the path just ends.¬†Not that I am complaining because it was a good time to turn around and head back to the car anyway. ūüôā

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As I was retracing my route on the map board, I happened to see an older couple on bikes close by and realized they were Amish. The man was wearing overalls, a straw¬†hat, and the woman was attired in a blue dress, black stockings, and a white hat. She had a three-wheeled bike with heavy plastic saddle buckets on the back which I thought was a great idea if you were going on a long day trip or want to carry some water and a lunch. It was filled with items and I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to strick up a conversation with them.¬† I found out they were intending¬†on going into Cincinnati and were just reading the¬†map to see which direction was needed to be taken in order to get there.

“Oh, where did you start your trip?” I inquired.

“Do you know where Wooster, Ohio is?” asked the gentleman. “That’s where we began yesterday.”

“Sure.” I answered, “That is quite a distance from here. Will you be headed back home after you visit Cincinnati?”

The man laughed and said, “No, we are on our¬†way to Sarasota, Florida!”

With that, he and his wife pedaled away southward on their bikes and waved to me as I stood there gawking at them. I wanted to ride after them; I wanted to take their picture; I wanted to ask them a couple of dozen questions. My 15-mile bike ride seemed so meager compared to the journey they were facing. I had quite a lot to think about on my way back to my car.

This week I wanted to encourage¬†you because you may feel that you are on a long journey with a bicycle, or maybe even a scooter or skateboard, and feel that the school year is as far away as Sarasota. I promise you, you are going to make it, and it’s going to be a great journey.

Will you have obstacles, will you¬†be tired and think you can’t go on some days? Yes, but it will be worth all you will go through because your children will be learning academic and life lessons from you. I believe you are best suited and called for this. You are lovingly¬†guiding them and teaching them valuable and precious things that only you as their mom can do. You have an awesome opportunity and yes, responsibility with homeschooling. I know you can do it. Because if I did it, you can too. lol The joy that I have, when I see my sons becoming such great young men, makes me glad I chose to invest my time and talents into their lives. It made the journey and all of the bumps that came with it so worth it.¬† Keep on pedaling!

 

While I did not get a picture of the Amish couple, I did get a great picture of the scenery.

 

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Enjoy the journey

 

 

 

 

 

Illness: How to Keep Going

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I have had one of those lingering colds where you just can’t seem to find the energy to do even the simplest of tasks. Teaching, doing lesson plans, cleaning the house and going grocery shopping seem like insurmountable tasks. I need a backup plan to get through this time. I am sure you have been there too.¬†One piece of advice that I would like to give to you is to plan ahead in the event that you might not feel well sometime during the school year. So, while I am less foggy-headed, I thought I’d write some ideas that you can use if you find yourself under the weather.

Math

Here are some websites for math worksheets that will help your student stay on track and review concepts.

Homeschool Math

Math Drills

Soft School 

Looking for educational videos? Here are a few that I think your children will like.

Brain Pop It has some free videos and quizzes on a variety of topics for your daughter to take after she watches them. You can assign one or more depending upon your need. If you enjoy what is offered, you can sign up for a year’s subscription.

Social Studies

Liberty’s Kids¬†are great for American history that I think your son will enjoy. They are well animated and would be great to use.

Ducksters has a variety of articles and games that are interesting that include topics of geography, science, and history.

Board and Card Games can also be educational as they teach children to do some of the following: Read and follow directions, strategize (checkers, chess, tic-tac-toe, Sorry, Monopoly), count money (Life, Monopoly), and add (Yahtzee, card games).

Educational Online Games

Sheppard Software would be a way of reviewing all sorts of topics.

 

Stay well!

~Lisa

 

 

 

 

Things to Consider

The week has been rather busy with upcoming parent-teacher conferences and lesson planning and organizing. While rifling through papers in the several binders that I keep for my classes, I came across a page of quotes that I’d like to share with you. My hope is that one or more of these will encourage¬†you this week as you consider your school week ahead.

You are doing a great job! Your children are doing well because of the great love and care you have for them and their education.

~ Lisa

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Homeschool Rocks

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Picture from Pinterest

Each year our church fellowship has a week-long camping event with food, fun, campfires, and families. With almost half of our small group being children, activities throughout the week are something that we need to have for them to do. I saw a facebook¬†group called Homeschool Rocks and thought decorating and hiding rocks with encouraging words or pictures would be a fabulous idea for our campout. Perhaps you might like to do it with your children too. I have included academic areas for you in parentheses¬†so you can see how it applies to school. ūüôā

You Will Need:

rocks

a bucket of warm, soapy water

paper towels

a pencil

outdoor acrylic paints

paint brushes

newspaper

waterproof markers

Elmer’s glue

Modge Podge or some type of outdoor sealant

paper

a plastic jar or another container

plastic grocery bags- one per person

Instructions: 

  1. Collect First of all, you and the children collect rocks that you want to paint. The best kinds are smooth, especially for younger children since they will paint more easily.  (PE is covered since you are getting exercise hunting for rocks.)
  2. Clean After you have determined which rocks you would like to paint, clean them in a bucket filled with warm, soapy water. Rinse them and place on some paper towels to dry. The paint will adhere much better to a clean surface, and your children will be getting their dirty hands clean at the same time. (Health- Getting all that dirt and grime off is part of a healthy routine.)
  3. Paint¬†Now it’s time to bring some life to those rocks! Cover a table with newspapers, and if you have small children who might get paint in more places than the rock, cover them too (an old shirt and pants will do the trick). Depending on what design you want to create, you may want to sketch¬†lightly on the rock before applying the paint. ¬†If details are being added, then a waterproof marker would be helpful to use. Outdoor patio paints are¬†preferred so the¬†rock weathers well. Allow to dry for several hours. (art)

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  1. Seal  In order for your awesome rocks to be enjoyed for a long time, a sealant such as Modge Podge should be used. This will make the designs weather resistant and shiny. NOTE: If you have used permanent markers on the rocks, apply a thin layer of glue before applying the sealant to prevent smudging. Allow to dry according to the directions on the jar. 41O7V5Vq2FL
  2. Hide No, not you, the rocks! Since we will be camping, the children will go and hide their rocks so that fellow campers can find them. Each person that has hidden a rock can write a clue for others to find their treasure, thus creating a scavenger hunt.  (clues- writing;  directions- math, social studies)
  3. Find¬†Put all of the clues in a plastic jar or other container and have each participant draw out a clue until they are all gone.Give each person a plastic grocery bag. Tell everyone to see if they can locate that rock based upon the clue. Help little ones who can’t read.
  4. Display Have a rock show so that everyone can enjoy the decorated creations.

I think everyone is going to enjoy doing this activity that it can be repeated as many times as you like. I would love to have you post your pictures if you do this.

~Lisa