Hello from The 4 Brothers Ranch! Our family has a lot going on and a couple blogs in order to keep things organized. You can find all our homeschooling stuff here! Annissa's regular everyday blog is called A PAGE IN MY BOOK and also there is a blog to update the kids medical issues at MY UNIQUE FLOWERS. Please check those out too!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

You Know You Homeschool ... (are homeschooled...)

You try to (quickly) capture the huge bee that was knocked unconscious as it accidentally flew into your car window, so the kids can classify and inspect it.

Your bank statement reflects the fact that you spend more at Books-A-Million than at fancy clothing stores.

You've got more books and bookcases than anyone you know.

You DREAM of a room (or even a whole house!) with wall to wall, ceiling to floor bookshelves.

The walls of your dining room are decorated with posters of the US Presidents, Periodic Table of Elements, Map of the Moon, Spanish Conjugation Chart and a copy of the Declaration of Independence, not to mention a poster of the Ten Commandments since no one can tell you not to!

You have children draped all over the furniture....and they're reading...for the FUN of it!

Your children actually enjoy spending time with their family, even their siblings!

Your children aren't embarrassed to be seen playing with someone younger than they are!

You are on a first name basis with the majority of local librarians.

You've laughed out loud when someone asked you "What about socialization?"

If you have ever thought about answering the following questions like this:

Do your parents make you homeschool?
*Yes, they do. In my heart of hearts, I really *want* to spend 6 hours a day in a stuffy classroom filled with stupid people, listening to a rude and irrational teacher rant incessantly.

Do you have any friends?
*No, I'm a misanthrope sociopath who would rather die a thousand deaths than be socialized normally.

How do you meet people?
*I have found that painting myself blue and running through the streets screaming is a very effective way to meet people.

Do you get graded?
*Grades are determined each semester by a coin toss.

How do you know what to do without a teacher telling you?
*I visit the library and pick books at random. Those books then become my curriculum for that semester. Last semester, I studied alternative physics, macamre, tomato growing, and plot flaws in Star Trek the Next Generation episodes.

How do you remember to work without a teacher nagging you?
*I bribe myself. Whenever I finish a homework assignment, I give myself a gold star or a cookie.

Is homeschooling legal?
*No. In fact, you could even be arrested for aiding and abbeting a criminal just by talking to me!
Or .......
*Yes. The government wants as many of us smartaleck, self motivating brats out of their high schools as possible.

Do you like homeschooling?
*Not particularly. I tolerate homeschooling only because the alternative is so horrendous.

Are you going to homeschool your kids?
*Certainly! In fact, my children will undergo an accelerated education, so that they are ready for college classes by the age of 10.

You must be pretty smart to homeschool, huh?
*Actually, my intelligence level is below normal. I have simply aquired an immense vocabulary through memorization, which often fools humans into believing that I am more intelligent than I actually am.

You Know You Are Homeschooled If...

1. You've been asked "so, like, do you have any friends?"
2. You've experienced the pain of BJU Press
3. sometimes mixed with Saxon math
4. You've been asked "so you get to do whatever you want all day?"
5. You've been asked "can you do school in your pajamas?"
6. More than one of your friends lives in the country.
7. You've ever been enrolled in The Potters School.
8. You have at least two friends that have 4 or more siblings.
9. You've been asked "so who teaches you?"
10. Upon hearing the answer "my mom" they've asked, "did she have to like go to college to be a teacher?"
11. You've actually heard of Kutless.
12. You and all your friends know Rosetta Stone is the best language program.
13. You've been asked "do you have gym class?"
14. You classify the world into two types of people- the people that say "LUCKY!" upon hearing you're homeschooled, and the people that say "wow that must stink" when hearing it.
15. You've been asked many times when you get up in the morning.
16. You're sick of people asking you when school ends and when school starts each day.
17. You don't understand how lucky you are that you don't have to eat cafeteria food.
18. You wake up every morning laughing, knowing that your public school friends are already in first or second period.
19. 2/3s of all your "field trips" take place in your back yard.
20. You know you've found someone extraordinary when they can actually make a half-decent homeschool joke.
21. You know that if that defines extraordinary, about 1 in every 50 people are extraordinary.
22. When you go out to stores during school hours you're asked "school kids have the day off today?"
23. You try ever so hard to smile and say "No, I'm homeschooled" but you really just want to roll your eyes and walk away.
24. You've been outside during school hours and a cop has actually asked you why you're not in school.
25.You often avoid telling people you're homeschooled, just so you don't have to answer all the idiotic questions stated above.

You KNOW You Are A Homeschooling Family When....

You get to change more than diapers, you get to change their minds.

When a child busts a lip, and after seeing she's okay, you round up some scotch tape to capture some blood and look at it under the microscope!

You find dead animals and actually consider saving them to dissect later.

Your children never ever leave the 'why?' stage.

When your teenager decides to take one community college course, and comes home and asks you why the teacher wrote 'At' on his paper. (A+)

You ask for, and get, a copier instead of a diamond bracelet for your wedding anniversary.

Your kids think reading history is best accomplished while lying on the floor with their head resting on the side of their patient dog.

Your husband can walk in at the end of a long day and tell how the science experiment went just by looking at the house.

You never have to drive your child's forgotten lunch to school.

Your child will never suffer the embarrassment of group showers after PE.

The only debate about the school lunch program is whose turn it is to cook.

You never have to face the dilemma of whether to take your child's side or the teacher's side in a dispute at school.

If your child gets drugs at school, it's probably Tylenol.

Your neighbors think you are insane.

Your kids learn new vocabulary from their extensive collection of 'Calvin & Hobbes' books.

Your formal dining room now has a computer, copy machine, and many book shelves and there are educational posters and maps all over the walls.

You have meal worms growing in a container... .on purpose.

If you get caught talking to yourself, you can claim you're having a PTA meeting.

You take off for a teacher in-service day because the principal needs clean clothes.

You can't make it through a movie without pointing out the historical inaccuracies.

You step on math manipulative's on your pre-dawn stumble to the bathroom.

The teacher gets to kiss the principal in the faculty lounge and no one gossips.

Your honor student can actually read the bumper sticker that you have put on your car.

If your child claims that the dog ate his homework, you can ask the dog.

Some day your children will consider you to be a miracle-working expert and will turn to you for advice.

Your kids refer to the neighbor kids as 'government school inmates.'

You can't make it through the grocery produce department without asking your preschooler the name and color of every vegetable.

You can't put your produce in your cart without asking your older student to estimate it's weight and verify accuracy.

You live in a one-house schoolroom.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Three Questions.... to start...

I found a website Design*Your*Homeschool.com ... it's geared towards families who are starting out homeschooling (and maybe for those who are not) ...

They suggest you answer these questions first:

What sort of individuals are we raising?
What are we raising them for?
What is the purpose of education?

What sort of individuals are we raising? These are hard questions! I wonder if they has specific answers in their minds when they created these questions? Course that's just me, I often wonder a lot before answering.

We are raising smart children who have some challenges in life and health. Things that they will have to face when they are older, things that may break them down now and make life more difficult. We are raising children who are fighters, 100% ... they are wonderful children and I am blessed to have them in my life.

So ... Calahan, I want him to grow up into a wonderful man. One who is compassionate, hard working, true to himself and who follows the path he needs to. I want him to pursue his dreams - if it be working with Orcas or following his heart with Art. I want him to stay off the path his Dad followed and realize the things he needs to change before making a wrong turn. Course what parent doesn't want that? He is an amazing child, who struggles a lot right now. He knows what his dreams are, and he has been passionate about it from the moment most children wish-washy around on "what they want to do when they grow up" ... Noah, I mainly just want to see him grow up and find happiness. He's struggled so much with health issues it makes me hurt inside thinking about everything he's been through, equally, it makes me proud. He's a fighter and a miracle! His current dream is to be a police officer, we'll see how long this sticks. This on the heels of a long line of .. I want to be a puppy, a power ranger, LOL... Seriously though, I want to help him grow up to be everything he can be - whatever that may be. He is such a smart kid deep down, I want to help raise that out of him. Both Nathan and Kaedyn are to little to really know, or even guess, what direction their life may take. Right now Nathan is struggling so bad with his hearing that speech is the BIGGEST issue and going in for the autism testing next month. I'm not looking forward to it, but I really wonder if my suspicion is correct. Mainly, with Nathan and Kaedyn, I just want to help guide them into discovering what their "dream" is and helping them realize that with hard work anything is in reach.

The purpose of education is to feed the mind and soul with the love of knowledge. There are so many exciting and fun facts and puzzles out there to figure out. If it be a great book that lets you fly on the back of a dragon or fight down the big giant one handed in a way that never thought possible... to the great numbers puzzle (math) or the ultimate "how does this work?" Science question. There are so many things I want to help and watch my children learn and discover. The greatest wonder of excitement over the "WOW" factor, when something clicks for them and they understand. Education is the most rewarding , in itself, feeling around.

Those probably aren't exactly the type of answers being sought, however - they are mine. They work for us I guess.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Photos of the Hard Working Kids

I thougtht I would share some photos of the kids .... hard working - from the past couple weeks. I've fully been meaning to do a lot of things in here (blog) but haven't gotten a chance to because I've been sick.....
The first couple are of Nathan painting (love Color Wonder!) and Cal and Noah working on their "favorites" project which is going to be on going...
I stapled a bunch of construction paper for them to cut stuff out of magazines and have some "I like this because..." or "this is my favorite because it shows..." type stuff by it ...

Nathan all done with his painting (finger painting too) .... Mommy helped of course! Nathan is smart, but to write his name and make a sun? LOL...

Goobered fingers from the Color Wonder gel...

Working on their "Favorites" Project ...

Closing up his paints.....

Favorites Project

We also did a 4 Brother's Ranch Sign
Each of the boys put their hand print on there

Nathan's masterpiece!

Kaedyn working hard at eating a cookie!!

Noah working on reading

Still working on reading - can you tell that he's ...

Top 20 Advantages To Homeschooling

Top 20 Advantages to Homeschooling

20. Your kids never tell you that you’re a lot dumber than their teacher.

19. If you can’t find matching socks for your child first thing in the morning, who cares?

18. Cleaning out the refrigerator can double as chemistry lab.

17. Your kids have good reason to think they might get spanked in school, but no reason to think they’ll get beat up by a gang.

16. If the principal gives the teacher a bad evaluation, she can stick her icy feet against his legs at night.

15. You can post the Ten Commandments on your school room wall and won’t get sued.

14. You never have to drive your child’s forgotten lunch to school.

13.Your child will never go to their 20th high school reunion, meet an old flame, and recklessly abandon their marriage.

12. You get to change more than diapers, you get to change their minds.

11. If you get caught talking to yourself, you can claim you’re having a PTA meeting.

10. It’s better to be slightly concerned about socialization than very concerned about socialism.

9. Your child will never suffer the embarrassment of group showers after PE.

8. The only debate about the school lunch program is whose turn it is to cook.

7. You never have to face the dilemma of whether to take your child’s side or the teacher’s side in a dispute at school.

6. If your child gets drugs at school, it’s probably Tylenol.

5. The teacher gets to kiss the principal in the faculty lounge and no one gossips.

4. Your kids recognize that this list is numerically in reverse order.

3. Your honor student can actually read the bumper sticker that you have on your car.

2. If your child claims that the dog ate his homework, you can ask the dog.

1. Some day your children will consider you to be a miracle working expert and will turn to you for advice.

(taken from http://homeschooling.gomilpitas.com/index.htm)