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My Chickies & more

We are raising 20 Cornish Rock chickens. I call them my chickies.  They started out as cute little fluff balls that would let you pick them up.

Taken April 29
After a week, they started to get their wing feathers and diving into their food like ravenous beasts.

Taken May 7

 Now, they've entered the awkward teen phase of chickie growth. Half baby feathers, half adult feathers.  We've all been there, right?  They still dive into their food like beasts. They also run back and forth and back and forth over and over again.

Taken May 14

I'm really enjoying the process of raising our own chickens. They're crazy little birds. We plan on learning to slaughter them and as strange as it sounds, I'm looking forward to that also.  I like seeing a process from start to finish. 


I'm a new member of the Mosaic Reviews team and just got my first assignment.  We will be reviewing one of the memory games from Classical Historian.  I'm not sure the girls will be all that thrilled to be doing "school" after we are done with school but maybe they won't notice that it's school.  The games look pretty fun! My review will be up at the end of June. 

It's definitely spring around here.  My girls are just dying to be done with school and get outside.  Not that I can blame them, because I'm not far behind.  It's been a long year for us, with building a house and moving at the beginning of the second semester.  We are all a bit worn out. I definitely feel less harried than I did in, say November, when we were a couple of months behind schedule with building, the girls were needing structure that I couldn't provide and we were not celebrating the holidays in our new home.  This book really helped me get through that weary, exhausting time.  Now the Hope ladies have started a blog, bringing daily posts of encouragement to moms everywhere.  They're a great group. I may be linking up to their Thursday posts every now and again.  Be ready for some hope, mommas!  God has more for us than defeat and condemnation!


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Khan Academy

{Check out the UPDATED tutorial on using Khan Academy!!}

I'm not a math person. It just never clicked for me. So many homeschool moms have shared similar thoughts as well as their worries over how they'll teach their children upper levels of math. Finding tutors is always an option as are the more expensive computer-based curriculum. But what if those expensive curriculum are out of reach for you or you don't know anyone who can tutor?

Enter Khan Academy.

Khan Academy is a completely free resource that began with Sal - the original genius behind Khan Academy - wanting to provide a better education for relatives overseas. What began as some math videos shared with family members has become an extensive virtual library of over 4,000 videos on topics ranging from basic math to trigonometry to American Civics. They've been featured on The Today Show and have thousands of Twitter followers.  Khan Academy is being used in schools around the world.

So how does this work for …

Khan Academy - UPDATED

{UPDATE #2 -- Khan Academy now gives each person the option of choosing a grade level, from early math - which covers K-2 - to high school. You have to log in under your student's account to change their grade level. But it definitely guides their exercises in a very clear way! We really enjoy it. Let me know what you think!}

One of my most popular posts has been this little tutorial on using Khan Academy for homeschool.  Soon after I posted, Khan Academy completely revamped their Learning Dashboard.  It is even easier now for homeschool families to use Khan Academy for their students.

Here's how to get started, if you haven't yet.  And you should! Because it's amazingly easy and totally free.

First step. Sign in. Always sign in as a teacher, so you have access to all the 'coach resources' as they're called. It will also give you more ways to track what your students are doing and what skills they need to keep practicing.

Once you're signed in, what you…

map tablecloth

Reposting a popular homeschool idea...

One issue homeschoolers run into at times is where to keep maps. Many programs really require access to a world and US map. Some homeschoolers are blessed with enough space to have a dedicated homeschool room. For those of us that do school at the dining room table, the living room couch or where ever we land - where do we display a map?

My oldest daughter suggested gluing a map to the underside of a clear tablecloth. Sounded like a good idea to me! Turns out it was the easiest project ever. We now have a sturdy plastic tablecloth to protect the table as well as easy access to a world map as well as a US map.

I purchased a large clear table protector, a World & US wall map set and clear Elmer's glue.

First step, spread the whole plastic cloth out and line up the maps up the way you want them. Our table is large enough that we could have both maps shown at once.

Glue like crazy on the map side, then carefully flip it over so the map side…