The kids are learning the words - this is their new favorite!
Thursday, January 21, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
This week and last week have been tough, SubhanALLAH. My kids are sick (again), which means that I am sick and this time it is just dragging on and on.
I didn't get sick until last Thursday and it was just a minor cold at the time. It really kicked in on Friday night and the baby got sick too. The problem with being ill was the timing. My husband signed me up for Al Kauthar Institute's LORD OF THE WORLDS (Unity of ALLAH's Worship) course and the lectures are 8 hours, Saturday and Sunday. My husband really wanted me to attend - last year I took the Al Maghrib course online but he's persistent and wanted me to physically attend, so he watched the baby in the lobby until I could tend to her during the breaks. It was easy for him because she slept the whole time but it was hard for me because with each passing hour, I got a lot worse. I couldn't attend the second day, I was in pretty bad shape until today, AlhamduLILLAH, so my husband attended the second half.
Anyway, AlhamduLILLAH for the time that I was able to attend, Sheikh Chowdhury spoke about creation vs evolution theories and how to respond to atheists, among other things. The issues were addressed in an organized and proficient manner and it was relevant to this month's TMH topics.
Sheikh Chowdhury recommended reading Darwin's Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution by Michael J. Behe. Behe writes that the theory of evolution is false based upon its inability to explain complex bio-molecular systems such as the human immune system, blood clotting and the building blocks of DNA.
This post is long overdue - I don't know why I put it off for so long!
January 2, I attended the Toronto Muslim Homeschoolers (TMH) group meeting for the first time, AlhamduLILLAH and had such a great experience. The sisters were warm and welcoming and I was downright giddy when I left there.
This month's main topic was science. It was beneficial to me to hear other sisters' ideas and learn of new resources and ways of teaching.
I learned that the group hosted a very successful science fair last year and in March, InshaALLAH, they will be hosting their second.
The group meets the first Saturday of each month at 9 A.M., alternately in the east and west ends (West End sisters are hosting in Feb. InshaALLAH). The membership is $25 for the whole year - I think it is well worth it, as there are organized playgroups, workshops, field trips, an annual picnic, and So Much More!
By the way, the sisters hosting the group provided some yummy food- I never had haleem before, but it was so good!
If you cannot attend, at least get permission from the moderators to sign up for the yahoo group, InshaALLAH.
When we started our school year, August 3, I scheduled time for my daughter to read each day. Then, I noticed that she was spending all of her off time reading and moving ahead in her reading program and pretty soon, we were catching her in the middle of the night, reading when she was supposed to be sleeping, reading next to the nightlight, (Oh the horror! Her poor little eyes).
Then, I started having flashbacks to the the Book It! Program from Pizza Hut, (do you remember it?)
In case you're wondering:
I am a home educator. Am I eligible to participate in BOOK IT!?
Yes, if you are a home educator and your K-6 child does not attend another educational facility, you are eligible to participate. All materials for the 2009-10 program have been allocated.
Since we missed it for this year, we will continue on our own and I will give her a small prize when she reaches 25 chapter books read (she's read 20 books - 19 chapter books) and a grand prize at 50 chapter books, InshaALLAH. She has to reach the goal by August 3, but I think she might do it by the end of spring.
Canada and Puerto Rico go here for your Book It! infomation.
Free Printable Sudoku Puzzles. I cut them out and glued them to a few pages. I might add some other math brainteasers and crossword puzzles. These can be used as a quick daily drill for my daughter, along with some mazes, InshaALLAH.
Monday, January 18, 2010
My daughter was so happy today to receive her first pen pal letter! Her pen pal included these cute stickers, MashaALLAH and my daughter couldn't be more thrilled.
We've already mapped out where everyone lives on our map and I think we'll take a cue from Umm Tafari's blog post and have a few geography lessons, InshaALLAH.
JazakILLAH Khairin to the sisters who have made this happen - AlhamduLILLAH we've also found a pen pal for my son,(InshaALLAH we will mail his first letter soon).
This is a coloring page that came with her letter. She colored it right away and wanted to show her pen pal.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I have a ton of buttons that I keep in a jar. I saw this last week online and added it to the workbox this week. It was an instant hit, especially since glue was involved. Simple. PDF for the paper if you want it is here.
Ah yes, it's from the free downloads section of How About Orange.
LOL, I get the most Emails from my husband - literally hundreds just waiting to be read. He finds good stuff all the time and I can't keep up with checking it. Here's a good one:
"The bigger desire you have for a sin, the bigger your eemaan is if you leave it."
Imaam Muhammad bin Saalih bin al-`Uthaymeen (Rahimahullaah)
Sunday, January 10, 2010
She's thinking about making changes to her blog - and the more I thought about her blog post, the more I wanted to change mine. Then, I stumbled across these free backgrounds and well, I had to go there. If it hurts your eyes I can tone it down, InshaALLAH.
Saturday, January 9, 2010
AlhamduLILLAH, my daughter and I are really enjoying the workboxes. She likes having her work set out for her and it helps me to focus on the younger children without having to tell her what is next all the time.
We were able to schedule some exercise (they get it when they play but it's nice to have something structured), and a scheduled snack.
Qur'an is not neglected anymore, AlhamduLILLAH. It's right there in her workbox so when it comes up, she goes to the computer and plays her mp3 to learn her surah. She knows all of Suratul Balad now except one line, mashaALLAH. Later in the day, we recite what we know and practice with one another or she works with her Dad while I work with her younger brother. MashaALLAH, he knows Fatiha, and Nas and part of Ayatul Kursi now.
I still have readers from Calvert School (bought on Ebay a long time ago) so I pulled them out to work with my son. He's doing well but he prefers to read from lined paper instead of the book for some reason. I wrote the sentences on paper and then I gave him a crayon and asked him to search for certain words and circle them.
I visited Islamic Bulletin Boards and downloaded the 99 Names and Attributes of ALLAH thermometer - another task that we need to add to the list, InshaALLAH.
There's always much to do but InshaALLAH we'll get it done.
Friday, January 8, 2010
This was our first week of writing letters to pen pals and I think it went well. My daughter was so excited that I couldn't get her to do anything else until she finished writing. We trekked to the end of the street and dropped our letters in the mail just as the snow started.
My son was feeling a bit left out and I needed to find a way to make him feel better. I remembered that the blogger at No Time For Flashcards made a mailbox for her son so I made one for our homeschool.
It was a hit with all of the kids, (of course, it's a box, lol). Now, when I get junk mail, (I never bother to open it anyway), they can use it to play post office, InshaALLAH.
By the way, are there any little boys out there who would like a pen pal? My son is four and he's just learning to write but he can read a bit. I believe he's open to drawings and paper airplanes too. :)
I've been pondering what to do about our Islamic Studies because I definitely need to get it under control, InshaALLAH. We have the proper materials but I think we're lacking structure.
So I spoke with my husband about it last night and we came up with a more suitable plan, InshaALLAH.
I am slowly going through the The Story of Muhammad (salallahu alayhi wa salaam) in Makkah, by Abu Zahir, Stories of the World, by Safia Iqbal and we're finishing up book 2 in the Islamic School Book series by Susan Douglass.
You see? Those are a lot of different books at the same time. I also try to fit in activities for each so that we can do a bit of notebooking and make it meaningful - and fun (I hope).
It's working well but I find that we run out of time if we try to fit it all in.
Instead, what I would like to do for the next bit, InshaALLAH is:
-continue with the seerah and one of the other books
-next, cover the wives of the Prophet (salallahu alayhi wa salaam) maybe in a lapbook (haven't done those in a while) and one of the other books, probably book three of the Susan Douglass series
-the four noblest women
-next, cover the 10 people guaranteed Jannah
-a unit study on prophets and messengers
In addition, there are our every day subjects - language arts and math, Qur'an and Arabic.
I also noticed that science has taken a back seat so I need to step it up with that too.
Monday, January 4, 2010
Sunday, January 3, 2010
Saturday, January 2, 2010
The course started in January 2009 and the duration is until June 2010 but it is available online and you may want to contact them about it anyway, InshaALLAH. It is available via Paltalk. MashaALLAH I was able to attend a course for Al Maghrib Institute after my c-section last year via their program and generosity.
Friday, January 1, 2010
Since the beginning of December, I have been slowly clearing out some clutter - especially homeschool stuff. The inspiration comes from setting up the workboxes. Since I can now use materials that we never seemed to have time for in the past, I need to weed out the junk and get to the good stuff.
I also realize the need to stop jumping in and trying to get involved in too many projects - you should see the pile of worksheets that I have accumulated over the last three years!
Anyway, that got me thinking about the rest of the home. It seems that I am always cleaning the same kinds of messes around here, toys on the floor, crayons, socks, etc. I need to find better solutions so that they mostly don't end up on the floor in the first place.
My mom is a super neat person and I always thought that once I got away from home, I wouldn't have to worry about cleaning all the time because it came naturally to us, but try as I might, I cannot even compete with hers. LOL my husband affectionately calls it "the museum look."
I've been reading through the Flylady site and learning how to better organize a household. I'm trying to rid myself of what she calls "CHAOS: Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome." My husband and children are social creatures so you never know when I'll get a visitor.
She says the first thing to do is "shine your sink" so that's what I did.
Our dishwasher died about three months ago and now I am reluctantly stuck at the sink everyday. Rather than continue to feel annoyed, I'm just trying to stick to a routine and InshaALLAH, after a while, it will feel like second nature.
How do you all find the time to manage the household? Do you have a menu planned for the week? For the month? Do you keep a binder? Here's another question - do you organize or keep a binder or something else for your own personal Islamic studies? Do you have a daily routine for studying your deen? All of these are things that I need to work on, InshaALLAH.
And now, to tackle the rest of that counter, lol.