The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

A few weeks back we finished reading The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.  We used the literature unit from Confessions of a Homeschooler.  Here are pictures of the lapbooks we did.  Skeeterbug’s (8) is first to give you an idea of how it is ‘supposed’ to look.  We actually might have been able to fit this all into one folder without that extra piece that folds vertically, but I decided to go with the example in the guide.  Our lapbooks aren’t folded the way traditional lapbooks are, I don’t care for the look, instead I trim them down and make them more like books.  For this one I just added the one vertical page, if more pages are needed I follow the method outlined here at Aussie Pumpkin Patch.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe LapbookOur Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook

Inside the wardrobe- a forest (apparently consisting of one tree) and a lamppost.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook

In case you are wondering what a lapbook done by a 3yo looks like, here’s Ladybug’s.  She’s too young to be interested in listening to the book but loves to be a part of whatever project we are working on.  When she saw me handing out lapbook pieces to work on she made it clear she wanted to work on some too.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe LapbookOur Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe LapbookOur Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe LapbookOur Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe LapbookOur Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook 

And here’s Jitterbug’s (5).  He listened to parts of the book, not all.  That’s fine with me, I look forward to reading it to him one day when he can follow it better.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook

He wanted his lamppost to be ‘on the ground’ and then arranged the others nearby. 

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook

The wardrobe also had to be on the ground.  It’s upside down because he drew his picture inside upside down.  Shhhh, don’t tell him, he has no idea!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook

Inside Jitterbug’s wardrobe- he drew a tree and a faun.  See the furry legs?  Love it.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Lapbook 

The one thing we didn’t get to was making Turkish Delight.  My excuse is that I don’t have a candy thermometer.  Really it just looks like a complicated recipe that I’m not looking forward to making, maybe we’ll get to it one of these days.  :)  We’ll continue to read the Narnia series, I have The Horse and His Boy sitting in my stack of books to start soon. 

Finished! All About Spelling Level 3

Skeeterbug finished All About Spelling Level 3!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Spelling

(Side note: His front teeth crack me up…he’s got one adult and one baby tooth right next to each other.  Later on the night this was taken he lost a tooth, not the front one that’s at a crazy angle but the one next to it.  It’s been a while since he lost one so it was exciting for him, he’d been wiggling it all day.)

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Spelling

We are still loving this program and will continue with the next level…which I don’t have yet.  I am ordering Level 4 from overseas and it will take a few weeks to get here.  Level 3 ended with some homophone work, which reminded me that All About Spelling has a whole book on homophones called All About Homophones.  Since they offer that as an e-book (why, oh why not any of their other products????) I can go ahead and purchase that so we have something to work on while we wait. 

All About Homophones

I’ve also set up spelling lists on Spelling City for him to work on.  I only have the free account, but it allows for customised spelling lists which can be used for various games.  I also downloaded the free app to try out.


iPhone Screenshot 1


And…did you know that All About Spelling currently has a giveaway on their blog to win a level of AAS?  Any level you choose.  It’s only open to US and Canadian residents (sorry, Aussies!).  Giveaway runs through 14 May, details are here.


Silly boy!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Spelling

This Week: the one with ANZAC Day

Again, not a normal week as there was a holiday this week. 

History:  Our regularly scheduled history work was diverted to ANZAC Day.  We used this early learning pack from Our Worldwide Classroom.  I’ll post about it more later.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ ANZAC Day

Literature: We finished Bunnicula: A Rabbit Tale of Mystery, which was not satisfactory at all as the mystery is not solved.  We continue to read Homer Price.  Next week I’m hoping to make donuts to go with it and I have a couple more books to start.

Ladybug worked on her cutting skills and finished her Kumon workbook.  She’s anxiously stalking the mailbox for her next one which I haven’t ordered yet.  Shhhh!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Kumon Let's Cut Paper

Handwriting:  Skeeterbug continues to prefer his print book.  I had a closer look at his cursive book and realised he’s done all the lowercase letters.  Seems like a good place for a break before learning all the uppercase letters.  Jitterbug and Ladybug continue to plug away at theirs.  Here’s a page from Ladybug’s book:

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ HWOT Preschool

Science:  We made our birdfeeders and got them hung in the tree out front where we will be able to look out the window and observe.  So far it seems that no birds have discovered them, we may have to move them.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Homemade Birdfeeder

Bible: We got one day of BSGFAA done.  One.  Both Jitterbug and Skeeterbug, I did them one at a time which worked better.

Math:  Skeeterbug is finally out of all those drawing lessons!  Phew!  The last one was on tessellation with a page to colour patterns, I couldn’t resist having a go too…

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ RightStart Math

Spelling:  Someone finished AAS Level 3! 

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Spelling 

Human Body: We continued to read books about the reproductive system and we started on skeletons.

Art: We made ‘shape trains’ in our weekly art lesson.  This is Jitterbug’s (5).  His train is travelling at night, thus the black sky.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio

We started AAR Level 1 again, we are only on lesson four and we are going to take it nice and slow.  This is a bingo game where he had to match the sounds to the letters.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Reading

When Ladybug saw the game he was playing she wanted a go, so I had her matching up the letters since she doesn’t know all the sounds yet.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ All About Reading

Virtues:  We’ve been working on memorising all the We Choose Virtues cards since we hadn’t worked on them recently.  We coloured our I am Gentle picture and worked on being gentle this week.

Grammar:  We read To Root, to Toot, to Parachute: What is a Verb?  (ignoring that the first word is rude in this country!) and completed chapter nine of Grammar-land.

To Root, to Toot, to Parachute: What is a Verb?

I feel we didn’t get nearly enough done this week, but I always seem to feel this way at the end of the week.  It helps to look back at these posts and see what we’ve done.  Next week might be (dare I say it?) a normal week.

Human Body: Reproductive System

Looks like this post will be all about all the books we read!  We did colour our body parts from the My Body book and hang them on our outlines.  The boy parts (a simple drawing of testes) and the girl parts (a simple drawing of the uterus/ovaries/fallopian tubes) were all on the same colouring page.  Both Ladybug and Jitterbug had to colour all the parts and we had much discussion over why they couldn’t hang both parts on their bodies.  :)

Our main book for this section is It’s Not the Stork: A Book About Girls, Boys, Babies, Bodies, Families, and Friends.  It’s just right for the age range of my kids.  It’s listed on Amazon as being for ages 4-8.  Try not to blush while you read it to your kids.  :)  It’s very appropriate, uses all the correct body terms with illustrations.  Talks about how boys and girls are different, how they are the same, a little about puberty, a little about how a baby is made, how the baby grows inside mummy, etc.  I can imagine some people would feel it contains too much information for this age, but given that we have a baby on the way it was just right for us.  The kids have questions about the process and this helps explain it very matter-of-factly without embarrassment.   See the bird and the bee on the cover?  They have funny things to say throughout the book.  A bird and a bee, get it?

It's Not the Stork

There is another book in the series:  It’s So Amazing: A Book About Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families that I considered ordering, it’s aimed at ages 7-10.  It looks like it talks more about puberty and sexuality, which I felt we could hold off on for now.

A book we found at the library is What’s Inside Your Tummy, Mummy?  (Our version says Mummy instead of Mommy like in the picture below.)  It has illustrations of a foetus growing (okay my spell check made me put the ‘o’ in foetus but I am so not used to spelling it that way!) at various stages throughout the pregnancy.  Supposedly life-size illustrations (though they felt a bit off to me).  Very simple.

What's Inside Your Tummy, Mummy?


We got these from the library just to have a look at the pictures.  The kids were way more fascinated with the animal one!


In the Womb

In the Womb: Animals


A couple of things we didn’t get to…I forgot to pull out the Flip-Flap Body Book, it has a section on reproduction.  I’ll get that out next week.

Flip-Flap Body Book


I’m also intending to print out these free Parts of the Womb nomenclature cards from Little Schoolhouse in the Suburbs. 

Free Parts of the Womb and Baby Development Cards from Little Schoolhouse in the Suburbs

It’s kind of an ongoing thing here, our baby isn’t due until July so we will continue our discussions on the reproductive system and babies.  See this post to learn more about the resources we are using for our human body unit.  Next we are learning about our skeletons.

Home Art Studio: Lessons 4-6

We continue to meet with friends weekly and complete a lesson from the Home Art Studio Kindergarten DVD.  A few weeks ago we made a butterfly and in the video she talked about symmetry.  Whatever they did to one side they were supposed to do to the other.  I think they all did really well at that. 

Jitterbug (5).  We had to tape the head back on his butterfly.  He was the only one of mine who insisted the butterfly needed a face.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Ladybug (3).  In the video Ms. Volin started with a blue circle on the top wings, so that’s what a lot of the kids started out with too.  Ladybug cut most of hers out by herself and her butterfly ended up without a head, so we had to tape hers back on too.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Skeeterbug (8).  I held myself back from helping any of them draw their butterflies (I helped Ladybug some), you can see they all three ended up with very different shapes.  With this one you can more easily see the black line that denotes movement.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

The next lesson we made an Owl Collage.  This project involved a lot of gluing.  First we drew an owl outline with a white crayon.  Then we tore and tore and tore up paper.  And glued and glued and glued all the pieces down.  I drew Ladybug’s owl for her, she did about 1/3 of hers before she tired of all the gluing and tearing.  I ended up filling in the rest of the brown feathers and the orange tummy.  After that she was happy to finish and cut out all the rest (except the feet, I did those).  I adore the eyes and beak because she did them herself.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Skeeterbug’s owl was large and took up the whole paper, which meant a lot of gluing.  After I’d helped the others I helped him out by putting glue on his pieces so all he had to do was stick them on the paper.  He’d gotten most of the way done by then but he was the last one working on his because his owl was so large.  He named his owl Jonny.  (Jonathan would normally be nicknamed Jono here, I’m not sure where he got Jonny.)

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Jitterbug also tired of this and I helped him by putting glue on most of his pieces.  He drew his owl all by himself, in fact he did everything except the feet.  He tried the feet but wasn’t happy with them and asked me to make some for him.  He named his owl Doby.  

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

I love how different each of these are.  I was actually surprised this was on the K DVD, not for the skill level but because the amount of gluing makes this such a lengthy project.  Beyond the attention span of a K’er, anyway! 

And here are the germs we made…I’ll put Skeeterbug’s first so that you have an idea what it was ‘supposed’ to look like, his most closely resembled the example in the video.  He chose to do three eyes and six legs.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Jitterbug chose to do four eyes and a crazy shape.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

Ladybug did all of the drawing and most of the cutting, I helped her out with some triangles.  Her germ had to be pink.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio K

We are really enjoying the Home Art Studio lessons.  Some of the levels were recently on sale so I purchased all of the remaining levels that I didn’t have.  I like that someone else is teaching the lesson and all we have to do is follow her example.  You can see our other projects here.

Finished! Writing With Ease Level 2

our aussie homeschool ~ Writing With Ease

Last week Skeeterbug finished Level 2 of Writing With Ease.  This is a four-day a week program.  One day of narration, two days of dictation, then on the last day narration and dictation is combined when the student takes one of his sentences from his own narration and it is dictated to him.  Copywork is dropped part way through this level, which I think is a bit too early so we still practice some copywork here and there.  I’d actually hoped to finish this level a little faster, but in the end it took us one school year to complete.  It’s funny to look back at my post from when he finished the last level, I was worried that we were behind.  Now I am quite happy to have the level overlap into the following school year.  I had also been thinking of using PAL but in the end put it aside to concentrate on the narration/dictation in WWE.

Moving forward we will begin Level 3, but I am also adding IEW’s Bible Heroes.  From what I understand this is aimed at second grade, with options for beefing it up for up to grade five.  I’ve looked at their third grade program and fear it could be too much this year when we will already be doing Level 3 of WWE.  I don’t want to drop WWE as I don’t want to lose ground on Skeeterbug’s narration/dictation skills.  He does not love writing and I don’t want to overwhelm him.  So I’m using Bible Heroes as a gentle introduction to IEW.  It has a very different feel to it, I am hoping it will be a good complement to WWE.  I have not yet decided if we will alternate weeks or days or how we will schedule it, we will figure that out after we’ve tried it a couple of different ways to see what works for us.  My tentative plan moving forward is to do All Things Fun & Fascinating from IEW next year, possibly alongside WWE Level 4, then maybe a year of their regular program before moving to Writing With Skill.  (Right now there is only one level of WWS, more will be released before we get there.)  Those are my tentative plans.  We may fall in love with IEW and stay there, or we may come back to just WWE/WWS.  Whatever works best for Skeeterbug.

And for anyone interested, the above book did not come spiral bound.  It’s actually quite a thick book since it comes with the instructor’s portion and the student pages all bound into one book.  I had it separated and the teacher portion bound.  The student pages I’ve kept loose-leaf for copying, they can be copied for use within your own family.  If I choose to sell the book (not anytime soon, I’ve got three more kids to go through it!) then the buyer can download a pdf of just the student pages from the Peace Hill Press website.  For Level 3 I’ll probably get the pdf version of the entire book and just read the instructor’s portion from the iPad and print the student pages as needed.

Linking to my Curriculum 2013 page since this explains what we are doing the rest of the year.  :)

This Week: the one where we lost a day

A bit late, but here is a wrap-up post for last week.  Is there ever a normal week?  Last week saw one whole day disappear to doctor’s appointments, chiro appointments, and soccer practice.  We also had a great excursion with our homeschool group, again to a nearby town, where we got to tour an old gold mine. 

Bible:  Started in Grapevine again.  We are using the OT Overview Level 3 for Skeeterbug.  We are in Part 2.  We haven’t used it since February, and when I pulled it out Skeeterbug excitedly asked “Oooh, can we do that?”  So we did.  We read the passage from the Bible, the summary in the teacher’s guide, and then Skeeterbug draws the picture.  While he's finishing his page I read the corresponding story from The Child’s Story Bible by Catherine Vos.  Lovely.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Grapevine

Writing: Skeeterbug finished Writing With Ease Level 2.  He’s hoping never to have to do writing again.  No such luck, mister!  I’m planning to continue with the next level of WWE and also begin IEW’s Bible Heroes.  More on that later.

Math:  Skeeterbug is still drawing.  This week he worked on hexagons and stars.  The warm-up sections of all these lessons has him learning multiplication and practicing mental addition and subtraction.  He does some of the drill sheets and continues with CWP, so even during all these drawing lessons he is still working on arithmetic.   We will be done with this drawing section early next week.  Phew!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ RightStart Math

History: Continued learning about the Romans, we have much reading to do on the subject!  I’ve got to decide on some activities now.

Human Body: Reproductive system.  We’ve been reading books on the subject, coloured our appropriate parts to hang on their body outlines.  My younger two both wanted to hang all the parts (the boy parts and the girl parts) on their bodies because they were all on the same colouring page.  Much discussion ensued.  :)  We also made our edible cell model, very much enjoyed by all the kids as you can imagine given all the lollies involved!

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Edible Cell Model

Devotions: Butterflies, hummingbirds.  We don’t have hummingbirds here in Australia.  We found this great video where they are eating out of people’s hands.  So neat!

Spelling: Skeeterbug finished steps 26 & 27.  We ran into some words he has a bit of trouble with, words where you change the ‘y’ to an ‘i’ before adding a suffix.  One more step to go!  Since I don’t have the next level yet (and it will be several weeks before I can get it here) he will practice his words from this level using Spelling City.  I’ve set up all our word lists on there and I’ll just let him play games and practice for the next few weeks.

Art: We made germs this week.  Yep, germs.  Beautiful.  This is Skeeterbug’s.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Home Art Studio

Grammar:  Hmmm, I don’t think we got to grammar this week. 

Phonics:  Jitterbug continues in his ETC C book.  He’s hit a ‘hard’ part on Reading Eggs.  I didn’t get to the AAR lessons this week, we will start them again next week.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Explode the Code

Science:  We read the rest of Lesson 2 in Zoo 1, now need to make our birdfeeders.  Maybe over the weekend???  This has been slow going.  I’m not really a bird fan so I admit to dragging my feet.

Handwriting:  Skeeterbug decided to work in his printing book this week instead of his cursive book.  The others plug away at theirs.  They especially enjoy using the Handwriting Without Tears app. (Which, by the way, is being discontinued.  The new version will require a yearly license fee per child, so if you’ve been thinking of getting the app do it now!)  I also got Ladybug this pre-writing book during the Dollar Days sales at Teacher Express, something else to colour and practice writing lines and shapes.  I printed these two to a page, so this little book is about size A5 (half a regular sheet of paper).

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Pre-Writing Practice PagesOur Aussie Homeschool ~ Pre-Writing Practice Pages

Literature: Started Homer Price and Bunnicula (a short read).  I’m planning to make doughnuts to go with Homer Price, which is something I haven’t done before.  Should be fun.  Planning to also start The Horse and His Boy soon.

Soccer:  First official game so it’s worth mentioning.  ;)

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ First Day of Soccer!

And, because there is no picture of Ladybug in this post, here is a picture of her in her Easter dress which she didn’t wear until this week because it came all the way from America and didn’t quite make it here in time.  She was very excited to wear it, thanks to her auntie for getting it for her.

Our Aussie Homeschool ~ Easter Dress

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