August Reads

Yes!  I know it’s the middle of October and I’m just getting around to posting our study list/reading list for August.  I almost didn’t post it today, but I was afraid that if I didn’t I might never get around to posting a book list again, and since our books define our studies, that would be very sad for my recordkeeping 🙂

I will note before I begin as a disclosure that most of my links are affiliate links.  Please feel free to buy from them (because we always need new books!) or don’t buy from them.  It’s okay with me either way 🙂

Read Alouds

The Courage of Sarah Noble by Alice Dalgiesh–This was an interesting read for us.  The chapters were short enough that Firecracker could have read the book to us, but he’d rather not, and we read it in just about an hour.  Everything we’ve read before that had Indians in it was from the Native American point of view, so it was really cool and different to read something from the settlers point of view.

Purplicious by Victoria Kann–This is an old favorite that we pulled out and read a few times.  The kids really enjoy all of the Pinkalicious books and this one is no different.

The Story of the World: History for the Classical Child: Volume 1: Ancient Times: From the Earliest Nomads to the Last Roman Emperor, Revised Edition by Susan Wise Bauer–We used this as a read-aloud.  I think I enjoyed it more than the kids did, but Rose loved all the myths and legends that are sprinkled through Volume 1.  Of all the stories in the book, the kids were most fascinated by Julius Caesar.

Dancing with the Indians by Angela Shelf Medearis–We used this as a go-along with our Seminole Indian studies.  It was also one that we’ve went back to since then just to remember that the Seminoles often took former slaves into their tribe.  In fact, the federal government often required them to take these former slaves in.

The Seminole by Liz Sonneborn–The text was dry.  It was very informative though and had great pictures.  It was the only thing really textbooky that we read when we studied Seminoles.

Ninja: The Shadow Warrior by Joel Levy–I think I spent half the summer reading it aloud to Firecracker just a couple of pages at a time.  He wants to learn about Ninjas and Samurai so badly, but most of the material on the subject is written very much over his head.  Check out my Ninja unit study page for a few ways that we made this book a little more understandable.

Magic Tree House #41: Moonlight on the Magic Flute by Mary Pope Osborne–This one is about Mozart.  It has a very interesting story line, and the kids really seemed to like it.

The Lemonade War by Jacqueline Davies–This book had everything.  It had new vocabulary, math and a bickering brother and sister that Firecracker and Rose could really empathize with.  I personally felt that the brother and sister were a little unkind to each other, but the feelings really resonated with the kids, and fiction is a safe place to work those feelings out.

A Good Night for Ghosts by Mary Pope Osborne–This is the Magic Tree House book that is based on Louis Armstrong.  The kids enjoyed it so much that Rose came up with some activities for us to with it, and I even wrote them out as a mini-unit study.  I felt like we really made a connection with Armstrong, and I love when that happened.

Preschool Books

Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann–Wordless books are not really my favorite, but my little kids giggled over it.  I used it to do a little unit about how God made the zoo animals.  Their favorite activity from that was our banana bites.  We dipped frozen banana slices into chocolate and covered them with sprinkles.  That was cooking that even my little Monkey could do.

Monkey bites

My Reads

Stages of Homeschooling: Beginnings (Book 1) by Barbara Frank–I actually found this to be a very gentle and good book about easing into the early years of homeschooling with your kids .  I really love her writing style.

Teaching in Your Tiara by Rebecca Frech–One of the reasons that I bought this one was that I loved the cover picture so much with the kiddie-made tiara.  Inside, it’s a real nuts-and-bolts type book that’s good for the beginning homeschooler.  I still found a lot of encouragement in it’s pages.

Plan to Be Flexible: Designing A Homeschool Year and Daily Schedule That Works for Your Family by Alicia Kazsuk–I like this.  I think everyone needs to tell all homeschoolers–new or veteran–that it’s okay to be flexible.  I would probably disagree with her about needing to have a plan at all, but to each his own 🙂

Grace for the Homeschool Mom by Tamara Chilver–This was really good, and I really needed it.  I really needed to give myself some grace.  I’ve had a real hard time with worry recently, and being able to go back to this book and think about some of the encouragement I received from it has really helped me get through.  Her book and Barbara Frank’s books really re-energized me.

How to Homeschool Your Child From Preschool Through High School by Roseanne Muncy–I got this for free and still consider it a waste of money.  Don’t pay the $9.99 asking price on Amazon!

Two Miserable Presidents: The Amazing, Terrible, and Totally True Story of the Civil War by Steve Sheinkin–I read this book while I was thinking about how to approach my Civil War class in co-op.  It’s a fun book, and if you pick it up, you won’t regret it.  I would say about 10 and up on this one just because it might go over your elementary-aged kid’s head.

Stages of Homeschooling: Enjoying the Journey (Book 2) by Barbara Frank–This covers those middle years when you’re in the thick of homeschooling.  It’s really encouraging and I really enjoyed it.

Curriculum Worked Through

This is a new space for me just to put some of the curriculum that we’ve worked through together or that one of the kids has worked through into.  We don’t do a lot of curriculum, but occasionally the kids pick something out (or I find something perfect for them) that we or they do.

Follow-the-Directions: Easy Origami–This is workbook that targets beginning reading and following direction skills.  The reading level in the book is around first grade level.  Firecracker worked through this book, so he did get some reading practice, but not anything really intense.  He really wanted to learn origami when we studied Japan and all the tutorials that we found online were too hard for him, so I was glad to get this book.  He was able to read and create all by himself and that was a real confidence builder for him.

His favorite thing he made was the mice.  He made a ton of them!

origami

I also picked up an addition workbook in Target’s dollar spot section and let Rose work through it.  It really helped her gain a little confidence and build a little skill with addition.  Now, if I print her a workbook page off the computer she does not approach it with fear.  Given her reaction a couple of months ago, I’m very pleased to have spent that dollar.

Firecracker’s Reads

Mouse Tales by Arnold Lobel–A cute and long easy reader about a mouse Dad telling bedtime stories to his children.  I’m always happy with Firecracker volunteers to read to me.

I know.  I said Firecracker was going to complete the hundred book challenge this year and he only read one book to me this month.  He reads everything over my shoulder.  He reads on his DS.  He reads on the computer.  He reads captions on the television.  He just hasn’t found the right books to make him want to read yet.  We’re still looking.

That’s about all for August.  I plan on getting the September Reads post up sometime this week and starting to work on some tutorials that I have pictures trapped on my camera for.  Wish me luck!

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