Home Schooling, Uncategorized

2017 Booklists

Thank goodness it’s Friday. I love Fridays. We work so hard all week and Fridays are our day to relax and take stock of the week so far. It’s a day for tying up loose ends and preparing for the weekend (and just maybe having sleep-ins!). When I hear a little voice ask me, “Can you push me on the swing?” I can say, “Yes!” When I get asked, “Can you read me a book?” I can say, “Yes”. “Can I make a robot?” “Can I play lego?” and sometimes I may even say yes to “Can we watch a movie?” It is Friday, right?


We still do school on Fridays but we only do maths, a little writing and whatever they missed during the week. There are no timetables, and the kids are free to decide when they  do their subjects. But of course, there will be no movie if their school hasn’t been done!


Today the kids have made robots, done electronics, played music, read books, constructed cubbies, designed fairy gardens, rode their bikes, wrote out recipes, wrote out book character names into notebooks and much more.  So much learning occurs even without structured school.


With much less on the agenda today, I have had a chance to take photos and make a list of all the curriculums that we are using this year. I love seeing what other people use, and it so often gives me ideas for what I would like to use in my homeschool. So here is goes….by grade level.

Year 10 (age 15)



English: Pearson English 10; Windows to the World; The Elegant Essay; Advanced Spelling.

Maths: MathOnline


Science – Chemistry 101

History – Christ the King Lord of History

Geography – North Star Geography 

Logic: – The Art of Argument

Economics: Continue Penny Candy from last year

The Arts:

Music: Guitar

Religion: Catholicism DVDs, The Teen Timeline

Year 8 (age 13)


English: Pearson English 8; Windows to the WorldThe Elegant Essay; Life of Fred Language Arts; Phonetic Zoo C

Maths: Saxon Maths


Science –Physics 101

History – RC History – Living books (for another post)

Geography – North Star Geography 

Logic:  The Art of Argument

Business:  Life of Fred Financial Choices

The Arts:

Art: Ever Ancient Ever New

Music: Guitar

Religion: Catholicism DVDsThe Teen Timeline

Year 6 (age 10)


English: Writing and Rhetoric Books 3 & 4; Life of Fred Language ArtsPhonetic Zoo B

Maths: New Syllabus Primary Mathematics 5A & 5B


Science –Magic School Bus

History – RC History – Living books (for another post)

Geography –Draw Africa & Draw Asia plus living books

Logic: One Hour Mysteries

Civics and Citizenship – Parliament

The Arts:

Art: Ever Ancient Ever New and art classes with a teacher at a friend’s house

Music: Violin

Religion: Catholicism DVDs, Bible reading for history

Year 3 (Age 8)


English: All About Spelling Level 3; Beautiful Feet Books, All Things Fun and Fascinating

Maths: New Syllabus Primary Mathematics 3A & 3B


Science –Magic School Bus

History – RC History – Living books (for another post)

Geography –Draw Africa & Draw Asia plus living books

The Arts:

Art: Ever Ancient Ever New and art classes with a teacher at a friend’s house

Music: Piano

Religion: 1st Confession & 1st Holy Communion Preparation,  Bible reading for history

Well there it is! As you can see, many books are shared as I teach the kids together as much as possible. So far, the kids are enjoying their schooling for 2017, and I am enjoying teaching them as well 🙂

Family, Home Schooling, My Daybook, Uncategorized

My Daybook – February

OUTSIDE MY WINDOW I SEE…a beautiful overcast day. I can also see some gorgeous new shoots on the rose bushes. If the parrots don’t get to them, I should be able to pick some soon to bring inside.

I AM GIVING THANKS….that Jay was feeling much better than usual yesterday and he was able to enjoy his birthday.

I AM PRAYING FOR……..Jay – that his up and coming medical treatment interstate will fix his health and he can lead a normal life again!

I AM LISTENING TO…a very quiet house!!! Only one of the big kids are up so it is very quiet. I can hear many different birds chirping outside.

I AM THINKING ABOUT….how I haven’t posted ANYTHING in so long. I really want to get back into it again. I like to blog so I can document our days and have something to look back on. Hopefully I can start up again.

I AM LEARNING….more and more about the bible. This year for Religion we are focusing on the bible. Not that we don’t already know how to read it, but this year we are using lots of resources to come to love and understand scripture more deeply and to understand the timeline from Adam and Eve right to Jesus.

I AM CREATING….lists, lists and more lists. I will be in Melbourne for 2 1/2 weeks with Jay. Our GAPs diet will have to continue at home, and so will school work. The kids will need to know what to do while we are gone.


IN THE SCHOOLROOM….there is plenty going on. I will have to do a separate post all on our chosen curriculums for this year. Dami is in Kindy this year. Although I prefer learning at this age to be completely natural, there are days where he wants to be like the big kids. Sometimes we enjoy a cup of tea together while he is doing his ‘Kindy’ work.


How are we supposed to do school with this little guy peering in the window?!!


COOKING IN THE KITCHEN….last night was a no dairy, no sugar, peppermint ice-cream for Jay’s 15th birthday. It was delicious!!


IN THE MORNING BASKET…we are listening to Peter Nimble and his Fantastic Eyes and we are learning the poem My Country.


IN THE GARDEN…we are fencing in the property so our new puppy won’t escape! We needed to cut down a few trees to be able to put the fence in. The logs became a good table and chairs.



I NEVER WANT TO FORGET….a cute little moment from Jay’s birthday yesterday….Dami spent the morning bringing ‘presents’ to Jay from the playroom. He gave away his Octonaught toys, his keyboard, a backpack and some toy cars. When he was off to bed that night he also gave Jay his teddies. It was a very serious activity, he was adamant that Jay was not to give them back.

The kids enjoyed a trip on their Poppy's sail boat. The boat literally rocked Dami off to sleep!
The kids enjoyed a trip on their Poppy’s sail boat. The boat literally rocked Dami off to sleep!
Australian Curriculum, Family, Health, Home Schooling, Parenting, Uncategorized

The Perfect Homeschool? – or Not!


It’s planning time again! It feels like only yesterday that I was planning for 2016, and here I am again thinking about what books I need to buy for next year. I was thinking the other day, for the first time since I started homeschooling 10 years ago I am not excited for the next school year. Planning and organising is my passion, so why no enthusiasm?

It took me a while to work it out, but I think it is because I feel that this year was a total flop. So many curriculums which I planned on using, just didn’t happen. Life threw me a curve ball. Term one was three broken bones in the family. Then term 2 we began our huge detox as a family.

Little did I know back then that we would go into survival mode.

Little did I know that Jay would spend most of his days unable to move off the couch. His detox was so debilitating that school was not a priority….his healing was our focus. So one by one, each subject got put completely on the back burner. Our daily plan become this;

Having a good day? Then get as much school work done as you can.

Having an average day? Then do maths and english.

Having a bad day? Then do your easy online subjects (religion, geography) and your textbooks which you can just read (science, history) –  we ditched anything that involved writing for these subjects.

Having a terrible day? Watch documentaries, listen to audio books, rest and relax. Just try to get outside for a small walk and some vitamin D. Even if you have to crawl out there….just get yourself outside.


Soaking up some vitamin D, and some brotherly love.

I was so worried when it was time for our moderator to come (in Western Australia we have a person come out from the Education department to see how our homeschooling is going). Jay said to me, “Mum, I have nothing to put in my portfolio!” After having a little panic, I realised that although we had no concrete proof of learning, I know that he has still been learning and expanding his mind.

I decided to look at each individual subject and list every book that he has read. We also noted down all the tests he has had and what he learnt from them (DNA tests, bacteria tests). He has also learnt a huge amount about the body and how it functions. He is even now thinking when he finished school he would like to be a chiropractor and functional doctor.

So this year was not a waste. His portfolio still looked great, even though it was very different to each of his past 8 years portfolios.

So while I sit here sifting through curriculums, talking to the kids about what their interests are for next year, and thinking about what worked and didn’t work this year, I have to keep in mind that you never know what another year will bring. What challenges will you face? How will your goals and plans change? As I have done for the last ten years, I will search for curriculum that meet the needs of my kids but I will be prepared to change whatever I must as life always takes us in directions which we cannot control.

The path is long….and hard

What never changes though is the fact that God is by our side. With the help of Mary our mother, the angels and saints we will continue to strive to do our best and even though we fail many times we pick ourselves up and keep trying. Will we ever have the perfect homeschool? No, but we will continue to do our best and that is what we are expected to do.

My biggest achievement this year, climbing Bluff Knoll