Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Simple Woman's Day Book

This just looked like a really fun one to participate in! With it also being Wordless Wednesday I thought it was the perfect way to sum up the day with just a few words!

Outside my window...It is getting dark

I am thinking...about my quilt that I need to finish

I am thankful parents who have so graciously watched my kids while I take a night class

From the kitchen...the dishes are still in the sink and will probably stay there until tomorrow

I am wearing...a red shirt and jeans

I am creating...this blog LOL

I am the farmers market with my bestie tomorrow

I am reading...A Time to Dance by Karen Kingsburry

I am cuddle up with my honey later

I am hearing...silence! Imagine that!

Around the house...I have been neglectful today. In my defense I really did NEED to have my unibrow waxed!

One of my favorite things...praying in the evening with the kids. Brianna has the cutest prayers and Keira bursts into tears every single time because she is nervous

A few plans for the rest of the week: Farmers Market tomorrow, school and cleaning house Friday and Friday evening I am going to Deaf chat at Starbucks, Saturday hopefully taking it easy, Sunday easter services and lunch with the family!

My picture thought is in my Wordless Wednesday post below!

Wordless Wednesday

Being burried alive with the rocks at the playground.

For more WW visit Here!

The Winner of The Fallacy Detective Giveaway!

Congrats to rsnickers! She won the copy of The Fallacy Detective: Thirty-Eight Lessons on How to Recognize Bad Reasoning! Don't worry, if you didn't win this contest I will be running another one starting next Tuesday!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Should Cursive Be Required?

The debate rages. Should we require our children to learn cursive. Or for that matter should handwriting be focused on at all? With the age of computers came a massive lean towards typing school assignments as opposed to handwriting them. In fact, most high school and colleges require that reports be typed. So do we need to teach our younger children cursive?

I distinctly remember the day that my 1st grade class began to practice cursive. It was about 3 weeks before the end of the school year and wow was I excited! I was going to be writing like the big kids in 2nd grade! I remember spending hours from then on out doing homework assignments and being required to write in cursive. We even had penmanship tests weekly.

USA today reported that a 2007 nationwide study found that 90% of teachers were teaching cursive in schools that made it a requirement. Research showed that most teachers who did not teach it cited that there just wasn't enough time. The focus has shifted from the "beauty of hand writing to the efficiency of computer literacy".

So what's the answer? Should we be teaching our children cursive? Personally, I am leaning towards teaching it to mine. While I do not see that it will be a required skill when they get older I do think there is something to be said about having the ability to compose a beautifully written paper (literally). I also see some value in the hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills it takes to form cursive letters.

Here are some other articles on cursive writing:

Is this the end of cursive?

Is cursive worth teaching?

Death to cursive writing

Tell me your thoughts on cursive!

picture credit: www.fragranceoftruth.wordpress/judas-asparagus

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

I attend college classes on Mondays and Wednesday while my parents watch the kids until I get home. For this reason I am having to do things that bake on those days so that my parents can just pull it out of the oven and it will still be warm for my husband when he gets home about 45 min after I leave.

Monday: Baked Tilapia with roasted mixed veggies

Tuesday: Crock Pot BBQ Brisket Sandwiches with corn on the cob

Wednesday: Rotisserie Chicken(from brookshires) and Potato Wedges and one other veggie to be determined

Thursday: Famous Pork chops with steamed mixed veggies

Friday: Teriyaki stir fry with rice and snow peas

Ok, I am asking my friends to hold me accountable to menu planning each week! Click the logo at the top to see other MPM bloggers!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Update on Project Postcard

A few weeks ago I posted HERE about a project I was starting with the girls. We are trying to collect one postcard from all of the states. Last week we started getting our postcards starting with Arkansas! Let me tell you! There is nothing quite as exciting for a 5 or 6 year old as getting their own mail! My girls are still quite young so I am not overloading them with work. We learned the Capital and colored pictures of the state flower, flag and bird. Since these pictures were taken we have received Tennessee and North Carolina as well! We still need lots more postcards so if you are able to help please let me know at We would be happy to send you a postcard back in return! Brianna coloring the state flower of Arkansas, the Apple Blossom.

Keira coloring the state flag.

12 Things you can do for FREE in Dallas,Tx

Whether you are just visiting or live in the Dallas area, most of us are looking for free(or really cheap) family friendly activities and educational experiences. I know that with three kids and two adults field trips can get expensive. A trip to the zoo costs a family of 4 cost nearly $50! So here is a list of free activities that your family can enjoy!

The Morton H Meyerson Symphony Center offers free public tours, and even occasionally is able to bring in an organist to play for the guests before the tour!

The Dallas Central Library boasts one of the original copies of the Declaration of Independence and also has on display Shakespeare's First Folio of Comedies, Histories and Tragedies. They also have one of the largest children's libraries in the country.

Mary Kay Factory and Museum Tours. Our co-op visited the Mary Kay factory last year and this was a hit! You get to see all the big machinery it takes to make Mary Kay make-up! Just be sure when you get the information that you book your tour for the factory as there are two Mary Kay buildings in Dallas. You can also tour the Mary Kay museum located in the Dallas headquarters building.

Alot of museums take donations rather than admission. A few of these include the African American Museum and the Hall of State. Special exhibits not included.

Dallas City Hall offers some unique architecture and the opportunity to teach your child about local politics.

M-line All Around offers street car rides near some of Dallas' tourist attractions including the Dallas Museum of Art (free for kids 12 and under!) and Historic West End. Donations taken and for $4 more you can purchase a Dart Day Pass.

Farmers Branch Historical Park is home to several structures dating back as far as 1840, including log cabins!

DFW Airport offers an observation station. Watch as airplanes go in and out of one of the busiest airports in the nation.

Fantasy Landing playground is designed to be accessible for both able-bodied and disabled children.

The Dallas Farmers Market everything from bulk produce to locally grown organics.

The Dallas Nature Center offers hiking, native plants, picnic areas and more. Donations Suggested.

Please visit for more great info on Dallas and its surrounding areas!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Freebie Friday

A few freebies for my friends! Since I have a field trip tomorrow with the kids I am posting it a bit early :)

Geotrax DVD-Very cute annimated episodes for young children

First 10,000 to sign up get a free Lego Smart Kit-(thanks www.

Give Away: The Fallacy Detective

What is a fallacy? A fallacy is a mistake made by using illogical reasoning. Example:

A cloud is 90% water and a watermelon is 90% water therefore because a plane can fly through a cloud a plane can also fly through a watermelon.

The Fallacy Detective: Thirty-Eight Lessons on How to Recognize Bad Reasoning by Nathaniel and Hans Bluedorn, helps parents and teachers teach logic using fun examples and cartoons. Teaching logic helps students with math and reasoning skills. This book makes it fun!

To enter the giveaway subscribe to my feeds using the email subscribe form to the right then post a comment here simply stating that you would like to enter the contest. Follow me on twitter for a second entry! (my tag is mmhomeschooling. Im still working on figuring twitter out!) If you already get email updates all you need to do is post a comment! I will use (or a similar site)to choose the winner on Tuesday March 30th!

This book was donated with the purpose of being given away. I am in no way being compensated for this giveaway.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A few more freebies

We love lapbooking here so I thought I would share with you a great site for free lapbooking (and some not free) resources. Currclick has just about any topic you could ask for and offers a free download weekly. I won't be able to list them all but here are a few of my favorites:

17th Century Lapbook and study guide

A-Z Have a Wonderful Walk

All About My Family

Anne of Green Gables Study Guide

Bible Notebooking:Genesis

Blinky Bill Alphabet Copy Book


Clouds Mini-Helper

Discoverers and Explorers

Down on the Farm

A Taste of Australia

This is just a small bit of what offers. Be sure to check them out!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Homeschooling for free

Side note:my son has popped almost all of my keys off of my keyboard. While hubby did manage to get most of them back on my shift key and my space bar are acting up so please forgive me if you see errors in this post.

Most of us invest in some sort of curriculum for our children, but did you know that you can homeschool for free? It takes a bit more time and planning but the internet has everything you need to teach your child. Below are some sites that off free educational materials:

School Express
Homeschooling Adventures
Homeschool Living
Homeschool Math
The Teachers Cafe
Worksheets online-Links to dozens of resources
America History of Us free DVD

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Live Animal Cameras

What better way to learn about God's creation than to be up close and personal with it? Sometimes that just isn't possible so what is the next best thing? Live animal cameras of course! Here is a list of live animal cams for you and your young one to enjoy:

Barn Owl Cam
Smithsonian National Zoo Cams (21 different cameras)
Africam (African water hole)
Monterey Bay Cams (Several)
Panda Cam at San Diego Zoo
Humming Bird Nest Cam

These are just a few of what I found. If you have any more great cams to add please feel free to comment and I will add them to the list!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Arlington Homeschool Book Fair

This is my absolute favorite time of the year! Ok, so I have only been once but I am so excited to be going back this year. It's time for the annual Arlington Homeschool Book Fair. Each year hundreds of vendors come and set up, along with workshops and speakers you don't want to miss it. It's a great way to be able to look in person at curriculum before purchasing and most, if not all, of the vendors offer some sort of discount for ordering at the fair. Along with curriculum there are lots of neat things from learning toys and homeschool t-shirts to good clean safe kids music.

Key Speakers this year include:
Tod Wilson from FamilyMan Ministries
Rosie Watson from Center for Home Education
Zan Tyler From Apologia Ministries
Tim and Lyndsay Lambert From Texas Homeschool Coalation
Ken Ham From Answers in Genesis

You can visit HERE to see the workshop schedule.

And last but not least here is a link for Texas Ranger discounted tickets!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Project Postcard

I am starting a new project with the girls and am hoping that some of you will be willing to help out! We are going to collect postcards from all of the 50 US States. As we collect the cards we will notebook about that state. The problem is that I don't know someone in all 50 states (depending on the response we might expand and try for post cards from all over the world!). Thats where you come in. If you are in a state other than Texas or know someone in a state other than Texas we would love to exchange post cards with you or your child! Here is what I am hoping for:

1. One postcard from each state
2. The cards dont have to be from children but if you have a child who can send it all the better
3. After getting your card in the mail my children will send a postcard back.

If you would like to send a postcard please email me at and I will send you the information you need.

We are very excited to see where all we can get postcards from!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Trying a New Reward System

I have decided to try out a new reward system for the girls. I am blessed in that they aren't particularly difficult children, but I have been looking for something that allows the to earn certain priveleges as recently they seem to take for granted the amount of TV and computer time that they have. So we are trying it.

Basically, the girls will earn chips (counting chips) for various things ranging from keeping their room clean to using good manners and finishing school work without too much complaint. They will then trade in the chips for computer time, TV time, and so on. I hesitated to do a payment system with them because I dont want them to think that they get paid for things that must be done around the house, but I think this system teaches them that when we work hard we are rewarded, but only after we have done the things that must be done can we redeem those rewards.

I am still working out chip value but I am thinking that each chip will be worth 5 min of computer or TV time with a 30 min a day max. On occassion I will allow them to watch a longer movie or play a bit longer on the computer. Other things they can redeem them for might include a treat, staying at a friends house, a small toy, and so on. I am still working on the list for that too.

After we get back from a birthday party tomorrow I am going to go get the paint for the school room and we are going to start getting that room really done up. I bought some giant clothes pegs that I am going to modpodge and use to hang up art. I am so excited!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Cat in the Hat Day at AK!

Today at AK Mesquite Homeschool Co-op our theme was Cat in the Hat. We watched the cartoon version and then read the book. Afterwards we made these very cute Cat in the Hat hats. It was a bit of a crazy day since the other teacher who is normally with me had to stay home with a sick child, but a parent graciously stayed with me (I actually have an older group while she teaches the younger ones).

Just to give you an idea of what we do at co-op here are some of our past projects
Painting with puffy paints
recycling projects
My State Notebooks
CSI Unit Study with staged crime
Artistic Pursuits
Cake decorating
Sports of all kinds
Creation Unit Study
Weather Unit Study
Field Trips to-Zoo, Pottery Painting, Museum of Art, Dallas Children's Theatre, Mary Kay Factory
This just scratches the surface! We have so much fun!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Getting Back on Track

Yesterday I was venting to a friend about my lack of time. This lack of time has begun drain my energy and enthusiasm for HSing. Now don't get me wrong. I still want to homeschool, and we still enjoy it very much, after we have started for the day. But if things get put aside or our day isn't started with school I loose motivation and it just doesn't get done. After advising another friend to sit down and plan out her days(losely) and to write a "mission statement" I have decided to heed my own advice and do the same. I need something to remind myself of why we chose to homeschool and I need a little more organization so that we stay on track. So here it goes:

The Molder Homeschool Mission Statement:

We chose to homeschool because:

*First and foremost we seek to put our children in environments that are most likely to lead to their salvation and redemption through Christ's Blood. We believe those environments include, church, home, and the homes of friends that share our beliefs.

*We seek to bring glory to Christ by raising and educating our children at home where we are able to guide them according to Biblical standards, protecting them from as much of the world's influence as possible until such time they are spiritually equipped to handle it.

*We seek to teach our children history, science, literature, and all other subjects through a Biblical perspective. Equipping them with the tools needed to stand for their faith against worldly teachings such as evolution, humanism and other world views.

*We seek to provide our children with an individualized learning experience gathering from all resources available to us. We believe that as parents we are called to be our children's educators and that we are best equipped to handle our own children's personalities, learning styles, emotional and psychological needs and that an environment specifically designed with their personal education in mind will give them to opportunity to explore intrests and develop skills needed for their future in a way that promotes self-confidence, self-discipline and a genuine love of learning.

*We seek to hand down our own morals to our children teaching self-sacrifice, servantship, respect, Godliness, modesty, restraint and other Christian characteristics.

*We seek to control our children's peer interaction so that they are not continually exposed to world views until the foundation of their faith is laid securely.

Deuteronomy 11:19 (King James Version)

And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Well there it is. It is surprisingly long to me! I think it is just about what I need to see to remind myself of why we chose to homeschool. I think this could be a good thing to do no matter what method of schooling you use.

Homeschool Days

Here is a list of various homeschool day discounts

Ft Worth Zoo March 4th

Sharkosa Ranch March 30th

Dallas Zoo April 12th

Six Flags Day- TBA

Homeschool Day at the Ballpark in Arlington April 30th-More information coming soon.

I will continue to add as I find events :) Feel free to post any that you know of!