Club Ed

Club_EdAfter so many years, my brain has run dry of ideas. We’ve taught classes from astronomy to art; cooking to sewing; and everything in between. It’s gotten to the point I can no longer come up something new to suggest for clubs in our homeschool group. Then, inspiration struck. Why work on this alone when I could get a little help from my friends?

Over the years, we’ve been in many clubs and co-ops. I can’t think of a club we haven’t done yet. Just to give you a small idea of our previous fun, here are a few clubs we’ve coordinated:

  • Astronomy
  • Chemistry
  • Animal Habitats
  • Bible Heroes
  • Discipleship
  • Sewing
  • Cooking
  • Engineering (Legos/KNex)
  • Chess
  • Origami
  • Apologetics
  • and more!

What clubs have we missed that you would suggest? Have there been particular clubs your children loved and would enjoy doing again? Perhaps there is a new twist on an old club!

Clubs can be fun, but they can also be a challenge. Let me ask you a question or two…

  • If you participate in clubs, what do you like about them?
  • What do you dislike about clubs?
  • What encourages you to be active, both in teaching and participation?
  • What discourages attendance?
  • Has there ever been a club which you found incredible?
  • How often would you like to see a club repeated?
  • What is the best time frame for club meetings, in your opinion?
  • How long should a club last?
  • Should clubs be age/grade oriented or skill oriented?

When it comes to club meetings and co-ops, a lot of planning, organizing, and praying is needed. It also helps to have a fresh pair of eyes looking at the year, bringing new life to the program. We want the kids to enjoy their time spent together, and be able to take away a few lessons as well.

Thanks in advance for sharing your awesome ideas and experience with us. We can’t wait to hear about what you’ve liked and disliked about homeschool clubs; as well as any new ideas we might have missed.

“Not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
Hebrews 10:25

📢 Chime In!: Help us with fun, educational ideas for clubs in the 2016-2017 year. Share your thoughts on exciting homeschool clubs!

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Taking a Break

Week Six: Fall Co-op (6/14)

Science Class; Butter and ice cream making.

Sometimes you just need a change of pace. It’s not that the activity is bad, it just doesn’t fit  your needs for the current time. I think this is how the kids and I are feeling right about now. Spring co-op is just around the corner and, while we would normally be gearing up for this season, we’ve decided to take the semester off.

I think our decision was motivated by several factors. Co-op makes for an early day and a long day; we just don’t know if we care to be that tired. Co-op is on Fridays; our library day and field trip day. Other activities are also beginning to come up, which we are a little more excited about. (More on that soon!)

So, while we are excited to see how others enjoy co-op this season and we wish them all the best, mommy is enjoying a small sigh of contentment and the kiddos are grateful to get a little more rest.

The next few months are going to be tremendously busy and there might be a few major changes in our routine, so this one little choice is a welcome one. It means a lot less work and a more relaxing semester for all of us.

Will you be doing co-op this season?

Week Five: Fall Co-op (2013-2014)

Another co-op morning, another day of craziness! (laughing) Why is it that on days when there are outside responsibilities and ministry events, the kids choose that morning to test my patience. Sheesh!

After a stern talking to, we were ready to be underway and plug through our lessons. An hour later, out the door we went and off to co-op it was. Thankfully, co-op went fairly well and we had lots of fun.

Fall Co-op (1/6)

Our kids were encouraged to find items to fill Thanksgiving baskets for their school spirit item this week. These items will be placed into baskets which will go out to needy families in our church who would otherwise not be having such a lovely holiday. I hope those families are blessed.

Fall Co-op (2/6)

Fall Co-op (3/6)

Making music with water and glass bottles!

Fall Co-op (4/6) Fall Co-op (5/6)

In my class, I taught the kids to make Dole Whip, my favorite treat when visiting Disneyland during the summer months. This is a very simple recipe; easy as pie:

Dole Whip

Ingredients:
2 (20oz) cans Dole pineapple, crushed
2 tbsp. Lime & Lemon juice
1/3 cup sugar
1 and 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream

Steps:

Drain pineapple; reserving 2 tbsp. juice. Set aside. Place pineapple, lemon juice, lime juice, sugar and reserved pineapple juice in blender or food processor; cover and blend until smooth.
Whip cream until thick and stiff; stir pineapple slush gently into whipped cream until slightly blended, in large bowl.
Pour mixture into an ice cream maker; press start. Serve once ready; enjoy!
(For those who may not own an ice cream maker, place mixture in a freezer safe bowl; place in freezer for about one hour.)

Fall Co-op (6/6)

One of our classes had the kids decorating these lovely salt dough ornaments. The one above was done by Mouse. She did a great job!

Well, another day done. We have one more week of co-op to go and we are finished. Hooray for an open schedule come the holidays!

Now… for some rest! Who knew having this much fun could be so tiring?

Week Four: Fall Co-op (2013-2014)

Well, another week of co-op went off without a hitch. The morning did start off a little crazy,  but the rest of the day was a breeze.

It seems the power company chose the morning of co-op to get some much-needed work done on the power grid. So, come 7:30 in the morning, all power was shut off to the neighborhood. It’s amazing how little you can do without electricity, isn’t it? I think a backup generator might be a good plan, just in case of emergency. No fridge, no microwave, no stove, no anything!

Oh, well; I digress. We knocked out our morning learning session without much ado and then rushed out the door to co-op. From there the rest was lovely.

Co-op: Week Four (1/7)

Me teaching my class to make gazpacho.

For those who might wish to try making gazpacho at home, here is an excellent recipe:

Gazpacho

2-3 slices of bread
3 large tomatoes
1 cucumber
1 red bell pepper
3-4 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
salt
2-3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1/2 cup ice water

Garnish:
croutons
sliced ham
tomato
diced cucumber
boiled egg

Place 2-3 slices of bread in a blender; blend until they become crumbs. Add all remaining ingredients for gazpacho and blend until smooth. Chill in fridge for half an hour. (In a pinch, blend with ice cubes and serve directly.) Serve in shallow bowls, topping the soup with various garnishes (listed above).

Co-op: Week Four (2/7)

Learning about density in science lessons.

Co-op: Week Four (3/7)

Music class

Co-op: Week Four (4/7)

My son learning about how dangerous rhinos really are.

Co-op: Week Four (5/7)

I also had the privilege of subbing for the Christmas crafts class. Today we made snowflakes out of Honeycomb cereal, painting them white after the glue dried.

This was another simple lesson for the kids. Grab a box of Honeycomb cereal, shape it to form a snowflake, glue the pieces together, and let dry. Once the snowflake is dry, paint it white and add some glitter. Easy-peasy!

Co-op: Week Four (6/7)

The little ones taking their music class.

Co-op: Week Four (7/7)

Making candy canes out of pipe cleaners and beads.

Co-op is always a blast and today proved no different. We had a great time and the kids were encouraged, during our devotion time, to obey God in all things; even in obeying their parents. Ah-hem!

Only two more weeks to go and we are officially done for the holidays. While co-op is loads of fun, I can’t wait to enjoy the  holiday season. This is my favorite time of year!

Week Two: Fall Co-op (2013-2014)

Well, another week of co-op is under our belts. The morning started off slightly rougher than last week, but went pretty smoothly. All-in-all, it was a pretty good day.

Week Two (1/11)

Our school spirit item this week was collecting things for Operation Christmas Child. What a great idea!

Week Two (2/11)

One of our teachers sure does like to do a thorough job. What an awesome board!

Week Two (3/11)

Technology can be your friend; let’s do some learning on the iPad.

Week Two (4/11)

One of our mommies helping in nursery.

Week Two (5/11)

My class: cooking. Today was salad.

Week Two (6/11)

Music class with a pro.

Week Two (7/11)

Christmas crafts are always a good idea. Hmmm… blue and purple for Christmas? Okay.

Week Two (8/11)

My boy having fun in his puppetry class.

Week Two (9/11)

More music fun.

Week Two (10/11)

Boyo having fun in his animal antics class.

Week Two (11/11)

Hands on Science. Today they learned about volcanoes.

After all this exciting fun, the kids and I were worn out. I think it might be time for a rest!

Week One: Fall Co-op (2013-2014)

This week began another fun series of co-op events through our church PSP. Thankfully, we got the morning started off right: we got up on time, had a good breakfast, finished up learning at home, and headed out the door. We had plenty of time to do set up for mommy’s class and also to visit with friends.

Fall Co-op #1

My son enjoying his puppetry class. Isn’t this puppet theatre adorable?

Fall Co-op #2

Drama class for my oldest gal. Let’s just say it was… interesting….

Fall Co-op #3

More of JAG’s puppetry class.

Fall Co-op #4

Mouse had a Christmas crafting class.

Fall Co-op #5

Noel had a music theory class; she learned a lot.

Fall Co-op #6

Mommy taught a cooking class; today’s lesson was on bruschetta.

Fall Co-op #7

JAG had another class on dangerous animals.

Fall Co-op #8

Learning was so much fun!

As if co-op wasn’t fun enough, one of the mommies was donating tons of materials she no longer had a need for. The kiddos picked up a Children’s World Atlas and a Cat’s Craddle activity kit; mommy picked up Expelled the movie. (I have never seen it, so I am excited to give it a go.)

Week one is officially under our belts. Next week is going to prove just as exciting; it is jam packed with fun activities and group events.

Hooray for fall!

Spring Co-op: Week 5

Well, another week of co-op is under our belt and what loads of fun we had! Our chess board is just about done, our art projects are completed, and origami proved to be a greater success than I thought possible.

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 1

The origami class

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 2

Art Class

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 3

Bunny Boxes from Origami

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 4

Finishing up our paper mache

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 5

Life Lessons for the high school students; balancing a checkbook, setting up a savings account, and applying for a job.

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 6

Playing in the sun

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 7

The little ones enjoying free play.

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 8

Chess boards are almost complete!

Spring Co-op: Week 5, 9

Having fun with woodshop.

We have one more week of Spring Co-op and then our calendars will be significantly more clear. But oh how we’ll miss getting together for some good, fun learning.

Fall Co-op Part III

Today was the third week of our fall co-op. The weather was a bit chilly, we got off to a late start, and we forgot a few items… it was wonderful!

(Laughing)… How could such a bad start turn into a great day? We got to spend the day with friends, learning some new things and fellowshipping.

Marine Habitats

My middle girls’ class was on marine habitats. They loved learning about the ocean and taking home some shells.

Saying Hello

The kids stopped to take a moment, posing for the camera. Aren’t they sweet?

Egg Drop

The high school kids were still working on “out of this world” science experiments. This week they were dropping eggs from the church roof, after insulating them in their egg “ships”.

Speech and Debate

Today I was, yet again, assisting in my oldest daughter’s speech class. She is doing better each week. Today we learned about giving an apologetic speech.

Prek Marine Biology

The kindergarteners began their marine mural today. They did a marvelous job, except that my son apparently had too much fun with his glue stick. (sigh…) Boys!

Math Class

Today’s Kindergarten math class was on measuring. I had each of the kids trace around their bodies and then measure themselves. They had a lot of fun with this activity.

Bible Heroes

This week the middle girls learned about Abraham Lincoln in their class. What a great American hero!

Park and Play

We had another park day today. More moms showed up, it was awesome having so many ladies to visit with.

Playing with Friends

My little man, hanging out with some of his buddies.

Today was, yet again, another full day. We did some learning at our homeschool co-op, went to the library, went to the park, and then headed home. But the day isn’t over yet!

Now that we are showered off and smell clean, we are heading out once again. The fun never stops!

My oldest daughter is currently working on her oratory speech, which she will deliver in two weeks. If you had to give a speech to your peers, what topic would you pick?

Fall Co-op Part II

Today was day two of our Fall Co-op. The kids and I finished our morning home school routine and then sprinted out the door. We arrived just in time for devotion and a load of fun!

School Spirit

Today’s school spirit was bringing your favorite marine creature.

Animal Habitats

My middle girls learned about crickets in their habitat class today.

 

Cricket Cones

Building habitats for their new pet crickets.

Are You There?

The little girlies checking on their crickets. My youngest girl is in heaven with this class! She practically begged to keep her crickets. So, of course I said yes.

 

Math Games

My class on math games. Today we played Math Doodles (copying the original idea in the Math Doodles app).

Speak to Me

My oldest girl in her speech class. She did much better this week than she did last.

 

Dry Ice

Today’s science class was about dry ice! They had a lot of fun creating fun experiments.

Pin Cushion

My oldest girl’s teacher brought them all pin cushions. I thought that was very sweet of her.

 

Puffer Fish

In marine biology, the little ones learned about puffer and rainbow fish. They created these neat paper fish for the collage they are working on.

A Stitch in Time

My oldest girl learning some basic stitches in her sewing class.

 

What a Clown

Our drama class was putting on quite a show. I understand they even recorded themselves!

Today’s classes were a lot of fun! We enjoyed seeing our friends and gaining a few new pets. Let’s see what next week brings.

My oldest girl struggles with public speaking. What methods have helped your children conquer this area of home schooling?

 

Full Steam Ahead

As if life isn’t already filled with “busy-ness”, our family is going to be charging full steam ahead during the next several weeks. We have a slew of activities planned and today was just the start of the all the fun!

Today we had a full schedule of events. We started off doing fall co-op with our homeschooling PSP, moved onto a library visit, rounded off with a park day, and ended with getting some paperwork done. Whew!

Marine Biology

My baby boy had a marine biology class this morning, during his co-op hours. He had lots of fun and learned quite a bit.

Speech

My oldest daughter had a speech class today. She was very uncomfortable, but she made it through. We are going to be doing some practicing before next week to help her get more comfortable.

Animal Habitats

My middle girls took an animal habitat class. Today’s lesson was on the life cycle of the frog. They even had a special visitor in class… a red bellied toad!

Math Games

I taught a class for the Kindergarten kids as well. During second period we played math games. Today’s lesson was on making tangrams and creating some neat animal shapes!

Heroes of the Bible

Second period meant Heroes of the Bible for my middle girls. They made neat notebooks and even got a cape to go with it!

Sewing

Second period was basic sewing skills for my oldest girlie. She had a lot of fun with this class.

Park Day

Just a few of our girlies who joined us at the park. It was great weather and great fellowship!

Dragons

Once again, our dragon friends graced us with their company and, once again, my youngest gal wouldn’t leave them alone!

Good Eats

My baby girl eating up her pizza. She WAS supposed to be eating her salad, but her dragon friends brought pizza to share… so… the salad was forgotten.

Our co-op classes were an absolute blast! We had so much fun and learned a lot. Thanks so much to the other teachers who helped make today special. We can’t wait for next week!

The park was awesome! The breeze was stupendous, the food was lovely, and the fellowship was sweet. I love getting together with my other mommies and listening to how their lives are going.

Today was definitely full, but it was all worth it. Now it’s time for some R&R!

If you could teach any co-op class, what class would you teach?