• Attendance

    February 2019
    M T W T F S S
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  • The “Class”

    Avery, Naim, Aaron

  • Subjects

  • Portfolio

Aaron: 3rd Grade Year

Aaron, 3rd Grade Year

Aaron, Age 9

Aaron, Age 9


  • VH Explorers (Fall, Winter)
  • UUCCWC: RE K-2
  • VH American History (Winter)
  • VH Pirates (Winter)
  • VH Jr. Lego Building Club (Winter)
  • Portland Child Art Studio (Winter)
  • Oregon Zoo “Zoo’s Clues” One Day Camp
  • Oregon Zoo “The Great Northwest” One Day Camp
  • NWCT Intro to Acting (Spring)
  • Zoo Camp-Otter (Summer)
  • Washington County Museum Camp: NW Pioneers
  • Portland Child Art Studio Camp


  • Calvert Discoveries in Reading Level 1
  • Teacher Created Resources: James and the Giant Peach
  • Math in Focus: Level 1B
  • Math in Focus: Level 2A
  • Sylvan 1: Reading/Vocabulary/Spelling
  • Sylvan 2: Language Arts Success
  • Hooked on Phonics: Master Reader
  • Handwriting Without Tears: Printing Power, Cursive
  • Teacher’s Mailbox: Reading Cards (2-3)
  • Atelier Art
  • Calvert Discoveries in Music
  • Real Science for Kids: Primary Chemistry
Books and Media:
  • Little Passports
  • James and the Giant Peach
  • Mr. Popper’s Penguins
  • Ramona and Her Mother
  • Ramona, Age 8
  • Little House in the Big Woods
  • Little House on the Prairie
  • On the Banks of Plum Creek
  • UNICEF: A Life Like Mine
  • PopUp Geography
  • Reading Rainbow App
  • DIY.org


  1. Children’s Museum: Dora/Diego
  2. Lego KidFest
  3. Lakeview Farms w/UU’s
  4. Outdoors In
  5. Out of This World Soccer Party
  6. NWCT James and the Giant Peach
  7. “Planes” at Valley Cinema
  8. Out of This World w/Fred
  9. Evergreen Aviation Museum
  10. “Smurfs 2” at Valley Cinema
  11. Orenco Business Association Halloween
  12. Rice Museum of Rocks and Minerals
  13. Sky High Trampoline
  14. OMSI Physics Lab/Solar System Ice/Organic Strawberries
  15. Outdoors In
  16. HFAC Swimming
  17. Zoo Lights
  18. Portland Spirit Christmas Cruise Magic Show and Boat Tour
  19. Portland Tram Tour
  20. NWCT Peter Pan
  21. Lego Movie
  22. VH Bloom Talent Show
  23. NWCT Goodnight Moon
  24. WeVillage
  25. Washington County Museum: Technology Through the Ages
  26. Portland Spirit Easter Cruise
  27. Sky High Sports
  28. Portland Children’s Museum: Portland Bicycles and Outdoor Adventure
  29. Rood Bridge Park
  30. Lan Su Chinese Garden Tour
  31. Village Free School Experience Days
  32. Forest Park/Audubon Society
  33. Cook Park
  34. Outdoors In (multiple)
  35. OHEN State Convention (OMSI, Art, etc. Classes)
  36. Orenco Gardens Independence Day Party
  37. Washington County State Fair
  38. Orenco Gardens Neighborhood Garage Sale
  39. WES Train/Wilsonville Family Fun Center
  40. Quatama Back to School Night
  41. Japanese Garden/Rose Garden

Avery’s Preschool Year

Avery, Three-Four Preschool Year

Avery 4

Avery, Age 4


  • Goddard Preschool (Ranch)
  • Early Childhood Special Education (Fall)
  • UUCCWC Nursery
  • Oregon Zoo: Penguin Camp

Naim: 3rd Grade Year

Naim, 3rd Grade Year

Naim 3rd Grade

Naim, Age 9

  • VH Explorers
  • HSC: Fall Soccer
  • UUCCWC RE: 3-5 Grade
  • Weight Watchers (heh.)
  • VH Schoolhouse Mash-Up (Winter, Spring)
  • VH World History (Winter)
  • VH Ancient Egypt (Spring)
  • VH Fun Sports (Spring)
  • NWCT Emporer’s New Clothes (Winter)
  • Oregon Zoo “Zoo’s Clues” One Day Camp
  • Oregon Zoo “The Great Northwest” One Day Camp
  • Portland Child Art Studio (Spring)
  • HPR Electric Eel Swimming (Spring)
  • VH Destination Imagination Camp
  • Washington County Museum: NW Pioneer Camp
  • NWCT Improv Camp
  • Teacher Created Resources: James and the Giant Peach, Mr. Popper’s Penguins
  • Calvert Discoveries in Reading 1
  • Calvert Discoveries in Music
  • Reading Horizons: Discovery
  • Hooked on Phonics First Grade Level 1
  • Sylvan K:  Sight Words, Spelling Flashcards (K and 1)
  • Sylvan 1st Grade Language Arts Success
  • Math in Focus: Level 1B (Fall)
  • Math in Focus: Level 2A (Spring)
  • Zaner Bloser Handwriting K
  • Atelier Art
  • Real Science for Kids: Primary Chemistry
  • James and The Giant Peach
  • Mr. Popper’s Penguins
  • Ramona and her Mother
  • Ramona, Age 8
  • Little House in the Big Woods
  • Little House on the Prairie
  • On the Banks of Plum Creek
  • Reading Rainbow
  • Math Arcade
  • Letter School
  • DIY. org
  • UNICEF: “A Life Like Mine”
  1. Children’s Museum: Dora/Diego
  2. Lakeview Farms w/UU’s
  3. Outdoors In
  4. NWCT James and the Giant Peach
  5. Out of This World Soccer Party
  6. “Planes” at Valley Cinema
  7. Out of This World w/Fred
  8. Evergreen Aviation Museum
  9. “Smurfs 2” at Valley Cinema
  10. Orenco Business Association Halloween
  11. Rice Museum of Rocks and Minerals
  12. Hillsboro Veterinary Hospital
  13. Sky High Trampoline
  14. OMSI Physics Lab/Solar System Ice/Organic Strawberries
  15. Outdoors In
  16. HFAC Swimming, Gym, Track
  17. Zoo Lights
  18. Portland Spirit River Cruise with Magician and Boat Tour
  19. Portland Tram Tour
  20. NWCT Peter Pan
  21. OMSI with Tony Hawk and Submarine Tour
  22. NWCT Goodnight Moon
  23. VH Bloom Talent Show
  24. The Lego Movie
  25. Oregon Youth Symphony
  26. Outdoors In
  27. WeVillage
  28. Washington County Museum: Technology through the Ages
  29. Quatama/Rock Creek Trail Bike Riding
  30. Portland Children’s Museum: Portland Bicycles and Outdoor Adventure
  31. Sky High Sports
  32. Portland Spirit Easter Cruise
  33. Rood Bridge Park
  34. Village Free School Experience Days
  35. Forest Park/Audubon Society
  36. Cook Park
  37. Outdoors In (multiple)
  38. OHEN State Convention
  39. Orenco Gardens Independence Day Party
  40. Washington County State Fair
  41. Orenco Gardens Neighborhood Garage Sale
  42. Zoo Concerts (Rick Springfield/Pat Benatar)
  43. WES Train/Wilsonville Family Fun Center
  44. Quatama Back to School Night
  45. Japanese Garden/Rose Garden

Oct-Nov Catch Up, 2013

Ok, I am obviously not getting these done each day. But I think I will shoot for once a week. Once a month is too long to remember what we did.


VH Explorers has finished. They finished “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing” and have started “SuperFudge.” They have both asked for more time at VH next quarter, so they will be going the whole day.

Naim finished Soccer. They did well and I warmed up a lot to the coach (who Naim always liked) and they had their party and he got his trophy.

Avery and I made the mutual decision to quit Early Childhood Special Ed. There was just no point, really. He started hating it and Nik went to visit and just found that he zoned out and didn’t do anything. They stressed procedures and rules so much and not communication. It was disappointing to see it go, but since then, I have gotten to spend more time with him and his language is just blooming when you sit down and talk to him. He is very entertaining.

He continues for now to go to Goddard. I did visit Goddard and he seems to do well there. He runs around happily like a regular kid and the other kids motivate him to talk and interact with him. Here are his DARs.

We decided to quit (or not start?) DI, which was disappointing. I am not blaming the parents who organized it, because it isn’t like I bothered to organized it…but they just couldn’t get it together and from June to November he had just one experience with DI and he just lost interest. He did not really get what it was to begin with. He liked the idea, but it was hard to grasp what it is this was supposed to be when they just never got started. They kept delaying and delaying. We went to three things and no one showed up which was really disappointing for Naim. And there was bad communication, and then they moved the time all around on me. He wants to do theater on Mondays anyway and I just couldn’t get myself to get him there when they kept moving and canceling it. I think if they just would have GOTTEN STARTED no matter what, the kids could have started to understand and gotten hooked, but they just kept putting the kids off.


We continue to work through the workboxes. The biggest thing that I think they like there is the morning meeting. We go over the calendar and so they better know what is coming up. We also have the downstairs “family computer” up and running now, so that is nice for school.

We are in Ch. 18 in Math which is very basic multiplication and division concepts. They seem to be getting this OK. We have also done timed math fact tests each day using an app on the iPad and we record the results using a spreadsheet. They like seeing the results and they are improving on addition and subtraction facts.

We finished our “James and the Giant Peach” unit and we went to the play at NWCT. I would like our next unit to be more organized into a “final product.” We will be starting “Mr. Popper’s Penguins” for winter.

Aaron has completed the Green level in HOP Master Reader and is reading the second chapter book in The Strange Museum series.

Naim and I are still on Ch.1 in Reading Horizons. I am not seeing this program as being the answer to all things for LD kids. But partly that may be my fault. I think for him he needs to just do one thing and one thing only. No Sylvan unless it directly relates to what he is learning in RH. I think we need to spend a week a lesson and do three days with mom and one or two days with the computer. He is not learning it because for one, he gets so frustrated with the test portion. He did finish his K Sylvan books, though, and I have the first grade book, but I might just hold on to it and give him specific lessons that support what we are already doing in RH. So he will get one big reading lesson. I may even do handwriting like that.

We are working on the numbers section of ZB in handwriting for Naim. Aaron is in the back fourth of his HWT book.


Hmmmmmmm…….Let me think. I need to refer to pictures to remember where we have gone!

Ok, It looks like Avery has gone to Washington Square.

They also all went to Outdoors In with Nik.

Aaron and Naim and I went to NWCT to see James and the Giant Peach. We took Ruoda, too.

This isn’t really a field trip, but we had our garage sale at the end of October. Naim helped a lot with that.

They went to see “Planes” at Valley Cinema.

They went to Out of This World Pizza twice. Once with the soccer kids and once with my dad.

They went to Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum with my dad. We saw a movie about air shows and plane races.

We all went to Rice Museum of Rocks and Minerals with my dad.

We went to Sky High Sports for homeschool day with my dad.

Avery and Naim went to the city landfill. Heh. Naim also went to the vet with Sully and Kai.

They have gone to the nursing home twice, and then D just got home so they have not visited him yet.

On Halloween, they participated in a Orenco Business Trick or Treat activity, as well as regular trick or treating.


Avery: Two-Three Early Preschool Year


Avery, Age 2


  • Goddard School Get Set Toddler (Fall)
  • Goddard School Preschool (Winter, Spring)
  • Early Intervention (Fall)
  • Early Childhood Special Education Preschool (Winter, Spring)
  • Library Storytime-Toddler (Fall)
  • Unitarian Universalist RE-Get Set Preschool
  • Oral Hull Foundation for the Blind Family Camp
Goddard Get Set Toddlers (The Farm)
  • Funshine Express-Buttercups
  • Montessori Early Childhood-Twos
  • Signing Time
  • Hooked on Phonics Baby/Toddler

Aaron’s Second Grade Year


Aaron, Second Grade, Age 7


  • VH Engineers Gone Wild! (Fall)
  • VH Science Olympiad (Winter, Spring)
  • VH Junior Lego Building Club (Fall)
  • VH Messy Garage (Winter, Spring)
  • VH Discoverers (Fall, Winter, Spring)
  • OMSI Labs (K-2)
  • Portland Child Art Studio (Winter, Spring)
  • OMSI: Hit the Road Camp
  • UUCCWC: Summer UU Superheroes
  • Portland Children’s Museum City Builders Camp
  • Oral Hull Foundation for the Blind Family Camp
  • Zoo Camp: Rhino


  • Usborne Phonics Readers
  • Calvert Discoveries in Reading Level 1
  • Math in Focus: Level 1B
  • Sylvan K: Sight Words
  • Sylvan 1: Reading/Vocabulary/Spelling
  • Hooked on Phonics: First Grade Level 2
  • Hooked on Phonics: Second Grade Level 1
  • Hooked on Phonics: Second Grade Level 2
  • HWT: Sentence School
  • Writing Strands 1
  • Handwriting Without Tears: Letters and Numbers for Me, My Printing Book, Printing Power
Books and Media:
  • OmniMax Movie: Life: A Cosmic Journey
  • Little Passports
  • Young Scientists Club Magic Schoolbus
  • Young Woodworkers Club
  • iMax Secrets of the Mummies
  • iMax Born to Be Wild
  • A New We (documentary about ecovillages)
  • Minecraft
  • PopUp Geography
  • Reading Rainbow App
  • FanFaria App


  1. OMSI: Solar System/Life Movie
  2. Seattle Space Needle
  3. Seattle Chihuly Glass Museum
  4. Pacific Science Center
  5. King Tut Exhibit
  6. Seattle Duck Boats
  7. OMSI: States of Matter/Grossology
  8. NWCT: BFG
  9. Out of this World Pizza Soccer Party
  10. OMSI Chemistry Lab/Temperature/Environmental Science/Movie
  11. We Village (multiple)
  12. Outdoors In (multiple)
  13. Great Wolf Lodge
  14. UU Christmas Pageant
  15. Ambulance/ER trip (heh. reluctant “field trip”)
  16. OMSI: Solar System/Black Hole OmniMax movies
  17. Out of this World
  18. My Little Waiting Room at PSVMC
  19. Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue 67
  20. Portland Children’s Museum/Storyland
  21. OMSI/Mythbusters
  22. World Forestry Center/Tree-Houses
  23. NWCT Suessical!
  24. Outdoors In
  25. Daddy’s with Seth (at the Nursing Home)
  26. 53rd Ave. Park with Seth
  27. WeVillage
  28. Portland Spirit Easter Brunch Cruise
  29. Oregon Zoo
  30. Jacobsen’s Books Art2D2 Book Launch Party
  31. Stub Stewart Camping Trip
  32. Shute Park: ML’s Birthday Party
  33. OCT: A Year with Frog and Toad
  34. Tualatin Hills Nature Center
  35. Portland Children’s Museum/Dinosaur Discovery
  36. Out of This World/Bagely Park
  37. VH Summerfest
  38. Pacific Coast, Seaside, Oregon
  39. WeVillage
  40. Goddard Parent Appreciation Dinner: BJ the Clown
  41. Wildwood Recreation Center (with OMSI)
  42. Mount Saint Helens Johnston Observatory (with OMSI)
  43. South Beach State Park (with OMSI)
  44. Newport Aquarium (with OMSI)
  45. Columbia Gorge/Multnomah Falls/Fish Hatchery/Bonneville Dam (with OMSI)
  46. The OutPost
  47. Hillsboro Independence Day Parade
  48. OHSU/Aerial Tram
  49. The OutPost
  50. Goddard Ice Cream Social/Puppet Show “I Dig Dinosaurs”
  51. Washington County Fair
  52. The OutPost
  53. Neighborhood HOA Safety Party
  54. Pump It Up/Dentist
  55. We Village
  56. The OutPost

Notes on Third Grade

My head is a bit of a scrambled mess about third grade. And my schedule is up in the air. So here is where I am going to put my miscellaneous thoughts down until it gets unscrambled.

The schedule:


Avery will be in Goddard for the Day. There is some issue with Destination Imagination which I will get to later. I also have this new job and when Avery is gone might be my prime time to work on it without interruption.


Avery is guaranteed  to be in ECSE until December, and then I might have to fight at his IEP meeting to continue after that, which is the plan. Also, Naim will have soccer practice on this day, likely.


Right now, they are scheduled to be at VH all day from 9:30-3:30 and I will have Avery with me. But I don’t think I can afford this. I am thinking of putting them in for Explorers in the am and then using the rest of the day as a fieldtrip day or special project day. Also library day.


This will look like Tuesday.


I am thinking of putting Avery in Goddard all day this day so I have some more time to work on my job. School would be in the morning.


In Fall, Naim will have soccer games that I still don’t have transportation for. I am thinking of using the kamikaze approach. I am going to go to the parents with a sign-up sheet for rides the first day and have some “kickstarted” like incentives. (1 ride is a $5 Starbucks card, 3 rides is a free night of babysitting, 5 rides is a $20 amazon or iTunes card and all 8 rides is a ???? Tursi’s soccer card? Season tickets to Timbers? I don’t know…something.) Then I am going to shove the sign up sheet in their faces.  There is no free ride in Portland, you have to bribe them and force them.



So I need to work maybe some swimming and outside time into there, maaaaaybeee destination imagination, and sufficient worktime for me at this job.

Ok, now some general thoughts about where I want to go and objectives I have.


I feel like I have been holding him back a bit because of Naim. Mostly, I think he needs to write more and create more. Also, I want to get him off the workbook routine into doing more projects. Also, finding ways for Aaron to get physical exercise which almost has to be done on the sly.


Reading, obviously. And I want school to also be more meaningful for him and to reflect more of what he can do with his wisdom and maturity that is often held back by the reading issues. I am on the fence about working more on his handwriting, which is horrible, or whether to just say fuck it and go to keyboarding and maybe just do a bit of handwriting here and there as survival handwriting.


Communication! Communication! Communication! We are on a roll. Also, he really needs to move on from toddler to little kid. So working on some ADLs like dressing and hygiene. Going to bed routines, Getting rid of nighttime diapers. Getting rid of the “air bottle.” Picking up after himself. Participating more in chores. Also, working on walking endurance and speed so he can graduate from the stroller.

Now, thoughts on Subjects:

Unit Studies:

Since they are at such different levels and workbooks are nice for skill building but not much else, I would really like to get into some more comprehensive projects. So, there are a number of ways I can do this.

  • I can use the global village curriculum I have, which gives a limited list of books, but I would have to come up with my own units. Which I can do, god knows I spent enough time in college making up unit studies. Some of the books seem good, but the whole curriculum is very vacant and fragmented so it would be some work.
  • Along with that, we could just figure out what subjects we wanted to do and make units from scratch.
  • I could go literature based. There are several books you can buy that have premade literature-based plans in them like Teacher Created resources. Those are mostly with a youth novel like Charlottes Web or Because of Winn Dixie.
  • There are several others that take more of a form of lapbooking or notebooking. This is not a big expense and the planning, if not done for you at least helps you along.
  • I could do the well-trained mind history route. Which uses  world history in such a way that you read literature, do science, etc. from that time period.
  • I am still trying to figure out this discovery education website that I have a 30 day trial on that seems to have a bunch of videos games, etc. that could be incorporated into unit studies.
  • ???


I am pretty happy with the Singapore Math program math in focus that we have been using. I think we will continue on in the current book, and then go on to the next book.


We have been doing the Magic Schoolbus kits, which we can keep doing, except I think they have really done all of them already in OMSI or VH classes. It does not appear that VH is doing the OMSI classes again this year, which kind of sucks because they rocked. But I think I could take them on our own. Not sure.

So, we may continue to do some of the Magic School bus stuff because they think it is fun. But also probably just incorporate into our new found wonderful unit studies somehow.


Aaron-He will be doing HOP Master Reader this year. I have an old version I got dirt cheap, so I need a windows machine to run the software, so will be trying dual boot. Ugh! But other than that, he could just read the hard copies and be fine.

Naim-I am thinking of Naim doing the Reading Horizon’s curriculum this year, but still don’t have the $$ to buy it. And then, in addition to HOP or instead of? HOP does work for him, but I think RH would be much more effective, and let him work at a pace without me having to hover over him so much. He has also been working through Starfall online, and he likes that. Although I am not sure how far it really goes. We are on the last of the primary sets of lessons now. That has been our evening thing. We are not at a loss of things for him to read or do around here. We also have Bob Books, the Calvert K books, and some other apps and things. Although he thinks all of those are for babies.

Both-We have been doing the Calvert Discoveries in Reading Series, and although we really liked the first one, the second is OKAAAAY, but  a  little meh. So, do we finish these? Go on to unit studies and library books? (Too hard for Naim to read?)

They are not anywhere near as fun as doing Reading Rainbow and/or FanFaria on the iPad which they love. The only thing is it is so easy to get the apps to read for you. I am not opposed to audio books, but it would also be nice for them to HAVE to read themselves, too.


Aaron will be working on his Printing Power book and after that he can move on to cursive in HWT. His handwriting is grade acceptable and progressing fine. Would like to incorporate it into more of his own writing.

Naim will finish the K Zaner Bloser book. And then to go on to the next ZB book? To go on to a keyboarding program? Both? We will see then. If I have Naim work on creating, composing stories. It is either going to have to be through keyboarding or through dictation at this point. There is no writing his own story on paper right now without it being a huge illegible mess.

Other Language Arts:

Right now they are moving through the Sylvan books, which focus on Spelling, Reading and Vocabulary. They like those books, but I would like to have more grammar. I also don’t know if all that fragmentation is all that helpful. It seem like it may be better to incorporate this into unit studies, but in other terms, it is a quick and independent way in which they can skill build in this area. I was looking at some grammar and spelling stuff at Learning Palace, and am wondering if I can incorporate that. I also have a Evan Moor ebook about sentence structure that I got free from the coop that actually looks kind of fun. Or, again, roll it into unit studies.

I need to go to the Learning Palace when I have more time and less kids.

Social Studies/History

We haven’t done a lot of formal SS or history, but it comes up in life all the time. We have done the Maps, Globes and Graphs books which they hated. We have read some of the Usborne Encyclopedia of World HIstory but then after ancient times it got too violent for Naim’s liking. (I wish those books would concentrate more on culture and arts and language etc. and less on wars. It seems like they just move from war to war. I know it is unavoidable, but does it ALL have to be about war? It bores me.)

So again, unit studies to the rescue? Or we could concentrate on something like Oregon or US history. Global Village has a US history book it recommends, as well as a geography book.


I think we are going to do Calvert’s Discoveries in Music this year.

There is also a children’s chorus at church, and I have played around with the idea of Jim for music lessons, but I don’t think I can afford it this year and he just had a baby, so, maybe Calvert this year and him next if they are interested.


We will continue to do Atelier Art. Perhaps also with some classes from the Child Art Studio or PCM or the like.


So, Naim is going to do soccer in the fall. I am also thinking that we will work on swimming ourselves. I will do one kid at a time (but the other kid can be swimming, too.) I will just get them to survival levels and then if they want to, they can take more swimming lessons. I have all but given up on swimming lessons with all the teachers that didn’t show up and schedules that I can’t make work with the bus, etc. Besides, this will save money for the time being. I bought a book. We will see how it goes. The issue is when to fit it in? It was supposed to be our summer sport but see above about teachers who didn’t show, etc.

Aaron is a challenge. So I think I just need to make a point to get him out of the house doing something…anything…almost every day. When he is outside, he will run, climb, swim, etc. But not in any organized fashion. Naim also has been running on occasion with Nik, so maybe we can incorporate walks as well.

Destination Imagination:

…is really starting to piss me off. It is SUCH a popularity contest to get on a team, and I don’t mean the kids, I mean the stupid parents! I have been working and working to get him on a team and have even volunteered to be  a team manager. And each time it has fell through and they go off and have their own team because I am not in the clique. So, now, I have a decision to make. I COUUUULD have my own team. I have Naim, maybe Ruoda and Jordan, and I could drum up maybe one other kid or consider Aaron being involved and I would have a team. That I would have to run. But if I did that it is totes going to be at my freakin house. Which would save time and energy.

And that would have been well and good except now I have this new job and I don’t now if I have the time and energy to do both. So, let it go for this year??? Ugh. I know he would love it. And it kind of takes the place of drama. Maybe when I know more about how this job is going to go I will be able to make a decision.

Is that it? CAN THAT BE IT FOR THIS YEAR? Please? OK.

Now I shall go to sleep, it is making me tired.