Thursday, October 17, 2013

Homeschooling Progress Report (field trips)

I'm planning on resuming the progress reports on here. I tried weekly ones and it got too bothersome. I tried monthly ones, and it was too awkward because that's not how I file my paperwork. So, I'm going to try posting progress reports every 3 weeks instead. Why every three weeks? Because that's how my book-keeping is set up, in three weeks intervals. It's an hours log I created, and three weeks of info was what would nicely fit on one page. Go figure... Anyway, I plan on (hopefully) posting updates which include total hours accomplished/left for each child, as well as what their main focal points, fun field trips, etc were for the week. Probably won't be many (if any) pictures involved, because I tend to not take very many in the first place. I thought about scanning their hours log sheets to post, but that may be a pipedream; we'll see...

Let's start with field trips over the last three weeks...

1) The NRA gun museum and archery museum in Springfield, Missouri. Visit time: 45 minutes, would have been longer but we only had that long before they closed. The kids learned about early gun styles, various marksmanship medal winners, and that past Miss America winners have used archery as their talent. They were most impressed by the Texas Rangers display in the gun section and Geronimo's handmade bow and quiver in the archery section.

2) The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas. Visit time: 2 hours. The kids learned a lot about the forming of early missions, and the start of the Texas Revolution. They were most impressed by the giant tree in the middle of the gardens, and the artifacts from Davy Crockett.

3) San Jacinto Monument in San Jacinto/La Porte, Texas. Visit time: 2 hours. The kids learned more about the Texas Revolution, as well as the role Texan military forces have played in other battles throughout U.S. history. We did pay for a ride up the elevator to the observation deck, which also has about a 15 minute video playing about the history of the monument itself. Well worth the extra money. The kids were very impressed by the view from the observation deck, and how impressive the USS Texas was from the observation deck of the San Jacinto Monument. Which brings me to the next destination.

4) USS Texas Battleship in La Porte, Texas. Visit time: 3 hours, it would have been longer but parts of the ship are currently roped off for maintenance/repairs. We went down two levels and up three or four levels from the main deck. Got to see where the crew slept, ate, showered, got their mail, and saw the doctor. The kids watched a 12 minute video on the engine room and how everything working inside to get the ship moving. The girls got to climb into the beds and see what it would have been like to try to sleep in them. As for what they learned, I wouldn't even know where to begin. There's so much history and information packed into that ship that it's unreal. The girls were most impressed by the information on the plaques throughout the ship and the big guns on the main deck, where they could actually sit and aim the guns at things.

5) Miscellaneous park play dates. This one isn't technically a field trip since, in Missouri, field trip hours are only counted for core subjects (science, math, history, language arts, reading). We managed to make it out to several parks over the last three weeks. Sometimes to meet people we already new, and sometimes to meet new people. We've started carrying a plastic tub of stuffed animals with us and leaving it out during our visit for other kids to take home a new friend. In the last three weeks, we've managed to give out 13 animals this way. Also, I've been keeping Kiki off the swings due to his refusal to part with them on graceful terms. He's been doing pretty well at taking a "no" from me most of the time, and I'm considering seeing if he's ready to try swinging again soon, hoping maybe he can handle the transition a little better now. We'll see.

6) Shooting range. Again, not technically field trips. These are p.e., although one could argue that they're life skills, but that's still not core. Not that I'm concerned about the core hours when it comes to any of the kids. We managed to get out target shooting three times in the last three weeks, between the shooting range and one trip to a friend's house. ZoKo got a new scope on her AR, and it has improved her accuracy because she can see the markers easier. B finally tried the AR, but is sticking to the .22 for now.

I had the progress reports typed and ready to put in here as well, but then decided that separate entries for each child might be prudent, if for no other reason than to make it easier to look back and follow how each kid has been doing over the past however long. So, this post ends here and the actual progress reports for each individual child shall be listed shortly. :)

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