Blogging Thru the Alphabet – Animals – V is for Viper

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I’m joining in the Blogging Through the Alphabet series with Through the Calm and Through the Storm as well as Adventures with Jude. I will be having animals as my theme.

Here are my past posts in case you missed them:

A for Aardvark    B for Badger    C for Capybara    D for Dodo    E for Eagles  F for Falcons

G for Giraffe  H for Hedgehog   I for Ibis    J for Jackal   K for Killer Whale   L for Leopard

M for Macaw   N for Nyala   O for Okapi  P for Porcupine  Q for Quetzal  R for Rhinoceros

S for Skunk  T for Termite  U for Uguisu

There are two parts to the term “pit viper,” and they both tell you something about these snakes. Let’s start with the second word. All of the snakes in this group are members of the Viperidae family of snakes — vipers for short. The first part of the name, “pit,” refers to the heat-sensing pits these snakes have. The pit viper is best identified by two small holes located on its face, one beneath each eye. These are special organs that allow them to sense their prey and “see” their prey in the dark. It is a “heat sensor”.

Viper

Vipers are characterized by long, hollow venomous fangs that are attached to movable bones on their top jaw. This is what they use to kill their prey and to protect themselves.

Most vipers are slender to stout-bodied snakes with a short tail. Most species have eyes with elliptical pupils that can open wide or close down very narrowly. This enables the snakes to see in a wide range of light conditions. Some vipers have keeled scales (scales with a ridge in their center) while others have smooth scales.

They are found from desert to rainforest. The moccasin is the only aquatic (lives in the water) viper. A Most pit vipers hunt at night when it is cooler. Although they usually stalk smaller forms of warm-blooded prey (mice and rats), they can be deadly to humans if and when they feel threatened.

All of the pit vipers are venomous snakes. But the strength and type of venom varies from one species to another. Consider the difference between the South American bushmaster (Lachesis muta) and the North American copperhead (Agkistrodon contortrix). Both are pit vipers, but the potency of their venom differs greatly. A single bite from the bushmaster, even a juvenile specimen, can be fatal. On the contrary, there are very few documented deaths from a copperhead bite. Pit vipers – specifically copperheads – are responsible for more reported bites in the United States than any other type of snake.

There are no vipers native to Madagascar or Australia.

I hope you enjoyed learning about these amazing animals as much as I did! Come back next week when we cover the letter W and learn about the wolf.

Now go check out all the other posts of those who are joining in with Blogging Through the Alphabet. They can post this entire week so make sure to check back and see what has been added!

Enjoy the journey!

Five Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents: {High School} Helpful Links, Day 5 #tipsforhomeschoolparents

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool ParentsI am joining up with about 50 other bloggers from the Schoolhouse Review Crew to bring some helpful tips for homeschool parents. I am going to be sharing a ton of helpful links with you over the next several posts.

Unfortunately a lot of people decide not to homeschool high school. This is very unfortunate, in my opinion. Why would you put your kids in public school at the height of their life changes (physically and emotionally) especially if you have homeschooled them for any length of time. That just seems so very wrong to me. But, that is just my thoughts. So, with that, I will share some hopefully helpful high school homeschooling links.

Some main areas to think about are:

  • Curriculum
  • Grade Tracking & Transcript
  • SAT / ACT Testing
  • Dual Credit
  • College Entrance

It would be good and helpful for you and your student to sit down before they start their ninth grade year and discuss what they might want to do after they graduate high school. This will help you get a plan of action for classes together. Also make sure to check your state laws regarding graduation requirements.

HSLDA has a lot of helpful information here.

Lee Binz with The Home Scholar will provide you with a wealth of helpful information!

What we chose to do with regards to curriculum was to go with BJU Press Distance Learning Online. This was a program that covered everything necessary while making sure to cover the classes I no longer felt qualified or able to teach. This is not something you have to do, this is something we chose to do.

Grade Tracking & Transcript

I have kept our grades in an excel file by grade. This works really well for me. Otherwise I did share in my post yesterday a couple of different online tracking options. I *think* they even offer a transcript area, but I can’t guarantee that.

I made my son’s transcript using Microsoft Word.

SAT and/or ACT Testing

Doing these will be helpful for scholarships should you be going this route. Our family personally decided to skip taking either of these tests because a lot of local community colleges (where our son will be starting college) require their own entrance exams anyway. So why put forth the time, cost and the effort for these tests?

A lot of homeschoolers DO choose to do them. You can find a local area offering the preparation and taking of the tests. You might even be able to find them at your local community college.

Although we didn’t choose to do either of these tests, we did do the CAP Test that is available through Christian Liberty Press for $25. We chose to do the online option and the test results were almost immediately sent to my email. This will tell you where your student falls grade-wise within each subject. You can take it yearly – or whenever you want.

Dual Credit

This is also something we didn’t do – mainly because we didn’t have the money. HOWEVER, with that said, a lot of colleges offer a significant discount for the classes taken as dual credit. This is definitely something I would suggest checking in to if your student intends on going to college.

FAFSA

This is government assistance for college. It is filled out online near the beginning of the year. You will want to fill it out after you do your taxes but as quickly as possible as the funds are available as first come, first served. Honestly I was surprised at how easy the process was! Here is their website: FAFSA.

College Entrance

As I’ve mentioned, we are going to be pursuing the local community college option to start. So that is the extent of my knowledge but from what I understand large colleges are very happy to accept homeschoolers. Our basic plan is to finish high school and then have him take the entrance exams and then take classes. Pretty simple.

College Plus is an online college a lot of homeschoolers choose to use as well.

Each day I will share ten other bloggers joining in on this series (each day will be 10 DIFFERENT bloggers) with a link to their blog. This will make it super easy for you to go visit and see what they are sharing (each blogger is sharing different tips!)…just click the links here:

Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
Latonya @ Joy in the Ordinary
Laura @ Day by Day in Our World
Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road
Lisa @ Farm Fresh Adventures
Lori @ At Home: where life happens
Meg @ Adventures with Jude
Megan @ My Full Heart
Melanie (Wren) @ finchnwren
Melissa @ Mom’s Plans

Enjoy the journey!

Five Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents: {Organization} Helpful Links, Day 4 #tipsforhomeschoolparents

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool ParentsI am joining up with about 50 other bloggers from the Schoolhouse Review Crew to bring some helpful tips for homeschool parents. I am going to be sharing a ton of helpful links with you over the next several posts.

Monday I shared {Getting Started} Helpful Links, Tuesday I shared {Free Curriculum} Helpful Links and yesterday I shared {Curriculum} Helpful Links. Today we will look at some links that will help with homeschool organization! {In all honesty, I don’t think we EVER TRULY get this one down! But … we all seem to continue to try!}

There are some online programs available to help with schedules and tracking. I have tried them and personally don’t like them (our schedule moves around too much) but I know a lot of people do. The most popular ones I’ve heard of are HomeschoolTracker and Homeschool Skedtrack.

Personally, when it comes to keeping track of assignments, courses and grades – Excel works perfectly for my needs. But many people prefer a different method.

Personally, I like paper planners that I can touch. There are some popular ones:

Hey Mama! Homeschool Print Planner (it is also available in digital if you would rather it that way.)

Here are some FREE printable planner pages.

I’ve heard that many people like the A Simple Plan planner from Mardel.

There is also The Well Planned Day planners.

Homeschool Lesson Organization

Many people like the workbox system. Check out what See Jami Blog and Heart of Wisdom have to share. Or Penny shares about the crate system.

FlyLady is well-known in the homeschooling circles. She helps with HOME organization and cleaning.

Curriculum Choice has a post that covers MANY different homeschool organization tips.

Amy over at Raising Arrows shares Organizing the Large Family Homeschool but don’t let that fool ya – anyone can benefit from what she shares!

Homeschool.com has an interesting article with a lot of good information. This one even touches on Time Management.

Sonlight has a wealth of information in this post! WOW!

A big thing I want to share here is DO NOT GET OVERWHELMED with organization … it will all be okay!

As a side note: You can get FREE homeschool ID cards through Homeschool Buyers Co-Op.

Come back tomorrow as we close our our week of Tips for Homeschool Parents and I share {High School} Helpful Links.

Each day I will share ten other bloggers joining in on this series (each day will be 10 DIFFERENT bloggers – but this time it is only nine!) with a link to their blog. This will make it super easy for you to go visit and see what they are sharing (each blogger is sharing different tips!)…just click the links here:

Dawn @ Double O Farms
Debbie @ Debbie’s Homeschool Corner
Desiree @ Our Homeschool Notebook
Diana @ Busy Homeschool Days
Diana @ Homeschool Review
Elyse @ Oiralinde: Eternal Song
Emilee @ Pea of Sweetness
Erin @ For Him and My Family
Jen @ Chestnut Grove Academy

Enjoy the journey!

Five Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents: {Curriculum} Helpful Links, Day 3 #tipsforhomeschoolparents

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool ParentsI am joining up with about 50 other bloggers from the Schoolhouse Review Crew to bring some helpful tips for homeschool parents. I am going to be sharing a ton of helpful links with you over the next several posts.

Monday I shared {Getting Started} Helpful Links. Yesterday I shared {Free Curriculum} Helpful Links and now today we will discuss some of the most common, most loved paid curriculum. I am going to sort them by subject:

All Inclusive (meaning all subjects are covered)

BJU Press

ABeka

Alpha Omega

Answers in Genesis

My Father’s World

Christian Liberty Press

Five In A Row

Sonlight

Classical Conversations

Tapestry of Grace

Bible

Grapevine Studies

History

Notgrass History

Diana Waring

Language Arts

Growing with Grammar

Institute or Excellence in Writing

Logic of English

Sharon Watson

Math

Math-U-See

Teaching Textbooks

Life of Fred

Saxon

Science

Apologia

Supercharged Science

Magic School Bus (You can often find these on sale for 50% off.)

The 101 Series

Foreign Language

Visual Latin

Latin Alive

Mango Languages (This can often be found for free use at libraries.)

Like the free curriculum I shared yesterday, there are a TON of other curriculum out there, these are just the more popular ones (and most I have personal experience with). Ones I am comfortable recommending to others.

As an additional note, you can often find used homeschool items for sale. I do this most of the time. There are MANY, MANY, MANY Facebook groups. But the two others that I use the most are:

homeschoolclassifieds.com

VegSource.com (look for the homeschool currriculum area)

Tomorrow I will share {Organization} Helpful Links!

Each day I will share ten other bloggers joining in on this (each day will be 10 DIFFERENT bloggers) with a link to their blog. This will make it super easy for you to go visit and see what they are sharing (each blogger is sharing different tips!)…just click the links here:

Annette @ A Net In Time
Brandy @ Kingdom Academy Homeschool
Brenda @ Counting Pinecones
Carol @ Home Sweet Life
Cassandra @ A Glimpse of Normal
Chareen @ Every Bed of Roses
Cristi @ Through the Calm and Through the Storm
Crystal @ Crystal Starr
DaLynn @ Biblical Womanhood
Danielle @ Sensible Whimsy

Enjoy the journey!

Five Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents: {Free Curriculum} Helpful Links, Day 2

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool ParentsI am joining up with about 50 other bloggers from the Schoolhouse Review Crew to bring some helpful tips for homeschool parents. I am going to be sharing a ton of helpful links with you over the next several posts.

Yesterday I shared about {Getting Started} Helpful Links so click on it if you missed it and need it!

As you continue your research of homeschooling, I thought this would be a good time to share some FREE homeschooling curriculum resources:

First, you can check out my Links 2 Free Stuff area here on the blog!

Now I will share some others…

Easy Peasy

Check out Homeschool Buyers Co-Op’s post on Free Curriculum

Ambleside Online (Charlotte Mason style)

Khan Academy

IXL has SOME free helps: IXL

Math Is Fun

Math Mammoth has some free YouTube videos. We have used and like Math Mammoth.

HomeschoolMath.net

Daily Grammar

English Grammar 101

The Science Spot

One of the things we have done (and continue to do) is look at different reading sites (like My Father’s Word and Sonlight) and look at their reading lists and then see what we can get of those from the library. A free way to know you are getting good quality reading in! As homeschoolers, we could NOT live without our local library!

There are a TON more that have free printables and worksheets – almost too many to list – so I will let you do basic searches for fun stuff like that!

Tomorrow I will be sharing common paid curriculum links.

Each day I will share ten other bloggers joining in on this series (each day will be 10 DIFFERENT bloggers) with a link to their blog. This will make it super easy for you to go visit and see what they are sharing (each blogger is sharing different tips!)…just click the links here:

Melissa @ Grace Christian School
Michele @ Family, Faith and Fridays
Missica @ Through the Open Window
Monique @ Mountain of Grace Homeschooling
Rebekah @ There Will Be A $5 Charge For Whining
Renita @ Krazy Kuehner Days
Sarah @ Renaissance Mama
Sasha @ Such a Time as This
Tawnee @ Adventures in Homeschooling
Tiffany @ The Crafty Home
Tina @ Desperate Homeschoolers

Enjoy the journey!

Five Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents: {Getting Started} Helpful Links, Day 1

5 Days of Tips for Homeschool ParentsI am joining up with about 50 other bloggers from the Schoolhouse Review Crew to bring some helpful tips for homeschool parents. I am going to be sharing a ton of helpful links with you over the next several posts. This first post will be for those just starting out with homeschooling so if this is you – read on. If it isn’t, maybe you know someone who might find it helpful. If so, please share it with them! Our oldest son’s Tae Kwon Do instructor recently asked me about getting started with homeschooling. These are some links I thought she might find helpful – so I thought I’d share them here as well!

Today we will cover:

  • Learning Styles (student)
  • Teaching Styles (parent)
  • Homeschooling Approaches

But first, check your homeschooling state laws at HSLDA.

Learning Style

If you are just thinking about homeschooling, or just starting homeschooling, you will want an idea of what your child/s learning style is. What is a “learning style”? Basically it is how they learn the best, or what their preferred way of learning is. Some kids learn best by hearing, others learn better by touching. Which is your child? Here are some links to help you with learning styles:

Weird, Unsocialize Homeschoolers shares How to Homeschool: Determine Your Child’s Learning Style

From Time4Learning: Learning Styles

Homeschool World: Discover Your Learning Style

Marianne at Abundant Life has this to say about Learning Styles and the Homeschool

Here is a “quiz” to help determine learning style.

Teaching Style

The next thing you want to consider is what kind of teaching style do YOU have? Yes, YOU! Here are some links to help you understand these a little more:

This one is a bit long but skip down about half way (if you want) and it will be worth the read! Homeschooling 911 shares What’s Your Teaching Style? (And Why It Matters).

Homeschool Approaches

Then there are homeschooling approaches…which will you be? Do you prefer textbooks? Or do you want to be as far from those as possible? Do you want to follow what your child has interest in? Here are some places to find help with what learning approaches are…

Homeschool.com has this to share: Homeschooling Approaches

Hearts at Home shares about Homeschool Teaching Methods.

Oklahoma Homeschool has an excellent article Homeschool Teaching Methods with some additional resources.

Eclectic Homeschooling has this neat quiz that might help you learn a little about your homeschool philosphy: What Kind of Homeschooler Are You?

Huge FREE Resource!

A really cool FREE resource for getting started with homeschooling is offered by The Old Schoolhouse Magazine and is called Homeschool Welcome Basket.

Each day I will share ten other bloggers joining in on this series (each day will be 10 DIFFERENT bloggers) with a link to their blog. This will make it super easy for you to go visit and see what they are sharing (each blogger is sharing different tips!)…just click the links here:

Jeniffer @ Thou Shall Not Whine
Jennifer @ A Peace of Mind
Jennifer @ Faithful Homestead
Joelle @ homeschooling for His Glory
Joesette @ Learning Curve
Kari @ Random Acts of Boyhood
Katie @ Katie’s Daily Life
Kemi @ Homemaking Organized
Kim @ Homestead Acres
Kylie @ Our Worldwide Classroom

Enjoy the journey!

My Week In Review

Hi! I am joining up with Home to 4 Kiddos this week and sharing “My Week in Review”.

Daddy was on vacation this week so we started out the week by returning home from visiting daddy’s parents “down south” (about a 4-1/2 hour drive). In general we’ve had a fairly relaxing week. We have done a little bit of schooling but it has been VERY RELAXED.

Daddy and P started a Robotics class online through Jetpack Academy that they have been working on slowly. They watched a couple of lessons. One of them discussed making / using a home-made lie detector test using a multi meter. We tried it (on me) but it didn’t really seem to work successfully but it was fun to try anyway.

We did some of our regular BJU online classes as well as worked on a couple reviews.

Visits to the park are always a requirement! We live easily within walking distance from one and we love to take a soft ball to throw and play ball tag, often asking other kids if they want to join (and they often do).

I got a bunch of Trim Healthy Mama plan ingredients in the mail and we tried several things. You may recall that I’ve posted about THM in the past:

More On Weight-loss; Trim Healthy Mama

Fooled Ya Pizza

Note that those posts are from 2 years ago. LOL This time I hope to be more realisic about my approach. I understand I am not going to do it perfectly at first and that is okay! *ANY* change is good. So, for now, I am going to just learn to COOK and then I will learn to do it right. The super fun thing is that the entire family is doing it with me! We’ll see how it goes…

So…this is a lot of what I have to get started. I’ve been buying a little here and there and then finally “bit the bullet” and ordered quite a bit from iherb.com (which I found out from another thru a blog post).

I did order Oat Bran instead of Oat Fiber so I have Oat Fiber on the way now (should arrive today). I am planning on making my own THM Baking Blend just because it will be less expensive – hopefully some of the “recipes” online will work nicely (seems there are several LOL).

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Wonder Wrap (p. 204 new cookbook)

WonderWrap

Apple Cinnamon Crockpot Oatmeal (p. 256)

AppleCinnamonOatmeal

Mashed Fotatoes (p. 219)

fotatoes

Overall we all enjoyed what I made. I finally got to use the food processor my MIL bought me! YAY! And while on this subject…I finally used the dehydrator she bought me as well! Homemade banana chips. They were awesome! (and didn’t last!)

Banana1

Today is Saturday and we are super excited to be heading to Medieval Times in a couple hours (we’ve had reservations for about a month so we’ve been waiting!). It is a dinner theater that has jousting, sword fighting and much more. I am confident the guys are going to love it! (And honestly, I think I will too!)

Overall it hasn’t been a busy week but it has been an enjoyable week. Next Tuesday daddy returns to work and things will get back on track. Honestly, this is part of why we homeschool – so we can “enjoy the journey”!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!