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Weekly Wrap-Up: The One on the First Week of School

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We did it! We survived the first week of school in our first year of year round schooling completely unscathed. Okay, maybe “completely unscathed” is not quite accurate. This week wasn’t without its bumps and bruises, its whining and complaining, but overall things went really well, particularly considering that I cut our usual summer vacation short by four weeks.

One thing I have really enjoyed about this week has been our SOAP Bible study lessons. I’ve been doing the SOAP study method for a year or so now and I tried it a bit with the kids last year, but we really stepped it up a bit this year and it’s been great!


(I also love having my dry erase board semi-permanently hanging on the wall instead of having to drag it out every time we need it. It’s not in the most convenient location, but it’s in the only available spot in the dining room. It works.)

Last year, I didn’t want to make Bible study a chore by having them journal the study like I do. This year, though, I really thought they were all old enough and capable enough to journal. I expected some complaint, but there hasn’t been any. None.

I told the kids the first day that we were going to journal our Bible study this year and I explained the SOAP method. However, I stressed that what they write in their journals is between them and God. I will not be checking it for spelling, grammar, or punctuation. In fact, I haven’t opened their journals at all. That’s their business.


I have been in awe over some of the discussions we’ve had and my kids’ depth of insight. I think we’ve all learned something this week as we’ve delved into God’s word together.

And, of course, we have continued hiding God’s word in our hearts using the Scripture memory box.

Scripture memory box

Tuesday was a really fun day. A lady in our local homeschool group has been organizing outings just for the middle school kids for the last couple of months. Tuesday was the first one we’ve been able to go to. It was at a local bowling alley that on “$2 Tuesday” – bowling, shoe rental, laser tag, hot dog & fries, and a Coke with refills, all for $2 each.

Josh Bowling

It was so much fun! Josh was  a little reluctant to go, but he had a great time (especially playing laser tag ) and he made a new friend.  We stopped for ice cream at Chick-Fil-A, where we saw just how cultured our local CFA is – a sculpture in the drive-thru line.

CFA Sculpture

The picture is rather blurry, but I was trying to hurry and take it before the people behind me thought I was a lunatic…and I think I was embarrassing Josh a bit. {grin} Meanwhile, Brian and the girls went to see a movie.

Josh had his first dyslexia therapy session Wednesday afternoon. I think it went really well. I was excited to see that some of the things his therapist is covering with him right now are things that we were working on toward the end of last school year or things that we were working on this week.

I think the therapy is going to mesh well with what we’re doing at home and his therapist seems like she’s going to be really great about working very closely with me, so that we’re each working on can be as complementary as possible.

Josh hasn’t complained about playing the online games either. They are fairly short and are specifically targeted to the concepts he’s working on. They seem fun to me. I don’t know if he’d call them fun, but he doesn’t mind doing them.

This was followed by a great family night Wednesday evening. A new pizza place opened in town and I’d been hearing good things about it, so we headed out there. It was a really nifty place with cool, unique tables. The one where we sat has now been claimed by Brianna as “our” table whenever we go because the motif under the glass top was sci-fi. She could have taken or left the Star Trek side, but Dr. Who won her over.

Dr. Who

The “number” for the table were vintage toys. We got a plastic airplane. One table had a giant, plastic robot. Another had a Star Wars lunch box.

Pie Slingers 1

Brianna went rafting – her first time ever – with our church youth group on Thursday. It poured down all morning, but the general thinking was, “You’re going to get wet anyway.”

She was exhausted when she got home, but she had a great time – and she didn’t have to take a dunk in the river. Always a plus.

Today was our catch-up day a la Trail Guide to Learning. Since Josh and Megan stayed caught up, it was a light day for us.

The big news this week is that I’ve survived the last two days of math. I’m thinking it might be the death of me between Josh’s fractions (which, unfortunately, I think he understands better than I do) and Megan’s long division (which is just as torturous to explain to her as it was to complete myself when I was about her age). We did survive this week, though. That’s noteworthy.

graph paper

Tip: Graph paper is a great way to help a kid make sure numbers stay lined up correctly for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Donna Young has several different sizes you can print for free.

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  1. I have had that scripture memory box in the back of my mind for us to do – ever since Kendra posted about it over at Curriculum Choice. Thank you for sharing about yours too! Must do… Thanks for hosting us all Kris.

  2. I use that same exact graph paper with my kids and it has worked wonders with their math! 🙂

    I am so glad that you recommended the Scripture Memory Box. I started it and am so happy with the system! Thanks so much!

    Glad your first week went well. Have a good weekend.
    Many blessings,

    1. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the Scripture memory box. It’s been one of the constants in our homeschool for many years now.

  3. Congratulations on making it through your first week of school!! It apparently was not without some fun stuff too!! I know exactly what you mean about math!! Thanks for hosting this opportunity to share!

  4. EXCELLENT tip for math! I’m not sure why I never thought of it (oh, well, maybe because I’m just not that creative lol). Thanks!!

    Congrats on your first week 🙂 It was our first week back as well and we made it wonderfully through Tuesday 😉

    Have a great weekend!

  5. It sounds like a great week. I need to go try the pizza place too.. sounds fun. We have missed every middle school outing due to scheduling conflicts. Hopefully we will make it to one of them soon. I love the graph paper idea!!! BTW, we have about 6 days left of this year. I love schooling year round… they forget less!

  6. Graph paper!!! That is exactly what we need to use right now!!! Thank you!!!
    (please excuse the exclamation points – we homeschool moms get excited over the craziest things)
    Sounds like a terrific first week back. Enjoy the weekend!

  7. I need to get back to doing SOAP. My kids aren’t quite old enough, but I’ve gotten a lot out of it myself in times past.
    graph paper for math! Love it! My 8yr old could definitely use this! I love Donna Young’s printables, so I’ll be headed over there this weekend to hook him up before we start back on Monday. 🙂

  8. I am so glad you posted about the Scripture Memory box! I haven’t seen that before. What a great tool!

    Thanks for hosting the link up. It’s our first week of the school year as well. 🙂

  9. I would have loved that table too! I’m such a sci-fi nerd. I was trying as hard as I could to make out the pictures in the picture. I think your daughter and I would have a lot to talk about 🙂

  10. Congratulations on your week! We are taking a long summer break and will start POS in September. We are all very excited.

    LOVE the graph paper, my son used that idea last year for 3 digit by 3 digit multiplication to keep his lines straight.

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