June 13, 2012

End of the School Year

Even though I homeschool Casia year around and we start the school year in September, there is still this sense in June that it's the end of the school year. Partly this is because Garrett is finishing up his 1st grade year in public school and his last day of school is tomorrow. In addition, the state requires testing and I have to send in the results next month. However, we are also planning on taking a break for a couple of weeks at the end of the month to unwind, travel, and play, so I need to get the testing done earlier to make sure I have plenty of time to get it in. So this week, Casia took a standardized test, not unlike many of her public school counterparts. We've also been finishing up units she has been working on in all her subjects so that we're at a good stopping point, which means more tests these last two weeks. I'm also planning on issuing her her first official homeschool report card so she can show off the straight A's she's been working so hard for, and earn her Nook. It definitely feels like the end of the year. 

After our break, we will resume homeschooling but it will be scaled back to just about three hours a day, most weekdays. This summer, Garrett wants in on it, so I'll be making some lesson plans for him over my break. I think I like it this way. Getting to experience the excitement of the ending school year, with days of swimming and fun in the sun in front of us, with the benefit of a leisurely pace over the summer months to kind of keep us on a regular schedule and keep the kids challenged. Then, when September rolls around, we get all the fun of back-to-school shopping and the start of a new year.

June 7, 2012

Philadelphia Trip: Day 2

On our second day in Philadelphia we decided to go to the Philadelphia Museum of Art instead trying to catch the historic places we missed the previous day. Out in front of the museum we saw the Rocky statue and Emily and I posed with him. Casia refused. She said, "He's a boxer. I don't like boxing." I tried to convince her that he's not just a boxer, he's an American classic, the underdog. I even tried to bribe her by telling her I'd let her watch the movie if she'd pose with me, but no dice.  

They had the Van Gogh exhibit while we were there, 
but we weren't able to get tickets for it and once I saw the line 
waiting to get into the exhibit I was glad.

Seriously, the pool was ankle deep,
and yet you know that if there was a sign for it,
it's because someone has tried it before. 

The facade of the museum was gorgeous. Casia and I enjoyed taking pictures of the building.

View of Philadelphia from the museum entrance.
 My favorite part about the Philadelphia Museum of Art was the decor of the exhibit rooms. They were decorated from the country and time period of the art that was displayed there. I have been to many very nice art museums in NYC, Chicago, etc., but this was the reason why Philly's is my favorite.

Japanese Art

They had a very interesting video demonstrating a traditional tea ceremony.

16th century French Art (decorated like Louis XVI's palace)

16th century English art (Tudor style room)

Early 20th century New York Penthouse

Casia asked me why they had tooth brush holders in an art museum.
That gave me a good laugh.

Emily was a good sport and posed for me with a lot of the statues.

I love Monet, so I took pictures of some of his paintings that I saw.

This was Casia's expression when she saw this painting,
 followed by her question, "Why would anyone want to paint a
 bunch of naked boys playing in a stream?"