### Wisdom from Elf and Emperor

Emperor claimed he just couldn't do ANY more English work until his new glasses came in. (He's NEARsighted.) Of course, I disagreed and told him he could infer what the answers would be by seeing which answers were left in his word bank.

"It's when you have something in FUR, Elf," Emperor says disdainfully to that little guy who obviously doesn't know anything. (He even rolled his eyes.)

I'm pretty sure that you won't be able to play video games until the glasses are in, either, in that case... No, Emperor tells me, he just can't play the "bad" video games... you know, the ones you can't win. (I guess it's a good thing Mom forbids the "bad" kind here at home, eh?)

Ah, well. Things are going more smoothly this week so far. Not so long ago, I had to deal with a very crabby, angry Elf who insisted that he does NOT need to use a zero after a decimal to hold place value. Um, .5 and .05, in my hard-and-fast rule-following world, are two different things. Elf said they were NOT, either, any such thing.

O, kayyy... But you keep getting the wrong answer. Maybe because you didn't put a zero here...

"I HATE ZEROES! And I wished the zero had never been invented and I wouldn't have to do this MAAAAATH!" Elf screams and hides his face.

"Drat those Arabs for doing this to you, Elfie! I can't BELIEVE those people!" I tell him sympathetically. "Tell you what. You be a Roman and do all this stuff in Roman numerals, and as long you get the right answers, I *promise* you, you will never have to use the zeroes in your maths."

*sniff* Ok, he says. I'm trying not to laugh, because he takes this entirely too seriously.

Now, Elf likes to tell people how important zeroes are when you're dealing with decimals. He's not sure how the Romans did the decimal thing, but zeroes make it way easier for us today. Apologies to the Arabs are in order, because zero is kinda nifty, isn't it? Well, he thinks so now. I guess that was worth a little extra time, some trial and error for him to learn for himself. :]

1. He'll think zero's are important when he Turns 10! You can't be 10 without the zero because then you would just be 1.. :O)

2. It sounds like they have a wise mommy!

3. Yeah, but Shelley, in Roman numerals it's just an X. Easier to write. ;)

Aw, thanks, Sue!

4. That's a good question. I wonder how did they do decimals in Roman.

5. Yep, and how the Egyptians built the Pyramids. :]

6. Ooooh! I love this little man. Who needs those silly old zeros anyway? I'm with elf....I think. I can't do Roman numerals either & I never did work out where the zero went with decimals unless there's one of these \$ with it.

7. I kinda love the kid, too.

8. Them zero thingies are rather useful, if'n I do say so myself.

[smile] Keep up the good work.

And that was very clever: Suggesting he try it in Roman numerals. I'll keep that one in my back pocket if it ever comes up...

~Luke

9. LOL Dare ya to do that in MathTacular! :p

10. Oh Man, you are right X is a lot easier! lol..

11. Oh wow! That is sooooo cute!! Man, I understand those days. LOL.

### Reading Curriculum: ABeka Book and BJU Press

Did you know that in the state of Missouri, homeschoolers must teach reading as a separate subject?  I don't know how anyone could homeschool well without teaching their child to read... but OK.

I got many of my ABeka books used and collected them over time.  I'm glad I came across these readers early in my homeschooling years.  It teaches children to read step-by-step.  I don't think I've seen a more effective reading program for the elementary years.  The children love the stories, and what I appreciate about them is that there is a rich and varied language even in simple-to-read books in this series.

My set is pretty old, and some are even from the 1960's and no longer listed in the reading series.  I think if I had to do things over again somehow, I think I'd just spend on a curriculum set and be done with it.  That's the thing, though, with homeschooling.  By the time you figure out what the perfect curriculum is for you, your children have graduate…

### Homeschooling is NOT So Hard.

I wish I'd have known this starting out. I wish I'd have known that it's actually LESS work to just homeschool your child, than to be an "involved parent" at school.

We've enjoyed elementary school with our older boys. *Most* of the teachers were actually pretty competent and caring (the others, I save for another blog post, another day...). We had the children involved in extra activities like the Spanish Club or Service Club, or choir, and they got a fair bit out of the experience.

But it's a LOT of work.

You get about a ton of worksheets that must be done by a certain time. Usually on a day when you're sick or have no time. You get the phone calls about this or that, and about a zillion sheets per day that sometimes contain important news, so you MUST go through them daily. The schools also *love* to throw in half days, teacher in-service days and early dismissals. Not so bad, unless you have children at more than one school and the schedu…

### Holiday Gifts for the Homeschool Teacher!

Merrymaking hint:  leave this post up on your phone/ computer for your family to "accidentally" find!  Let the magic begin!

All teachers love a little appreciation every now and then, including homeschoolers.   I don't know about you, though, but I don't want any apple crap.  So first rule:  no apple crap!

Otherwise I'm pretty open.  I love getting gifts, even if it's just something small or simple.  One thing I love is when my children want to help out and make lunch or clean up or put their laundry away.  Or just behave themselves and get their math done.  This is a really big thing when you think about it.

And from the adults in my life, the gift of coffee always shows love - or rather, someone not wanting an "I need coffee" emergency in the middle of winter after a big snowstorm.  Somehow, I always have a lot of coffee in my pantry during the winter months.  (Guess why.) Thanks, D!

My gallery of homeschool appreciation pics: