2016 Fall Semester

th-2016-fall-eventsIt’s been a busy school year so far!  Rather than post several individual posts, we decided to do a re-cap of this year so far. We’ve had quite a few new things added to our schedule this year, including the formation of our two new co-op groups, THINK High School Cooperative and THINK Elementary Cooperative. We’ve also had our usual weekly field trips and clubs. Here’s a look back at what we’ve been up to this school year. Enjoy!

The first official event for each Triangle Homeschoolers’ school year is our annual ‘Not back to School’ party. This year, we also held a mini-conference to help those new to homeschooling find support and community. We also started a dedicated Aquatic Science Class for upper elementary, middle and high school students. We also decided to start hosting ‘mom’s night out’ type events and kicked off the year with a murder-mystery dinner!

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In September, we had an Art Guild class focusing on the art of Georgia O’Keefe, and our first co-op classes began. We also had a Teen Social at a local coffee shop, and visited Seawolf Park in Galveston. Our Public Speaking group met, and we also hosted a Mom’s Night In Painting Nite with the Art Sherpa on YouTube.

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October started off with NASA’s Johnson Space Center Homeschool Day and our Teen Social. We planned a haunted house theme for our Halloween Party, so several times during the month of October, we got together to work on crafts and decorations for the party. It was a huge success, with multiple themed rooms and our students practicing their acting skills as they set the tone in each room. We’re missing the big group picture (but will edit this and post it later) – it was a fantastic turnout though! Our THINK Elementary Co-op ended in October, but will begin again in January, while our THINK High School Co-op continued throughout the month.

 

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just a few of the littles in our photo-booth!

In November, er started the month by attending the Texas Renaissance Festival School Days, a low-key Teen Social with cartoons and card games, and our first visit to the Houston Gem & Mineral Society Education Day. Our THINK High School Co-op continued with the beginning of Home Ec classes, and the students learned to crochet and to knit. We also hosted our third annual Thanksgiving Food Drive, benefiting the South East Texas Food Bank.

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December hasn’t been quite so busy as the rest of the month, but we’ve still been pretty active! Our Teen Social for December saw the kids roasting hot dogs and s’mores over a fire before the rain chased us all indoors. We spent some time practicing for our Christmas Concert and a day creating Christmas Cards to send to veterans who won’t be able to visit their families this holiday season. Our Christmas Concert went off without a hitch! We had a fantastic and enthusiastic group of carolers to sing for us, and it was a great opportunity for our THINK High School Cooperative orchestra students to show off their hard work.

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Wishing you and your family a Happy New Year!
TH

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TH Art Guild – Nevelson – Aug. 17, 2016

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Every 6 weeks, our group meets for Art Guild, a hands-on art class based on the book, ‘Discovering Great Artists‘ that provides easy to do art projects in the style of the artist the lesson is focused on. This month, our subject was Louise Nevelson, whose massive monochromatic found-art sculptures are both interesting and inspired. We took a page from her book and gathered all kinds of junk, from paper and plastic tubes and bottles to keys and other bits of metal and bric-a-brak. The kids used a combination of school glue, hot glue and tape to create a single, stand alone work of sculpture and then spray-painted it to mimic Nevelson’s style. Once all the pieces were painted, we assembled them all into a somewhat uniform larger piece. Though our work was not quite as impressive as Nevelson’s, it was a great introduction to modern art, and hopefully gave the kids a glimpse of what is possible for their own experimentation with art.

 

Teen Social – Field Day May 6, 2016

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Our Field Day & Ice Cream Social was a great success! Each of our families suggested a physical challenge and a mental challenge for the field day/obstacle course. The kids broke into two teams, and  competed for bragging rights (until the next time). Afterwards, we went indoors for ice cream, then changed into swim wear and hit the pool!

Here are some of the activities we did:

 

Mental Challenges:

  • Stroop Test
  • A Truth and A Lie
  • Improv Challenge: Question game (you are asked a question and must answer in the form of a question or you’re out)

Physical Challenges:

  • LARP game – Last One Standing
  • water relay with sponges and 2 liter bottles
  • yoga challenge

We ended up with 10 games, but didn’t get to do all of them!

 

 

 

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TH STEM-Egg Drop Contest – April 27, 2016

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Today, we hosted an ‘egg drop’ contest! Everyone brought all kinds of things from home to build a capsule capable of protecting an egg from a 10′ drop. We had so many neat ideas! From a cradle of straws, to a fully-insulated cup; foam, paper, fabric and everything in between. If you’re looking for a neat science-focused activity, this one was a winner!

San Jacinto & Battleship TEXAS – March 2, 2016

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Chinese New Year – February 10, 2016

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Happy Year of the Monkey!
Our group got together to celebrate the Chinese New Year at Tyrell Park’s Botanical Gardens this week. Everyone brought delicious homemade Chinese foods, and crafts for the kids. The littles made noisemakers with paper plates, beads, beans and craft sticks, and all of the kids made dragon masks. After lunch, we passed out wishes for the new year, along with the traditional gift of money in small golden envelopes to ensure luck and prosperity for the coming year. Then the kids lined up in their masks and took off on a Dragon Parade through the park. Lastly, they exchanged Valentines, and departed a happy, well-fed crew!

TH Art Guild: Picasso – January 2016

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This year, we started an art-focused class, held every 6 weeks, based on the book Discovering Great Artists by Kohl and Solga. This was our first class, and we had an awesome turnout! The kids brought their completed self-portraits, and after the lesson on Picasso’s life and style, the kids (and a couple of the moms) cut the pictures apart and re-assembled them, Picasso-style. After embellishing them with other craft supplies, we called them masterpieces.

Our next lesson will be on Toulouse-Lautrec, and impressionism. If you’re interested in joining us, check out our Facebook group and plan on joining us at our next Park Day!

 

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Social Studies Club – Australia – Jan. 2016

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The kids chose Australia as the subject of the social studies club this month. Topics can include pretty much anything, from current events in that country, to history, agriculture, wildlife, art, local flair, tourism – anything the students want the focus of their project and presentation to be on.

As always, a huge part of this meeting is the food! We encourage each family to prepare a dish from that country to share. Since Australia’s mother country is England, we had some favorites that were both familiar and country-appropriate.

Next month, we’re focusing on Hawaii. If you’re interested in joining us, check us out on Facebook!

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Public Speaking – December 2015

unnamed This month’s public speaking assembly was great! There’s always a bit of a dip in participation during the holidays, but a few of our students still had their noses to the grindstone even with Christmas cheer in the air.

One of the cool things about out public speaking assembly is the range of materials that the students choose to present. From personal pieces, to historical reports, literary selections and poetry, over the course of this year’s classes, we’ve covered a huge range of subject matter.

We host our public speaking assembly every 6 weeks, and it’s open to students of all ages. If you’re interested in joining us, check us out on Facebook!

 

Social Studies Club – Japan

Every month, our group hosts a social studies club, focused on a single country or region. For the month of December, our country of focus was Japan. The kids all do a project of their choice. I love this format, because it means that all the kids can participate; it’s not limited to any grade level or ability. They also get to choose whatever area of study they want to work in, so the projects can be whatever strikes their fancy, from history, to current events, culture, politics, daily life – whatever they’re interested in.

In addition to their project and presentation, we also bring food from that culture. Today, we had several really great recipes, including: rice bowls with chicken breast and bell peppers in oyster sauce, rice noodles with spring veggies, nama chocolate maccha,  and sunomono (cucumber salad). Yum!

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