Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Shockwave Basketball

Ashlin guarding Addison.
 After practicing for the past two weeks, Ashlin had her first basketball game last Saturday.  She is participating in the 5-on-5 league at the YMCA.  This is her first year to play basketball.  Ashlin wasn't sure she wanted to play, but after thinking about it she decided to give basketball a try.
Taking a break from the action.
 The league is made up of 3rd and 4th Graders.  Ashlin is lucky that she knows most of the girls on her team because they also attend school at Sacred Heart.
Looking for someone to pass the ball to.
 Ashlin played pretty good for her first game. She guarded, dribbled, boxed out, shot, inbounded the ball and rebounded.  For never playing before, Keith and I were impressed with her guarding and boxing out skills.  She even has a pretty good shot.
Playing defense.

Inbounding the ball to Audrey.
 Ashlin's team lost the game, but they never gave up and kept working hard the entire game.  The opposing team had a set of twins (the Piper girls) that are in the 4th Grade, attend Sacred Heart, and are over 5 foot tall.  They were a force in the middle and down low making it hard to defend them because of their height.
Take care,

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Jr High/High School Christmas Concert

 Last Sunday was the Jr High/High School Christmas concert.  The program included selections by the Jr High Band, Senior High Choir, 7th Grade Choir, 8th Grade Choir, Senior High Band, Senior High Jazz Band, Senior High Percussions Ensemble and then a finale by the Massed Choirs.  The performances were very good and enjoyed by all. 
The junior high students are required to be participate in the concert due to music being one of their required classes.  They were even graded on their participation in the concert.  I don't see music or choir in Cara's future.  She does not enjoy it and will be glad when junior high is over.

Take care,

Friday, December 13, 2013

Elementary Christmas Concert

 Last Sunday was the elementary Christmas concert at school.  The kids were all to dress up in their Sunday best for the concert.  The Kindergarten class sang "Away in a Manger", "The Christmas Story", and "Angel Band".  They did a great job singing and doing actions at the same time.  Justin told me before the concert that he was not going to do all the actions.  When I asked, "Why?", he replied, "Some of them are dumb, Mom.".  Justin has been singing Christmas songs for days.
 The 3rd Grade class sang, "O Bethlehem" and "Innkeeper".  They did a great job with some students having a speaking part. 

The 3rd-6th Grade students performed a play called "The Unfriendly Beasts (No Room in the Stable) while the students sang.  The 5th Grade along with the Sacred Heart Singers sang, "The Friendly Beasts", "Finale" and "Silent Night".  It was a great concert and the music teachers and students put in a lot of work to make it successful.

This Sunday we will be attending Cara's junior high/high school music concert.  She is not looking forward to it at all.

Take care,

Monday, December 9, 2013

Itty Bitty Basketball Clinic

Saturday morning it was Justin's turn to get to do something sport related.  The whole time he is saying, "Finally!".  Yes, he spends a lot of time watching his sisters play a sport and sitting on a bleacher.  You had to be in 1st Grade to play in the recreational kids league at the YMCA; so, Justin is doing the clinic again this year.
 The clinic was led Saturday morning by Randy Hagedorn, the YMCA director, and Troy Test.  Both of these guys are super great with kids.  Actually, Randy started his career at the YMCA as the preschool teacher.  He talks at their level when explaining everything and also demonstrates exactly what to do.
 First, the kids worked on passing and catching the ball.  They worked on catching the ball with their hands, not their chest or stomach and how to pass the ball, chest pass and bounce pass.
 Next, the kids worked on dribbling the ball.  Randy explained to dribble with only one hand at a time and he also explained what a double dribble is to the kids.
 Last, the kids got to shoot the ball with the backboards lowered.  Justin had a great time and is ready to go back next Saturday to clinic again.
Take care,

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Testing the Kindergarten

The end of the 2nd quarter at school is rapidly approaching.  Our 2nd quarter and 1st semester ends at school when we leave for Christmas break.  Therefore, the students need to be tested over various things to see if they are learning and retaining the information needed to move on to 1st Grade. 

This week I have started testing Mrs. Simon's Kindergarten students.  One day I listened to each student in the classroom count as high as they could count stopping them if they reached 200.  The goal is for each student to count to 100.  Some students can count to 100 or above while others cannot reach 100 yet. 

Yesterday, I tested Mrs. Simon's Kindergarten class on number recognition.  Many students can count quite high, but they cannot recognize the numbers as high.  I had two stacks of cards.  One stack was 0 to 10 and the other stack was 11 to 20.  All of the students could recognize 0 to 10.  The second stack was the tricky stack.  A few students knew none of the numbers in the second stack and a few students knew all of the numbers, with most of the students recognizing some of the numbers.

While testing one little girl on the second stack of 11-20, she knew every number, but number 12.  The first time she told me the number 12 was the number 20.  Then after going through all the numbers I showed her the number 12 again.  That time she looked at me funny and said, "Mrs. Leader why are you trying to trick me with that number.  There is no number two-teen."  I wanted to laugh at her comment because she was so serious about the number not being a real number.  I told her, "You are right, there is no number two-teen.  This is the number 12."  She looked again at the number confused and said, "Oh". 

I love these little students to death!  One never knows what will come out of their mouths though.

Take care,

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Black Friday Shopping

I decided to take the year off from Black Friday shopping.  We hosted Thanksgiving at our house for both sets of parents and Keith's brother, David, and his family.  It was a relaxing day filled with lots of food.  I browsed through the Black Friday ads, but I was content to stay home and avoid the crowds.
A friend took this photo of these two shopping and sent it to me.  Sorry the photo had to have a few items blacked out due to little ones snooping on the blog.  Karla said these two were having a blast while making some great memories together!
The three little ones went home with Grandpa and Grandma Korth for a sleepover and then Keith and Cara started plotting.  About 5:30 p.m. they looked through the ads and about 6:00 they headed out to Walmart just to see the crowd and what everyone was buying.  I stayed home on the couch watching football.  About an hour later, the shoppers were back home laughing and talking about the crazy shoppers.  They had to park in the El Mezcal parking lot and walk over to Walmart because the parking lot was all full.   Then they cruised around looking at the lines at other stores.

Next, they left at about 8:00 for the sales at Target.  They cruised around the store and picked up a few things that I told them to get.  Then they waited an hour to check-out, but talked to many people in line and around the store that they new.  Then they went to Herberger's and Keith purchased three shirts (Buy 1 Get 2 Free). 

These two came home laughing and telling stories about crazy shoppers after again not being gone very long.  But, they made a few more life memories and had a great time together!

Take care,

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Is that really a deer, Dad?

Last night when Keith came home from work he decided to put up some Christmas decorations and lights outside.  The weather was nice and later this week we are supposed to have a cold front coming through that is going to send the temperatures plummeting.  Justin volunteered to help his Dad.
Justin helped Keith carry up lights, extension cords, etc. from the basement.  He was a cheerful little helper willing to carry anything for Dad.  Keith brought up one of the deer to put together and this is how the conversation went:
Justin:  What kind of animal is that supposed to be Dad?
Dad:  It is a reindeer, Justin.
Justin:  Are you sure that is a deer because it really looks like an elk to me?

Then Justin went on to explain why he thought it was an elk and not a deer.  Only a six-year old Kindergartner would ask that many questions while putting up Christmas decorations.

PS.  After school yesterday, I took Justin to the doctor to get his flu shot.  He told Erica and Ashlin to wait in the waiting room.  When we came out, their first question was "Did you cry?".  Justin replied, "No, I did not cry or scream or try to run away like you two did at Walgreens when you had to get yours.".  He then kept reminding them all night how he did not cry or scream or run down an aisle to get away from Mom.
Take care,

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Kindergarten Sharing Stew

Thanksgiving week is a short, but busy week in Kindergarten.  Every year the Kindergarten students make sharing stew.  Each student is assigned something to bring.  Then the students peel and chop the ingredients.  Then the next day they get to eat the stew for lunch and the leftovers are taken to the Rescue Mission.
 Sharing stew has a list of ingredients that includes: carrots, potatoes, green beans, broth, corn, celery, noodles and mixed vegetables.  Their meal also includes: milk, pumpkin bread, grapes, celery and carrot sticks, bread and homemade butter.  The students make the butter out of whipping cream using a jar with a marble inside.
 The students learned all about the First Thanksgiving.  They made pilgrim hats and Native American headbands.  They also made necklaces out of cereal and macaroni. 
Justin with Gage, Lane and Bailey.
 Yesterday they got to eat their sharing stew for lunch.  They had such a good time!  Justin thought that the stew was pretty good, which really surprised me because he is such a picky eater.  He loves Kindergarten!

They all wanted their photo taken with their hats on.  This is most of the class.
Happy Thanksgiving,

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Junior High Basketball First Game

 The Junior High girls kicked off their basketball season yesterday with two games against Boone Central/Newman Grove.  The 7th grade game was first.  We only had four girls available to play, therefore, we have a 7th/8th grade combined team.  There are only six 7th grade girls out for basketball and one girl is hurt and another girl is on vacation in Florida this week.  Therefore, only four girls, so they moved four 8th grade "B" team girls down to play.
 The junior high girls have been practicing for about three weeks.  They are coached by Mr. Hale (the athletic director), Mr. Bamsey and Mrs. Bohacek (volunteer coaches that have children attending Norfolk Catholic). 
 The first game was a hard fought game filled with quite a few turnovers (which are expected in the first game).  Cara's team lost in a 11-14 game.  Many shots were taken, but they just would not fall for either team.  Many shots would roll around the rim or sink part way only to fall back out.  This was frustrating, but the coach told the girls to keep shooting.
 The girls need to work on free throws, lay-ups and boxing out.  As the game went on the girls started playing more aggressive.  The girls were upbeat after the game, even if it was a loss and ready to play again.  They will play this team again in a few weeks in the Norfolk Catholic Tournament.  Boone Central played two girls (I believe they are twins) down low that were as tall as Cara, but outweighed Cara by quite a bit.  Our girls had to work hard against these two girls.
 The Norfolk Catholic 8th grade team came home with a victory in a 46-18 game.  The 8th grade team created many turnovers and converted on fast break opportunities in their win.  Both teams played hard and have the opportunity to improve before their next game.
Take care,

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Long Live Junie B. Jones

All three of our girls learned to read by reading about the adventures of Junie B. Jones.  The author, Barbara Park, sparked an interest in each of them to read another book in the series.  The girls started reading about Junie B. Jones in First Grade and her adventures made us all smile. 

The reason I am posting about Junie B. Jones today is because I read that the author, Barbara Park, passed away last week from ovarian cancer.  I cannot imagine no new books in the series.  We love Junie B. books at our house.  I'm sure that Justin will also learn to read on some of the Junie B. books.  Thank you, Barbara Park for a wonderful children's series and for giving many children a gift and love of reading about Junie B. Jones' adventures.

Take care,

Monday, November 18, 2013

YMCA 5-on-5 Spirit League Basketball

I feel like we just finished volleyball season, but basketball season is starting.  Cara has already been practicing basketball for about 3 weeks and has her first junior high game next week.  Erica decided to join a 5th Grade team from school that is going to the YMCA Spirit 5-on-5 league.  Ashlin is playing on the YMCA recreational basketball league.  Justin wants to go to Itty Bitty Basketball Clinic at the YMCA.  Then after Christmas, Cara and Erica will start playing tournaments on the weekends for Club Basketball. 
Team huddle
 Erica's team had their first practice on Saturday and then started playing games yesterday.  The girls are being coached by Michelle (CeCe's Mom) and Tonja (Alexis' Mom).  Both of these Moms played basketball in college, so, the girls are in very good hands.  The coaches are stressing skills, learning the game, teamwork, sportsmanship and above all, having FUN
 Some of the girls have never played basketball before, so, everyone is learning.  Erica is one of the girls that has never played basketball before.  She has never shown an interest, but after hearing the girls talk about it at school, Erica is giving the game a try.
 The girls played a team from Columbus and Crofton in games yesterday.  The team from Crofton has been practicing for 3 weeks already.  One Crofton Dad commented that for our girls to only have one practice, he thought they played a pretty good game.
 The girls played hard both games and they never gave up.  Everyone got to play equal playing time.  They had some success, but they need more practice.  By the end of the season, they will be playing as a much improved team.

 Erica had fun playing is ready to learn more about the game.  We asked her to give basketball a chance and she is giving her best. 
These brothers had a mini game of their own going on before one game started.  It was two boys in 2nd Grade (Nolan and Dillon) against the two boys in Kindergarten (Jack and Justin).  They can only sit for so long in a gym watching their sisters play.

Take care,

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Visiting the Farm

Justin on the 4-wheeler with Grandpa Leader
A few weeks ago the kids had a Friday off so Keith took them to visit his Uncle Allen's farm to pick pumpkins.  First, they stopped in Bloomfield to pick up Grandpa and Grandma Leader.  They picked pumpkins, rode on the 4-wheeler, rode on the gator, etc.  Justin thought it was awesome!  I see more visits in the future.  (Sorry the quality of this photo is so poor, Keith e-mailed it to me from his phone.)

Take care,

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Halloween 2013

 The kids were excited for Halloween.  They are always ready to eat candy and run around the neighborhood ringing doorbells.  The class parties are all at 2:00 on Halloween at school.  Many parents come to help run the parties.
 One of the games, Justin's class played was to wrap a classmate with toilet paper like a mummy.  Justin and Zach had to wrap Blaise as a mummy.  Justin had this game figured out pretty quick and wrapped Blaise up fairly fast.

 Erica and some of her friends all wore pajamas, robes and slippers for the party.  5th Grade is given the option of costumes or no costumes for their party.  Erica wanted no part of photos during her party, but her friends were ready to pose.
 One parent brought these decorated cookies for a sweet treat for the students.  Justin gobbled his up right away.
Ashlin dressed up as a cat.  She also did not want a photo taken, so I had to take one on the sly. 

After school, I took Justin downtown trick-or-treating at the businesses.  He made it up and down the main street in about 45 minutes and then we headed home for a quick supper before heading out in our neighborhood.  It was the first round of the high school football playoffs so we were not sure how many trick-or-treaters we would have, but we ended up having 72 kids stop by which is a large number for us.

Take care,

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

First Snowfall

 Yesterday was our first snowfall.  It started out as rainfall, then sleet, and then snow.  It changed between the three of them all day long.  Officially, we received 0.7 inches.  The kids at school were all crazy because it was snowing and it was our first one this fall.  Prediction is for a bad winter with low temps and quite a bit of snow, but we'll see if the Farmer's Almanac holds true this year.
Take care,

Monday, November 4, 2013

Singing at The Meadows

 The three Kindergarten classes walked to The Meadows on Halloween to sing for the residents some Halloween songs.  The Meadows is a retirement home/assisted living facility that is about six blocks from the school.  I walked along with the students.
 The children sang about pumpkins, spiders, ghosts, etc. for the residents.  The sun was shining bright that morning and the students had to face a big bank of windows so the photos aren't very good.  The residents love it when the students come to entertain them.
The students even had a few riddles for the residents to solve.  This was a good morning Halloween activity because the students were very excited for their Halloween parties that afternoon.

Take care,