Saturday, March 31, 2012

Week 13 Wrap up

This has been a tough week for me.  Not because the kids are acting crazy and refusing to work, but because we are implementing a new schedule.  Dad and I talked and Dad told me that he thought Master M needed more down time from school.  He suggested that Master M have off the days he has outside lessons/activities.  I needed some time to think about this, but I said I'd give it a go. This means he would school Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. (Dad then went on to say that if he had his off days broken up between his work week he would enjoy his work week more.) 

Sunday we went to church and then came home and had a nice family lunch.  The kids played outside most of the day. Master M did some school stuff in the afternoon.

Monday Pork Chop had speech therapy. Her therapist told me that she is doing very good during their sessions and she is really trying hard to hear the different sounds and say them correctly.  While she was having her therapy session Master M and I read a story for history. It's out of this fun book we picked up at the library. One of those you choose your way books about Ancient Egypt. We are working through all the scenarios and then notebooking them. The kids watched a Magic School Bus episode on the human body for science. Our FIAR book this week is the Story About Ping. We did the 3 R's too.

Tuesday (our new off day) the kids played with clay, Pork Chop drew all the stuff in a How to Draw Clifford book, and they painted with water colors. It was pretty cool out so they didn't spend much time outside. They have been extremely helpful this week and spent an hour helping me deep clean the house. In the afternoon we went to the library to pick up some things I had requested. While there I picked up a couple of books on hands on preschool activities. Pork Chop wants to have her own work, but she doesn't like puzzles or worksheets.  She really enjoys what we are doing with FIAR, but she wants more. I found a book called  1,2, Buckle My Shoe that looked like it had some good ideas in it.  I also picked up a copy of The Well Trained Mind. We already use OPGTR and notebook practically everything so I figured it was time to read about classical education.  The kids picked their library books in record time (15 minutes) and we were already half way to karate so I just drove over. We had an hour to blow before karate started and Goose (13 months) was asleep so we read our next book in the Magic Treehouse Series #7 Sunset of the Sabertooth.  At karate Master M did 100 kicks. After dinner I dove into reading TWTM while the kids played and Dad did some work at the table.  I read everything that pertained to children of my kids age range and found that we were already doing classical education. It was very reassuring to sit back and say "Hey, we are already doing this.". Dad thought it was wonderful that in the book they state 4 days of school is enough since he suggested that SAME thing on Saturday!

Wednesday I used the review in Master M's math book as a test. He completed it all on his own  *I did read the instructions* and made 100%. I am so glad I ordered all the books for Singapore 1b because he is ready. I told him if he made 100% on his test he wouldn't have to do math for the rest of the week.  Next, will be a big review for him since it's shapes, patterns, lengths, and weights.  While he did his math test Pork Chop did her assignment from the book I picked up from the library.  On a white paper I wrote 1-9 and drew banana shapes (I say banana shapes bc I am a horrible drawer). On a piece of yellow construction paper I printed out enough banana's to fill all my banana shapes. I cut them out and had her glue them on which took her longer than it took Master M to do his math test. She LOVED this and asked if we could do more tomorrow.  I decided to start her on OPGTR today too. She loves being read to  and pretends to read to Goose.  Master M did his OPGTR lesson and spelling lesson today without much complaint. He doesn't like it when I make him go back and rewrite a letter, but he did it.  He tells me he doesn't like reading, but I caught him reading a BOB book to his sister this morning :)  We read Ping again and added sequencing cards and vocabulary to our FIAR book.  The day has been really nice and warm so the kids have been outside  a lot. We have  big wooden swingset in our back yard the kind with the clubhouse and sandbox under it. Well, ours just has a dirt box under it. The kids like dirt better than sand.  Master M made a river in the dirt box and then he explained to me and his dad about his river, how he was growing crops on the other side of the box, how he was digging irrigation tunnels to water his crops, and how he had built a damn so that part of his river was now a lake.  I think what he is learning about Ancient times is sinking in :)

Thursday: Goose woke up at 3 am. By 7am I had the house looking very good (THANK YOU COFFEE!). I was very glad that it was our new off day.  The kids spent the morning playing outside. I called the music teacher that does suzuki violin and cello and got info about starting Master M. I am giving him until the end of April to pick. That gives us plenty of time to get him signed up and an instrument before classes start in June. I secrectly want him to play the cello. At lunch Master M was trying to figure out how butter was made from milk. So after lunch we watched a How It's Made on butter. We all love that How It's Made is available on Netflix for whenever we need it. While I helped Pork Chop put together a 100 piece puzzle Master M watched another How It's Made on bathtubs, helecopters, and some other stuff (toothpicks???). Then it was back outside.  Master M had baseball practice and that went well. His coach has him on 1st base. He still needs to practice his catching, but his hitting was spot on. On the way home from baseball Pork Chop told me she was mad at me. She said it wasn't fair her brother has reading class, math class, science class, and history class. She claimed she never got to do ANYTHING. So Dad cooked dinner while I did a lesson out of OPGTR with her and some m&m math. After dinner Master M read a Level 1 reader (with help).

Friday: We read Cells are Us for science and made a page for our science notebook. Master M had a review lesson in OPGTR and Pork Chop continued to learn vowel sounds. Master M had his spelling test today and only wrote 2 words correct. We went over them a lot this week, but when he wrote some of them he sounded out an a sound instead of an e sound. He has a really hard time with the short e sound.  We finished up The Story about Ping and read some more about Egypt for history.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

This Week's Literary Picks

Here are our literary picks for the week.

Pork Chop's Picks:
Babar Family Times
Mary Engelbreit's A Merry Little Christmas
Sailor Moo Cow at Sea (Lisa Wheeler)
Curious George Takes a train (Margret & H.A. Rey)
A Beach Tail (Karen Lynn Williams)
Max's ABC (Rosemary Wells)
You Can't Take a Ballon Into The Museum of Fine Arts (Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman & Robin Preiss Glasser)

Master M's Picks:
Bone Soup (Cambria Evans)
Harry Bear and Friends Count Fish (Elliot Kreloff)
Green Eggs and Ham (Dr. Seuss)
Ten Apples up on Top (Dr. Suess)
-Seadogs An Epic Ocean Operetta (Lisa Wheeler)

Mom's Kid Picks:

-The Biggest Bear (Lynd Ward)
-The Fool of the World and the Flying Ship (Arthur Ransome)

-Mummies, Pyramids, and Pharoahs (Gail Gibbons)
-Ancient Egypt An Interactive History Adventure (Heather Adamson)
-Mummies (Kremena Spengler)
-Ms. Frizzle's Adventures Ancient Egypt (Joanna Cole & Bruce Degen)
-The Valley of the Kings: Egypts Greatest Mummies (Michael Burgan)
-Pharaoh's Boat (David Weitzman)
-Great Ancient Egypt:Projects You Can Build Yourself (Carmella Van Vleet)
-The Gruesome Truth About The Egyptians (Jillian Powell)
-See Through Mummies (John Malam)
-You Are In Ancient Egypt (Raintree Perspectives)
-Life in Ancient Egypt (Paul Challen)
-Pyramids and Mummies (Seymour Simon)
-The Magic School Bus: Inside the Human Body (Joanna Cole)
-Little Pear (Eleanor Frances Lattimore)
-How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World (Marjorie Priceman)
(Can you tell we are studying Ancient Egypt????)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Week 11 Wrap Up

Sunday: We went to the zoo today.  It was 80 and beautiful.  I think everyone had the same idea as we did because the zoo was packed.  Master M HATES crowds of people and was very upset that the herpaquarium was packed.  We have a membership that we use quite often, but dad has only been with us once. On that particular trip it was our first time at the zoo and we missed the herpaquarium and the lorakeets. Oh, those lorakeets. They were the downfall of our zoo trip. The line was long and because so many people had come in and out the lorakeets were hiding. On a normal weekday there are a few other families at the zoo. We can hit up everything and spend 20-30 minutes in with the lorakeets (Master M really loves those lorakeets). Last time we went the bird guy told us the baby lorakeets were old enough to be added with the rest.  Master M was SO excited about seeing those new lorakeets, but not bad enough to wait 30+ minutes in line. After that he was done.  It was so wonderful though to see him telling dad all about the animals at the zoo. He was even telling dad which mallards were males and females. 
Master M played reading eggs for a while today. He just started playing it yesterday and is already on lesson 27. He sees it as a video game and he hasn't met a video game he doesn't want to beat. I also had him read a beginning reader book to me (with quite a bit of help).

Dad isn't home a lot during the week and Master M asked if we could start doing a science lab on the weekends so dad could participate. Our next lab was building cells out of our RSO life curriculum.  I already had the stuff bought to do it so when we got home from the zoo we started making our jello plant and animal cells. The jello is the cell membrane, the grapes are the chloroplasts, and the strawberry is the nucleus.

Monday: This week our FIAR book is How To Make An Apple Pie And See The World. We read it and put story discs on each one of the places they visited. We also put a story disc on the Indian Ocean.  We also colored in the countries on a printed map and wrote what continent each place was on.  Master M colored in flags of every country listed in the book.  After we finished up our FIAR stuff it was time for snack and the kids ate the plant cell they made yesterday. They both said it was yummy. Then we were off to speech therapy. Today was Pork Chop's first day of speech.  While she did speech I went over Master M's spelling words with him  (We are using Soaring with Spelling and Vocabulary) and had him spell them a couple of time with alphabet tiles on a white board. Then it was time for the pretest. This is our first week with this curriculum and he has a really hard time pinpointing the individual sounds in words so  I was afraid he was going to get them all wrong. He really suprised me when he was able to sound out and spell all but the last two words. (Can and Fan) He wrote cat and fat. When we went over the words he realized he wrote the wrong letter and happily wrote them correctly over in the correction section.  Pork Chop's therapy lasts for 1 hour so we had time to read a little reader and the first 6 chapters of our Magic Treehouse book (I can't think of the name but it's book #6 Amazon something). After lunch we worked on math which was adding past 10 by making 10's and 1's. Master M picked it up super quick and was coming up with the answers quicker than I could have him move our manipulitives!

Tuesday: Was a long day. You know those days when your children are ornery? Yeah, this was one of those day.  Still we did an experiment on evoporation, spelling, added to our timeline, reading, and worked on adding 2 digits where the sum is greater than 10.  We alse had a new friend come over and play. Then it was off to karate where Master M had his first class as on orange belt:)

Wednesday: Ran very smooth. We finished up our work in a short amount of time. I started Pork Chop on the MEP's Primary Practice book 1a.  She has been asking me for more worksheets so I figured this was a start.  She did 2 pages and seemed very happy with it.  We added to our scrapbook on How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World.  Master M can now group numbers like 8+7 into 10+5 to make 15 in his head. I was taught math completely different than what I am teaching him so this method of adding is ver new to me and I am having to relearn the basics.  This way seems so easier than what I was taught (I don't have to count on my fingers anymore *cough*cough*). I am NOT the math whiz of this house.  Master M is also really picking up speed on reading. He still doesn't *like* to read (he HATES sounding words out), but he can read BOB books pretty profiently (Just 1-2 helps).  We used our afternoon to go get Pork Chop some new glasses, pick up some groceries, play outside (for a few minutes 87 is quite hot!), play with model magic, and finish up reading our Magic Treehouse book "Afternoon on the Amazon". Then we whisked Pork Chop off to dance. 

Thursday: Was just plain HORRIBLE!! That's all I have to say about that.  I did manage to decide what we are using for Ancient History.  I decided to use A BOOK IN TIME's book list and notebook history.

Friday:Went much better than Thursday.  It was rainy when we woke up and we all just hung out until around 10 when we started school work.  We started our Ancient History Notebook today and Master M is REALLY into it. He asked if we could work on it first. When we were done he said "I know we don't have school tomorrow, but can we still work on this."  When people say "the joy of learning" I'm pretty sure this is what they are talking about :)  Master M finished up his first week of Soaring with Spelling and Vocabulary and took his spelling test today. I told him at the beginning of the week if he made 100% I would give him $1 (He is trying to save up money for the dinosaur gift shop exhibit at the zoo in April). He rose to the challenge and spelled every word correct!!!  I was SO proud of him!  Then we moved on to reading. This has not gone good this week (understatement!). I asked over on HIVE MIND for help on a child who isn't putting forth a good effort for reading and someone suggested to really draw out the words. Since we are at a point in OPGTR where we can't go forward until he is able to really read short vowel sound words we worked with letter tiles on a small white board.  When he came to a word he didn't know and of course refused to sound out (which is just crazy because he sounded out all of his spelling words during his test!) I really drew out those words. After the 3rd time doing it he looked at me and said "You can stop that now." I guess annoying mom sounding out words was enough for him to really try himself!  We only spent 20 minutes on reading, but he was really working at it and that's all I wanted.  For science they watched a Magic Schoolbus video on the body and then we journaled it. Math was finishing up yesterday's lesson on adding numbers larger than 10 while hiding in the basement from tornadoes.  Then we finished up our FIAR book How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World by drawing street scenes for art. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Weekly Wrap Up

This week we only had a 4 day school week. We went to South Carolina last week drove home Monday. This week was extremely busy for us. The kids had karate, dance, baseball, and a karate graduation! Even with all this we managed to get everything done and start Five in a Row.  Oh, and the weather here was FANTASTIC. We spent a lot of time outdoors this week! The highlight of the week was attending Master M's karate graduation to an orange belt today!

We own several of the books needed for FIAR book 1 and since this was bought so Pork Chop could really join in on school I allowed her to pick the first book. She chose Madeline. I didn't think Master M would enjoy Madeline and that I would hear grumbles about it. I was pleasently suprised and he really enjoyed the book.  Today both kids were able to finish almost every sentence. Master M even asked to start with Madeline today. We did every activity listed in the book and the Madeline lapbook on homeschoolshare.  I loved that my kids can now show you where France is on a map! Pork Chop will say "It's where the Ipal (Eiffel) Tower is.". We aren't doing lapbooks right now, but we are doing a large scrapbook. It will contain all the info from our book of the week.

We are at a point in Singapore 1a where it is important for Master M to know his mental math (addition and subtraction 1-10) very well. He can tell you the answer, but it's not immediate. We took this week for review and did lots of addition and subtraction problems. He can spit the answers out much faster and accurately now, but I still feel he needs another week of review.

We have finally moved beyond the constanants in OPGTR and Master M is starting to read words and short easy sentences. Since OPGTR is so dry I write the individual words on our whiteboard for him to read. The short stories (really short just 3-4 sentences) I type up and put a box under each one. This gives Master M a space to illustrate the sentences which helps make OPGTR not quite so boring.  He really doesn't like to practice reading. Since he is a perfectionist and reading isn't something that comes to him immediately he doesn't want to do it.  I really have to push and help, but he is starting to get it.  I have started doing 3 20 minute reading sessions with him each day (morning, afternoon, and night).  He is reading basic readers and with lots of help.

We have started using R.E.A.L. Science Odyssey Life and I have to say we LOVE it! Since it's only 1 page of reading to several labs it works well for us.  Pork Chop sits in on the labs and "helps" and Master M really likes having hands on science. This week we did plot study and the kids had a lot of fun finding all the living things in our overgrown flower bed (I pulled the weeds while we were out there!). Our 2nd lab was a cell lab where we looked at an egg and labeled the parts.

Monday, March 5, 2012

The Wild Boy Scrapbook/Notebook (Mordicai Gerstein)

I couldn't find a pre planned lesson on this book so I made my own. This is geared toward younger children since my kids are 4 and almost 6.

*Book Report:What happened first? What happened next? What happened last? What was your favorite part? How good was this book 1-4 stars?  (I do most of the writing)

*Draw a picture of the wild boy in the woods. (My 5 yr old was very worried about how he was going to draw a naked boy. He said "I always draw people with their clothes on". Mind you all the people he has EVER drawn have been stick figures. lol He wanted to know if he should draw a skeleton and that led to the discussion of how you body has skin over your bones.)

*We printed out a picture of Jean Marc Itard and talked about how he was a dr. for deaf and mute people. Which lead to a discussion on what exactly deaf and mute meant. Beside the picture we wrote (straight from the mouth of my 5 yr old) A dr. who helped people who were deaf and mute. He took in the wild boy and cared for him.

*We defined the words deaf and mute

*We found France on our world map and put a marker there so we would remember where it was. We printed out a outline of France. We used our world map to find the mountains/forest and Paris. We then put the mountains/forest and Paris on our map. Beside the trees we wrote "The found the wild boy in the forest" and beside Paris we wrote "He was sent to Paris after he was captured.". Beside the map we used scrapbook letters to spell FRANCE.

*In the book it says Dr. Itard made cutout letters for Victor. I printed out the alphabet coloring pages and we will be working on coloring those in. After we are done with A-Z we will make a garland out of them to hang in our school room.

*Talk about how you would feel being completely alone.

*Research what kind of plants/berries/mushrooms you could eat in the wild to survive. Print them out and glue them to you notebook/scrapbook or draw them (don't forget to write down the names).

*Research out wilderness survival skills and list them.

*Talk about being different than everyone else and how to treat people who are different than us.

*Compare/contrast Paris (a city) and the forest

*Learn about walnuts (the wild boy's favorite food)

*Make a list of the foods the wild boy would and wouldn't eat

*The wild boy had to be taught hot from cold, rough and smooth, colors, and shapes. Find things that are rough and smooth to add to your notebook/scrapbook. Make a list of things that are hot and cold. Glue and label different colors and shapes to you book.

*Play cup and ball like Victor did in the book.

*In the book Dr. Itard gets frustrated with Victor. Talk about how you feel when you are frustrated. After Dr. Itard gets frustrated and yells at Victor he starts to cry and became upset. Talk about how you feel when your feelings get hurt.

*Dr. Itard teacher Victor the french word for milk (lait). Learn a few basic words in french and add them to your book.

*Toward the end of the book Victor becames very helpful. Talk about things the kids can do to be helpful. Make a list to go in your book. (Don't forget to have to kids do the things they listed to be helpful!)

*The book talks about how Victor liked to stand by his window under a full moon. Go out and look at the moon on different nights. You could track the moon phases or just research the moon phases and add them to your book.