Friday, December 14, 2007

Week 15 Report

We are definitely in a pre-vacation mode this week! We're still doing school, but it is very "light."

Read Alouds: We finished Family Under the Bridge. I love it when Ben shouts, "Read More!" Luke was more than able to keep up with the story. We started Father Christmas Letters, but since it is a holiday themed book, we only have a week to read it and it is nonrenewable, so I'm not sure we'll finish.

We've been working on Hand of a Child's Symbols of Christmas lapbook. It's been really fun! We'll finish this up next week, put it all together and share it with our family when they visit for Christmas.

Readers: Ben is working through Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder and one of the Sugar Creek Gang books (I can't think of it's title, but it is the first in the series). I'm finding it hard to get good reading material for Ben at this point (outside school reading), because many of the books at the library are just too wizardy/ fantasy for my tastes. He's working through the Time Warp Trio books again (he read them mostly in 2nd grade and last summer) -- so he is even having trouble finding good books, too. So the Sugar Creek Gang is what we're test-driving to see if it is worth getting the series for him. I'm pleased that it is a Christian series -- hopefully the story line is good. If you have any recommendations for chapter books for an 8 year old boy, please post them!

Science: We've done about a week and a half worth of science this week, and will continue to be science-intense next week. We softed an egg shell using vinegar this week to show how important calcium.

Piano: Ben's been pracaticing for his recital tomorrow. I'll try to remember to take the camera and post the video.

Geography: We're working through a couple Weekly Reader workbooks about geography and map reading skills. Although we've been making maps since 1st grade, I wanted to use these couple weeks to review things like map symbols, reading road maps (interstate and highway markers). I also found a great total free downloadable geography game called Seterra. You can customize it for each continent's name, countries, US states, state capitals, and I think flags, too. Definitely something than can be used with a huge range of ages (including adult).

Flashmaster/ Math: We are just using the Flashmaster to re-baseline Ben's progress with math facts since we started using it in September. I'm pleased to say he's improved in his speed and accuracy with all four operations! All his subtraction and addition facts were 90% or better, which was the target. Next week, we'll play some math games with some of our fun dice.

I copied from below our goals for this three week period before Christmas break and since this blog is my diary/ personal progress report of our schooling, I thought I'd better consult it and make adjustments in our last week:

  • double up on science and science experiments, since we got a little behind and since Ben loves it! - We've done pretty good with this so far. We're in week 14 (Calcium), and I'd like to finish this book, which is just three more days of reading and some internet links, too. Very doable!
  • Complete a Symbols of Christmas lapbook. It looks great! Also very doable. We do one lesson a day, and will finish it on Friday (we have no CBS nor Gym class, so this will be easy to do, too)
  • Finish our last SL gr. 3-5 reader: Mustang, Spirit of the West I decided not to go with this book. Ben's reading two other books right now, plus we've got a pile of library books.
  • Make Christmas cookies finally have started this!
  • Re-read The Light at Tern Rock and The Family Under The Bridge and other seasonal books from the library. We've done one of these books. I'll have to look at Tern Rock and see if we can read it in a week.
  • Learn some Christmas carols so that we can go caroling to our neighbors some night. I'm not sure we'll go caroling, but I will at least have us all go over and deliver cookies to our 4 closest neighbors!
  • Finish up our All About Spelling Level 2 and retest with the materials from The Writing Road to Reading We'll finish this on Monday, retest on Tuesday.
  • Re-baseline Ben's mastery of arithmetic on Flashmaster and work through some Challenging Word Problems and math games Flasmaster is done; we'll work through CWP and math games.
  • Work through some geography workbooks that I have and listen to geography songs Forgot about the geography songs, but we've been doing well with the workbooks.

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