Saturday, September 6, 2008

Weeks 1 & 2 Report

I've survived two weeks of homeschooling two boys, yea! They are all still well-fed, the house isn't a mess, and Levi has been having a great time doing his "school." Oh, and we've gotten Daisy to boot, so all in all -- praise God! -- homeschooling is off to a pretty good start (despite a nasty first day).


Fourth Grade: We spent the first week re-reading "If You Were There When They Signed the Constitution" just so we could get a firm footing on what we were studying in June. Ben did a narration for me and drew a great picture. I can tell school is a little rusty because we had to work hard together to get the narration; Ben was very vague at first, but I backed-up, went through some basic questions with him, and encouraged him to the put his answers in full sentences.

Someone asked me how we did narrations and I have found this article by Susan Wise Bauer extremely helpful and encouraging as we go through the process.

We have started using Growing with Grammar. It is a lot of review right now of subjects/ predicates, but I am enjoying the ease right now. I'm not sure GWG 4 was the right level to move to from FLL 3; I've thumbed through the student manual, and it looks like a lot of review of what we did last year, however, I maintain that it is heads and shoulders above what is expected at this level, so I'm content to let the material solidify in Ben's brain by using GWG and let him understand the information better. It is certainly providing more practice with the concepts than FLL3 did.

We've just been reviewing Latin vocabulary and chants for the past 2 weeks and lessons 1-12 from All About Spelling. Next week we'll move forward in both these subjects. We'll start Lesson 3 in Lively Latin and Lesson 13 in AAS. Math is also just a review of math facts at this point. I think we camped, swam, and played all the math facts our of Ben's brain this summer; fortunately they seem to be returning.

I am trying a new approach to History and Science this year. We will do 2 days of each -- MW for History, TTh for Science, and Friday we'll use to fill in as needed. I want to make a switch to the 4 day a week schedule for SL, and need to spend some time looking at where we are in the 5 day schedule vs. the 4 day schedule. This new block scheduling, however, is helping our science time. It doesn't seem as rushed, we're able to read, talk, do a couple activities and then I send Ben off to review the internet links (which have reinforced our lessons on energy just fabulously!)

Kindergarten: Luke has been reviewing the nearly 30 first lessons in 100EZ lessons. I'm so thankful he hasn't forgotten anything. He is reading the little stories at the end of each lesson fairly easily. I have to remind him, though, to blend the letter sounds together like rrrrraaaaat instead of r-a-t. We've also started Horizons K for math. it is far too easy for him right now, but that is OK because we're working hard on the reading. We're also working through the DEL books, but honestly I think it is a waste of time at this point to do all the activities. Luke needs help with following auditory directions and motor skills, so I think I'm going to bag the rest. Instead, we'll move on to the Critical Thinking books that I have for him.

We have been reading our science stories from the Pond People book. It is well written and very enjoyable for Luke. He is definitely my nature boy. We even discovered tomato hornworms on our plants this week.

This coming week swim lessons start. We'll switch our twice weekly art lessons from Wednesday/ Friday to Tuesday/Friday for now.

1 comment:

Sheila in OK said...

I love the notebooking form. Where did you get it? I am also using Core 3--just finished week 2! :)