Monday, October 24, 2011

Weekly Report - October 17-21

Last week we listened to Treasure Island again, chapters 21-25. Son and I are enthralled by the sudden action in the story. Before there was much dialogue and descriptive parts, by necessity, but now that the enemies are out of hiding, the plot thickens. I'm discovering that Literature can be a joy for me as well through listening. I like reading aloud to Son, but I do have a busy 8-month-old to care for who has a penchant for crinkling and tasting paper. 

Still chugging along with place values for Math. I'm tempted to race ahead, I know that in Math and other disciplinary subjects, slow and steady wins the race. Son understands, but I want him to practice and have different problems thrown at him. I have started to (gulp) skip some problems, not many, but just enough so that it speeds us along without taking away from the practice and learning. When we do more than one page, I offer to write some answers down for him while he tells me what to write and how he got to the answer.

Spanish consisted of Rosetta Stone for 15 minutes at a time. He got 100% on most. I need to remember to set up the Homeschool aspects, the reports and such. His pronunciation is very good, and I like the fact that he enjoys it.

When we did English, we reviewed what a sentence is, statements, questions, exclamations, and commands. I find that Son seems to like grammar, and especially enjoys Lynne Truss books on the subject. A few weeks ago he asked me if he could get Eats, Shoots, and Leaves for Christmas! I'm planning on getting him the three-book collection. Now he's reading There's a Frog In My Throat! 440 Animal Sayings A Little Bird Told Me by Loreen Leedy and Pat Street. We continue with PLL  as our main book, and VIE as a supplement and oral review and activities.

Now that we do Poetry, Composer Study, Picture Study, and Logic on Fridays we have deviated some from the truly CM schedule. Poetry ended being nonexistent this week. 

I'm trying it out as I find out it takes upwards of 4 hours to complete our school, and with all the little interruptions (baby) sometimes it can take longer. I feel the need to simplify and cut it down to English, Writing, Reading, Spanish, History, Science, and Spanish. I like it and I don't like it. It's more efficient, and Fridays feel more relaxed, but at the same time it was nice to go back and forth between what CM called inspirational subjects and disciplinary subjects. However, this new schedule wins out for now. Son seems to focus better, and I strive to keep variety within the disciplinary subjects as well. 

Natural Science consisted of some review material of our Singapore Science MPH 3/4 Diversity textbook through Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) "Taking The Challenge!". Son can handle them, although he does fly through the instructions too fast. I teach him to stop and read carefully. It's a process that I find will take some time. I am pleasantly surprised at the level of critical thinking he's capable of. We also started discussing the upcoming Science Fair in January. What a science fair is, and he read the Magic School Bus picture book on Science Fair. He also watched "Science Fair Panic!" 4-part video series by The Happy Scientist. Son also began his online research for his oral presentation on "Venomous Snakes of Florida".

I find that Spelling once a week is sufficient using Wheeler's Elementary Speller, and using Spelling City the other time. So far we only made it through the Wheeler's. Son never got to the computer.

In Geography, I gave Son a choice: would you like to continue going through the fifty states, or pause and camp on Florida for a while? He wanted to continue studying Florida, so Georgia was the last state he checked out before we started to hone in on Florida. This means that starting next week, or rather, this week, we'll be reading on Florida History and memorizing the capital, major lakes, state bird, motto, etc.

We did Lessons 85 and 86 in PLL for English. Son couldn't get over how funny "It is I" sounded. He argued that nobody should answer "it is I" because nobody would know who that is anyway. I think he has a point. It does sound more "natural", even if incorrect, to say, "It is me." However, Son said, he would want to say, "It is me, Son." Without your name it's crazy, after all. We had a chuckle.

Son was proud of himself, as nobody but one much older boy was able to knock him off his feet in Taekwondo sparring. He's practicing his forms, and has mastered the newest form. I reminded him that he needs to know all his forms up to and including the orange belt - from first through fourth. He has a tendency to think that if he's passed, he's done. The knowledge builds, like in math.

In Dance his teacher expressed that he was the best at the grand-jeté, but the worst at actual splits. Another student, the teacher's granddaughter and just over four years old, was just the opposite. Son just started ballet and tap, and he enjoys it, especially tap dancing. He will be performing for the first time this December, alongside his sister.

Son has convinced himself he can make millions playing Tennis. He's practicing hard, wants to work every day, and is getting better and better. He's the best in class, and his teachers see his dedication. His backhand is improving, and since Daddy bought him sneakers, he's been more agile on the court. We may need to splurge for private classes in the future if he continues this interest.

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