Monday, May 20, 2013

Weekly Update: 5-17-13

Mother's Day loot

    School stuff. We're gravitating to summer mode. Hitting some subjects hard so we can be done with them. Steadily plugging along in others.


    I recently added On the Shoulders of Hobbits to his Hobbit study. This book is becoming one of those books to him. You know the kind. They become a part of you. He loves every part of this Hobbit study. We've filled the binder so full it's bursting.
    In math he's enjoying the YourTeacher math freebie from Homeschool Buyer's Coop. I'm inclined to just let him do that for the summer. I think he's up to prealgebra lesson 40 now.
    His vocab book feels like busywork anymore. I don't think we'll finish it.


    We looked at how much was left in Where the Brook and River Meet and decided to just focus on the literature and Bible parts of it. Nearly all the bigger projects have also come up in AHG badges anyway. (We were already skipping most of the writing, all of the grammar, and random other pieces.)
     She's also enjoying YourTeacher math. She's roughly halfway done with their prealgebra. I had her start at the beginning of it, but she's pretested out of the majority of the lessons. It's been a good review for her.
     Her grammar and spelling books are nearly done. Those subjects will get dropped until fall when they're finished.

Raingutter Regatta track for Cubbies in our minivan



    He's feeling the computer math itch, but a day of Khan Academy a week seems to be all he wants. He's doing great in his Horizons book though. A few stacks of really big problems overwhelmed him a bit this week, but transferring just those big problems to a quad notebook solved that problem.
    In literature he's reading The Railway Children by Nesbit. His grammar and spelling aren't quite as far as Joy's, but I think he can test out of a fair chunk of it and finish around the same time.
He's still reading through science books and materials faster than I can buy them.


    She's getting a little bored in math again. Time to speed it up and move her along. If the challenge level doesn't keep steady pressure she gets antsy. I already have her next book purchased, and she'll start that if she finishes the current one.
    The still fairly new to her English book doesn't stand a chance. She's jumping ahead in spelling. For writing she's been doing studied dictation lately. I'm mostly giving her classic children's poetry: Robert Louis Stevenson, Christina Rosetti, and such. Being a poetry lover this has tickled her. I started out picking very small pieces, which she flew through with perfect scores.


    Faith is still plugging along with her Writing Road to Reading phonics cards. That little bit of card review each day really does help her reading. When she comes across a word like "want" I can say, "That one uses the third sound of A," and she knows exactly how to sound it out. She's pretty much done with Veritas Press K level literature.
    In math she's steadily moving forward. Her Life of Fred Apples book only has about a week left. She ♥ Fred.
Valor's preferred way to watch a dance show


    I was asked what he does during lessons this week. Mostly? He eats. Like a hobbit. Breakfast. Second breakfast. Elevensies. Brunch. Luncheon. There's a reason he wears size 4t clothes at 2. He's talking up a storm lately. Other people are starting to understand him more and more.


    The Middle Crew's read aloud history might as well be considered family wide history. The big kids' pencils stop moving when I start reading them, and they can tell me tiny details from the stories.

    I did a "Writing Plunge" with the oldest four, inspired by a writing curriculum's teacher manual I ordered to examine in my hands (Jump In). They all sat down at the table with just a pencil and a piece of paper. When I said writing the boys gave me a look. When I said 15 minutes tops, no editing and no final drafts, they relaxed. "Anyone can write for THAT much time." Then I read the first plunge to them. "You have just created a new dessert. Name it and write a short description of it for the menu." We talked a bit about what that meant, checked the clock, and they wrote for fifteen minutes. (The book suggested ten, but it wasn't written with a 2nd and 4th grade sibling in mind.) After the time was up they shared their papers aloud. Each one of them thoroughly enjoyed the activity, and it was the first thing they told Dad about when he got home.
  • Grace: Ice Cream Cake
  • Honor: Chocolate Pizza
  • Joy: Chocolate Cup with the best mint-vanilla-cherry Cuffins
  • Justice: Snickers Cake



    AHG is growing. I started getting one larger activity in a month, trying to design them so every person who attends earns a patch. Last month we visited an arboretum. This month we're going camping. Next month the Pioneers will host a daddy-daughter dance.

SilverDad's vehicle after scouts. Rut roh...
    Cub Scouts is running so well. It's awesome. We have a fabulous team. Honor and his fellow Webelos have been working on NOVA awards, and recently we added the Webelos Fitness work back into our rotation. A new boy needs it for his Webelos rank, so we're all backing up to do it with him. The review will be good for the more experienced scouts.

    Boy Scouts is having some burps. SilverDad is enjoying his new role as Scoutmaster. The changes at the top didn't sit well with all the boys, but they're adjusting.

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