If we value the pursuit of knowledge, we must be free to follow wherever that search may lead us. ~ Adlai Stevenson

Friday, April 12, 2013

Weekly Report: Kicking Myself...

image courtesy of mobilebeat
I've written about language arts, specifically writing, here, here, and probably in a few other places. My original plan was to keep it fun and loose, but at the same time, panic was setting in... would my kids be prepared to actually write well in the future? I bought a secondhand copy of The Complete Writer a while back--on the shelf it went, and on the shelf it stayed, until this week. This week, I pulled it out and started using level 1 with The Girl and level 3 with The Boy.

And now I am kicking myself! The kids are giving me these fantastic narrations/summaries! They love the copywork, and next week I'll be starting dictation with The Boy as well, using the approach recommended in The Writer's Jungle (a little at a time, in other words). I was worried that WWE/WWS would be too repetitive and too restrictive for them, but they are really enjoying language arts right now.

We'll definitely be continuing with this program. I am not sure yet if I will buy the workbook for WWE (The Girl), or if we will use our own sources. My husband really likes the looks of WWS for The Boy in the fall as well.

As to the rest of the week...

Saxon Math is still a big hit. We did take a day off from formal math to play beanbag toss/skip counting/multiplication in the backyard, working through 3's, 4's, 5's... up to 10's. I finally got the tests for Saxon 6/5 so that we can begin jumping The Boy ahead a little, since what he's doing now is not much of a challenge.

Science was all about nature this week. We read about frogs, metal ore, and swallows. We planted our tomatoes and peppers, and some heather in the front yard. I showed the kids how to divide lamb's ear, with which we are making a border along the flower beds that border the small lawn in the front yard. We hunted through the yard to find some of the mantises we released recently, and found quite a number of them! The Girl found 8 or 9 on the lemon balm alone!

In history, we read a few of the You Wouldn't Want to be books (we're using this awesome chronological list of the titles) - always a big hit here! Next week, we'll be finishing up the Egyptians, then on to ancient China and India! Maybe we'll finally watch this whole series.

We read about Iguaza Falls in Richard Halliburton's book; started the story of Perseus in A Wonder Book for Girls & Boys (we're only reading the actual Greek mythology stories in this, not the Tanglewood bits), and decided that once we finish The Road to Oz, we'll start reading through the Harry Potter series at bedtime. We also read the story of Hamlet, which I chose since I am reading the play itself for my Shakespeare class.

photo courtesy of Adrian Limani
I am happy to report that The Girl got past her mental block with Reading Horizons. She's definitely making progress with this program, and I am over the moon excited about that!

She's even starting to make a list of books she wants to read herself. Among them: the Ramona series; the All of a Kind Family series; Diary of a Wimpy Kid; and a few others I can't think of offhand. She has never made a list of books to read before, unless it was a list of books she wanted me to read to her.

Believe me when I say this is a huge breakthrough!!!

So overall, it has been a good week! Next week, we'll continue with Saxon and the Complete Writer. We'll get back to K12's History Odyssey, and BFSU. Yes, back to Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding! What can I say, other than that with all three volumes, it is perhaps the most comprehensive science program for kids I have come across! We'll be starting volume 2 in the fall, with topics like Brownian motion, atomic motion, parallel circuits, and convection currents. This means wrapping up volume 1 at long last! I figure it'll give me a chance to work in some units/chapters from the Prentice Hall Science Explorer texts I bought too.

Hope you all had a good week! Enjoy your weekend too! Ours will be busy with an in-house fencing tournament, and a skate-a-thon.


  1. Anonymous11:59 AM

    Great week! Great review!

  2. Anonymous5:44 AM

    Oh my gosh, what a great week! Want to trade kids? ;)

    Seriously, though, I think that's wonderful. When they're actually excited about learning and reading, I think that means you're doing something right.

  3. I'm going to have to look into that science program more. Thanks for sharing the link.

    Your week looks great, and I love that Cassia is making up a reading list of her own too.

  4. Sounds like a great week. Saxon Math is a hit for us, too.

  5. Great week, I too have the complete writer on my shelf as well. Your list of history books looks great, we've enjoyed many of those listed.


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