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

Friday, January 10, 2014

Week 1, 2014... A Light But Good Week

We're easing back in after having December off from formal homeschooling, and I have to say that for a whole month (plus) off, it seemed to disappear in the twinkle of an eye! Regardless, we got back to work this week, and it was good!

We started out the week with a trip to the coast. The weather was so warm, we were down to t-shirts and tank tops for over an hour before it began to cool off again!

There was some splashing around...

Lovely views...

Wet sand to play with... 

Shells and shell bits to collect...

Some general watching of the waves...

 Some good father-daughter time...

A glorious sunset...

Then tranquility...

And finally, time to say goodbye to the ocean...

In math, we have set Saxon aside, at least for the moment. The Boy picked back up with Life of Fred Fractions, and tried out some Zaccaro Challenge Math, which being about astronomy/light years/etc., required calculator use, something he is not used to. It is a skill I think he should learn, so we worked on that together. The Girl tried out Zaccaro Primary Challenge Math, going through levels one and two for the first couple of chapters. We started on division (with 10s) as part of this, and so we'll be working on that skill more next week. Next week I would like to work in a day of math games/activities, perhaps something from the Family Math books I have, or from The Book of Perfectly Perilous Math!

In language arts, The Girl worked through a review of short vowel words in Reading Pathways. Truthfully, much of the book is review work at this point, but she needs the work in fluency. She did some free writing on her own. The Boy read a couple of passages from A Christmas Carol in Write With the Best, and then used Write Source 2000 to review parts of speech. Next week, I'll add back in Hot Fudge Monday and perhaps some Brave Writer exercises.

From the Afternoon Basket, we started learning about philosophy with Harry Stottlemeier's Discovery, and a lot about Pompeii with The Complete Book of Marvels. We also read about the periodic table, atomic weight, and more, in The Magic of Reality. The kids were so fascinated with Pompeii that we ended up watching a documentary -- Pompeii, Back From the Dead -- as well (I recommend it!), and then last night discussion about atomic weight led to a great conversation about early alchemists! Hopefully, next week we'll add in mathematical reading, with The Man Who Counted.

For our Block Study, we read a couple of chapters from The Ancient Greek World, and started reading through the D'Aulaires Book of Greek Myths. Next week, we'll add in Black Ships Before Troy, which is waiting for me at the library! We might add in some documentaries, and maybe a movie or two as well. I'd like to do some art, and a project or two during the next few weeks. And, I would like to get through more of The Ancient Greek World next week.

As for art, I did post a couple of Matisse's pieces on the fridge, but we didn't do any art projects, so that is a definite "must" for the upcoming Sunday. I did put a copy of the sound recording of Peter and the Wolf on hold at the library, for our music studies. Naturally, the kids have heard it before, and seen the film version, but it is always fun to listen to!

As for everything else, the kids continue to enjoy their Christmas gifts of bicycles and scooters. They biked down to the local park this week, and rode around for a while (I walked). Today, they are off to their park day with friends, and scooters. The Boy returned to fencing this week, and has his first "senior" in-house tournament tomorrow. The Girl is on the fence about an activity at the moment... she's not sure if she wants to return to roller derby right now, nor is she sure about karate, so we've put that on the back burner for the moment. I start back to school on Monday Thursday evening, with a class in British American lit/feminist theory, and M has a job interview next week as well (keep your fingers crossed!), so we have a lot going on! As far as independent studies, The Girl and I read about life in Siberia in Faces Magazine, and she watched a documentary on sea creatures. The Boy read a bit about aircraft history in Flight, and I've "assigned" him the task of watching one episode of Carl Sagan's Cosmos each week. There was quite a lot of building with Keva planks this week (one of last year's Christmas gifts!), plenty of drawing, and a good bit of Harry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban, as well as the last bit of Percy Jackson & the Battle of the Labyrinth, which reminds me, I need to put the next [audio] book in that series on hold. Next week, I hope to get in some more of A Wrinkle in Time as well.

I hope you all had a good week, and that you have a great weekend!


  1. Love the pictures! Warm sun on the beach - hard to imagine with all the snow here in Quebec.

  2. Fencing sounds like such a neat extracurricular activity! Let us know how he does. Enjoyed the ocean pics.

  3. The beach is beautiful! Been too cold for us to go lately :( looks like you had a fun week

  4. Great photos from the beach, Gillian! We are happy to finally see the low 50s here today--but the 30s are on their way back to us soon.

    I really MUST e-mail you...

    You sound busy, busy, busy as usual -- I don't know how you do it! You are one energetic mama!

    Take care, 'til we talk!


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