The weeks are sure flying, aren’t they? We’re so busy nowadays that I blink twice and it’s Friday. Here are this week’s highlights:
- We spent Labor Day doing lessons in the morning, and then that afternoon Steady Eddie (who was off work) and I attended the funeral of my cousin’s mother-in-law. She was a dear lady who suffered from Alzheimer’s during the last few years of her life. She will be missed! On the way home, Steady Eddie dropped me off by the mall for a few minutes, where I purchased a pretty tunic-style top to wear to the same cousin’s son’s wedding. Yes, he is getting married the same week that his grandmother was buried. The circle of life.
- We spent Labor Day evening with my parents and sister and her family.
- Tuesday and Wednesday were a whirlwind of activity between CBS leadership for me on Tuesday and co-op and piano lessons for the girls on Tuesday. Wednesdays are long days for me this semester because Steady Eddie is gone all day long–from early morning until bedtime, and I go non-stop. I sat in the nursery at church on Wednesday night and almost literally couldn’t hold my eyes open.
- Thursday was our first at-home day, which puts a good bit of pressure on me to make sure we do everything. The truth is, though, that we do a pretty good job Monday and Wednesday of jumping into our lessons after getting back from CBS, so there’s no need to panic.
- Lulu’s academic week went something like this:
Math: RightStart E lessons 85-88. She’s in the thick of dividing and fractions and factoring and averages. Fun stuff! She’s handling it very well. We managed to play three math games this week–Factoring, each time. I think the RightStart Games are brilliant! (Have I said that before? )
English grammar: Rod & Staff 5 lessons 12-14. She diagrammed lots of sentence skeletons and then moved into diagramming compound sentences. We’re skipping the writing lessons. So far R & S seems like a good fit for her–she likes to be fairly independent. Sometimes I have a hard time figuring out how much is too much in terms of the exercises, but I’m trying to err on the side of avoiding overkill, which is actually a weakness of mine.
Writing: WWS1 week 3. Lulu was introduced to the thesaurus this week. She also did a couple of one level outlines. So far, so good with this curriculum. I’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time over at the WTM forums lately, though, really trying to figure out where we’re headed. In this document, SWB herself recommends either doing WWS1 half-time for a 5th grader or using something else entirely. I’m still pondering this. The first three lessons are something of a review/introduction, so they were easy enough for her, but I don’t want her to be very frustrated by it, either. I’m considering adding Killgallons’ Paragraph Composing for Middle School Students or one its sister publications. I also purchased a new curriculum, Treasured Conversations, written by a well-respected WTMer, and I think I might be able to use some of this with Lulu, too, for writing across the curriculum. Despite the fact that yes, I have taught writing to community college students, I find that I feel a need for hand-holding when it comes to teaching my own children. I have a lot of thinking and deciding to do this weekend! (Apparently that curriculum post I wrote a few weeks ago was merely preliminary. . .)
Spelling: Lulu completed lesson 28 in R & S 4 and took a test in Spelling City. She missed one word–Thanksgiving, which she failed to capitalize.
Handwriting–I think I had Lulu do one bit of copy work this week, the third stanza of our memory hymn. She does a fair amount of writing through her regular work, so this I’m sort of hit-and-miss in my assigning this to her.
Lulu completed one Perplexor puzzle. (I have to dole these out like candy.)
- Louise’s academic week went something like this:
Math: Louise did RS C lessons 135-138. This was her first real introduction to fractions, and she handled it well. The biggest “problem” was the repeated building of the fraction chart–getting those fraction strips lined up was difficult for my Little Perfectionist. (I also think the RS approach to fractions is brilliant, for the record.) We also managed to play the same game three times this week: Concentrating on One, in which we matched up pairs of fractions that add to one.
English grammar: I switched Louise back to the old, familiar FLL a week or two ago. R & S required too much handwriting for my third grader, and I think she missed the familiarity of the conversational lessons in FLL. This week she completed lessons 4-6 in FLL 3.
Writing: Louise completed week 3 in WWE 3 this week. The biggest struggle in this for both girls has been to not over-narrate–to decide the most important things to share in their narrations.
Spelling: Louise completed lesson 13 in R & S 3 and took a test in Spelling City. She missed four or five words, but all of the ones she missed were possessive nouns, and she didn’t know where the apostrophe is located on the keyboard. (She did this while I went to get an eye examination, so I didn’t know it until later.)
Handwriting: Louise has opted to try a different type of manuscript than what Lulu learned, so right now she’s just learning her letters. I have her practice her new letter in her PreScripts book and then practice some of the older letters on a lined whiteboard using a fine-tipped wet-erase marker. This seems to work well for our lefty. This week she learned capital and lower case F and capital G.
Louise completed one Perplexor puzzle.
- Our together work included three rounds of Circle Time. I’m pleased with their memory work progress. We might finish the Declaration of Independence intro by Christmas! We also did two or three lessons in Getting Started with Latin (which I’m loving, by the way).
- Our chapter book read alouds this week were The Secret of the Andes and Lawn Boy for Sonlight/history and Then There Were Five for fun.
- Both girls completed their marine biology assignments for co-op, which included a short oral report about a certain species of whale (narwhal for Louise and blue whale for Lulu).
- Lulu continues to be enamored of Alabama history and shares all the juicy details with us after co-op. She enjoys her reading and homework for this class.
- Both girls are enjoying their co-op Spanish class, which is a very gentle introduction, mostly vocabulary.
- I feel like we’ve stalled out in history right now, mostly because I cannot for the life of me actually carry off the Sonlight schedule. Besides having the girls read a bit in an American history compendium and our history read-alouds, we did nothing. I have major work to do this weekend!
- I’m still struggling to make time for the DLM in our school day. He is SO ready for a bit of formal learning. I did make it to the library Thursday evening to check out a bunch of books for him, so I have hope that I can also work on this this weekend and start next week with a better plan in place.
- I am in a major reading slump myself right now–too much else on my mind! (See note above about spending an inordinate amount of time on WTM.) I’m very close to (FINALLY!) finishing Flora and Ulysses, winner of the 2014 Newbery Medal and one of the strangest books I’ve ever read.
- Last Sunday we finally broke open our new geography game, Ticket to Ride, and learned how to play it. It’s fun!
- Another game that’s getting a lot of playing time here at the House of Hope lately is Spot It! It’s the DLM’s game-of-choice.
- Our Fun Friday activity this week was traveling up to Decatur, Alabama, with my dad to where the USS LST 325 was docked. This LST (landing ship, tank) was at D-Day. Very interesting!
- When we went out to get out in the van to go see the ship this afternoon, we had a visitor on one of the wires by our house:
I know hawks are common, but I’m always thrilled when I see one!
If you read this far, thank you! I know long posts like this break all the “rules” of blogging, but you know what? I don’t care. I like having a narrative record of our homeschool journey, and if anyone reads it all, that’s just a bonus.
How was your week?