Friday, December 18, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Math: Teaching Textbooks--lessons 71-80--percentages--E also continued working in Life of Fred. I-E and E-R finished book one of Key to Fractions before starting book two and learned how to multiply two digit numbers in Primary Mathmatics.
History: These past few weeks we studied the Assyrians and the rebirth of Babylon. The kids also reviewed their timelines to see how the events of the different civilizations they've studied fit together.
Art: We continued studying lines. This week the kids drew a blind self portrait and then a self portrait where they got to actually look at their papers while drawing their portraits.
Science: I-E and E-R are studying insects. Unfortuntually, its been a bit chilly here for them to observe any live insects. But I'm sure any day the Santa Anna Winds will blow and bring those insects out of hiding. E studied fixed pulleys by building a model and testing how much force was used with different lengths of rope.
Spanish and French: We are putting together books about ourselves in Spanish and French and using Rosetta Stone.
Drama: E-R and I-E worked on memorizing their Noel poems and had a recital. E had two performances of Beauty and the Beast where he had a winning performance as Gastine.
Water Polo: Water Polo ended for the season. We have swim team tryouts this coming week.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
So, this year I decided to combine the two programs. E sticks with History Odyssey. He is old enough to remember the stories from SOTW from the last time we studied ancient history. A-M and I-E read SOTW together. I pick a few activities to go with each part of History Odyssey. Voila, best of both worlds!
Anyway, now to the part you cared about! I've matched up the chapters of SOTW with History Odyssey. I know that some ladies on TWTM forums have mentioned that they perfer to do the opposite---Follow SOTW and add in History Odyssey. To be honest, that does make more sense to me, but I didn't think about doing it that way before we started, so here we are. Perhaps next year, I will try it that way. So if you wish to do it that way, this list will still work--just complete the SOTW chapters in order and match them up to the History Odyssey lessons listed.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
N: N continues to work hard on his Japanese class. He is also working on extra labs for his Pyscology class so he can count it as a lab science class. N's report card also pleased us with all As. he also helped put together another great fun night as part of a great leadership team! I exspecially enjoy hearing his voice on the school's call-outs.
At home this week, we had a laid back relaxed kind of week. PJs were the uniform of the day as we adjusted to the cooler fall mornings. We bathed like cats in the sunshine to warm up.
History: This week we learned about the cultures spread throughout Ancient Africa. Littles wrote paragraphs about the changes camels brought to Africa. We also worked on mapwork and timelines. As a treat, we watched a DVD about the first rivertrip from the start of the Nile to the Mediterranean Sea. We are reading aloud People of the Ancient World: The Ancient Kushites.
Math: E was feeling under the weather a few days this week and skipped Teaching Textbooks two days. He completed lessons 68-70---topics stock, calculating with a calculator, and checkbooks. He also continued to work on Life of Fred. Currently Fred is working on fixing his mistake of paying WAY too much for a bike. I-E and E-R continued working in the first book of Key to Fractions--I am hoping they can finish it this coming week. In Primary Mathmatics, this week constisted of reviewing estimating and multiplying. We also worked on mental math problems.
My favorite part of math this week was when J started Math in Everyday Life with everyone. They learned about wages, gross pay vs net pay, deductions, exemptions, social security tax, and minimum wage laws. I really enjoyed listening from the kitchen. :)
Language Arts: We finished chapter 17 and started chapter 18 in Shurley English. This week we focused on irregular verbs and verb tenses. E-R and I-E are really enjoying Island of the Blue Dolphin. We have read it outloud within the past year. E-R told me, "I forgot how good it was." Ethan has added alot to his Hobbit display.
Art: Lessons 2 and 3 are completed. The project for Lesson 2 explored lines and different ways to create them. Lesson 3 had a practice with contour lines and looking at things as they are instead of how one expects them to look.
English---We have worked through Chapters 15 and 16 of Shurley English. New things learned--indirect objects, possesive nouns, and quotation rules. Our research writing unit began with summary paragraphs which we practice during history time. We practiced summarizing the contributions different pharoahs are remembered for. We also worked hands-on with an encyclopedia. In spelling I-E and E-R worked through lesson 38. Some of their words these past two weeks---splattered, admitted, withheld, shouldered, builds, wouldn't, watering, prettiest. E has been working in Sequential 2 at an accelerated pace. We have been doing two lessons a day because it seems so easy for him. Some of his words: scream, disgusted, climax, streaming, surname, nickname, and Christianity. We started Word Roots. Our root for this week was struct. Ethan continues working on his Hobbit bulletin board. He has written poems about elves and goblins. He has also added another setting drawing. E-R and I-E finished reading Trumpet of the Swans. E-R made a character book. I was very impressed with her drawings--she's quite an artist. I-E decided to make a poster about the themes of love and family. Her poster turned out quite lovely! This week they started reading Island of the Blue Dolphin. I challenged E-R and I-E to read 1,000 pages by the end of the year. If they complete the challenge, they earn a date with Dad. They have been working hard to meet the challenge.
Math--E-R and I-E worked on Factors, Multiples, Order of Operations, Negative Numbers, Addition and Subtraction of Whole Numbers in Primary Mathematics. They also reviewed Place Value using Miquon. They also started Key to Fractions Book One last week. Book One reviews Fraction Concepts, so they can really cement those concepts before I introduce Multiplying, Dividing, Addition, and Subtracting of Fraction. In Teaching Textbook, E worked on lessons 57-66 which covered decimals. Today he completed quiz 9. Life of Fred is a new math book we are testing out. I wanted E to complete a review of fractions, but didn't want anything as problem intensive as the Key to books. Life of Fred fits that criteria perfectly. Each lesson is a short sweet bit of Fred's life that just happens to include math. Of course, Fred leds a pretty unusual life--considering he is only 5 1/2 and is currently teaching college classes!
History--We finished up studying Ancient Egypt. I'm kinda sad, because there is so much we didn't have time to study, but alas we must move on. I am excited to move on to Ancient Africa. I remember studying this time and area with A-M and N. I think I enjoyed it so much because I learned so much new myself.
Art--We started art this past week. We are using Discoveries in Art. We completed lesson one which covers the defination of art, the feelings expressed in art, elements of art, and the choices involved in creating art. The best part was the project. J took the littles to the park to draw a night scene of the sky. Then they compared their creations to Starry Night. They had a blast and were all happy with their creations. Of course, I wanted to add all of the enrichment suggestions to the lessons; of course that didn't happen and maybe--just a little---I'm okay with that!
Friday, November 13, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
A-M: Last week was the freshman project launch at Foothill. The theme for this year's projects is Think Globally, Act Locally. A-M is happy to get her choice of topics--tundra, global-warming, pergrine falcon. This project counts for the majority of her biology grade. It will also count towards her grade for all of her other classes except PE. Presentation day will be December 14th. JT has volunteered to be a judge on presentation day. Of course, he won't judge A-T, but it will be interesting to see what some of the other students present. Every week until December 14th will involve some kind of assignment to work towards presentation. This week, A-M worked on researching her topics.
N: Last week N was busy getting ready for Red Ribbon Week. Red Ribbon Week is a week in which El Camino sponsors activities that encourage drug free behaviors and lifestyles. He also finished his English class with another A and started his Pyschology class. He received his grade for his Japanese midterm and did not do as well as he had hoped. He was very nervous to take the oral part of the exam. That was the part he had the most difficulty with. He is working hard on Japanese; I am very proud of his hard work. Last Friday his school week ended with a moonlight costume party. He attended dressed as the mad hatter. The party was very well attended and deemed a success. Red Ribbon Week was kicked off with a luncheon and blood drive this week and ended with a presentation from Straight-UP.
Writing: Last week was a full and busy week. I was able to include writing across the curriculum which makes me feel that what we do was exspecially meaningful. In October, we are focusing on persuasive writing. E was able to finish his persuasive essay and has moved on to reading the editoral and opinion section of the newspaper. I-E and E-R finished their essays this week. I thought writing went well--we are opinonated at this house--so the opinion statements were pretty easy.
History: Two weeks ago, we began a four week study of Ancient Egypt. So far we have completed days 9,10, 13, and 15 of History Odyssey which involved completing the intro and religion pockets of History Pockets: Ancient Egypt. I always change the pockets up a bit in order to involve more orginal thinking and writing. For example: The Nile River project mentioned above--it orginally called for the students to simple match the pictures up to a paragraph and to glue them next to the Nile River. I had my students make their Nile Rivers as instructed, but then to use those paragraphs to practice taking notes--which they included next to their pictures. We also read an introduction to Ancient Egypt from the Kingfisher Encylopedia and from People from the Ancient World: Ancient Egypt. Everyone colored and labeled maps of Ancient Egypt and wrote summeries of the reading from Kingfisher. E-R and I-E read chapters 2,4,12,and 13 of Story of the World volume 1. I have been reading aloud Tales of Ancient Egypt. A very dry book that my kids actually like. I'm not going to stress if we don't finish this one.
study island. E-R and I-E loved it. It is full of games that require practice of different skills that are on standarized tests. E wasn't that thrilled. I think he was frustrated by the pretest that he scored low on. Of course, the point of a pretest is to see just where one is, and what one needs to work on. He of course did not see it that way. I'm sure after he watches his sisters play the games, he will be more willing to particapate. This year will be the first time my younger kids have to take standarized tests. It will be interesting to see how they do.
The days we did get to Primary Mathmatics we covered approxiamation and factors. E completed his chapter on multiplying and dividing fractions in Teaching Textbooks. He has moved on to the next chapter which involves multiplying and dividing fractions in the real world. He covered the lessons on sales and recipes and ratios. He has been much better at concentrating on math since his completion rate has been tied to computer time!
French and Spanish: We continue to move forward using Calvart, Rosetta Stone, and flash cards. We also are working on completing Spanish and French alphabet books which I printed off of enchanted learning.
English: We worked on Sequential Spelling, completed chapter 13 and 14 of Shurley Grammar, and practiced handwriting. E continued working in Painless Vocabulary. E-R and I-E read the first few chapters of Trumpter Swan. E started The Hobbit. He is making a bulliten board about it as he reads. So far, he has included a picture of the setting of chapter one, an attribute web for Bilbo in chapter one(we plan on tracking how Bilbo changes throughout the book), predications for what is going to happen in chapter 2 and 3. A tragidy befall E's Shurley English book when the cat decided to use it for a litter box. Ummm, maybe he will be starting Rod and Staff ahead of schedule!
Science: E-R and I-E read about minerals and rocks in The Usborne Encyclopedia of Science. They explored the websites that went with those pages and took notes. The experiment they completed was from Reader's Digest How the Earth Works. They tested their rock and mineral samples with acid to see if the samples were carbonates. Ethan began learning about simple machines. So far, he's worked with 1st and 2nd degree levers. We need to work on science much more. I tend to find history more interesting so I have been focusing on that more these past few weeks. We'll have to have a catch-up weekend soon to come up to speed in science.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Sunday, October 4, 2009
I am so thankful for a husband who drives kids where ever they need to go. I am thankful for a husband who doesn't mind getting up at 5 am. And I suppose, I don't mind a husband who picks out the shows we watch each evening!
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Thursday, September 24, 2009
His breast is more white you can see.
The Fishhawk is often found sinting in a tree by a pond, lake, or a river.
A Fishhawk can catch a fish easily.
I hope you like the paragraph.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Math: E has worked through lessons 42-44 in Teaching Textbook. We are mired in fractions, and we are taking this tramp at a slow pace. E-R and I-E also worked with fractions this week in Singapore. They covered equivalent fractions, covering fractions, and simplifing fractions. A short review on time finished our math week for us today.
Language Arts: The highlight of studying The Mouse and the Motorcycle for E-R and I-E has been their Ralph journals. After reading each chapter, they write in a journal pretending to be Ralph writing about his day. It is good practice writing and they have really thought about point of view this week. E has continued reading The Golden Goblet. I love this book's themes. So much thought-provoking thinking comes from our discussions of Ranofer's choices. E is working on an essay to compare and contrast two different careers--just as Ranofer compares and contrast goldsmithing with stonecutting. We made it through chapter nine of Shurley and reviewed three-point paragraphs. I was surprised that all my students remembered how to write them. I expected to spend two weeks on them, but we ended up spending just two days reviewing. Next week we are moving on to Three-Paragraph Expository Essays. E continued on in his Painless Vocabulary and Thinking Skills books. E-R and I-E worked on Explode the Code and everyone continued on with Sequential Spelling. I only got to spelling with E and A-M twice this week. I'm trying to keep them together. The problem is we have to wait until A-M gets home to do it and by that point I'm done with school. I'll have to rethink how I'm doing spelling with the two of them.
Science: Oh science, I had such grand plans, but after looking at the book I'm using for earth science, I realize I need more guidance. E-R and I-E didn't get any science in this week. E worked one day with his science encyclopedias and the internet links that went with them. He couldn't do his workshop and attached experiment because I bought the wrong size battery for his motor. So today I got the battery and then the motor had something wrong with it! He took it apart and worked on fixing it for about an hour. Later he attempted to fix it with Dad and still things didn't workout. Now he thinks he needs a little tiny screw to make things work. We talked about how things don't always work out in science even for professional scientists: he wrote up the experiment explaining the problem with his faulty equipment.
French: E completed a review and lesson 10. He spent today downloading the audio component to our new computer--which by the way N figured out how to get the sound up and running.---Thanks N!
Spanish: Since the sound is now working on the computer E-R and I-E stared using Rosetta Stone to work on learning Spanish vocabulary. They are working on it free form right now. Whatever they do is bonus. It will help them when they take a formal Spanish class at a later point. E-R loves it and asks to do it in her free time. She started her own Spanish notebook just for fun. I told her that I had a workbook that went along with Rosetta Stone. It was like Christmas for her--she was so excited when I got it out for her.
Reading: I-E completed lessons 66-69 and E-R lessons 37-30 in their McGuffey's Reader. Today I-E chose to read The Tale of the Patty Pan and E-R read The Tale of Timmy Mouse.
N at El Camino: This week N completed his first class--World History-with an A. I'm very proud of his progress. Mrs. Stout set the course up to take four weeks and he set a goal to finish in three which he did. His final project was a powerpoint presentation on the causes of WWII--he earned a 100%. So far this year he has a 100% in his Japanese class. Leadership has been going much better then last year. N is leading the committee on monthly activities and tonight was the first fun night. Turnout was excellent and all went as planned.
A at Foothill: A worked on working with a group this week. This was a new experience for her. Her group worked on a newscast from South Africa. She was a roving reporter reporting on the AIDS epidemic. The project went well. She has also been struggling with managing her time regarding homework. She seemed to have done better with this later on this week.
All in all not a bad week. We are still trying to hit our stride in some things and also waiting for curriculum to arrive for art and a few other things. I need to work on going to bed earlier and getting up earlier. I feel better when I get up between 5:30 and 6:00. Then I get to have my own quiet time, exercise, and clean up a little before everyone gets up. I managed it twice this week--aiming for three times this coming week.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
We only took two full weeks off this summer, so some things we have a jump-start with and other things we are just finishing up from last year. My two oldest are in high school this year and it seems so quiet with only three at home.
N is attending El Camino High School at Ventura College http://www.venturausd.org/elcamino/ again this year. He has his usual classes and is also participating in Leadership and Crew. This semester he has Japanese at the college. Mrs. Stout is his teacher---who we dearly love. She is the perfect match for N. I believe No-Nonsense is her middle name. N is again volunteering at Project Secure http://www.venturausd.org/projectsecure.htm which makes me one proud mama.
A-M is attending Foothill http://www.foothilltech.org/. Foothill incorporates technology into all of the classes offered and is ranked in the top 3% of high schools in the nation. Teachers work together so students have assignments that cross all curricula. A-M loves it. Ask her sometime about her PE teacher!
At home we have a full year planned. I am combining all three younger children in History and Grammar.
This year we are trying History Odyssey--Ancients for the first time. It is a schedule that incorporates the classical method of studying history. I have used many different resources to teach history throughout the years. All have had good points, but none have incorporated all the resources that I wanted to include in our studies. And I have to say History Odyssey is the same story. I spent my afternoon at the library added all my resources into the first six weeks of the lesson plan. I am also adding an unit on archeaology before we start. We will finsih that week long unit with some of these kits. http://rainbowresource.com/prodlist.php?sid=1252818459-1081249&subject=14&category=4259 I have a ton of resources for teaching this period of history (enough to start my own library). Unfortunately, these resources are in Saint Louis. Maybe that is a good thing because I can go crazy with history.
For Grammar we are currently using Shurley English 4. We are currently on Week 9. I do not usually use the writing lessons in Shurley English because they are dry, boring, and do not cover enough different forms of writing to meet any kind of standards, so we can complete one week of Shurley English in 4 days. At this pace, we will finish this level in the first semester of this school year. At that point I will move E onto Rod and Staff 5 or 6. E-R and E-I will continue on to Shurley English 5. Shurley English is a program that teaches parts of speeches and grammar rules through review, review, and more review. I have used Shurley English with all of my children at some point in their education. Five years after using Shurley, my oldest is still able to recite that preposition jingle.
We will be using Write Source again this year for writing. E-R and I-E will be using level 5 and E will be using level 7. They all really enjoy their Write-Source books if not always their Write-Source assignments(ex specially that revising!).
Spelling is as always Sequential Spelling. Level 2 for E and A-M. Level 1 for E-R and I-E. SS teaches patterns for spelling and not a list of words that appear random. I have seen a real difference in the understanding of spelling with this program.
E is using Painless Vocabulary this year. All three at home will use Word Roots. Word Roots teaches the Greek and Latin roots found in English words therefore allowing students to decipher the meaning of larger words they may not come across in everyday reading. Mostly we are using it because it will help us meet a CA standard. I have used Vocabulary Vines in the past, but Word Roots seems much more simple. Also, Word Roots has a computer program which I thought would be a nice reward for my kids occasionally.
We have quite a few books to read for literature this year. E started off the year with The Golden Goblet so he could dip his toes into the ancient culture of Egypt. I also picked this book out for him, because I remember it fondly from when we covered Ancient History with N and A-M. It is a mystery that teaches not just the historyand culture of Egypt but also about how to grow as a person. E-R and I-E started out the year with The Mouse and The Motorcycle. So far, they both really love the story. They feel that I am a lot like Ralph's mom--I worry too much.
Language Arts will be rounded out with handwriting and typing. E is completing a quick review of cursive--he really needs to practice his penmanship. E-R and I-E will be continuing their study of cursive writing.
E is studying physics this year with the Thames & Kosmos Physics Workshop. Thames and Kosmos science kits use quality components which I appreciate. There is nothing worse then trying to make an experiment work when the equipment being used is falling apart. The physics kit has the student build a machine and then experiments are performed with that machine. It is an excellent concept for studying physics. I have added reading and research to the kit using the Kingfisher and Usborne Science Encyclopedias. The Usborne Science Encyclopedia is Internet-linked. Ninety percent of the links I have visited are unbelievably informative AND fun! E has enjoyed science so far this year. His latest project was a sailcar. E hopes to finish early so he can move on to this kit---http://www.thamesandkosmos.com/products/ph/ph2.html
E-R and I-E are starting out the year studying Earth Science. I am loosely using Science Works. I am not really happy with it and am needing to supplement a lot. I am looking forward to the last part of this semester when we will move on to insects using Home Science Adventures. I loved that kit when I used it with all three of my older kids. The models in that kit alone are worth the price. The second semester we will be studying Astronomy using Great Science Adventures: World of Space.
E begged to study French this year using Calvert's French Program. It will hopefully give him a jumpstart with language when he starts high school, and he just finds it fun at this point! Bonjour!
E-R and I-E will continue learning Spanish vocabulary by moving on to Rosetta Stone. Rosetta Stone is one of the components of A-M's Spanish class at Foothill, so E-R and I-E are very excited to share some of their work with big sister.
Teaching Textbooks 7 is E's math for the first half of the year. He works on it for an hour a day and will most likely finish it about mid-year. From there he will move on to Teaching Textbooks Pre-Algebra.
E-R and I-E are about 3/4s of the way through Singapore Primary Mathematics Level 3. In about 6 weeks, they should be done and will move on to Level 4.
Our Art program is Discoveries in Art from Calvert. Again this is an outstanding program that I have used before with my older kids. We ordered the new version on DVD and haven't received it yet, but I am looking forward to exploring this with yet another group of kids.
Of course, we have other misc. workbooks that I use to supplement with throughout the year. I will fit in a short unit on American government, review geography, ect. Also, plans change. This is our plan for now and I will update this as plans do change. I also aim on posting weekly what we accomplished. I don't always know how I am going to fit everything into my days of teaching, but I look forward to this school year and am happy to enjoy these days of my life educating my children.