Yes, another homeschooling blog...

P'once a little time there was a girl. This girl grew up to be a Mamma to three little girls all very much like herself. And this little Mamma knew she just had to have a place of her own to keep all things home school right at her fingertips.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Week 12, January 18 - 21

As I ready myself for our coming week of curriculum, I think about what we were doing last year--this very week in homeschooling. We listened to the I have a dream speech, "Do I do this every year?" How do I make civil rights meaningful to a six year old? Do I even know what it means to have this freedom Dr. MLK jr. fought for so hard? So I have begun looking at online resources. I found an article done by ABC on The Harvey Milk Civil Rights Academy which has many great ways to teach children about tolerance.

Monday:
I am pleased with the progression of our day as a whole. With homeschooling Mara, I've never had any problems, however as I learn different ways of integrating our homeschooling unit from a 1 child program to 2, I began to think about how this will work for our family. It made me nervous to think that perhaps it would turn out that I just don't have enough time in the day; or one child's work would suffer at the expense of another. Or everything in our school day would be fine, but the housework would suffer and the children would be starving... Over the last year, I have been collecting special toddler friendly projects here and there, and was given another wonderful resource by a good friend full of Alphabet printables. So today, when gathering my arsenal for my oldest, I also gathered 6 or so activities for the little one, and guess what? It was great. My youngest happily played Playdoh, colored, played blocks, etc. while I gave my oldest enough instruction to complete a task independently.  Meanwhile I could help the young one either pick up that project and start a new one. I know I can't expect everyday to run as smoothly as today, but at least I know it's not impossible.

In honor of Dr. MLK Jr. Day, one of the activities of our day consisted of allowing Mara to choose just one color out of all her 100 plus colored crayons. We then looked through a couple of our kaleidoscopes and talked about why they looked so beautiful when you look through them. I had printed off some really interesting kaleidoscope coloring pages, then ask her to color them.

I was hoping that she would ask to use other colors in her picture, but initially told her she couldn't. At the end of the exercise it gave us a good chance for a discussion about friendship, peace and human rights. **We had a great discussion. And in the end, I did allow her to use all the colors : ).


We will also officially begin our Planta Unit in Science. Monday we began with reading about the differences between Vascular and Non-vascular. We are using stalks of celery to provide an experiment for this lesson. Mara had assistance in forming a hypothesis in her journal about the results of the experiment and based on tomorrow's results, she should be able to come to a conclusion whether celery is Vascular or Non-vascular. We have not finished the entire Chapter, though I think we'll be able to tomorrow.

Mara has a whole bunch of Thank you notes to write, poor thing, backed up from Christmas and a birthday a week a part, so I think our journal writing will be rather scarce this week. Which is fine.

We read Gwen Frostie's To those who see. Mara read the first several pages aloud and I read the rest. I would like to keep coming back to this book. It is a beautiful illustrated book and I know it has potential for a really great project, but unfortunately it hasn't come to me. Maybe we'll bring it out again in the Spring. It's a great all-season book.We have also begun the 6th book in the Narnia series, The Silver Chair. Though we are not reading this book as a part of our school time reading. This is for before bed.

We did a complete review in all Latin vocabulary, including parts of a sentence: Pronoun, Verb, Subject noun. Mara was able to quickly translate English to Latin, Latin to English with little to no prompting. We reviewed the 'state of being' verb, which we had previously done very little work and I was impressed with how ready she was to use it. Honestly, I think the review was purely for my benefit.

In Mathematics, we finally completed the unit on number lines all the way through 100. I have never heard so much squawking in all my life trying to get through this stuff. Good grief. Adda-bird chuckled happily while listening on, stating that it was starting to sound more like home school to him. We're moving on to skip counting next. Thank goodness.

In History, we read about Constantine. Here are some review questions we will be using to go along with our readings:

Constantine was the Emperor who put an end to Christian persecution. What did Constantine see in the sky before going to battle? Chi Rho, a symbol of Christianity. What did he interpret this to mean?  He thought it to be a sign from the Christian God. Did Constantine win his battle? Yes.

I may also take this on-topic opportunity for memorization of The Nicene Creed this week.


I  believe in one God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, And of all things visible and invisible: And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God; Begotten of his Father before all worlds, God of God, Light of Light, Very God of Very God; Begotten, not made; Being of one substance with the Father; By whom all things were made:  Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven, And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary, And was made man: And was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried: And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures:  And ascended into heaven,  And sitteth on the right hand of the Father: And he shall come again, with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead; Whose kingdom shall have no end.
And I believe in the Holy Ghost, The Lord, and Giver of Life, Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son; Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; Who spake by the Prophets: And I believe one Catholic and Apostolic Church: I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins: And I look for the Resurrection of the dead: And the Life of the world to come.  Amen.
 I am still waiting to hear back from our local chapter of the Izaak Walton League, which is rather disappointing. **Update. I just heard from the Izaak Walton League just this morning. It sounds like it is a very active chapter in the community. The president will be sending us a packet of information in the mail about the upcoming activities, events and registration information. In the meantime, impatiently awaiting our mail. Swimming lessons will begin in early February.

Tuesday:
Math: Skip counting 10's, 2's, and 5's
Latin/Grammar: We had another review of using sum, then we switched over to doing Subject/subject noun/linking verb/predicate/predicate nominative. This mainly consisted of me writing out 10 sentences and Mara then labeling each part.
Science: Mara observed yesterday's celery in colored water. We dissected it width and length-wise to observe any coloring on the inside. Mara drew a picture and wrote the results down in her journal.
History: Review of Constantine, Q&A, Nicene Creed
Mara also completed another Thank you note. I was thinking that I would have her work on more than one a day, but these are fairly lengthy and proving to be rather taxing on her hand muscles. I don't want the quality to suffer, so I'm fine with her just writing one each day.
Reading: Read Aloud - The Silver Chair and Mara also read several of her library books checked out the other day.

Wednesday:
More skip counting activities in Mathematics today, mostly consisting of finding patterns in numbers on a  hundred chart. In Science, we finished up the Planta chapter and I am sending her off today with a parts of the plant labeling activity, flower drawing, a couple journal entry ideas. A thank you note was written today as well as Latin/grammar review.

We will also begin a thorough unit on MANNERS!! I was terribly embarrassed at Saturday's birthday party by the lack of thank you's that were thoughtfully given. I began thinking about how many Thank you's are given by everyone in our household, and while I do not feel they are completely lacking, I do feel as though they could be more frequent. So with this lesson, I am starting with myself, however had a long talk about it with Mara this morning.. and already I have heard a difference :) I would love to hear other parents comments on teaching good manners.

I'll be sure to update this page with a progression of our week.

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