Saturday, September 5, 2009

Week 2 Report

Language Arts
Noodle read the following stories from Yesterday's Classics Primer:

The Pancake
Three Billy Goats Gruff
Little Tuppens
Little Spider's First Web

And read The Three Little Pigs from the First Reader.

I had her do a coloring page or a drawing after each one, which she really seems to like. She did a paper craft of Little Spider's First Web that she really enjoyed. She'd asked to do some cut & paste projects like Spud has been doing.

She also did her lessons from Writing With Ease, Level 1 and we did our grammar lessons from First Language Lessons. Spud often joins us for the grammar lessons.* (see below for story)

Spud reviewed his short vowel sounds this week and we started on the "blends" in our Phonics Pathways book. He said he didn't like that the sounds (i.e. sa, se, si, so, su) weren't actual words, so we may need to try a different approach. From his Upstart (computer-based preschool activities) and some of our own activities, I think he is getting the concept of sounding things out pretty well, but he is so reluctant to DO anything that he can't do well. I really don't know how much to try some of the different phonics type activities with him, as he doesn't want to try them. I finally finished prepping the rest of my Happy Phonics materials, so I think we will utilize those this coming week in lieu of the Phonics Pathways and see how he responds.
Here's the awesome Alligator I mentioned before. The kids insisted that he have a body.

We did Seasons this week, and read a couple of books and watched the Bill Nye episode about Seasons. Also did a paper craft showing the different seasons. For our Earth Science text, we are using the First Encyclopedia of our World and doing either a single or multiple topics each week. So far, so good.

Ancient India was this week (Chapter 10, I think, in Story of the World Volume 1). In addition, we read One Grain of Rice and are going to read Once a Mouse tonight. The kids really liked One Grain of Rice and how starting with one grain of rice and doubling it every day for 30 days could result in so much rice by the end.

Spud did some number matching again and we also played Numberbow. (You roll the dice and add them up, then color that number on your rainbow. Each person takes 12 rolls, and whoever has the most of their rainbow colored wins. Of course, my kids are so competitive, or maybe just poor losers for now, that we don't focus so much on winning.) I got the big dice at Dollar Tree a few weeks back and they have been a fun addition to some of our games.

He did some pattern blocks and then made his own block "monster".
I told him it reminded me of an owl, but he insisted it was a monster, and then proceeded to add more "monstery" features.

Noodle did her Math U See lesson about doubles and only missed one on her test. She wrote that 30 + 30 = 16, which I think happened only in the writing stage, as she sometimes gets 16 and 60 messed up, as well as 12 and 20. I told her this week that I think it's funny she doesn't like math, as most kids like things they are good at. "They do?" she asked, incredulous. We started a sticker card for her in an effort to make math a bit less of a dreaded thing. She gets one sticker for each workbook page she does on her own, two if she gets 100% on her weekly test and 1 if she doesn't get 100% on her test. I caved and gave her two even though she had the mistake on this week's exam, because once I pointed out the missed problem, she solved it correctly right away.

Noodle did well on the songs she had a chance to practice and we played the duet version of Ladybug for Leadership School Tuesday evening. She was kind of worried that afternoon because she didn't have it exactly perfect every time, but when we performed it, she didn't miss a single note! And neither did I, thankfully.

I thought this was a cute scene I happened upon one day:
Sprout was clapping happily on the floor while Noodle played Yankee Doodle and Spud played with toys and bounced around on the sofa.

That's all that comes to mind right now. We ended up doing only part of our school day Thursday because Sprout was sick. I just couldn't handle a fussy, barfy baby who hadn't slept well the past two nights (which meant I hadn't either!) AND have the patience/attention necessary to help the kids with their lessons.

Friday we did our lessons and spent a couple of hours up the canyon at the 2nd Annual Homeschoolers Picnic, put on by our friends Nickie & Gove Allen. It was a lot of fun. Spud got soaking wet in the shallow part of the river there (which was fun for him) and Noodle got to play with a neighbor boy whose family is new to homeschooling this year. We are lucky to have a few homeschooling families in our ward, even if we don't necessarily do activities together. At least it makes us seem a little less "weird" at church.

* Noodle (and Spud, apparently) have been learning about complete sentences, and we were all hanging out up in my bedroom one afternoon and Noodle answered some question and Spud said, while dangling sideways off the desk chair in a bored, nonchalant voice, "That's not a complete sentence, Noodle." She was a bit taken aback, and I was surprised, and explained that while it wasn't a complete sentence, and complete sentences are really good to use, we often speak in incomplete sentences and that's acceptable.

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