Sunday, February 1, 2015

Picking up Speed

Last week was our final week of half days before we jump back in at full speed. It also happened to be Australia Day, which means on top of half days we also had a shorter week. The kids enjoyed a morning out with their Nana to go check out the film Big Hero 6, which was all fun & games until Nana & Jayde got stuck in the elevator.

Apparently it just refused to open the doors once it got them to the ground level. Nana pushed the emergency button & didn't hear it do anything, & pushed it again. The kids assured her it was making noises, but...Thankfully Morgan had taken the stairs down, he hates elevators between his vision issues & being some what claustrophobic they just aren't a good mix for him.

He wondered what was taking them forever to get out & then saw staff come running. He figured at that point he should just sit down & enjoy the show. I'm impressed he didn't get back in line for popcorn to eat while watching the show to be quite honest with you.

Needless to say when Mr S & I arrived at the theatre to collect everyone & take them home for our traditional Aussie Day BBQ we heard all about the three minute entrapment in the elevator. It took much longer for us to actually get the scoop on the film they want to watch!

It was back to business as usual on Tuesday. Morgan's always up early so I set him to practice with Dragon. We'd been debating using the Dragon programme with him for a while & his specialist felt he should be using it over handwriting at this stage so it confirmed our choice in purchasing it. The catch is, that Dragon has to be trained, like any robot, to do what you want. He'd been struggling with the account we'd had for him, so I opened a new one up selecting a new accent & that seemed to fix things. Then I had him grab a book he could read quickly {speed is still a huge issue for him} & had him read it to the computer. From there it was a matter of training the computer, if needed, & we were off & running. The results he got this week with Dragon were phenomenal!

Spelling was back on the table this week & I'm really glad we did. My normal struggler did excellent this week aside from one normal word that trips him up. The other child was in a real mess & needed rule reminding & so forth in order to really succeed that first day. Day 2 was a wee bit better, & by Day 3 we were back to our normal selves. That's Goliath & David joining us for spelling. They get into a lot of trouble & had to be sent elsewhere to think for a while. Plus, I found David's slingshot in the washer, & that caused a lot of commotion too.

Jayden started a new lesson in his book & we had a chat about how to properly watch lectures. He complained that he didn't like the lectures, which prompted the chat. Ha! He was stressed he'd find this lesson hard, but he didn't & I think, that more then anything else, is what caused some of the panic over the lecture.

Morgan wrapped up all his review of previous lessons & the half lesson he'd been at when we began summer break. He's ready to jump right back in & propel himself forward. He's having no issues with concepts, but his vision is playing up again lately so we're prayerful that it won't cause any issue with advancing in his studies at this time.

I walked in the library to ask Morgan something & found this scene spread out. Apparently he needed a sandwich to get him through his science lecture for the day, what a hoot! Despite not being fully sold on the Apologia Curriculum, he's using General Science this year anyway. He's reviewing the first chapter that he covered last year & will follow the course from there. We're using the schedule from Sonlight Science H.

Jayden dug into his new science this week as well. He's doing NOEO Chem 2. The first day had me a little nervous because both content & length were quite short, Day 2 content was much meatier while length was short. I understood it that time. Day 3 was a bit longer in length but still quite meaty in content. He filled in a few science notebooking pages this week. Each week there are specific words to define, sometimes there are specific diagrams to draw {this week it was an atom}, & then on days with experiments there are lab sheets that need filling out. Our science pages are perfect for it.

We'd hoped to finish Book B in Grammar prior to Term 1, but it wasn't to be because we crunched enough as it was. I prefer the slower pace that Winter Promise sets forth to give the kids time to soak in what they've learned anyway. Morgan was still using the white paper, shame on me! He uses highlighters or markers instead of circling or writing per his specialists suggestions. We covered a variety of adverbs & adjectives this week. I find it interesting what the kids know in this area & these were lessons they had absolutely no issues with whatsoever.

Jayden is slipping into US history this year with Sonlight Core D. His first read aloud & his markable map arrived on Thursday so we read a chapter in his new read aloud, Walk The World's Rim & then he hopped up & marked all the places we read about on his map. They really do enjoy the mapping exercises! Unfortunately, as we're using an older copy of D the timeline pieces for that first week aren't included in the newer edition. He was a little disappointed by that, so I suggested we handwriting in the things we'd read about.

Morgan was keen to mark places on his map as well. Last year we just had the 1 markable map & marked everything on 1. If we read about it we marked it, if we heard it in a news report, we marked it, etc. We kept a paper Oversized map specifically for studies. While the oversized map is still being used by Morgan for his World History, he wanted to keep the markeable map going for anything we heard or read about. So after starting his new read aloud, Red Hugh of Donegal, he quickly marked Ireland on the map.

Wednesday we had a package containing a few Christmas gifts. Don't ask me what took it so long to get here, even the company we purchased from presumed it got lost upon it's way. The kids each received some Odyssey cds & the kids spent Friday Morning listening to a couple of stories from the Silver Celebration set.

We also had our daily devotion & Bible reading, all though we didn't end up digging into our Bible study as intended. We're having terrible difficulty getting Morgan's book on blue paper & the white is messing with his vision too much to be using things on white paper for very long or often. I'm going to be honest & say I'm a little frustrated with Precept Ministries because after emailing them a couple of months ago I never heard back in regards to selling a PDF to me of the book{s} we are using or even printing on our speciality paper. I really should shoot them off another email, & simply get over my irritation of not having heard back yet.

Friday wasn't very academic for us as I was busy sorting out a lot of last minute things for the coming year for us. I'll have to share about them in another post though!

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