Monday, January 18, 2016

2016 Week 1: Weekly Wrap Up

It was back to business for us this week, & while some may groan at the thought it was a lovely relief for us to be back on a schedule. We don't jump back in feet first, but creep back in slowly, dipping our toes to test the water. It's a great way to get back into a routine, & to ease back into subjects that might overwhelm children when thrown in their face full-force after a break. Our break wasn't as long as it's been in years past due to some illness back in Term 2 & a variety of other life events that came our way, but I still felt it was important to ease my boys back into a routine.

We started off our week with history & math. History is by far the top subject in our home. The subject that comes up for the most discussion & debate more often then anything else. It was, in fact, the discussion & debate of many dinner conversations this week which all resulted in a few interesting conversations & eventual research to back up one's point. I'm cherishing these days, when my children have reached a point where they can logically argue & validate why they think things are as they are.

This year we're kicking off with Bookshark 7's history. Which is the second half of world history; we did the first half last year & enjoyed ourselves entirely! While we'd dug into this very lightly towards the end of last year we'd really only read about the first 2 main topics & devoured the first read aloud. Admittedly the first read aloud, The King's Fifth, is not for everyone but it was one we enjoyed.

For our first week back we dug back into those first couple of topics to review them, & then went beyond them. The boys were pretty up-to-speed on the Dutch Revolt & remembered it very well from our study last year. It was a topic that required extra reading because they had so many unanswered questions, thus it was a topic they weren't soon to forget. We also dug into our Queen Elizabeth I book & continued forward in European History reading mainly about Martin Luther this week.

We learned a fair deal more then usual about him & it was all very interesting. There were a few, "Wait, read that last sentence again it can't be right.." moments & further "Hmms.." as people pondered what we read. I debated having the boys do a summary or written narration about Luther, but in the end we didn't. It's all good.

We pulled out our timeline Review Cards from Winter Promise's Quest For Royals & Revolutionaries to use to review all topics we cover in European History as well as those we encounter in our other studies that there are cards for. If we lack a card, I'm not really sure we will, we may devise our own to use. We're pretty simple with the cards & I basically read out the name or key event & the child tells us a fact or two about the name/event I read out.

We added to our Mark-Able map, which has all ready begun filling in quickly. We mark the places we read about in our history, in Current Events we read about, & so forth. It's fun to see all the places we've traveled  in a year. It's currently hanging by our, slightly, tattered world map so the kids can refer to it for a bigger picture if they want. The only real trick is keeping the birds from eating it. Archimedes is a rather cheeky little thing & seems ot have a taste for the bottom lefthand corner above all else.

We eased back into math with lessons that weren't too terribly difficult at all. There was no fuss or muss about it which is always pleasant. Jayden was so delighted with himself that he was able to do his long division & complex multiplication problems on his own. Previously, while he can tell me every step & answer he's really struggled to do them on his own. During his specialist appointment it was revealed that he was seeing double, at times, & the figures were jumping around the page. No wonder the poor kid was struggling! We're delighted with his effort & he is obviously delighted too as he's pushing to the finish line in his book.

Cooking was on the card for both this week, all though I honestly only have this pathetic photo of what the kitchen looked like Friday evening after they'd made a pot of popcorn. I walked into the kitchen to get a glass of water, sighed deeply, & said, "I take it you made some popcorn then?" Friday Night is movie night in our home, which is a long standing tradition I partook in as a child too.. The kids sleep in the lounge room & enjoy a movie with popcorn while I go to bed a normal hour. This is slightly disrupted during Football season, but as the boys get older they don't seem to mind the ability to stay up later to cash in on Movie Night.

Morgan is signed up for an online course via an Aussie university for improving his video game making skills. He's really taken to programming & has been creating all sorts of games around here for people to try out. Many of them are built off of things he knew all ready & he was looking to devise something for himself. A friend has mentioned Open2Study a few times to us & we finally caught it during enrollment time. He's really enjoying himself & taking gobs of notes, mostly after the fact. His only confusion came when he noticed the assessment had 25+ days in which to be taken. He found that rather odd & wondered why anyone would want to advance to the second Module of study without having closed off the first. He passed all his quizzes & assessment thus far so he's quite pleased with himself. He really holds high expectations for himself & I had to remind him that this was an 11-12 or higher course & that if he didn't ace everything that was okay. He didn't agree in regards to settling for second best, but it did reduce his stress levels.

We pulled out Kloo French to play. The game is incredibly simplistic, but is meant to teach you a variety of vocabulary as you travel along. We also watched a Muzzy French Video to get a feel for the programme as we looked into signing up. The boys really need something which doesn't spend as much time concentrating on the writing as much as the speaking at this stage.

We took a few walks, not as many as normal as we've been battling some high humidity & smoke from bush fires. We took advantage of the few times it was cooler & hit a nature trail, beach path, & other places closer to home.

1 comment:

Dove's Rest said...

Wow, all back into the swing of things. I hope Morgan doesn't put too much pressure on himself and actually walks away with some new ideas not stress! I look forward to an awesome year this year. I am getting really excited about starting FIAR with Faith this year and really hoping I've chosen well for Carter and he enjoys the books and time period. Take care, Nell