Friday, March 11, 2016

2016 Week In Review: Weeks 6-9

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I haven't fallen off the face of the earth despite my lack of Week In Review posts & other such things. Mr S has been sick & my time has been devoted to picking up all the things he can't do right now amongst a great number of other things like getting him home from work, which often results in a race to the ferry before it closes.

On days we miss it means a longer trip around the bay & into town to collect him. Then a mad dash home to see how the kids are going get the beginning measures of tea running, or on some days when I'm stuck behind insane tourists just checking that the kids haven't burnt the tea.

Mr S is finally feeling considerably better which is a huge help, all though we did scold him for considering attempting to bike to work the other day. We didn't want to see him overdoing it too quickly. He's good, nothing too serious, & thankfully he's recouping well. Prayerfully the end is in sight for him!

Please note, as always, that any book link to Book Depository is an Affiliate link. Other links are not.


We've been slowly making our way through both of these books & are set to finish Do Hard Things in our final week of Term 1 {next week}. We're just under halfway through our devotional, which has us on track for where we hoped to be by the end of the term. We're still reading through the Bible & have made it to Mark. We're not reading every chapter or even every book, more of an abbreviated trip through the Bible this year.


We're still plucking away with Classic Poetry & finally hit a few more interesting poems over the past week or two. I will say that while this book is hard to match up to the poetry book of last year it is nice to have the mini biographies of the poets as we read through some of their poetry selections. I also pulled out our copy of Oxford Illustrated American Poetry to read through on days the other book isn't scheduled as the boys have separated into seperate cores with one doing US History & one in World history. More on that later though..


We are nearly done with Vinegar Boy & will wrap it up just before Good Friday. It's not a book for the faint of heart as it does have some tough stuff in it, but then again the story of grace & mercy is often littered with hate & violence isn't it? I'm grateful to be able to share this book with my own children having had it read to me when I was my eldest's age.


Morgan has been busily working through Bookshark History 7 steadily each day. He's doing the majority of it on his own & then comes to tell me all the amazing & cool things he's learned. We're still reading the European History book together, always an interesting read! He's finished 8 weeks of the curriculum thus far & will finish another half week before we choose to lay it aside for our term break.

The read aloud is suppose to be The Ravenmaster's Secret which is a delightful read tying a lot of last year's history & some of this years together while giving you a glimpse of life in The Tower. It's a pretty quick read for a read aloud & we'll wrap that up next week before embarking on our term break. Ahh, so exciting to only have 1 week left before we're officially on break.

The Scarlet Pimpernel was scheduled as a reader, but it's pretty heavy & thick combined with the constant French phrases & old English made it one we debated swapping out as a read aloud. I can understand why the book is a reader though as it's very very wordy to read aloud. We've split the difference & found an audio copy of it & we listen together so we can address the French Phrases & other unusual bits that come up as we listen. He's really keen to watch the movie when he's done to see if he grasped the majority of the story. He's worked a plan out with this book to wrap this up on Good Friday so that he can lay all his books down entering into Resurrection Weekend, & then Term Break.


Morgan was absolutely delighted with his first assigned book, Flora & Ulysses, of the year & was often found rolling with laughter over it & reading gobs of it at a time. As his work load increased he slowed down his pace, & then realised Monday when he picked it up he only had 2 chapters left. He couldn't believe he hadn't just wrapped it up last week.

He's now reading The Island Of Dr Libris which he's enjoying, but hasn't, yet, grasped him as quickly as Flora's story did. He actually felt a little off kilter when he started it wondering if he'd come into Book 2 of a series & then wondered why so many stories always represent children from broken homes with fighting parents. Thus we entertained ourselves with a conversation on social norms & how writers try to appeal to that.


Jayden wrapped up Darling, Mercy Dog Of WWI a few weeks ago & has really struggled with his newest book. He's a tough cookie when it comes to books & it's a real struggle to break him out of the genre he's thrust himself into. I'd thought he'd really enjoy General Butterfingers, but as it turns out he doesn't. He finds it more of a boring nonsense type story & has met the 3-5 chapter portion with still no love for the book, & lamented on Monday that after reading Darling's story the other book is just not as interesting. I picked him up some of the beloved Michael Morpurgo books from the library which we may use instead. We'll see, but again more on that later..


Morgan wrapped up The Ghost In The Tokaido Inn last week or the week before, I can't remember now! He really loved this book. I felt so-so about it when I pre-read it over the summer, & I'm glad that despite how I felt about the book that I didn't remove it because he has been absolutely smitten by it. He was delighted to learn that it was Book 1 in a series & it's made it a bit of a struggle to seamlessly move into The Scarlet Pimpernel for sure!


Not sure if we journaled about Master Cornhill, but we equally finished this book as well. There was a lot of unanswered questions & hanging side-stories in our opinion all though it was an interesting view of London during the time the story took place. The author took great pains to make sure she mentioned various facts that she learned, but we wonder if some of those facts made for the hanging portions of the story. Or maybe our ideals were just too high? Either way, with the finishing of this book it brought a close to the Middle Ages for us with great certainty.


Morgan finished up his math book on Leap Day & jumped right in with his new book the very next day. He had no issues with the first lesson in the new book, but wanted answers to questions with the second book & discussed it with Mr S over tea one evening this week. Or, as Jayde calls it, "They geeked out over math, revolting."


Jayde was right behind him & wrapped up his former math book on the 1st of March. The first lesson in his new book was also represented in his last book & he had no issues with it there, but he's had some minor struggles with it in the new book so we spread it over 2 weeks. He'll continue working on it next week with some extra pages I'll print out for him & then take the test before heading into our break.


The markable map is crazy full. Since taking the photo the bottom white gap is now filling in with geographical locations that have been marked as well. We have to spend a couple of minutes verifying if something has been marked before anyone adds anything to it these days. Great fun!


We ended up pulling out the next WP LA level we had on hand & dove right into it. Thus far the boys have remembered everything from last year & are breezing through with no issue. We won't hit 9 weeks before term break due to when we started it, but that's okay. I'm impressed to see how much they remembered from last time around & will be curious to see if that remains the same throughout the year.

This book includes cursive writing which they were delighted to see, but it led to many conversations on how each person tends to write differently & ended with me writing our my ABC's in cursive on the white board to show that despite how I learned I came up with a method all my own. Someone was having a perfectionist moment & didn't like the idea of not writing it exactly as the book instructed.

Spelling has also been swimming along & we are right on target with it to finish off our current book next term. Very exciting as we've been a while in it as we repeated the first half of it from a previous year. When children with Irlens get their diagnosis sometimes they need to be retaught certain things so that they can actually see that which they previously heard. Some lessons in our book are very smooth & easy & other times you'll find words scribbled on the dryer, mirrors, or glass surrounds by the tubs in our home with little inspirational messages like, "You've got this stop panicking!"


Last week we pulled up the PBS documentary to watch about The Secrets of The Tower Of London. It wasn't nearly as delightful as the King Henry documentary we watched, but considering the many many miles we are from Europe we were delighted to be able to see the video & get an idea of what it was like. There was a lot of historical facts in the movie, but the tour itself was severely lacking due to the rules against videography & photography after the jewel heist. Yikes! All the same, we did get to see the current {at that time} Ravenmaster which was fun & hear about his current ravens. We were filled with our own questions based on our studies, but I suppose those will have to wait until "someday" when visit Europe. If you're curious we found the video on Netflix.


We've also been meeting up with friends on Friday's for a chat & play which has been such a cherished part of our week. The kids had a blast Last Friday hosting friends & doing a great variety of things while I fully enjoyed catching up with friends & sharing in God's blessings on our lives. Such a beautiful way to end our week. This Friday we entertained Mr S who had an extra day off work, an equally wonderful blessing.

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