Tuesday, April 19, 2016

2016 Week In Review: Weeks 11-12

We've been back to our studies for a couple of weeks now, but I haven't posted our weekly updates as normal. Ahh, life it happens, right?

We enjoyed 2 blissful weeks off which involved an awful lot of game playing, book reading, lazy days, & anything else that took very little brain power.

We enjoyed many walks on the beach, time visiting with friends, & few silly escapades that revolve around life in our home..

We also purchased a few new titles for the new Term, mostly science related which we sweated over arriving on time, but the final science book arrived mid-morning on our first day back to term. What wonderful timing that was for sure!

We've struggled a little bit to find our feet & a new routing that suits are ever changing days, but by the end of our second week we seem to be leveling out which is nice to see. It's also rewarding for the boys as they work hard & are keen to meet their own personal goals each day/week/term.

Morgan finally picked out a new planner for the year. It took him forever, but he wanted to be sure of his choice. He ended up choosing a Plum Paper ME planner. We didn't want the student planner because he wanted lots of room to write things & to schedule things on the weekends. He debated a larger planner, but decided he really loved the size of the smaller version so he can chuck it in his bag if he wants. The ME planner use to be called the family planner & is broken down by 7 categories each day. So far it's worked really well for him. The purple line/tape in the photo above is not part of the planner. We opted to block off the weekend so he could see the difference at a glance.

Our together read aloud this term is Pinocchio. It's what was sitting on the shelf & someone has been eager for this one to be read aloud. The other one, not so much, but within a very short time he was giggling away. This is another in our collection of books illustrated by the amazing Mr Ingpen, We have a few more to obtain to finish off our collection of the ones he currently has out. I so wish he'd do Railway Children & Little Women, but alas..

Jayden started his lovely Civil War study & is delighted with it. Lots of fun things included in this study & his favourite book is Mr Lincoln's High Tech War. He absolutely loves that book! Each week there are a variety of notebooking pages to utilize, a few projects, websites to visit, & a movie to watch. I'll share more about this whole entire study in another post.

I pulled out our HSITW Timeline Figures & he enjoyed colouring those in & hanging on the wall this past week as well. He spent the whole week asking why we weren't using Abraham Lincoln & was delighted to discover Mr Lincoln's figure is scheduled in Week 2. He was getting rather anxious about that.

His reader for this study was suppose to be the lovely Iron Thunder, but the book was heavily delayed in arriving & we pulled out an audio version for him instead. He's utterly captivated by it! However, i wanted him to be physically reading as well. He's very capable, but due to the issues he was having prior to getting his filters he resist reading to an extent. When he found the idea that a little girl sent Mr Lincoln a letter encouraging him to grow whiskers, I was reminded of the very story being on our bookcase & pulled it out for him. He's not enjoying the story as much as Iron Thunder, but enough that he's been found several times curled up with the book without anyone having to remind him to attend to it.

Whatever the math slouch was, it seems to have lifted for this boy. He's been pulling through a lesson a week with absolutely no issues at all & decidedly giddy about the tests at the end of the week. I have weird kids, what can I say? This is our second time through this book {Epsilon} & as I recall it went fairly quickly for us through the first unit & then slowed down a bit as we hit new information. We'll see how it goes for the second one, but for now his progress is impressive.

He's absolutely in love with his new science curriculum. This may be the first one that has been all his alone & he can't wait to get to his lesson each day. I was a little so-so on our first day, but seeing his excitement has really made it grow on me. I'll have to share more, in-depth, about the book later. His first unit is on light & many experiments have required a "dark room". Our home is anything but dark thanks to our lovely windows, so we've retreated daily to the cupboard under the stairs. Yes, we seriously have one of those. We've had a few days with three of us piled in there as the dog sat outside if trying to figure out if we were playing hide & seek or just being silly.

There is no pre-fab type notebook for this lovely science course, which dissapointed me a little bit. I do understand why, & I'm aware that it's reasonably new to the market. I'm also aware that there is a lapbook that can be purchased, but I wanted a notebook. In the end I pulled an older primary "draw & write" Mead notebook off the shelf for him. I offered to make him one with HWOT lines & his special grey paper, but he really wanted the pre-made one. We record the questions he's meant to answer in there & he writes the answers & completes the drawings as instructed in the text. The more in-depth questions for the oldest students we tend to answer aloud.

He's still plugging away with Writing With Ease, all though I've made the papers up with HWOT lines & printed them on his grey paper & then bound them up at home. He was really smitten with the work required in the first week of our term as it had lovely experiments from the book, Magic... Naturally! by Vicki Cobb. He's requested the book for his birthday after trying out one of the tricks that was in his writing assignment.

Mr Morgan has been incredibly busy as well, all though I have far less pictures as he grabs his books & planner then disappears until his work is completed. He checks-in here & there for help if he needs it or to surface for air, or to share some amazing fact he's learned. He's enjoying The Island of Dr Libri as his assigned book at the moment, which he's fully enjoying. So much so, he tucked it in his bag to take camping with us recently.

He's also enjoying his new science book, Physical Science. We ordered the notebook & audio book for him so he can move through it without much, if any help. He's using the scheduled made by Lynn Ericson. After looking at the 3 available, he chose this one because it only added 10 days to the school year unless he could find a few days to double up.

His first experiment was a huge hit for both of them as Jayden wanted to join him in hopes of seeing the glass of water "blow up". Ahh, that boy! The water did not blow up, all though it did bubble quite a fair amount. The ibuprofen wasn't needed, but it was laying on the table & he needed something to hold the battery up. He had great luck with all his experiments in the first 2 weeks of term.

He's equally moving along at a good clip with his new math book, which is nice to see as well. I correct it if he needs me to, but if he gets stuck on a lesson of needs help he asks Mr S. We've harassed him at work for a problem or two, but for the most part he's had no issues which is, again, lovely for him.

He's moving along with his history having cleared up the remainder of week 9 & 10 off his list. He's really enjoying his studies as he's entering some new territory & meeting a few new faces in history. He's been blown away by both the oddities, horrors, & interesting he's encountered along the way. We watched the BBC documentary The French Revolution in our first week back as well. A word of warning there's some thick content in the beginning especially for younger viewers.

Morgan's continuing to work through Writing With Skill & has nearly cleared the halfway mark. He had one lesson last term that really threw him for a loop, but other then that he's had no issues with the assignments this far. I especially loved his most recent piece on Mars {required topic}, perhaps because he had no qualms with just tackling it without fear. All though, the actual written piece was very well spoken too.

They both worked on grammar over the past couple of weeks & dubbed it easy. A good portion has been review with a smattering of new information so it's kept them on their toes without overwhelming them. Spelling is humming along too. We've had some weeks where the words have gotten increasingly easy & they cried out for harder words. Funny considering how far they've come. The thing about SSS/VPD is that when they focus on a word without their glasses they can't always see it clearly much less all the letters. It's nice to see them have confidence in the subject matter & not feel intimidated by it at all!

They also helped change a car tire. I wasn't sure that either of them had need of learning before & when Mr S said he was off to put the spare on I suggested he take the boys with him. They accomplished the job & we took the car down to the shop for a new tire, but were given such a huge deal we replaced all four. Such an amazing blessing without doubt. We ran errands on foot, & then camped in the empty lot across from the car shop while we waited on the car.

They also helped pull out the tent & set it up. Our tent is rather large & really only takes 1-2 people to set up the main section, but it was good practice for them to lend a hand. We aired it out for a birthday camping trip we took the following week.

Aside from all of that there were some French Lessons, guitar practice, & piano practice. However, it was decided that the guitar needed to be restrung for a leftie because learning how to do it as a beginner wasn't working. Lucky for our boy an Uncle was headed our way who is an accomplished guitarist & was happy to help him out by restringing it for him. I woke up one morning to find the two of them outside working away on it, much to our boy's delight. A couple of pretty full weeks, which was nice as we have a few weeks ahead that will be missing days due to holidays, family gatherings, & that aforementioned camping trip.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I just came across your blog. It's lovely. I have enjoyed reading about the homeschooling happenings in your home. Just a little note, I tried clicking on your side bar 'about me' and there was no link there.
Thanks for sharing your homeschool days, I'll be back to check in again!