Saturday, January 14, 2017

Week In Review 16/17: Week 11

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This week was back to school around here. Yes, it's early compared to the local schools, & yes it's still summer here but we don't keep to the local schedule. By starting back early it allows us plenty of time to ease back into our routine as well as the advantage to take camping trips while it's still warm & the rest of the state is back to normal business. Not only that, we're still working on transitioning to a different school scheduled based on an impending move our family is anticipating making.

While this was our first week back in 2017 it's actually our 11th week of this particular school year. Crazy, I know, but it gets a little clearer as we move along. We have a 7th & 9th grader, both high schoolers in our state which is crazy weird, but there you have it. I shared about our curriculum on another post last year, but things have changed a bit for our 7th grader so I might write about that in another post.

The biggest hurdle, in our home, for getting back into a routine is the wake-up time. We have one who likes to be a night owl, & I can relate because I so use to deal with the same thing! However, we prefer him to be up by a specific time. I know there are countless discussions on this topic, but we do what we feel is best for our home. We have told him that as he reaches pure independence this year he's welcome to set his own schedule in that regard, so we'll see what happens.


We kicked off Monday with a light version of our book basket: Bible, poetry, & a theology book. We're still working through our lovely copy of  A Treasury Of Poetry For Young People, & the current poet is Robert Frost. While Frost has written a few poems we've really enjoyed & are familiar with, we're not as fond as some of his other works. One thing we're really enjoying about this poetry book is that it has a biography of each poet before you spend time reading their poems, & then on a few of the poems there are definitions of unusual words or explanations of some of the poems.

We're currently reading through I Chronicles, all though again following a little guide we've put together. It's been fun rereading about the life of Saul & David as last year we listened to the AIO Darien's Rise which is a modern day telling of this very story. It was one of those awesome stories that had us returning to the passages to verify the truth behind the stories

We started reading God's Will, God's Best For Your Life this week & by the time we got to the end of the first chapter decided the book isn't for us. I'm often very hesitant to state why I won't use a book when it comes to matters of faith as I know not everyone believes the same. It is never my intention to bash another faith or to be a stumbling block for a fellow believer. However, we felt this book was scripturally wrong in many instances, & perhaps that's our interpretation in how we've read into the book & it's likely the author didn't mean to portray facts in such a manner. Either way, we've opted to lay the book aside. We spent much of last term reading a theology book that was uninspiring, dry, & had a whole lot of, to us, nonsense in it. Rather then spend time doing that again this term, we decided to order some books I knew we'd enjoy. We shall anxiously await their arrival & I'll share about them when they arrive.


There was no long break with math, as the boys worked on with math right up until Christmas holidays. Then it was laid aside for 2 weeks until we started back up. Having the two weeks off we opted to do a few review pages to make sure everyone was up to snuff. I have no hand in Morgan's math these days, he & Mr S do their own thing. This has been a great thing for Morgan who likes to "talk math" & do far more with numbers than I do. Mr S has taken it all in stride & goes over a lesson on the weekends & corrects the math each evening when he gets home. The only downside is that Mr S likes to skip around when teaching a lesson & verify that all previous material is still cemented in & that all new material is grasped enough to practice throughout the week. This means that sometimes Morgan is sometimes confused as to what pages he should do in his book because he'll often have done something on every page in his lesson time with Mr S. It's a minor thing, really, but it really made me chuckle when Morgan expressed his concern about not knowing what to do.


Jayden is still lacking the confidence I'd like to see him have with math. He is a logical person & becomes frustrated with some of the steps he needs to take in order to show his math. However, he also loves to argue, so I often tell him to, ".. think of it as proving you are right. Not just writing an answer, but proving beyond a doubt that you are right." He still has a few lessons to wrap up in his current math book & I suspect that it may take us the majority of the term to cover as there are some pretty deep concepts coming up. Mind you, this kid does not stumble at the lessons I anticipate.. ever. It's always the simplistic ones, & that always makes me chuckle.

Morgan moved right back into his normal schedule of taking his workload off on his own to complete & reporting back in at the end of each day. He worked through Week 10 with Sonlight Core 100. He's still very much loving this Core & having absolutely no issue keeping the pace. I was a little nervous as I've heard so many complaints about this core, but that's not an issue for our boy. In fact, this crazy kid is ahead in the literature portion of the Core. I told him if he keeps that pace he'll wrap up that side of things early & I can provide him with another stack of books he might enjoy. I think he actually took that as a challenge!


Jayden is working through BookShark Level 6 History which is the first half of world history. We've made it to the Greeks, & he's spent time this week reading over various Greek Myths as well as Black Ships Before Troy. Yep, we change things up a little, & this was one of the notes I made when the last child went through this particular Core. We also use a different Greek Myths book because it's what we own & it works just as well.



This crazy boy absolutely LOVES reading through the Kingfisher which is required with his history core. He will read the assigned pages & then close his eyes & open to random pages & read those too. He cracks me up because each time I ask him what he read he has some crazy thing to tell me which has no relation to what he's learned. The other day he shocked me by running in & actually telling me information that related to his history lesson!



There were several timelines to colour & pin up this week too. We love our timeline figures & we're using the HSITW timeline figures. While BkSk does sell timeline figures with their cores I didn't think to order 2 sets & rather than pay international shipping for a second set I just printed from our HSITW cd, the upside is that we have more timeline figures for things that we'd normally just put a notation about in our timeline. 

A little mapping from both this week. It's always so fun to watch our maps fill in each year. Morgan has the bottom map for the first time in ages, & Jayden has the top map. His E's are in reference to everything he marked while studying Egypt. He's now labeling things with G for what he's marking while learning about the Greeks. He tends to have more to mark in a week than Morgan as much of what Morgan maps right now is related to the Origional Colonies & all that was mapped out a while back.



Both boys are enjoying reading through books they received for Christmas from their American Grandmother. For Jayde this was super awesome because he'd wrapped up his last assigned book & I didn't realise that! He's enjoying, An Elephant In The Garden, which is the book he chose out of his large stash of Michael Morpurgo books; he really loves Morpurgo's books.


Morgan, on the other hand received a stash of Roald Dahl books which was exciting for him as Dahl is one of Mr S' favourite authors. Morgan loves knowing what books others love & trying them out to see how he feels about them so this was a lovely surprise for him. He hasn't actually finished his assigned book, but it was no where to be seen so he grabbed his copy of The BFG & ran off to indulge for a while each day. He's not impressed that the book came with a pair of BFG ears because, "There is no way I'm cutting up my book to gain the ears!" ha!


We jumped right back in with our IEW Fix-It Grammar. The boys have really fallen in love with Fix-It, & admittedly it's so painless to teach I'm glad they love it. Thankfully it was a review week because they were both a tad rusty after taking 8 weeks off. One of the lovely things about Fix-It is that each student gets a copy of grammar cards, they are encouraged in each lesson to use those cards as needed. After discovering that both kids cards were scattered all over we quickly printed out a new set, laminated them & set to work.



We use Fix-It a little bit differently, on the advice of a Fix-It pro, & our boys type up their rewrites. This allows some typing practice as well as grammar practice. Last year Morgan was very thorough in his typing where as I didn't require it of Jayden, but this year it's a requirement. Interestingly enough Jayden was not only delighted to be required to do this, but has some crazy mad typing skills considering this is the kid who has never done any formal typing in his life. Ignore the medical necklace in his mouth, at least he's wearing it, right?

We also jumped right back in with spelling, yes we still do spelling. It's quick, simple & to the point. Spelling takes us about 10-15 minutes a day & as my boys only got their visual spectral tints after the age one would normally concentrate on spelling it's a requirement for now.



The boys helped Mr S patch his bike tire, & yes that's in the middle of my lounge room. Mr S goes through bike tires at such a crazy rate {road bikes to work daily} that I've told him we should really consider some road side assistance for him. Ha! To hold him over until he could get to the bike shop, the guys patched it instead. Mr S needed help because he didn't put his glasses on before he got his hands all covered in grease & he couldn't find the hole. Why in the lounge room? We were watching cricket..

The boys also did lots of dinner prep this week, including some solo work when I went to find Mr S & his flat tire & bring him home. When we got in the kids had mixed up the burgers, sliced all the veggies & were debating starting the grill. They are pretty handy in the kitchen most days.


We took a trip to the park this week, it was still crawling with many many people as school is out, tourist season is upon us, & all that hoopla. After a bit of fun in the sun Jayde asked if we could stop off on the way home to see the local Greek god. Ha! Truthfully we don't have a Greek god, but we do have a ridiculous nude statue that is suppose to be the Spirit Of The Sea & is as likely to seeing a Greek statue as we'll get this year, thus I was very happy to oblige.

Next week we'll be adding in science & hopefully some art! We'll also be meeting up with friends {hooray!}, &, hopefully, having an interruption free week. We had quite the revolving door as we worked our way through our first week back, including a half day holiday, & a repair man who attempted to fix our reverse cycle heat pump & blew it up instead. Yep, complete with a pop, bang, a bit of smoke, & then the power turning off at the box.

Monday, January 9, 2017

52 Weeks Through The Bible

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Last year I was working my way through the Bible & decided to make some simple stickers to use in my planner to remind me of where I was each day. Last year I decided to use the "Variety Method" as I dubbed it. I'm certain it goes by other names, but what it is escapes me!

Instead of reading one book from start to finish you move around reading from various books each week. While it may be harder to determine how much of the Bible you've read at a given time, I really enjoyed this method because it broke down some of the books of Law into more manageable readings. Also, no endless days of begats, which was a delight too.

It also means you'll find some days are shorter reads where some days are longer. While I did type out the schedule into little boxes I could tick off I won't say I followed it top to bottom each day. I worked through each one each week in whatever way worked for me that week.

If you'd like to snag a set feel free to grab them here. I printed mine on full sheet label paper & just cut them out as I needed them. Mine were sized specifically for my Plum Paper planner sidebar, but I'm sure will fit in a variety of different planners if you're so inclined. Enjoy.