Friday, January 11, 2008

Getting back in the Groove.... sort of.

We tried to jump back into getting an education this week. It was hard the first day or so but we eased back into our somewhat normal schedule. Sophie of course resisted just about everything but I found ways to slip things in at first and then she was hooked.

We actually went through 3 chapters of Story of the World this week. I didn't mean to but I turned on the CD and we listened to some of the chapters we had already covered and then the one we were going to do this week. We also all were sitting around the table coloring while we listened. When I went to turn it off Sophie didn't want to stop. So we listened to the next one as well. When I finally got to turn it off I asked her about the two chapters and she could tell me pretty much what the chapters were about. Then a few days later she requested a history lesson again so I turned the CD on and we listened to the two chapters we discussed but Soph didn't want to stop there again. She wanted the next chapter as well. So we studied Assyria, Babylon and Crete this week. To go along with the chapters we read a number of go along books as well. Lots of books about Persia and magic carpets. After reading the book about the 7 wonders of the ancient world Sophie drew this. She also did some map work and of course some narration with out her knowing it.

We Rowed The Salamander Room this week. Which was a great go along with our animal studies. We haven't studied amphibians yet. So we read all sorts of books about Frogs and Salamanders this week.

I don't know why we haven't done this before now but we put up an animal classification chart on the wall under our timeline.
We will be adding animals to it under their classification as they come up in our studies. Classification of animals isn't something we have really studied. We knew there were birds, reptiles and mammals and such but to divide up the animals into Vertebrate or Invertebrate was new to Sophie.
Here is the Dollar Store Frog we "dissected". We never could get all the pieces back where they belonged but it was fun for a few minutes.

We also made some clay salamanders and painted them. The kids went wild for this project. I admit I did a lot of the sculpting. They just weren't looking anything like salamanders.
Sophie wanted hers to be orange like the salamander in the book.
Henry just love painting. He didn't care how ugly and mixed up the colors got.
Ian's request was for a long curling tail.
Here is our finished products.

We also watched the Reading Rainbow episode about The Salamander Room. I think we know Amphibians pretty well now.

We listened to some Gershwin music while we played and read a book about Degas for our music and art study.

Where we really fell short this week is Math. Our usual struggle. Sophie just flat out refused to do the exercises. I forced her to do it the first day but my husband told me not to do that. He doesn't want her to hate math or have any objections to math so we didn't do it at all the rest of the week. She has never been a workbook type of kid so it doesn't really surprise me. I think I am going to have to go back to just doing math games and break out my Family Math book again for some small projects we can do for math. Singapore math is just not going to work for us. Are there any other suggestions for doing math with a kids who hates workbooks?

It was actually a great week, except for the math and maybe some life skills. Sophie also refused to clean her room, pick up her toys or help set or clear the table either. We are having a little power struggle at the moment. We are trying to work through this but it is a bit of a worry. Strong willed children.... gotta love them.


Cocoa said...

Wow! You guys had a great week. I love the salamanders. As for math have you looked at Math U See? My second daughter hates workbooks and is a very visual/kinesthetic learner. We switched her to Math U See and she has done very well.

Bibliophile said...

Have you visited the site of the House Fairy? It's at You subscribe to her service and you get lots of help to get the children to clean their rooms, I know. It's part of the FlyLady group.

Bibliophile said...

Have you visited the site of the House Fairy? It's at You subscribe to her service and you get lots of help to get the children to clean their rooms, I know. It's part of the FlyLady group.

Oops. It's I got the extension wrong. Just look at it and see if there's anything you can use.

Anonymous said...

The salamanders look great!! We're making posters for our animal studies, one for classification, and one for herbivore/carnivore/omnivore. Also have you checked out They have tons of free worksheets on all different animals as well as murals to color and tape together to add animal cutouts to.

My Ice Cream Diary said...

I was going to ask you where you got the salamanders... you did a great job sculpting those!

Looks like another stellar week.

When one of my children won't help set the table I put them in charge of setting their own spot for a week. If they don't set it, they can't eat. It is a good motivator.