Friday, August 19, 2011

Getting back into the swing of things.

We officially started school this week. I have to actually keep attendance so I figure I need a start date. So here is the quick run down.

Scripture - Book of Mormon - We got to read about Samuel the Lamanite and today read about the signs of Jesus' birth. Each of the kids including Henry take turns reading aloud.

History - My kids have been anxious to start Story of the world so we listened to the Introduction about what history is and the difference between Historians and Archaeologists. The loved Archaeologists Dig for Clues.

The kids wanted a project but since I didn't have anything planned they just  did some drawings of archaeologists or what ever they wanted to related to the book and labeled it for me.  We did break out the Mummy's Treasure game and played a few rounds of this Archaeology based game.
Since this wasn't enough history for the week the kids decided we needed to do chapter 1 of Story of the World also. We listened to the Audio and looked at maps as he described where the Nomads lived.
I think Sophie can't wait to dig into Egyptian History because she actually wanted to move onto chapter 2 the next day as well. But I held her back and we read  Simon and Barklee in Egypt.
I can't say this was the most exciting book but the kids kept wanting me to continue reading when I came to the end of each chapter so I guess they enjoyed it. It wasn't really historical but it did introduce some of the geography of Egypt especially since we again broke out the atlas to look at all the places these little animals traveled on their adventures. I guess for the 25 cents I paid the Friends of the Library for the book, which was on the used book shelf a few months back, it was worth the money and the hour spent on the book.
Math - The kids are all doing their Singapore with little complaints. They much prefer it over the Math Mammoth I had them doing over the Summer. Henry is almost finished with 1A.  Ian is going to be done with 2B shortly as well. Sophie just reached the first review in 5A. They have her doing a lot of Division and it is so time consuming. She has to sit doing math long after the boys have finished and moved onto other things. I guess that is all part of the fun of being a 5th Grader.

Science - The kids were tired of birds and I have to say I was too. They all decided they wanted to do Anatomy instead. So even though I wasn't totally prepared for it be jumped into Apologia's Anatomy and Physiology.

My kids love learning about the human body. They had The Way We Work out looking at the pictures that go along with the section we read about cells this week just so they could compare the two.

I did get the yellow jello and candy so we could make the edible cells. The kids loved this. I don't know if it exactly helped them remember the parts any better than drawing them did but they had fun and they got to eat the jello later. 

Writing - Henry is still plugging away at Explode the code which is what I count as his writing. I am still waiting for reading to really click with him before we move onto Writing with Ease. He is still really fighting reading.

Sophie started Writing with Ease 4 this week. She really didn't like the long sentence she had to write for Dictation on the 2nd day and had quite a tantrum about it but other than that one day it went smoothly.

Ian started Writing with Ease 2 and had to do dictation for the first time this week. He actually did really well.

Reading - I have Ian and Henry read aloud to me. Ian has been reading a chapter each day from the Magic Tree House reptile reference book, which is the book he choose as his summer reading prize from the library.  Henry has been reading any of the easy reader books we have on the shelf. We had one about mummies which was good.
I don't have Sophie read aloud to me because she does a lot of the reading for science and other subjects. She also gets to read books to Molly to keep her occupied while I do other things.

Art  - The artist I choose for the rest of August is John Audubon. I was thinking we were going to finish our science study of birds and Audubon would gone along well with that but now we are doing something different for Science but I have a bunch of books on Audubon. We still read The boy who drew birds. The kids also took one of his bird pictures and tried to sketch it.

Music - We are listening to Vivaldi this month. I turned on the Classics for Kids radio show about Vivaldi while the kids colored a picture of Vivaldi. Then they dug out the CD of Vivaldi's Ring of Mystery. It is sort of strange how little as far as biographies of Vivaldi there are at the library. But we listened to the Four Seasons a few times this week and the kids have a general idea of who it was and where he lived so I guess that is about all they really need.

Story Quest - This is something I have just added into our usual line up. It is from the Institute for Excellence in Writing. We did one little part of the first lesson and I can see I really need to go slowly through this for my kids at first. They really enjoyed discussing stories and the genres they fit in and even what makes up a plot. They got frustrated when I tried to have them write a story that first day even if it was together and out loud with me. I broke out the white board and markers for this lesson and I think they were a distraction. Henry just kept erasing things from the board and asking if he could have a pen. So I can't say the first try went smoothly but I will give it another go next week.

P.E. - I am actually required to do P.E. with my kids so I guess I should make more of an effort to put something in our schedule that looks like athletics. We did go on a few walks around the block. Molly requests "walk block"s quite often. The kids played some Wii Fit one morning. We did some yoga and sit-up one day as well.  I hope that counts as P.E.

It was a pretty full week. We were very busy and even made it to all the appointments we had scheduled, had a play date, got hair cuts, went to park day, watered a neighbors plants a few times while they are away and went to activity girls (the whole crew goes to this. The boys play with a bunch of other siblings too young for the activities but Mom brings them because Dad is still at work. So my boys have a great time with friends while Sophie has her class).

I don't know how we are going to fit everything in once piano lessons, science class, co-op, my band practice, and oh yeah... we didn't do any Latin this week either. I think I need a few more hours in the day or maybe just need to go to sleep earlier.

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