Thursday, March 31, 2011

Weekly Recap 3/28-4/1/11

I'm setting up an early posting for this week because we will be leaving early, early for the Midwest Homeschool Conference tomorrow morning.  I'm excited about the conference because I don't have any needs or expectations to be met.  I may just hang out in the hotel room and read while the kids play in the children's program.  Truly, I probably won't do that but it's fun to think that I could.

Anyway, this week has been a mixed bag.  We finished reading King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table.  I have to admit that we all kind of breathed a sigh of relief with that one.  We liked the stories at the beginning of the book but from the beginning of the quest for the Holy Grail through the final chapter we were almost buried in betrayal and disaster.  We prefer our stories of knights and chivalry to come in smaller doses.

We began reading The Door in the Wall and find that, even with it's beginning in dissertion and plague, it's engaging and not as nearly anxiety provoking as our last selection.  We will have to see how the story of Robin progresses but for right now life in a monastery is a peaceful place for us. 

I decided to scrap the binders this week.  I bought 70 page spiral notebooks for everyone and we are going to see if this works better for us.  I was begining to feel as if I was drowning in paper and that nothing was finding it's rightful place.  With the spiral notebook we have the date, copywork/dictation, our five-a-day and any other written work all in one place.  It's easier for me to check and easier for the kids to keep up with.  So far, so good.

Much of our time this week has been spent reading the piles of books on Aztecs, explorers and rulers of the middle ages.  We didn't start any new history or science work because I was wanting to spend more time reading. 

Another issue that raised it's ugly head is the difference between memorizing and understanding.  M6 reached lesson 191 in First Language Lessons.  In this lesson the student is suppose to parse a paragraph.  Personally, I think that's a pretty ambitious activity for anyone in the six to eight age range.  The focus to now has been mostly in identifying one part of speech at a time after repeating the definition for that part of speech at least three times.  To me it seems to me that the jump from identifying a single part of speech to parsing a paragraph is a large jump to make.  M6 certainly felt overwhelmed by all of it. 

As a result, I made a card game with the parts of speech and types of sentences with their definitions on one set of cards and a group of words on another set of cards.  The purpose of the game was to give practice remembering the definitions for the various parts of speech and then matching the individual words to their appropriate part of speech.  In my mind, it was going to be a fun activity for all of us.  Reality wasn't quite as lovely but I think it was worthwhile.  We won't be playing again for a few days but I do think it will be an activity we do at least once a week for awhile.

A final accomplishment for the week is that M6 learned to ride her two wheel bike.  No more training wheels at our house!

1 comment:

  1. Hooray for M6! We can't wait to see you ride when we come visit in a couple weeks.