Friday, March 14, 2008

Weekly Report

I want to shout from the mountain tops! We had a FANTASTIC week!! The new schedule we tried out worked beautifully! In fact, I was debating whether or not to do short lessons like Charlotte Mason did, or continue with doing our lessons until they are completed. Well, without realizing it, we did short lessons and I believe that added to our successful week. Instead of trudging through our spelling and writing 40 plus words in one day, I broke it up into 3 days. I heard no complaining and I think he got a better grasp on the rule and words!
Here's the break down of our week...

We worked on writing equations and finding the sums on the abacus. He also spent the week looking for parallel and perpendicular lines. He understood the concepts well. We also introduced "tens". I love the way this concept is taught visually. I makes it very easy to understand. Magnus had 10 plastic bags and added 5 tiles of one color and 5 tiles of another color to the bag to make ten. The reason behind the two different colors is to reinforce them not counting, but knowing there are 5 tiles of two different colors present. This aids in the base ten philosophy and with learning future concepts. I had to "reteach" the way RS says 20...2 tens...instead of twenty, but that is only for a few lessons so they can understand that 20 is 2 groups of ten. Magnus caught on quickly.

Language Arts-Magnus
Grammar...Loving Queen's Language Lessons for the Very Young. This week he worked on copying Robert Frost's poem, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. He enjoyed the poem so much, he has also memorized it and has made it into a song! We talked about what "stanzas" are and where capital letters are used. While completing his copywork, he made sure to use correct spelling, capitalization, and punctuation.
Spelling...He learned about final blends and initial blends and segmenting words. I see where the segmenting has already aided in his spelling. He was having some difficulty with "l" being blended with another consonant, so I'll continue reviewing that with him. I also dictated two and three words phrases to him and he did really well with those.
Dictionary Skills...He completed a few pages in his workbook without complaining and getting discouraged!

Great things are to be said for the Get Ready for the Code workbooks. He looks forward to doing these every day. He worked on the letter "m" and "k". He did some "magazine art" for the letter "m" . He gets discouraged easily if the letter he is writing doesn't turn out just the way he wants it to. This is getting a little frustrating to deal with. I'm keeping my cool though and trying to offer encouragement where I can.

We read chapter 20, Greece Gets Civilized Again. The boys enjoyed writing their names using the Greek alphabet and learning about the Olympics. For our project this week, we became Greek weavers and weaved a placemat (since they liked to feast) using foam sheets. They liked the project and have used their placemats since making them.

Science/Nature Study-Both
I've already written posts about this and you can read about our Green Hour Challenge week 4 and our impromptu nature study by clicking on the links. There are also some great resources and links for aiding in a Bird study within those posts. Birds are going to be our area of concentration for the next 6-8 weeks. I'll be posting some about our nature study on my nature blog, Dancing with Dandelions soon, so be sure to check there too.

Fine Art Friday-Both
This was a good decision as far as scheduling goes. It is a perfect way to end a busy week. It's very relaxing and doesn't require a lot of planning for me. During our tea time we had a picture study of a still life called Old Models painted by William Michael Harnett in 1892. The boys then selected three items that are very special to them, arranged them, and used watercolor crayons to draw them.

Here is what they came up with...

These are the items Thane selected. "Cake" is the bear Collin brought him back from CA, his baseball glove, and the Lone Ranger gun I got him.

This is his drawing. You may have to click on the picture to get a better look at it.

These are Magnus' items. "Grizz" is the bear Collin brought back from CA, his baseball glove, and some Thornton Burgess books we got him for his birthday.

Here is his drawing. Again, you may have to click on it to see it better.

Tea Time-Both
This is the first week for trying this and we will be doing it regularly. The boys responded well to it and enjoyed having a snack while I read to them. On Tuesday and Thursday, I read from the Burgess Bird Book for Children, Wednesday we read poems, and Friday was our Harnett picture study. I am going to "dress" it up a bit by buying some special tea cups and table coverings for this time to make it a bit more special. Hopefully this will be one of those things the boys will cherish and always remember.

Handicrafts during Quiet Time
The boys have always had quiet time or nap time in the afternoons. It lasts for two hours and will always be a part of our day. I need it more than they do! Anyhow, the first 20 minutes of Magnus' QT is dedicated to working on his handicrafts. Right now he is knitting a scarf.

He has also expressed and interest in learning how to sew, work with leather, and wood carving.

Our activities this week included...
Monday...Welcoming Collin home from his visit to UC Davis and his family in WA.
Tuesday...nothing and it was great!
Wednesday...AWANA...suppose to be pajama night, but apparently WE were the only ones who did not receive the rescheduled email. Needless to say, we ran home and changed. Ugh!
Thursday...attended the "Boro Wild program at the local nature center. They are talking about habitats. I am going to post about this on my nature blog...Dancing with Dandelions.
Friday...nothing again.

Hopefully next week will go as smoothly as this week has! Be sure to check back and see! Hope you have a great weekend!


LisaWA said...

Wow... that was some week, and it sounds great...

RyLee and Christian have been making hats with the same type of contraption Magnus had, only bigger... They have been having fun!

Glad your hubby is home... enjoy your weekend friend...


Lori Carr said...

Sounds like a great week. Catlyn loves the kniffy knitter. She made scarfs for all of her friends for Christmas. I am going to have to go and check out your nature blog. Sounds like fun!:)

Paige said...

Glad your week went smoothly. I can't believe your son knits! I always wanted to learn how...

jennybell said...

My son also has this perfectionist issue when it comes to writing letters. I always try to emphasize I want "his" best and not what someone else's best is. Also, to emphasize "practice makes perfect", I used a huge font in Word to write his first and last name in two lines with space below each to copy. I had him do this each day for a week and I dated them and put them in order at the end of the week to show him how much better he got just by practicing for a week. Of course, you would do this for as long as you need to show a difference. And I still get some complaints about it, but now I have something concrete to remind him.

Lori Carr said...

I just came across this wonderful link full of ideas for Artist Study. Since, we were talking about this the other day, I thought I would share!:)

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great week! I'm so proud of your looming little ones! Cool!

Tina said...

What a wonderful week you had! You are a wonderful Mommy! :o)