Friday, February 6, 2009

Weekly Report...Week 17

Wanna know what I did this week? I googled our local school district. I was at the end of my rope and desperate. Am I going to send my boys to school? No. But, for an afternoon, I considered it. That being said, attitudes changed and work got done. It was a tough one.

Tapestry of Grace (Both)
We started Unit 2 of Year 2 this week. I found this week to be fascinating as we concentrated on the a few of the artists from the Renaissance...Michelangelo, DaVinci, and Giotto (even though he was in the 13th century).

History...we read Mike Venezia's books about Michelangelo and DaVinci. We also listened to The Story of the World vol. 2 audio of the chapter about the Renaissance.

Literature...we read Mario's Angels and answered the questions on the Student Activity Page. Magnus is also in the process of reading I, Juan de Pareja.

Project...the boys colored a picture of Da Vinci's Mona Lisa and pretended to be Michelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel. I taped paper to the ceiling above their loft beds, handed them a tub of markers, and let them get their creative juices flowing.

The picture "painting' didn't last long on the ceiling. They complained of their necks hurting. I told them, "Michelangelo had to be in that position for 4 years"! Anyhow, they finished them on the wall.

Language Arts (Magnus)
Grammar...He started Level Two this week of Growing with Grammar. It was pretty much review, but he was able to do it independently. One of the big blow ups we had this week was in this subject. Thankfully it seems to have been resolved and you can read about it here. I really encourage you to click on the link if you have a child who struggles with the process of handwriting.

Spelling...I think I am going to try a different approach with him. I love All About Spelling and the phonetic approach it takes, but the rules are not cementing and they only work for less than half of the words in the English language. I still want to teach them to him, but not have them be the basis/foundation of the program. I am looking into Spelling Power.

Phonics (Thane)
Well, we started The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading this week. I was a little worried about it keeping Thane's attention since it does not have the bling that Sing, Spell, Read, and Write has, but he seems to like it. I have been encouraging him in saying that he is truly reading now by looking at the words and not the pictures. That seems to help. I still hope to find time to look in my big bin of Happy Phonics games to add a bit of fun to it.

Magnus...we worked on skip counting some more and the concepts of whole, half, and quarter.

Thane...well, we did about 10 lessons this week. It's hard to justify doing problems like 10+3 when he is figuring out 85+25 mentally! But, I am still going to press on and finish Level A with him just to make sure we don't miss anything foundational. At this rate, he'll be moving into Level B just about the same time Magnus finishes it (in about a month)! I am also going to print off some addition worksheet for him to do "for fun" (his words!).

Science (Both)
We read some more from One Small Square: Woods. Do me a on the link and look at the cover of the book. Don't look intently, but just look as you would at one of those weird posters with the wavy lines that showed a 3 D image. Does the image on the lower left hand corner look like a zebra stretching his neck to you? It freaks me out every time because that is what I see and then I think, "what is a zebra doing in the woods?". Call me crazy, I know. Anyhow, the boys drew life cycles of a butterfly/moth. I had also planned on going on a small nature hike this morning, but it's raining. Luckily, part of our gigantic patio (it's bigger than our living area!) is covered so the boys are still able to be outside.

Well, after reading about the incredible things that can be found living in and under fallen logs, we decided to not worry about the rain and go investigate some dead logs nearby...

Latin (Magnus)
Unfortunately, with all of the drama this week, we didn't get to it. I hope to make this more of a priority.

PACT classes:

Science...teacher was sick this week so he didn't have it.
Drawing...worked on drawing a flower in a vase and then painted it (I think).
Kidspiration...finished his Abe Lincoln thingy. Still unsure what exactly this class is.
Music Appreciation...studied Mozart and different movements of music.
PE...He had trouble running around the track twice last week due to a cramp and his time was a little over 9 minutes. This week he ran/jogged/walked it in 5 something!


Mrs. P's Kindergarten was K week this week. He brought some of his knights for sharing time.
Music Appreciation...see Mangus'
PE...Not sure where this kids gets all of his energy (yes I do...Collin!) He ran twice around the track in 4 minutes 3 seconds.

The boys also attended AWANA this week. Thane is an official Spark now as he earned his vest and book. No more Cubbies. Collin and I enjoyed some uninterrupted conversation over dinner!

Thanks for coming by! I hope you have an enjoyable weekend! See you next week! :o)


Sailmom said...

My benchmark for burnout is when I start googling boarding schools. ... Did you know there's only one junior boarding school in California?! ;)

Lori C., Texas said...

I hear ya on the calling schools!! Been there done that!:) I really like AAS and I think we would get more out of it if I would make myself do the whole lesson and review but I think what I need to get is not such an involved program?? Just a list of words?? I don't know. We will finish up this book and then see where we are at. I have heard wonderful things about Spelling Power. Good luck! Have a great weekend!:)

Our Westmoreland School said...

Wow, you guys do A LOT of hands on learning. What an incredible week. That was a bad week?!? Amazing!

Rhonda said...

I smiled a little (in sympathy and understanding) when I read your first paragraph! I've had days like that too.
How great that you have a loft bed to try out your Michelangelo paintings! Very cool.
I hope you have a wonderful week-end and a great upcoming week.

Just some guy... said...

Way to hang in there! Hope this week goes better.

LBJ said...

Mom took us to go look at a private school when Wes and I were something like 8 and 10. She kept frantically asking us if we wanted to do it. I was no help. I kept saying I wanted to go, but only if I could ride a bus. When I found out that wasn't an option, I decided to stick with Mom. I'm sorry for the burnout week. Remember, that no matter what, you're doing GREAT....GREAT, I say!
Do you think your sons would get cricks in their necks somewhere else? I don't think so!..j/k, but seriously, it sounds like you guys are doing some awesome stuff. They'll remember it forever.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom said...

Hey Brittney, want to know what I do on a bad school day? I first remind myself that if I were working in an office, I would have bad days too and public school opens a whole different set of me if you want a list. :)

The other thing is that when we have a really bad attitude day, we just take a few hours off and do something to shake the attitude. Take a walk, go to the library, play a game, watch a movie, or something else that will break the mood.

If the bad attitude persists, I take a look at my expectations and see what I can adjust....sort of like what you had happen with the handwriting issue this week.

You are not slacking in the least so try not to let the occasional bad day hang you up.

Barb-Harmony Art Mom

Melissa said...

wow! I love visitng your blog from time to time. I can relate on so many levels, and I often gaze out at the public school bus stop just two houses away and wonder if it is my pot of gold. Then someone says "MOM!!" and I snap out of it. It's not easy, this thing we do, but it sure is worth it. You are doing an amazing job from the looks of it. From eating on the piano, to painting the Sistine Chapel, to looking under rock! :)

Lori C., Texas said...

I am very excited about doing our Human Body study. Most of the books you listed are already on my list!:) I can't wait to do the My Body one. The kids are going to love it. We are also going to be reading a lot of Magic School Bus books and do a couple of the Magic School Bus science kits. Should be a lot of fun. I just wanted to do something fun!:)

Just some guy... said...

Look at all the support for you - and they're all right! You rock! (And look under them.)

Anonymous said...

You deserve many kudos for your inovative "hands-on" learning techniques. But, as I viewed the boys emulating Mr. Angelo I could not keep from wondering if those markers were bleeding through the paper and staining the ceiling. Just an observation from the one who performs the painting duties in our houshold.


Brittney said...

Poppy...I doubled up the paper. You should know you raised me better than that! :o)

Thanks for your kudos! I do my best!