Days 35-53

Wow, am I backed up! I toyed with the idea of just ending the blog altogether after these past few weeks of holidays, sick days, crazy errands, and repair work on the house. But, I really want to have a complete record of my days, so here’s a summary of the last seventeen school days.

N (age 12):

Math: N started each lesson with mental math. Her lessons were on number families (counting numbers, whole numbers, integers, and rational numbers), multiplying algebraic terms, using multiple unit multipliers, converting units of area, diagonals, interior angles, exterior angles, solving equations with mixed number coefficients, solving equations with negative coefficients, evaluating equations with signed numbers, evaluating equations with signed numbers without parentheses, and finding percent of change (increases and decreases).  She also did quite well on an assessment and had an investigation on graphing functions.

Bible: N and C reviewed their memory verses (Galatians 4:4-5, Isaiah 9:7, Micah 5:2, Daniel 9:25, Isaiah 7:14, and Malachi 3:1, and Deuteronomy 15:18). They finished their study of the book of Matthew and began reading the book of Mark. We discussed the differences between the two books and the intent of the authors.

Reading: N finished reading The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. She enjoyed it so much, that she asked to read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. While reading that, she also read The Legend of Sleepy Hollow and Rip Van Winkle. She was pleasantly surprised by how well-done the Disney version of “Ichabod Crane” was.

Spelling: N had two assessments from her  Spelling Workout F.

Writing: N and C practiced using rhymes, incorporating seemingly disparate sentences into a coherent paragraph, using words related to fish in a story that’s not about about fish, telling a story from the perspective of an inanimate object, and writing a professional letter.

History: N finished learning about the Revolutionary War, about the Ratification of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, about the differences between the nationalists (later known as the federalists) and the federalists (later known as the anti-federalists), about the characters and political persuasions of the founding fathers during the first five presidencies, and about the toll differing politics took on the relationships of the founders in A Patriot’s History of the United States.

Science: N and C learned about krypton and other noble gases; iron, copper, zirconium, iridium, gold, and the other transition metals; and lanthanum, neodymium, promethium, terbium, and the other lanthanide metals.

Geography: N and C learned about Chad, the Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Senegal, the Gambia, and Guinea-Bissau. They also reviewed maps of Europe, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, South America, and Central America.

Spanish: N completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: N practiced her scales and practiced sight reading with our musical flashcards.

C (age 11):

Math: C warmed up with mental math every day. Her lessons were on multiplying by one-digit numbers, multiplying three factors, finding missing numbers in multiplication problems, division facts, three ways to show division, problems about equal groups, one-digit division with a remainder, divisibility (by 2, 5, and 10), recognizing halves, solving problems with parentheses, using the associative property, and listing the factors of whole numbers. She also had two assessments and an investigation on fractions (halves, fourths, and tenths).

Reading: C finished up Nzingha: Warrior Queen of Matamba. She read an abridged version of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. She started reading an abridged version of A Christmas Carol and East of the Sun, West of the Moon.

Spelling: C had three assessments and did very well on all of them.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Writing: Combined class with N.

History: C and S learned about Abbas I of Iran, the Ottoman Turks in Persia, the Thirty Years’ War in England, the isolation of Japan under the Tokugawa dynasty, the rise of the Manchu dynasty in China, the Moghul emperors of India, the beheading of Charles I in England, Oliver Cromwell’s failed “Commonwealth of England experiment,” and the plague and fire of London under Charles II.

Science: Combined class with N.

Geography: Combined class with N.

Spanish: C completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: C practiced her ukulele.

S (age 8):

Math: S practiced counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s using her hundred-number chart. She counted backwards from 30. She counted by even numbers to 20 and by odd numbers to 19. She learned to write numbers 56-60. Her lessons were on subtracting zero from a number, subtracting a number from itself, writing the numbers 0-10 using words (although I’m not spending too much energy on this considering her reading difficulty), identifying pairs, identifying the season of winter, writing money amounts using the cent symbol, and paying for items using dimes and pennies (she’s great at counting money because she counts her allowance daily like Silas Marner). She also had an assessment and did quite well (only one problem incorrect).

Reading: S continued her unit of All About Reading. She reviewed words using the short /u/ sound and read two stories. She began work on words using the short /e/ sound and the letter Y (which she wants to pronounce as /w/, but we’re working on it). She was very motivated to finish her last lesson and read fifteen words in about two minutes! A record!

Writing: S copied the days of the week on worksheets that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Grammar: S reviewed all the poems she’s learned so far and began memorizing the poem “Mr. Nobody”. She practiced listening comprehension with the stories “The Crow and the Pitcher” and “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” She reviewed the days of the week, the months of the year, and the seasons; she practiced using was/were; she learned the capitalization rules of holidays, days, months, and the word “I”; she practiced using sit/set; she reviewed nouns, verbs, and pronouns using the poem “The Three Little Kittens”; she practiced writing her address; she learned how to abbreviated titles of respect; she practiced using is/are; and she learned how to punctuate poetry.

History: Combined class with C.

Science: S watched Coyote Peterson videos religiously. She’s mildly obsessed with him.

Bible: S and H practiced their memory verses (Proverbs 11:3, Titus 2:7, John 3:16). The learned about Jacob and Esau’s sibling rivalry, about Jacob tricking Esau out of his birthright and his blessing, and about Jacob running away out of fear that Esau would kill him.

H (age 6):

Math: H filled out the next date in her calendar and colored the date block according to the pattern. She practiced counting to 20. She said the days of the week and the months of the year. Her lessons were on identifying circles and rectangles, solving a matrix with circles and rectangles, placing objects on a real graph, identifying the fewest and most on a graph, creating and reading an AB color pattern, creating and reading an ABB color pattern, acting out addition and subtraction story problems, and creating and interpreting a pictograph.

Reading: H reviewed A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, and M. She continued to practice letter flashcards for these letters. She was introduced to the letters N, O, and P.

Writing: H copied A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, and P on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: Combined class with S.

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Day 34

Back to normal at last. After a birthday weekend and a final swim party for the summer, it’s back to our normal routine. I’m much happier about that than the kids are!

N (age 12):

Math: N and I reviewed her assessment. She was able to recognize her mistakes and work her way through everything she got wrong, but I still want to keep reviewing certain concepts so that I’m confident she understands them before she begins Algebra I in a few months.

Bible: N and C reviewed their memory verses (Galatians 4:4-5, Isaiah 9:7, Micah 5:2, Daniel 9:25, Isaiah 7:14, and Malachi 3:1). They continued learning about Jesus’ parables and their meanings.

Reading: N read some of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. She read a few chapters of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. She’s starting to see the plot of the book as more than just a collection of stories about boys in 19th century Mississippi.

Spelling: N can’t find her spelling book. She was almost finished with it anyway, so I had her start Lesson 1 on her next book, Spelling Workout F. Her lesson is on words with the /k/, /kw/, and /n/ sounds.

Writing: N and C practiced using cliches.

History: N learned about the life of Thomas Paine and his pamphlet Common Sense, and about the writing and signing of the Declaration of Independence in A Patriot’s History of the United States. She finished reading The Enlightenment.

Science: N and C learned about sulfur and other non-metals, and about halogens. They experimented with sulfur by comparing the smell of raw cabbage with that of cooking and cooked cabbage. We talked about why the smells changed during the cooking process.

Geography: N and C reviewed their maps of the Middle East and Southeast Asia.

Spanish: N completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: N practiced her scales and practiced sight reading with our musical flashcards.

C (age 11):

Math: C warmed up with some mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. Her lesson was on story problems about separation using subtraction. She completed a lesson review.

Reading: C read some more of Nzingha: Warrior Queen of Matamba.

Spelling: C completed the bookwork for her next lesson on words ending in -ed and -ing.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Writing: Combined class with N.

History: C and S learned about the slave trade in Jamestown and about warrior queen Nzingha of Matamba.

Science: Combined class with N.

Geography: Combined class with N.

Spanish: C completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: C practiced her ukulele.

S (age 8):

Math: S practiced counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s using her hundred-number chart. She counted backwards from 30. She counted by even numbers to 20 and by odd numbers to 19. Her lesson was on comparing lengths and measuring using non-standard units (linking cubes from the manipulatives kit).

Reading: S continued her unit of All About Reading. She read a story about a dog who worked as a model. She was extremely unhappy about reading today and didn’t do as well as usual as a result.

Writing: S copied the days of the week on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Grammar: S reviewed pronouns, initials, and abbreviations.

History: Combined class with C.

Science: S learned about wolf spiders on Coyote Peterson’s YouTube channel. I really like Coyote Peterson!

Bible: S and H practiced their memory verses (Proverbs 11:3, Titus 2:7, John 3:16).

H (age 6):

Math: H filled out the next date in her calendar and colored the date block according to the pattern. She practiced counting to 15. She said the days of the week. Her lesson was on acting out story problems containing addition and subtraction. She used the counting bears to act out various scenarios.

Reading: H reviewed A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K and L. She continued to practice letter flashcards for these letters. She was introduced to the letter M.

Writing: H copied A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, and M on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: Combined class with S.

Day 33

A series of unfortunate events kept us away from homeschool gym class today. Everyone got a treat at a local restaurant to make up for the disappointment. Thankfully, there’s another class next week! I’m loving this weekly program and am so thankful that it’s available to us.

N (age 12):

Math: N had an assessment today. The results were abysmal, but expected considering the post-vacation brain fog. We’ll review on Monday.

Bible: N and C reviewed their memory verses (Galatians 4:4-5, Isaiah 9:7, Micah 5:2, Daniel 9:25, Isaiah 7:14, and Malachi 3:1). They continued learning about Jesus’ parables and their meanings.

Reading: N read some of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. She read a few chapters of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. I’m glad to see she’s enjoying the book and catching the humor.

Spelling: N had an assessment.

Writing: N and C practiced writing a sentimental letter with no exaggeration or flowery language.

History: N continued reading The Enlightenment.

Spanish: N completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: N practiced her scales and practiced sight reading with our musical flashcards.

C (age 10):

Math: C had an assessment. She only got a few wrong, so we reviewed them when she was done with her assessment.

Reading: C read some more of Nzingha: Warrior Queen of Matamba.

Spelling: C had an assessment and got quite a few words wrong that she never got wrong before. I had her write them each five times.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Writing: Combined class with N.

Spanish: C completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: C practiced her ukulele.

S (age 7):

Math: S had an assessment.

Reading: S continued her unit of All About Reading. She read a story about a girl with a to-do list. She did quite well, but still struggles with her emotions when reading.

Writing: S copied the days of the week on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: S and H practiced their memory verses (Proverbs 11:3, Titus 2:7, John 3:16).

H (age 5):

Math: H filled out the next date in her calendar and colored the date block according to the pattern. She practiced counting to 15. She said the days of the week. Her lesson was on sorting by color and then creating a real graph. She sorted her counting bears by color, then graphed them and interpreted the graph.

Reading: H reviewed A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, and K. She continued to practice letter flashcards for these letters. She was introduced to the letter L.

Writing: H copied A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, and L on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: Combined class with S.

Day 32

Library Day! There weren’t many books checked out because everyone is still reading the books they already have out. I did check out some of the best baby books I’ve ever seen for R the toddler. They’re called Cozy Classics. They’re classic novels for babies. They manage to take even the most complex storylines (Pride and Prejudice, War and Peace, Les Miserables) and condense them into books with twelve words and twelve pictures each. R’s favorite is currently Moby Dick, but my favorite so far has been Jane Eyre. I love these books so much!

Day 31

We got back from Virginia Beach on Sunday night. Monday rolled around, and no one wanted to do school, so we took Monday and Tuesday off before diving back into full education days on Wednesday.

N (age 12):

Math: N warmed up with some mental math.  Her lesson was on the order of operations with signed numbers (all the negatives and positives were a little confusing; e.g. subtracting a negative is the same as adding a positive) and solving a function when given the rule. She powered through, but she’s going to need continued review to be sure the concepts stick. She did a lesson review.

Bible: N and C reviewed their memory verses (Galatians 4:4-5, Isaiah 9:7, Micah 5:2, Daniel 9:25, Isaiah 7:14, and Malachi 3:1). They continued learning about Jesus’ parables and their meanings.

Reading: N read some of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. She read a few chapters of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. We talked about some of the language used in the story that is now considered offensive.

Spelling: N practiced her words containing the suffixes -er, -or, -ist, and -est.

Writing: N and C practiced defining a slang word without using slang (so that a person learning to speak English would be able to understand).

History: N continued reading The Enlightenment.

Spanish: N completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: N practiced her scales and practiced sight reading with our musical flashcards.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on subtraction. Her lesson was on finding the missing number in a subtraction problem. She completed a lesson review.

Reading: C read some more of Nzingha: Warrior Queen of Matamba.

Spelling: C practice her irregular plurals.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Writing: Combined class with N.

Spanish: C completed several more lessons and a worksheet in Spanish.

Music: C practiced her ukulele.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up with counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s. She counted to 20 by 2s and to 19 by odd numbers. She counted backwards from 30. Her lesson was on covering a design with pattern blocks, then sorting, counting, and recording the pattern blocks used to cover the design. She completed a worksheet on addition and finished a lesson review sheet.

Reading: S continued her unit of All About Reading. She read some more practice words as a review before reading her story.

Writing: S copied the days of the week on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: S and H practiced their memory verses (Proverbs 11:3, Titus 2:7, John 3:16). Every Kindle in the house was out of batteries, so the Bible lesson will be doubled up tomorrow.

H (age 5):

Math: H filled out the next date in her calendar and colored the date block according to the pattern. She practiced counting to 15. She said the days of the week. Her lesson was on sorting by color. She watched me sort pattern blocks by color, then sorted her own pile of pattern blocks by color.

Reading: H reviewed A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, and K. She continued to practice letter flashcards for these letters.

Writing: H copied A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, and K on a worksheet that I made from the Writing Wizard website.

Bible: Combined class with S.

Day 30

We finished up our learning time in Virginia Beach with a trip to Historic Jamestowne. The kids loved exploring the native village, learning about making dugout canoes and native tools. They learned how to fight pirates and work the sails on the wooden ships. They explored the fort at Jamestowne, trying on colonial armor and watching a firearm demonstration.

Day 29

No edu-vacation to Virginia is complete without a trip to Colonial Williamsburg! It was a little tiring for the youngers, so we didn’t get to see as much as we’d hoped. The kids were still able to explore a colonial jail and a colonial lumberyard. They learned about blacksmithing, silversmithing, bookbinding, and dressmaking. They watched colonists fire a cannon, and perform a fife and drum march, and they (of course) all had their heads in the stocks.