Day 52

School started out well. And then we found a frog in our toilet. And that was the end of school for the day. I’ll double up on things in the next couple of days to get caught up with our planned schedule.

N (age 11):

Math: N did her mental math and a worksheet. Her lesson was on finding least common denominators and using prime factorization to find least common denominators for large denominators. She isn’t shy about letting me know that she hates using prime factorization to find least common denominators, but she does recognize that it’s a necessary evil for her and that she will be assessed on her knowledge of it. She completed a lesson review.

Spelling: N took an assessment.

Reading: N read a chapter of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I read a chapter of Number the Stars to N and C last night.

And the frog appeared.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. Her lesson was on using pictures to compare fractions. This lesson was right up her right-brained alley!  She did quite well with it. The frog showed up before she could complete a lesson review.

Spelling: C did really well on her assessment until the very last word.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I read a chapter of Number the Stars to N and C last night.

Frog.

S (age 7):

Frog.

H (age 5):

Frog.

Day 51

Okay, so the motivation may have inched up only ever so slightly, but attitudes were definitely better. Generally.

N (age 11):

Math: N did her mental math and a worksheet. Her lesson was on estimating answers to problems with whole and mixed numbers. She caught on quickly and sped through the lesson, coming to a screeching halt when I assigned her lesson review. She’s plodding through that.

Spelling: N practiced her words with the prefixes sub-, mid-, bi-, and tri-. I think she’ll have an assessment on Wednesday.

Reading: N read a chapter of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I read a chapter of Number the Stars to N and C last night.

Bible: N and C reviewed all their memory verses (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-6, and Psalm 23:1-3) and recited the books of the Bible. They learned about the strong friendship between David and Jonathan. We talked about Saul following the typical pattern of ancient and medieval rulers to go crazy and start killing any perceived threats to their power. We also talked about the importance of friendship.

Science: N and C learned about the planet Jupiter.

Geography: N and C filled in maps of South and Central America for review.

Music: N practiced her scales (G major and C major) and her current lesson.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. Her lesson was on finding multiples and factors. I worry that the wording of story problems might confuse her as to whether to find multiples or factors, so I’ll have to be sure to show her which clues to look for in order to find the correct answers.

Spelling: C practiced her words with the consonant blends sp, tr, pl, and nd. She’ll have an assessment on Wednesday as well.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I read a chapter of Number the Stars to N and C last night.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Geography: Combined class with N.

Science: Combined class with N.

Music: C practiced A, B, C, E, and all her chord transitions. She played while reading music. She’s continuing to learn to play songs that coming strumming with playing individual notes.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up by counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s, and by counting backward from 30 to 1. She learned how to write the number 19. Her lesson introduced writing addition number sentences. She did very well. She’s also doing much better at recognizing and writing numbers from memory. As with reading, the concepts stuck with her, but she had a hard time with number recognition. She completed a lesson review.

Grammar: S reviewed “The Caterpillar” and “Work.” She continued her memory work of “Hearts are Like Doors.” I read S the story she heard yesterday for listening comprehension. This time, she pointed out all the nouns she heard as I read the story.

Reading: S began her next unit in All About Reading. S had a much better attitude today about reading. She reviewed the letter sounds she’s learned so far. Then she read some words. Finally, she read a very short and simple story about a mischievous ferret. While she still stated that reading was hard and she didn’t like learning how to do it, she went through the lesson relatively quickly. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: S copied words and short sentences using a custom worksheet from HandwritingPractice.Net.

H (age 5):

Math: H warmed up by counting to 20 and singing the “Days of the Week”. We played Dominoes and Memory.

Reading: H continued to review the vowels for letter recognition and short vowel sounds. She practiced the B, C, D, and F portion of the phonics poem. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: H practiced writing her name, and the letters B, C, D, F, and the vowels using a custom worksheet I made at HandwritingPractice.Net.

Days 47-50

It has been agonizing for the past week. I mean, it’s worse than pulling teeth! I don’t know where the motivation has gone, but it’s officially gone. Usually, I would take a break about this time, but we just took a break a week and a half ago. I’m at a loss. So, we continue to plod through and I continue to look for ways to light fires under my children. Maybe camping this weekend will help. Or it could make it worse. The inevitable doldrums of this time of year have set in.

N (age 11):

Math: N did her mental math and worksheets. Over the last few days, she has learned more about multiples (some has been review). She learned about finding the least common multiple and using fraction equivalents to solve division problems. She learned about using two or more steps to solving a word problem. She learned about finding the average. She got woefully behind in her lesson reviews, so she’s spending a lot of time playing catch up.

Spelling: N practiced her words with the prefixes sub-, mid-, bi-, and tri-.

Reading: N read several chapters of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I began reading N and C Number the Stars at night.

Bible: N and C reviewed all their memory verses (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-6, and Psalm 23:1-3) and recited the books of the Bible. They learned about Saul’s eventual rejection by God as the king of Israel. They learned about the subsequent anointing of David as the next king. They learned about David and Goliath.

History: N and C learned about the spread of Islam to Northern Africa and Spain. They located the expanded Islamic Empire on their maps.

Geography: N and C filled in all the European countries they know so far on their maps. Then, they learned about France from the Time for Kids website.

Science: N and C learned about the planet Mars. They researched the mythological Mars and Ares. They researched Percival Lowell, Vesto Silpher, the Viking landings, the Pathfinder land, and the Spirit and Opportunity landings. They filled out a fact sheet on Mars from Only Passionate Curiosity.

Music: N practiced her scales (G major and C major) and her current lesson.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. Her lesson was on adding numbers with more than three digits, and on checking one-digit division using multiplication. It built on concepts she already knew, so it was an easy lesson. She completed a lesson review.

Spelling: C practiced her words with the consonant blends sp, tr, pl, and nd.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I began reading N and C Number the Stars at night.

Bible: Combined class with N.

History: Combined class with N.

Geography: Combined class with N.

Science: Combined class with N.

Music: C practiced A, B, C, E, and all her chord transitions. She played while reading music. She’s continuing to learn to play songs that coming strumming with playing individual notes.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up by counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s, and by counting backward from 30 to 1. She learned how to write 18, she aced an assessment, and got some real-world math skills by helping her father replace the front door.


Grammar: S reviewed “The Caterpillar” and “Work.” She continued her memory work of “Hearts are Like Doors.” S worked on reading comprehension

Reading: S began her next unit in All About Reading. The second lesson went more in depth with reading words. S “t,” “b,” “n,” and “j” to the letters comprising the words she’s reading. She began to be overwhelmed by the amount of letter sounds to remember, so we took several days to read through all the short-vowel, two- and three-letter words. She began learning the sight word “the.” While she’s actually doing quite well sounding out the words, the new skill is frustrating for her to learn. The reward of filling in a progress chart and showing people the list of words and sentences she’s read so far is mildly motivating. I had the same discussion with her that I had with N and C at some point. “Every day will be hard, because every day you will learn something new. But, you will also practice the things you’ve already learned, and they will become easier.” I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: S began copying words and short sentences using a custom worksheet from HandwritingPractice.Net.

H (age 5):

Math: H warmed up by counting to 20 and singing the “Days of the Week”. We played Dominoes and Memory.

Reading: H continued to review the vowels for letter recognition and short vowel sounds. She practiced the B, C, D, and F portion of the phonics poem. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: H practiced writing her name, and the letters B, C, D, F, and the vowels using a custom worksheet I made at HandwritingPractice.Net.

Day 46

There was some reluctance to get going today. No one really feels like doing much of anything. We plodded through the day and managed to get everything done, even though it was a bit like pulling teeth.

N (age 11):

Math: N warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on angles. Her lesson was on multiplying and dividing mixed numbers. She gets a little confused with  changing a fraction division problem to a multiplication problem by changing the second fraction to its reciprocal; she either changes both factors to their reciprocal or doesn’t change either. We’ll keep plugging away at it. She completed a lesson review.

Spelling: N practiced her words with the prefixes sub-, mid-, bi-, and tri-.

Reading: N read a chapter of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: N and C reviewed all their memory verses (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-6, and Psalm 23:1-2) and recited the books of the Bible. They were introduced to Saul. We talked about Israel being more concerned about being like other countries than about being led by God. We talked about negative peer pressure and staying true to our beliefs in the face of it.

History: N and C learned about Clovis and the unification of the Franks, Romans, Burgundians, and Allemani into one, united empire. We discussed Clovis’ discriminatory laws and how they affected the peace (or lack thereof) of the region. They located the Frankish Empire on a map.

Music: N practiced her scales (G major and C major) and her current lesson.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. In mental math, she’s been working on subtracting a multiple of ten from a multiple of one hundred. She was having a lot of trouble with it, so I began illustrating it for her using a number line. She was able to grasp the concept with that visualization. I try to keep her right brain in mind when teaching to her, and I use pictures and colors as often as possible. Her lesson was on subtracting numbers with more than three digits, and finding the missing factor in multiplication problems. She completed a lesson review.

Spelling: C practiced her words with the consonant blends sp, tr, pl, and nd.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: Combined class with N.

History: Combined class with N.

Music: C practiced A, B, C, E, and all her chord transitions. She played while reading music. She’s continuing to learn to play songs that coming strumming with playing individual notes.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up by counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s, and by counting backward from 30 to 1. She learned how to write 18. She learned how to picture and combine sets. She completed a lesson review.

Grammar: S reviewed “The Caterpillar” and “Work.” She continued her memory work of “Hearts are Like Doors.” We talked about the proper names of the days of the week.

Reading: S began her next unit in All About Reading. I introduced the sounds of letters “n,” “t,” “b,” and “j.” She practiced reading two- and three-letter words using all the letters she’s learned so far. She was a bit frustrated by the end of this portion of the lesson. She completed an activity sheet involving matching a word to its picture. We began another worksheet, but she became frustrated again, so we stopped there and will continue on Wednesday. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: S’s cut was pretty deep, so she got out of handwriting today, and probably will not do it tomorrow either. I’ll start her back on handwriting on Thursday.

H (age 5):

Math: H warmed up by counting to 20 and singing the “Days of the Week”. We played dominoes and worked on patterns.

Reading: H continued to review the vowels for letter recognition and short vowel sounds. She practiced the B, C, D, and F portion of the phonics poem. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: H practiced writing her name, and the letters B, C, D, F, and the vowels using a custom worksheet I made at HandwritingPractice.Net.

Day 45

We didn’t go camping the weekend before and we didn’t have soccer games, so it was a relatively laid back day. We’ve got to get back into a schedule that doesn’t include soccer or quite as many weekend field trips.

N (age 11):

Math: N warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on angles. She had an assessment. She didn’t do as well as usual. She made some careless computing mistakes and, frankly, seemed like she didn’t feel like putting forth the effort to answer some of the questions. I made her answer them while we were reviewing the assessment.

Spelling: N practiced her words with the prefixes sub-, mid-, bi-, and tri-.

Reading: N read a chapter of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: N and C reviewed all their memory verses (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-6, and Psalm 23:1-2) and recited the books of the Bible. They were introduced to Saul. We talked about Israel being more concerned about being like other countries than about being led by God. We talked about negative peer pressure and staying true to our beliefs in the face of it.

History: N and C learned about Clovis and the unification of the Franks, Romans, Burgundians, and Allemani into one, united empire. They located the Frankish Empire on a map.

Music: N practiced her scales (G major and C major) and her current lesson.

C (age 10):

Math: C warmed up with mental math and a worksheet on multiplication. Her lesson was on adding numbers with more than three digits, and on checking one-digit division using multiplication. It built on concepts she already knew, so it was an easy lesson. She completed a lesson review.

Spelling: C practiced her words with the consonant blends sp, tr, pl, and nd.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: Combined class with N.

History: Combined class with N.

Music: C practiced A, B, C, E, and all her chord transitions. She played while reading music. She’s continuing to learn to play songs that coming strumming with playing individual notes.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up by counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s, and by counting backward from 30 to 1. She learned how to write 17. She learned how to divide a solid in half using an apple. She completed a lesson review.

Grammar: S reviewed “The Caterpillar” and “Work.” She continued her memory work of “Hearts are Like Doors.” We talked about common and proper names of pets and people.

Reading: S began her next unit in All About Reading. In introduced the sounds of letters “m,” “s,” “p,” and “a.” She practiced reading two- and three-letter words using those letters and the short vowel sound /a/. We reviewed the vowels and talked about what a consonant is. We talked about the letter “y” being used as a consonant or a vowel. She completed an activity sheet involving matching a word to its picture. She practiced reading words on flashcards. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: S cut her finger and wasn’t able to do handwriting today.

H (age 5):

Math: H warmed up by counting to 20 and singing the “Days of the Week”. We practiced some addition using manipulatives.

Reading: H continued to review the vowels for letter recognition and short vowel sounds. She practiced the B, C, D, and F portion of the phonics poem. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: H practiced writing her name, and the letters B, C, D, F, and the vowels using a custom worksheet I made at HandwritingPractice.Net.

Day 43-44

Last Wednesday and Thursday. Oh! I’m so behind. No camping this weekend, though, so I’m hoping I can get back on some sort of blogging schedule.

N (age 11):

Math: N warmed up both days with mental math and a worksheets on angles. Her lessons wee on subtracting mixed numbers with regrouping, and reducting fractions using prime numbers and canceling. N completed a lesson reviews.

Spelling: N practiced her words with the prefixes sub-, mid-, bi-, and tri-.

Reading: N read a chapter of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: N and C reviewed all their memory verses (2 Timothy 3:16-17, Exodus 20:1-17, Psalm 1:1-6, and Psalm 23:1-2) and recited the books of the Bible. They learned about the death of Eli and his sons, and about Samuel taking over as priest. We compared and contrasted Eli and Samuel.

Science: N and C looked into the Greek and Roman origins of the planet Venus and the asteroid Hermes. They researched the Venera probes and the Magellan spacecraft.

History: N and C learned about New Zealand and the Maoris. We have good family friends from New Zealand, so it’s exciting for the girls to study about the history of their friends’ country.

Geography: N and C filled out all the countries they know so far on their maps of Europe. Then, they learned about Portugal from the Time for Kids website.

Music: N practiced her scales (G major and C major) and her current lesson.

C (age 10):

Math: C and I reviewed the answers she got wrong on her assessment. Then, she had an investigation of percents. She learned how to convert from percents to fractions to decimals, etc. There were no lesson reviews.

Spelling: C practiced her words with the consonant blends sp, tr, pl, and nd.

Reading: C read a chapter of Little House on the Prairie. I read N and C a chapter of The Hundred Dresses last night.

Bible: Combined class with N.

Science: Combined class with N.

History: Combined class with N.

Geography: Combined class with N.

Music: C practiced A, B, C, E, and all her chord transitions. She played while reading music. She’s continuing to learn to play songs that coming strumming with playing individual notes.

S (age 7):

Math: S warmed up by counting to 100 by 1s, 5s, and 10s, and by counting backward from 30 to 1. She learned how to write 15 and 16. She learned how to count pennies by arranging them on the 100-number chart. We talked about the four seasons and about fall in particular. She used pennies to act out addition and subtraction problems. She completed two lesson reviews.

Grammar: S reviewed “The Caterpillar” and “Work.” She continued her memory work of “Hearts are Like Doors.” She practiced saying her address. We talked about common and proper names of things.

Reading: S finished up her reading unit with the sounds /x/, /y/, and /z/. We did the usual activities. She was so excited to receive her certificate of completion! She ran around showing everyone, who (thankfully) acted appropriately enthusiastic in response. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: S worked on her name, lower case “x,” y,” and “z,” and capital “X,” “Y,” and “Z” using a custom worksheet from HandwritingPractice.Net.

H (age 5):

Math: H warmed up by counting to 20 and singing the “Days of the Week”. We played dominoes and worked on patterns together.

Reading: H continued to review the vowels for letter recognition and short vowel sounds. She practiced the B, C, D, and F portion of the phonics poem. I read a chapter of The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs and a chapter of Ramona Quimby Age 8 to S and H.

Writing: H practiced writing her name, and the letters B, C, D, F, and the vowels using a custom worksheet I made at HandwritingPractice.Net.