Wow, what a week! The routines are beginning to fall into place for the new subjects. One thing I have realized is that math needs to be done early, before history or science. The week went better for Makayla, who understood factors in math pretty easily. Joseph and Emma did one and a half chapters in their math as it’s pretty much review of things they know really really well from the MUS Primer level.
History is going along pretty well. I think the suggested family read aloud (Middle Ages, Renaissance, Reformation & Epistles Handbook) for the most of Term 1 is a bit hard for my younger children. We’re reading a chapter of Famous Men of the Middle Ages four days a week, and while Makayla has no trouble following it, the other children lose focus quickly on some of the stories. The read aloud books suggested for grades 1-3 are spot on however, so they are focusing more on those and getting what they can from the other book. They are loving The Sword in the Tree, which we’ll finish up next week before they begin learning about Vikings with Leif the Lucky and then Viking Adventure will follow. Makayla started reading The Vikings by Elizabeth Janeway independently this week.
Spelling floats along. All About Spelling really makes it simple for me to teach so many different levels. I love having my lesson concepts laid out in a progression that makes sense. Joseph and Emma both are working on level 1 together while Makayla is a ways into level 3. The letter tiles are working well for the younger children, helping them have something to physically manipulate when sounding out words.
Joseph and Emma are really focusing on silent E in reading right now, so they’ve been reading the Now I’m Reading: Amazing Animals books to me. We’ve been able to learn other things along the way, such as when to use C’s soft sound. They sometimes grab the All About Spelling Readers too, I’m leaving it up to them most days.
My preschoolers Daniel and Oliver have been joining in where they want to. This week I pulled out some of the Letter of the Week materials I had laminated for counting, sizes, and letters. Both had fun with them. Daniel kept asking for more to do, so we used items from several different letters.
Science is the area where I really feel like I’m spinning in circles. Something is probably going to have to change for a while. Makayla is doing Botany and it’s going great. She’s relatively independent, we may read together or she may just read on her own and then she notebooks about it. Joseph is loving his Rocking Robots Download N Go, and Daniel insists he sit with us and join in for that. The only drawback is Joseph is not ready to read independently and so I have to be with him doing all the reading. No big deal if it were reading a page or two and being done, but the units are set up with questions to explore through internet linked videos, websites, and more. He loves it, but writing is something he’s still very slow and methodical about, so I’m doing a lot of waiting for him to finish copying down words.
Then I still have Emma to work with. She’s nearly finished with her bees lapbook. She, too, has taken lots of time to write in answers herself, but she’s been willing to narrate longer answers for me to write in.
All in all science takes two hours or more between all the different children. The children LOVE science, they love what we’re doing, so getting them to stop is hard. I’m spending a lot of time all together, time that really is hard to come by some days when the baby and toddler are not so happy with the idea of mommy being busy for so long. I think we’re going to have to work on units together for the younger ones for a while until they can read independently. We’ll see what happens. Joseph will be working with the Robots unit for two more weeks I think, so until then things won’t change. Hopefully at that point Joseph and Emma can agree on a topic for the next unit so we can work together for a while.
How has your week gone?
This post is linked to the Weekly Wrap-Up.