I really started to entitle this post “Homeschooling Chaos” or “Unbalanced Homeschooling” because that’s how I feel the week has gone. However, all things considered, it has gone better than I think it has (which is the main reason I write up these posts, anyway-to get a picture of what we actually did). I say all things considered because. . .
I am in the throes of first trimester pregnancy yuckiness.
Yes, you read that correctly, we will be welcoming a new little one into the House of Hope around the first of April. 🙂
So. Homeschooling. Yeah. I’m finding homeschooling with a rambunctious two year old AND morning sickness AND pregnancy exhaustion requires almost more intestinal fortitude that I possess on some days. We’re doing it, though, by the help of God and lots of just plain old grit. The last time I did this pregnant, Lulu was in kindergarten and Louise was a tag-along preschooler, and that’s a sight easier than 3rd and 1st grades, with an incorrigible two year old boy along for the ride. If you’re inclined, add me to your prayer list, please. 🙂
I didn’t take a lot of pictures because as snap-happy as I am most of the time, when I feel bad, the camera is almost the last thing I think about. These rather generic collages of sights around our homeschool this week will have to do, and they may or may not have anything much to do with what I say.
Here’s the run-down:
Lulu, grade 3:
Language: Together, she and I read and discussed pp. 43-64 in Michael Clay Thompson’s Grammar Island. This includes pronouns and adjectives, as well as lots of good grammar discussion about our binary sentence system in English and just plain old grammar fun. This also includes very little written work at all, but the discussion is so rich. It is not intuitive in terms of how much information to cover in a day (there are no lesson divisions, only chapters), so I feel like I’m probably covering too much on some days, but so far I think I has been fruitful. We’ll see how it goes. I like it, anyway, and there is that. 😉
Writing: We got started on WWE 3 this week, and Lulu completed every exercise in the first week. She did very well with this. The biggest problem we have is honing down her summaries to just a few sentences. I do see growth in this area, though; she can usually pick out the extraneous information.
Handwriting: Lulu did handwriting practice four days this week. She’s still excited about cursive. (Hurray!)
Math: Lulu is working through the subtraction book of Math Mammoth semi-independently since it is actually below her skill and knowledge level. She completed pp. 19-30 in this. We also did lessons 126-128 in RS C, which included converting feet to inches (see picture above) We also played several games this week, including Threes Corners, Long Chain Subtraction Solitaire, and Addition War.
Lulu also read Crispin: Cross of Lead for her assigned reading this week and did a book report (like this one). She also read selected pages from a science book on animal classification and did a couple of notebooking pages on the five kingdoms (which goes along with our CC memory work).
Louise, grade 1:
Language: Louise and I did lessons 5-7 in FLL 1, which mostly consisted of going over and over (and over) the definition of a noun and identifying common and proper nouns. In the middle of this was review of the poem “The Caterpillar” by Rossetti, but I’m sort of giving this a light treatment since Louise memorized it when Lulu did a few years ago. I’m still figuring out what else she’ll memorize.
Writing: So far, WWE 1 has been no problem at all for Louise; in fact, I wonder if she could skip it and go on to WWE 2. She volunteered to write her own narrations this week, and she did a really good job. She’s an old first grader with the great advantage of having tagged along for years with a sister only eighteen months older than she. This has been a challenge for me to try to figure out. 🙂
Handwriting: Four more days of practice done!
Math: Louise is working on the addition book of Math Mammoth also semi-independently, and she completed pages 19-30 in it with few problems. We also did lessons 31-33 in RS B, which included lots of place value practice and some formal, written addition practice. She really likes this and wants to be timed on the exercises. (Oh, what motivation having an older sister provides!)
Louise’s required reading this week was Ralph S. Mouse which she and I read together taking turns. We only got through two chapters, though.
Steady Eddie worked on a science lesson with the girls last week. They built a scale model of the solar system out on the road in front of the house (those are the inner planets, I think, up there in the picture).
We practiced our CC memory work (cycle 1, weeks 1 and 2) three days this week; one of those days was at 9:00 at night. This is certainly not how I’d prefer to do things, but I’m having a hard time figuring out a time slot for everything just yet. We’re trying out moving piano practice to afternoon or evening now, since it takes a solid hour of time for both girls to practice. I can work with the girl who isn’t practicing, but I like to use this time for chores. Plus, I still have to be close by and available to help with the piano stuff.
We also finished chapter eighteen in SotW 2 and read chapter 19. This is a great chapter about Richard the Lionhearted (which Lulu knows a good bit about from when she read the Great Illustrated Classics version of Ivanhoe and I read aloud Knight’s Castle) and Robin Hood. I had great plans to have the girls do one written (or dictated) narration and a couple of activities, but we ran out of time. Instead, I opted to let them watch the Errol Flynn version of Robin Hood (or get started on it, at least-they’ll finish it this weekend) mostly because by this time I needed a break. (As a side note, I am somewhat embarrassed to admit how much television/movies the DLM has watched in his short life. We don’t watch much tv at all here, but when we do and when they do elsewhere, like at their grandparents’ homes, of course the DLM is included. It was so much easier to avoid it when the girls were little together! I’m sure over all the DLM is way below average, at least if many toddlers I know are any indication, but it still bothers me. Does anyone else have this problem? Please say you do and make me feel better! 🙂 )
On our Fun Friday (which wasn’t too fun for me, honestly–I felt pretty bad), we did a bit of poetry reading from the Ambleside Online recommended titles/ poets and a Vermeer art study (CM style). We also started working on learning to sketch a map of the world by using Leigh Bortins’ instructions in The Core. (You can read more about Bortins’ thoughts on geography here.)
We also did plenty of reading aloud, finishing Man of the Family by Ralph Moody (review forthcoming next Read Aloud Thursday) and starting The Children’s Homer by Padraic Colum, as well as quite a few picture books. We’re also reading a chapter a day in the Gospel of John KJV over breakfast.
I’m sure I’m leaving something out. It has been a difficult week. One good thing about it is that we’ve stayed home almost all week, only getting out for a few trips out to visit grandparents, go to CC, the doctor, piano lessons, and church. We haven’t even been to the library this week! I’m glad the week’s over, and I’m even more glad that we have a long weekend ahead of us, one in which I don’t have to work. 🙂 Steady Eddie and I have a date planned this weekend to see a stage version of The Importance of Being Earnest locally, and I’m happy about that. I hope I can get ahead of the game this weekend, and especially spend some time thinking through some keep-the-DLM-busy-and-happy strategies. I have ideas, just no time to implement them.
I’m ending with a collage that includes a few outdoor shots from Thursday. One good thing that came our way thanks to Hurricane Isaac is some cooler weather (it has been hot here, hence my unwillingness to get outside yet for nature study), so we did lessons outside a bit on Thursday before it started sprinkling. This is actually the perfect solution for the DLM, so I’ll be extremely thankful when cooler weather arrives.
How was your week?
P.S. Normally I would include my This Week in Books somewhere in here, but today I hadn’t the energy to stack the books and take the photo. We are reading, though. Since judging by the lack of comments I did this mostly for my own benefit, I think I’m going to take a break from it for a while.