Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Weekly Report #4

Why is it so hard to write these reports, especially in a timely manner? For one thing, they take a long time. For another, I feel so busy since school started. You may have noticed on my other blog that I'm not spending much time blogging lately. I feel that if I'm lucky I get an hour or so to myself in the evening before bed--and I have to choose between reading, blogging, spending time with my husband, ironing, and calling a friend. Yikes! I'm trying to use my afternoons more efficiently so that at least I don't have to do laundry or ironing between 8:00 pm and my bedtime (9:30).

But enough about me. Here's a quick glimpse at our week:

I just want to say that our littlest student is growing up so fast. I love watching her mother her babies, read her books, and mimic the sounds we make when we're talking about the alphabet. I love how she lights up when it's time for Morning Meeting and runs to sit down first. She claps her hands and can't wait to sing together and pray. And she has been so good at playing happily in her playpen while we do math (she kept climbing up on the table to get at the manipulatives, pencils, crayons, etc.)

In math, I decided that we weren't moving quickly enough. The lessons are too easy for my boys. I have heard that many people choose to work a year ahead in Saxon Math, but I have been nervous to skip some fundamental building block. A silly fear, I am sure, but real nonetheless. Anyhow, I went through the lessons again and we skipped lots of lessons that were simply too basic. Don't worry, Mom--I did the assessments on them to make sure that we hadn't skipped too far! For Ian we are just going one lesson at a time. I'm not worried about it being basic for him, I think it's appropriate for someone who is nearly 4. I'm glad I didn't wait until his kinder year to start this math, though.

So, Kimball did SM 22, 23, 32, 33, and 38. Henry did SM 31, 35, 36, and 38. I figure we'll work a little faster and start the next level in the spring or late winter. Ian did SM Kinder 7-9. He is so cute when we do math, and he really loves it. He really has changed so much from the problems we were having this summer, and I'm sure it's largely because I am doing one-on-one schoolwork with him now.

Russian continues. They are in lesson 2 now, learning to say things like, "the men eat the sandwiches" and "the girls swim," and "the woman eats rice and an apple." They are loving it. I finally remembered to pull out the accompanying CD for the car and we listen to it and practice our pronunciation and vocabulary when we have short errands to run. Longer rides require our book on CD,
The Little Princess.

Thank goodness we are listening to that because I only read one chapter last week from our read-aloud chapter book. We've been reading lots of library picture books this week. The one that gets chosen over and over is Me and My Cat? If I've read it once, I've read it forty times already. But it is entertaining and I love the illustrations.

I decided to tackle a writing assignment this week, since all we've been doing so far is journal writing. The boys each wrote a letter to Grammy and Papa, thanking them for the fun weekend they had together while Jared & I were away. We started with a web and planned out the letter ahead of time. They spent a couple of days writing it. I didn't think to take the picture until they had already folded them up 100 times and put them in the envelope, so they may be tricky to read. I felt good about what they accomplished, their grandparents were thrilled, and Kimball even checked off a Faith in God requirement.

We did three grammar lessons this week, which is actually what I plan but rarely accomplish. The lessons are short but always get put off if we are running behind. We continue to focus on common vs. proper nouns.

For letter of the week, we focused on letter C. We've started talking about our letter of the week at the morning meeting to get everyone involved. Then, Ian and I work in his letter of the week journal together each morning, reviewing previous weeks' entries. This week we spent the first two days just on the "k" sound, then I introduced situations in which c makes the "s" and "ch" sounds. We colored pictures of cows, camels, crocodiles, and chickens.
We looked for Cs in every book we read. We made carrot cupcakes and cinnamon rolls with cream cheese icing (notice the latter had all three kinds of c sounds.)
We took these treats to people, since I can't have them sitting around the house or I accidentally eat them. Plus, I am really trying to incorporate service into our week. So we shared with a friend whom I visit teach, a friend whose husband loves my carrot cake, a new couple in the ward, our piano teacher, and Aunt Alli and Isaac.
As far as history goes, I thought we'd spend another week on Egypt, since we still had work to do on the death mask and a chapter book to read on Egypt. But alas, we didn't get very far. I think I've realized that the novelty of these things has worn off a bit for all of us and it kept getting pushed to last and then until tomorrow. We'll eventually finish that death mask, but it's time to move on to a new civilization.

In Old Testament we read about King Saul. We talked about how the Lord warned the people against having a king and they asked for one anyway. We talked about why we should always listen to the Lord's counsel. We also talked about the principle learned through Saul, "to obey is better than to sacrifice."

For our Hymn of the Week, we learned, "A Poor Wayfaring Man of Grief". Kimball also gave an excellent FHE lesson, planned entirely on his own, comparing three prophets: Lehi, Noah, and Abinadai, each of whom was called to warn the people of coming destruction if they would not repent.

We practiced tying shoes, a skill which has yet to be mastered by anyone under the age of 30 in our home. We played at the park. We attended speech, tae kwon do, soccer, piano lessons, and Cub Scouts. Kimball's Cub Scout den visited the fire station and he learned a lot about what fire fighters do, as well as how to fold a flag. We played with our cousins, Cooper and Catelyn. We went to a swim party, a birthday party, and a ward party (all on the same day.) So I think we got our social stuff in!
All in all, I am so grateful for this experience. I feel so blessed to be able to do this for my kids. I can feel it strengthening our family. I can feel it pushing me to improve. I can see it helping my kids individually. I can feel the Lord's hand in our lives. If only the ironing fairy would visit me this week!


Nana said...

too bad it takes so long to post - because I love to read about your week. Wish I could be your ironing fairy.

Michal said...

i wish you could be my ironing fairy, too. i just need to get caught up again. and then stay caught up. who knew a girl would mean so many more clothes to iron?