Friday, April 22, 2011

What We're Up To

As a relaxed, eclectic homeschooler who battles a tendency to anxiety, sometimes it just helps to write it all down. Are we doing enough? (Susie Homeschool Blogger accomplishes so much more [always a sign of wackadoo thinking].) Are they learning? Am I making every moment count?

Relax, girl. They're wired to learn. And so are you! 

So for my own review, and your idle curiosity, here's where our learning adventures took us this week.

Bible: Stories from the Book of Acts (Egermeier's Bible Story Book). AWANA memory work.

History: The World of Columbus and Sons. Just one chapter. Not our most historical week. Till Year's Good End (Middle Ages picture book for the girls.) Discussion of Passover.

Science:  Popular Mechanics for Kids: Lightning and Other Forces of Nature (DVD). This inertia experiment with eggs. Resulting hijinks in the front yard with dissecting hardboiled eggs. This interactive physics simulation of crashing vehicles. Discussion of Marie and Pierre Curie. Ranger Rick magazine.
Green Hour at the creek. (Gosh, and I always feel like a slacker when it comes to science.)

Math: Singapore Math (Ian.) Logic puzzles from Braingle.comLearning Resources Dino Math Tracks Place Value Game. iPad Games: "Monster Squeeze," "Math Ninja," and everyone's favorite: Rocket Math.
Note: Rocket Math, played by all three kids, is made by the same folks who bring us two other favorites: Stack the States and Stack the Countries.

Poetry: "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening." And, on its anniversary Monday, "The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere."

GeographyFamilies of Russia (Families of the World) (DVD). Geography club meeting on Russia. Trip to local Russian market. Russia mapwork, followed by ...

It's a salt dough map of Russia, made entirely by himself. Can you see the pride oozing from his pores?

Read-AloudsPied Piper of AustinIsland of the Blue Dolphins (to Ian; after our success with Hatchet, we're following up with a survival-book theme of sorts). Ginger Pye (to the girls). We felt like Ginger Pye was an appropriate follow-up to the tale of that other Cranbury family, The Moffats. Those Pyes and Moffats from the days of yore, they sure are free-range kids! Plus, this one features, centrally, a dog. And the relationship between its siblings protagonists, Jerry and Rachel, reminds me so much of these guys:

Also, their mother, Mrs. Pye, "never scolds." So in that way, she's just like me!

And if you believe that, I have a pig in a poke to sell you.

Personal Reading: 
Ian: Ginger PyeThe Red Pyramid (The Kane Chronicles, Book 1). Clubhouse magazine.
Eliza: I ain't exactly sure. But she made an excellent batch of cornbread last night!
Caroline: Go, Dog. Go! 
Me: Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food LifeThe Fellowship of the RingLife Study of Matthew.

WritingThe Complete Writer: Writing with Ease. Letter to one of our Compassion kids.

Music: Classical Kids: Tchaikovsky Discovers America. Russian folksongs on YouTube.

Art: Happens all the time. In particular, Ian spent hours carefully drawing Star Wars clone troopers.

Audiobooks: Novacom Saga (Adventures in Odyssey)Henry and the Paper RoutePeter Pan.

It may look like a lot (and I'm probably forgetting a few things), but be not deceived: Our days are hardly a tightly scheduled machine. We all do chores. We do things that look like wasting time. We lie on the floor and stare off into space sometimes. We have interruptions. And yet ... learning happens, all the time. Life is good.


KTG said...

Oh, you're doing a lot! I wish I could be in your homeschool.Thanks for letting me observe via the blog.
ps.I was really into Island of the Blue Dolphins in grade 4.

Danica Newton said...

Go girl! I feel successful when I get an hour a day in with Sophie. Xander's FAVORITE book right now is Go Dog Go, especially the 'Do you like my hat?' part. Weird, I never remembered that book being so random.
And, if Ian liked Hatchet, he might love My Side of the Mountain. A survival book about a boy who runs away from a family full of siblings, to live by himself in the Catskills. He hollows out a tree to live in, befriends the local wildlife, and discovers which plants are good to eat. Told in first person narrative.

JD said...

My Side of the Mountain... my favorite book EVER!

Hannah said...

Oh, y'all. My Side of the Mountain was exactly what I was planning for us to read next (assuming the survival theme hasn't gotten old)! :-) :-)

Danica Newton said...

After that, The Cay :)

kcooley said...

So inspiring! Having the spring conference here in NYC, remembering the days when you all used to come.