Monday, April 13, 2009

Science Lab with Dan

So Dan is teaching half of the science labs at co-op this year. I think it's safe to say that the kids are loving it. (Though he's made me nervous a time or two!!) Today was no exception. Thanks to my good friend Robin, who asked Dan how he was going to top extracting DNA from fruit a few co-ops ago, Dan had some exciting stuff planned for today. Who knows what the "Grand Finale" will be on the last day of co-op. Hadley said she doesn't know how he will top today's experiment. I think Pastor will be glad if the church stays in one piece. :)

Disclaimer: All the pictures below were done with safety in mind. What's in the bottle you ask? Cremora. Certainly makes me think twice about putting it in my tea!! What was their lesson today in Keepers class (which is AFTER science lab and lunch) ...
fire safety. How appropriate LOL!


Riley Sarah

Easter Pictures

So Easter morning was a little bit hectic. The girls had to hunt for their Easter baskets and then get ready for church. Skyeler had a friend spend the night so I had three girls who wanted their hair done, and my own to do. I managed to get a picture of Aly before we left for church, but Skyeler was the last to get her hair done and had to wait till AFTER church for her pictures. Her hair had fallen down a little, but she still looked pretty. The pictures show how rushed I was...I left the flash on :( Oh, well, at least you can see their outfits and what they looked like.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Tennis Lessons

Aly is thoroughly enjoying the homeschool tennis class she has been attending. It's only for 6 weeks but I believe it is the highlight of her week :) I tried to get some pictures today, however, most ended up extremely blurry. Ugh. So here's the best I got.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Weekly Report

I love how I still call these "weekly" reports. I don't think I've done a back to back report yet :) We are buckling down here. There are about 33 (or so, I've lost track this week) days left of actual school for us. That does not include three co-op days, two field trip days, and three testing days that are already planned. Aly may be attending a day camp the first week of June (the camp Skye will be volunteering at). I want to make sure we are done with formal school work by then. Skyeler will have one module left of science to read after that time. Then I'll reassess and see what I want the girls to "review" over the summer. I'm thinking Latin and Algebra for Skyeler and addition/subtraction facts for Aly. We'll see.

So here's what we did get done this week. Quite a bit actually, so I'm pleased. Skyeler has been working a little longer than usual. She usually has the option to finish work the next day, but I told her that for 30 some odd days, she stuck, we're sticking strictly to my schedule.

Aly's work for the week...

Saxon Math 2 - this week Aly learned some new subtraction facts, telling time in 5 minute intervals, and adding three two-digit numbers. It was not an easy week for her which is very unusual. She almost always flies through her math lessons. Per Cheryl's advice, I will be waiting to teach the multiplication lessons till next year. I really think Aly needs to get her add/sub facts down more solidly before we go on.

All About Spelling - Aly completed lessons 13, 14, & 15 this week. We are working quickly through Level 1. She knows how to spell most all of the words, but she had not had any formal instruction on the phonograms, so I didn't want to skip this level. So far I'm really impressed with this curriculum. I will need to order the Level 2 book before we finish this year. There are only 10 lessons left in Level 1 and we are doing, on average, a lesson a day.

Five in a Row - We began Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney this week. It is a beautiful book. I chose it for this week and next because we are working on our Gardening pin in Little Keepers this week and next co-op. In the book, Miss Rumphius plants lupines all around her town to help make the world more beautiful. So far this week we have started bean sprouts in plastic baggies (also for co-op), looked at pictures and discussed Maine (also made a lapbook book), discussed good nicknames and bad nicknames, the library and the Dewey Decimal System, and some new vocabulary words. Today we discussed the art of motion and the mediums used in Miss Rumphius. If we make it to the library, we'll pay close attention to the Dewey Decimal System numbers and what we would find in each number. Next week we'll do more with different areas of the world and gardening.

Language Lessons for the Very Young- ok, we only did the free sample lessons this week. I'm trying to make up my mind between this program and Primary Language Lessons for next year, so I printed out sample lessons to do with Aly. This week we did Picture Study and Narration. The picture was four owls in a forest. This was Aly's narration (she dictated it and I wrote it down):

"Once upon a time there were four owls. They were having a meeting in the forest. They were on a hunt to catch mice and to store them for the winter in their cave. One owl went to go get comforting leaves for the winter. Then another owl went to get rocks to put in the cave doorway. Then another owl went to get mice with the team leader and had a wonderful and comforting winter. The End."

We also did some lessons on singular/plural words. I think I'm going to have to email the company if I choose this program, because I'm not sure where to place Aly. She had a very easy time with these lessons.

What Skyeler worked on this week...

Apologia Physical Science - she is still working through the "forces" modules. These have been her least favorite of the whole book. It's shown in her tests. She usually has A's, but these have been B's. :) She is anxious to get to the light and sound waves, but has to get through these modules first. Thursday, though, was a little interesting to her. She learned about light bulbs. When the light bulb blew in the lamp downstairs, I was treated to a dissertation on "why" it blew :) She began the study guide today.

Videotext Algebra - completed lessons E-2, E-3, & E-4 plus a quiz. These are tough lessons...all on story problems. (Shiver, yuck!)

History - Story of the World Vol. 4 - read chapters 12-15. I read some of these chapters with her. Modern history is not nice history. Potato famine in Ireland, European countries taking over African lands, the slaughter of Armenians by Abdulhamid the Red, no not nice history at all. I see why this volume is not for Aly's age. One cool thing we learned about was Nicolaas & Diederickde Beer and the founding of the De Beers diamond company.

Literature - read chapters 14-17 of The Hobbit and did the corresponding worksheets. She's almost finished with the book and was upset that the dwarves weren't even the ones to kill Smaug the dragon. :) Not to mention that the phrase "may your beard wither away" was one that caused great humor.

English - did two review worksheets

Latin - started working through lesson 12 from the Memoria Press guide.

Both girls...

Geography - I found a cool online game for learning the countries of South America. They finished South America in co-op and are moving on to Africa which means that they soon need to draw their South American maps and label them. After practicing on the computer, they filled out a blank map. Aly missed two countries. I think Skyeler got them all right. Next week we will work on the drawing and then label South America. I have a feeling Africa will be MUCH harder.

History Read Aloud - We listened to the book on tape this time, Number the Stars by Lois Lowry. Skyeler is not quite to this point in history (so I'm not sure why Sonlight has it scheduled already, but that's a whole 'nother post *sigh*). Wow. That's about all I can say. This book was very good. I know little of the World Wars and have to say that I never really thought about life during them. This book took place in Nazi occupied Denmark when the Jews were first being "relocated" out of Denmark. Skyeler and I had some discussion of the book and during it AlyAly burst into tears. She was so sad that he had caused a lot of people to die. So much for my "simple" explanation. Aly is very much like me.

We had co-op on Monday. Skyeler is still learning quilting in Keepers class and they did probability in Science with Tina. Aly is continuing with Art class and we did Gardening in Little Keepers. Skyeler continued with piano practice but had no lessons this week. Aly is off to tennis in about 30 minutes.

We hung up the bird feeder (ok, we just hung it from the hammock for now because the trees are too far away from the window) and we have been watching birds this week. (That might also be part of why math didn't go well for Aly, we were a little distracted). But I'm going to post about that separately since I managed to get a couple pictures.

Aly has had some itchy spots on a couple different parts of her body all week. I was holding off on taking her to the doctor unless it spread. I had Dan look at it this morning and he thinks it is poison ivy (oak, sumac, whatever it is in our yard). This makes sense because Aly was in the older, dying apple tree and there IS something else growing with that tree. I'm guessing it's not poison ivy, but one of the others. I have been giving her Benedryl for the itching, which might also be the cause of distraction and whininess on Aly's part for school this week. I'm keeping a close eye on it, because last time she got into it, it was on her face and spread very quickly. I'm thinking it's not going to do that this time since it's been 5 days already.

Aly & I also worked on the front flower beds yesterday, getting out the old mulch and hoeing up the dirt so it's ready to plant. The compost pile is growing. Dan cut down the one big tree by the garage door so that already makes it look better :) I didn't get all the way around the front yesterday but hopefully by next week we can get it done and make a trip to Lowe's and get some pretty flowers. Skyeler has asked if her and Aly can be in charge of the back area and I said yes. She is starting to plan out her little garden, too.

That about sums up our week. I'm definitely ready for a relaxing weekend watching the Final Four tournaments!
asked why the soldiers were in Denmark in the first place. I explained, in very simple terms, about Hitler and the Jews and the Master Race. To my astonishment,