Monthly Archives: September 2012

Week 4 Report

I finally got this posted!  We have had a really strange start with our schedule this year.  I have been having to go to the chiropractor, among other things, and it has been hard to keep a schedule like I want to.  We have still been getting things done, but I am not liking the fact that I haven’t had much planned out.  I need to work on that.

Here’s what we did this week:

For Math, we finished up AoPS Prealgebra Chapter 1 by doing the Review Exercises and the Challenge Exercises.  My daughter actually seemed to “get” some of the Challenge problems better than the others.  Go figure!  She also did some Algebra Readiness problems.

She continued doing her Perplexors workbook for Logic, which she loves.  I ordered Math Perplexors, Logic Liftoff, and another Perplexors workbook for her this week as well.  We also finished up our first One Hour Mystery.

We are still learning about Mesopotamia and Sumer in History.  We began reading The Golden Bull by Marjorie Cowley.  It is about a brother and sister who travel to the city of Ur in ancient Mesopotamia.  So far, my daughter is really enjoying it.  She is mostly reading it aloud herself while I follow along to make sure she is reading the words correctly.  She has had trouble with skipping or making up words, and not comprehending what she reads.  This is a fairly simple storyline, and she is reading it well and understanding it.  She is even asking to read it!  That is amazing to me, since she has never liked to read before.  We also read Gilgamesh the King by Ludmila Zeman.  It is a very simple retelling of the story, in fact too simple I think.  I am still glad we read it, the pictures were great.  It didn’t take long to read at all.  She did a worksheet on Mesopotamian Math, but other than that we just read this week.

For Science, we continued lessons in BFSU.  We also started reading The Story of Science to coincide with our history lessons.

She started doing Daily Word Ladders to help with her vocabulary.  We continued with Grammar using the sample of Advanced Language Lessons.  She is catching on to grammar pretty well, so once we finish the ALL sample, I may or may not continue with it.  Although, I have heard such great things about Rod & Staff English that I wanted to try that.  She has also been doing Grammar Skill Builders.  To help with her reading fluency, she has been taking some free phonics lessons online as well.  But she can only do those at my mom’s house because our speakers don’t work!  We are also doing Comprehension Cliffhangers Mysteries (orally so far) to help with her comprehension.  She loves when things are set up as a mystery!

We also started learning about orchestra instruments in The Story of the Orchestra.  We plan to learn about the instruments first, then study the composers closer to the time they lived alongside our history lessons.  She also continued working on her cursive, did some copywork and a typing lesson, and had her second week of Chorus & Karate at co-op.

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Week 3 Report

We had our first co-op this week!  My daughter is taking Chorus & Karate there.  She really enjoyed her Chorus class at public school last year, so I had to find somewhere that she could continue singing.  She also has always wanted to try Karate, so she should have a lot of fun with that.  And maybe pick up a few self defense moves as well!

Here’s what we did this week:

For Math, we started on Art of Problem Solving Prealgebra.  We got through Chapter 1, did the exercises at the ends of the sections, and watched the videos online.  From now on, I think we will watch the video for each section BEFORE we start the exercises.  Math has always been her best subject, but I don’t think she ever understood the “why” of things.  AoPS seems very different from anything she has done before, so I want to make sure she is getting it.

For Logic, she continued working on her Perplexors workbook.  We also attempted to start the Art of Argument, but as I was reading the introduction I could see my daughter had no idea what I was talking about.  I think it may be a little bit too early to try this with her, considering she has never done Logic before.  So, I decided to shelf it for now and just do more introductory materials and puzzles, and try to pick AoA back up after Christmas or possibly next year.

For History, we worked through a few more chapters of Human Odyssey, still covering Mesopotamia and the Sumerians.  Science was more BFSU lessons for review.  For Grammar, we are using the 15-week sample of Advanced Language Lessons I received by emailing Susan Wise Bauer’s assistant at PHP.  So far, my daughter is really doing well with this, considering she has had little to no grammar before.  We also did a chapter of Grammarland.

Also this week was some Copywork, a Vocabulary Word Map & a unit on Greek and Latin Roots, and some Analogies pages and Elaboration activities.  She is also learning cursive for the first time and doing well with the Logic of English program.

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First 2 Weeks Report

I plan on doing a weekly report, but since our second week was short because of the Labor Day Holiday and a yard sale this week, we only schooled for 3 days. Since alot of what we did was review, I decided to lump the first 2 weeks together for my report.

I was really pleased with the amount we got done, considering we are just starting and my daughter is coming out of public school. She was excited to start, and everything went smoothly. Here’s some of what we did:

For math, we reviewed using the free samples of Math Mammoth worksheets. We would discuss orally, and then she would solve the problems. Math is her best subject, so she did very well with this. There were only a few things she had to be reminded about. Next week we will officially start Art of Problem Solving Pre-Algebra.

To give her an introduction to Logic, I got her a Perplexors workbook and she LOVES it.  She has been doing several of the puzzles everyday.  We also started One Hour Mysteries, and she has enjoyed that as well.

For History, we are starting with Ancient.  Our spine is K12 Human Odyssey Volume 1.  I was also going to use Streams of Civilization Volume 1, but I realized that trying to match up the two books, as well as any other supplemental books we will read, was just taking too much of my time.  I did, however, like the way that Streams of Civilization presented Evolution vs. Creation.  I am teaching my daughter from a Creation standpoint, but I also wanted her to understand that there are other beliefs, so I liked the way this presented both sides.  After that, we started learning about Mesopotamia and the Sumerians.  For our timeline, we are using the book and figures from Homeschool in the Woods.  I purchased the timeline figures on CD, so that I would have the most flexibility.  I got full sheet sticker labels to print them on (I copy & size them myself to get more on a page).  I noticed that after we cut them out and tried to place them in the book, the ink would start to smudge from the oils on our fingers.  My solution to this was to brush some Matte Modge Podge over the top before we cut them out.  It “seals” them and I you can’t even tell it’s on there.  Here’s a picture of the first page of our timeline:

For Science, I decided I wanted to start with review to make sure she has a solid base, so we are using BFSU Volume 1.  I purchased the $5.00 download and use it on the iPad.  This text is made for younger students, but works fine for review with older students at a faster pace.  We will then move on to something else, but I am not sure what at this point.  We have done a total of 4 lessons so far.

We also worked on Grammar (which she has never had beyond knowing a few of the parts of speech) and she did some of her Vocabulary Doodles.  We have not started any formal writing curriculum yet, because I want to get her more comfortable with grammar and vocabulary first.

All in all, a great first 2 weeks!

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