Monday, August 20, 2012

School Days Summary - 8/13-17/12

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My New 3rd Grader

My New 5th Grader
It might be a little early for some, but we started our school year! We're trying something a little different from last year. I scheduled us to have school for 6 or 7 weeks and then take a full week off. I just recently saw on another homeschool blog that some people call it Sabbath schooling. I didn't know it had a name! :) I was just hoping to try a slightly different schedule to help prevent burn-out later in the year. In order to get our required days in and still finish up our year by June, we needed to get started.
It was about that time to start anyway... the kids were starting to be bored with their summer freedom. :)
They woke up on Monday to a treat at their seat at the table. Fun folders and notebooks for each and a pack of pencils to share.
Tenor's Gift
Soprano's gift

We also included a few additions to our school space. A real white board on the door which I can use for Soprano's math and other teaching times.

We also added some behavior jars for each kid. One says "I need to work on my attitude", while the other says, "I chose to do the right thing!" The idea is that we can use them to work on a few specific habits/behaviors/attitudes at a time. If they do a good job (with the right attitude) on whatever we're working on, they get a little die cut person shape in the 'right thing' jar. If they didn't do so great, a person will go in the other jar. At the end of the week if they have more in the 'right' jar than the 'need to work' jar, they get a treat. It worked great for our first week. We'll see how it goes as we continue our school year.
Soprano's jars

Tenor's jars

Bucket full of die cut people shapes
Math: Continuing into the next level of Saxon Math for each. Tenor will be doing 1 lesson, investigation, or test each day so we can move him into the next book before the end of the year. He will most likely pursue learning all of the advanced math subjects so we need to get him up a level before high school. Soprano did 4 days of lessons and 1 day of computer math this week in Saxon Math 3. So far she's not fussed about math and done the meeting book cheerfully.

Reading and Language Arts: We are using 'Across the Centuries' for both of them again this year. Soprano started reading "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, " while Tenor began reading "Jim Thorpe: Olympic Champion."

Soprano has Rod and Staff English and Spelling this year and is beginning to learn cursive writing with A Reason for Handwriting C.
Tenor did a week of lessons and worksheets in Rod and Staff English and Spelling also. He's practicing his cursive handwriting this year with the left-over half of Soprano's workbook from last year. He'll be working on his writing with Ancient History Based Writing Lessons from IEW. He completed the first lesson on choosing good adjectives and then illustrated his work.
Tenor's "The Ancient World"
Typing: They will both use Typer Island for their typing instruction this year with a bumped up WPM goal. Tenor had 1 lesson but Soprano will start next week.
Spanish: Tenor started his new Spanish curriculum and watched the first intro lesson and did a bunch of worksheet pages. Soprano jumped back into Switched on Schoolhouse Elementary Spanish where she left off last year.
Phys Ed.: We were blessed to get a huge outdoor trampoline off of Freecycle a few weeks ago so the kids have been jumping every day. They're continuing with Tae Kwon Do but have had a lighter schedule over the summer. It'll be every week this fall.
They did a worksheet that labeled each of the continents we learned last year.
PA History, Civics, and Health will start in the next few weeks.
We were quite excited to start our My Father's World studies. This year we begin our first-year of a four-year history cycle. We started at the very beginning. A very good place to start, don't you think? ;)
Bible: We read in Genesis and read about Creation. We also refreshed our memorization of 2 Timothy 3:16.
Soprano's Creation notebook page
We also celebrated our first Jewish feast, Shabbat. The kids made a challah cover, and we enjoyed a weekend of rest. We really had no idea what we were doing but the book spelled it out for us. It was a nice way to start our school year.
Bass praying a blessing over Tenor
Bass praying a blessing over Soprano
We also enjoyed watching the first half of "What's in the Bible? with Buck Denver Volume 1". You can find some of the 'What's in the Bible?' clips on youtube. (Who Do You Trust song, Genesis song, several other great clips can be found here.) We just got the Volume 1-8 set with a great sale and already love what we've seen. Click on the link above for a 20% off code (also, currently free shipping on orders of $15 or more!)

Science: We read about how God created light and how light works. We also started reading Dinosaurs of Eden. It's a great book with lots of information. The kids watched several videos to reinforce what we learned including: Flight and Spike: Earth, Flight and Spike: Crystals, Flight and Spike: Porcupine, Flight and Spike: Dinosaurs, and Magic School Bus Gets a Bright Idea,

History: We began our timelines and hung them on our timeline string. Eventually they'll be hole-punched and go into binders.
Soprano's Timeline Page
They also finished up Olympics lapbooks that they had started during the London summer games.
Tenor's cover
Soprano's cover
Soprano's interior folder 2
Other MFW: 
Music: We listened to Haydn's Creation via youtube.
Art: We read the intro and did the first 2 drawing lessons from God and the History of Art. We got 2 books so the kids can do all of their work right in the text.

We had a great first week of school! The kids weren't jumping up and down excited to start but they got right back into the routine. Tenor even said, "I think this year is going to be more fun than last year." Yes, I agree, Lord willing!
One other fun 'school' thing we did was use a gift certificate to go to the Science Factory. They kids had a blast.
Parachute Man Pipe
Build Your Own Coaster
The Kaleidoscope
Making a Paper Plane
Sand Pendulums
To finish our very first day, we went to a local dairy farm for an ice cream treat and to visit the new baby cows!

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  1. LOL! I did not realize our kids were going into the same grades...I have a 3rd grade daughter and a 5th grade son too. Funny thing kids picked out the same notebooks...Horses and Phineas and Ferb :-D Looks like you guys had a great week.

    1. Sounds like our kids might be instant best friends! LOL

  2. We will be starting CTG next week with my 2nd and 4th graders. I'm excited to get started, and reading your blog entry has made me even more so. What a wonderful snapshot of your first week. I just got Typer Island for my kids for the year too. I will probably hold off for awhile with my 2nd grader because I think the jump in work from 1st to CTG is going to be a lot for her. I am also starting my 4th grader in IEW Ancient History. It will be our 1st year doing IEW, but I think it looks like a wonderful program. We also did that same Olympic lap book! I think you and I could have some long chats over coffee about homeschooling and curriculum!! :) Hope you second week is as great as your first! Blessings, Amy

    1. It sounds like we're leading almost parallel homeschool lives! *giggle* Our 2nd week is rolling right along, and we're enjoying CTG immensely. We've had so many good and interesting discussions already. I hope your start goes well too!

  3. Looks like an awesome first week! We are doing our first week of CTG this week!!

  4. You have so many great links! Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting them :)


Your kind comments make me smile!

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