Weeks 19 & 20

I’ve been working almost every afternoon the past couple of weeks, so we have had to get right on things to get done. The motivator of needing to get done in time to have computer time BEFORE I start work has proven a powerful force. If we start by 9:30 or so we can generally be done by 11:30, which allows for fifteen minutes of computer time each (with lag time for loading, etc.) and I can start work at 1:00. So. It’s not inspiring and quaint but it works.

They are enjoying Seabird more than Tree in the Trail, it seems to me, and understanding it better. We had a very short chapter in The Little Duke  over the last two weeks, which they did not like. We will all be sorry to get to the end of The Little Duke, but it is fast approaching. Joan of Arc, our Term 3 biography, is undoubtedly a fine book but I doubt it will take the place of The Little Duke.

We did a map of the United Kingdom for a change from the maps of all of Europe–it was helpful especially since in history we read about the battle of Bannockburn and Robert the Bruce. That was the day they decided to have their stuffed animals narrate. History and Beanie Babies are always a good mix.

We have mostly been going straight through the math pages–although some days Deux prefers to roll all the dice in the dice bowl and add up the total. I even had him write the totals down in his math notebook and he did not flip out. I need to start getting those out more–we have been working entirely orally for a few months, but he is getting a little bit more comfortable with a pencil and it would be good to start getting practice in. On Pi Day we measured various sizes of bowls and pans and figured out the approximate ratio before I explained about pi.

Speaking of getting comfortable with a pencil, this week they decide they wanted to do Spanish copywork, so they have been copying pages from Un Dia Feliz. This has actually gone really well, and I am pleased to see that reading Spanish is starting to click for them.

For science we are trying to study gravity, and we did the great Tower-of-Pisa experiment out back on the big climber (with a big chunk of concrete and a pinecone). I’m not sure how much they are understanding, but then, there are things in this lesson that I did not understand before now. We still have some of the lesson left to do next week.

Deux has really gotten into game design. He has started playing Magic: The Gathering for his computer time and picked it for family game night. Since he’s not allowed to touch the cards the rest of the time, he has been working out ways to play it with other kinds of cards. Duchess has gotten hooked on Nancy Drew books and is reading them all straight through. Dash is working hard on his handwriting and then reading the words he has written. Dot has been climbing trees. (I love the way kids go through phases where they defy all your stereotypes of them.)

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