Monday, August 25, 2014

Weekly Wrap-Up : The 1st Week

I honestly was a little worried about going from our relaxing and unscheduled summer days into a school day routine. We did start very slowly only adding a few subjects at first. In fact, there were a few subjects like Science and Logic that I had collected the materials for but didn't really plan to teach so we could really just ease in. But the kids asked... or more like begged! So we ended up covering a lot more than I had initially planned!

Glad I was ready:)

We started with Old Story New in the beginning of the week:) We started it last year, worked on a few weeks through the summer and so it felt very familiar. We also read and discussed some introductory verses from Tapestry of Grace, Year 1.

All three older kids jumped excitedly into their math:) They were sharing a computer, which I dreaded; but, it all worked out quite well. As they waited for each other to finish they worked on their own practice problems or fact sheet. Since the girls were starting with a new level they began with review, but Chris jumped right back into the middle of the 4th year... so it was a little tougher to zip through lessons, but he got the hang of it quickly!

We started with the IEW Ancients curriculum. We started on key word outlining because it matched our history topics better than the beginning assignments. The kids knew right what to do from our experience last year with IEW. It was exciting to see how quickly they remembered how to pick out the key words and then to use the outlines for their own summaries. Yipppeee!!

For our reading, we used the literature suggestions from Tapestry. Anna started the cat of Bubastes by G.A. Henty and Lydia and Chris read other books about Egypt, Bill and Pete Go Down the Nile, Deserts and Peeps at Many Lands (on the Kindle). Anna quickly lost interest in The Cat of Bubastes and Peeps at Many Lands (with all the new words and places) got "too slow" for Lydia and Chris. So we changed it up a bit in the middle of the week:) I read Peeps at Many Lands to everyone (a chapter each day), we started reading The Golden Goblet in the evenings with Brian and the kids chose from a pile of Ancient Egypt books what they wanted to read during their structured reading time:)

One of the reasons I wanted to ease into school was so we could figure out how Tapestry would "fit" into the school day. I've already explained a bit how using Tapestry has affected our Bible time by reading and discussing passages suggested for the week. Our readings were based off of Tapestry suggestions as well. Surprisingly our history time looked some what similar to when we used SOTW because we pulled it out to read 2 chapters for this week.

When working on our paper maps, I used some of the suggested places/regions/etc from Tapestry (TOG) and blended the two. We did most of the bigger geographical identifications by the kids finding the locations on the map on the wall. For the terms (lots of terms) we made note cards. It was kid of cool to learn the differences between seas, gulfs and bays. And then we planned our salt map of Egypt:)... yes, just planned we didn't actually get to make it until Week #2.

Part of our reading talked about the meaning of history and that everyone has events in their life that makes up their own history, so we made our own timelines.

IMG_8180And then another section of reading talked about archeology. Nate and I went out one morning and buried some "treasures" (plastic plates, a homemade bracelet, pencil, etc) in the sandpit. Later in the afternoon the older kids went outside to dig it all up:) They tried to made some grid lines but then just started randomly digging and still did not find all the items (even with Nate helping them)! I think they learned a few of the challenges of archeology especially earlier when they wanted to go dig but it had just started raining!

We began Science with learning about the different theories surrounding the formation of the world. We read from the Bible and sources confirming creation and then found sources explaining evolution. And we talked about other theories, like "old world" versus "new world" and intelligent design. We started reading a child's biography on Charles Darwin as well. The kids really liked the detailed coloring page from a our science book.

When "preparing" science I quickly realized how different this year of science is going to be for us. The book covers a lot of topics but is merely a guide not a full teaching curriculum - how spoiled I was after using Apologia! So there is a lot more preparations that need to be done each week (but after Week #2 I'm seeing that we are being challenged, I just need to be willing to find additional resources to make it more hands-on and "alive").

They begged to pull out the Mind Benders book:) I cut up little paper pieces so I wouldn't have to copy a page for each kid and we did each puzzle together. Just two or three puzzles during each session.

Preschool Corner
Nate and I began The Story of Ping. I got a lot of my printables from Royal Baloo and Mama's Learning Corner. After reading Ping and taking about the books some he jumped into some activities.

He  worked on beginning sounds printables and a few pages from an "old-school" pre-reading book I own.

He glue ducks to make a D. And we used some toys to learn some new things about water;)


You've got to love preschool in the bathtub:) We read a book about water and some of the things it does, while Nate was finishing his bath. And we used some toys to learn some new things about water;)

 Preschool is pretty short and sweet around here;) Although he did have a few practice sessions on listening quietly during Bible Time. And learning to finish a task when ask and cleaning up before pulling out a new toy:)

A few weeks ago we were given some tadpoles. I was super excited since we hadn't done the "tadpole thing" for a few years and Nate hadn't seen it yet. One morning, during our first week, we realized that some of the tadpoles had grown their back legs, so we added some rocks to their habitat.

Nate and I also took a little break from rowing Ping to read about tadpoles. He enjoyed seeing all the stages and then finding tadpoles in our batch that were at some of the different stages, too.

One morning while walking the dog we found a visitor:) This turtle looked a little different than the normal Eastern Box or Yellow-Bellied Sliders that usually bravely venture into our yard! The kids pointed out all the differences, like his nose and webbed feet, to try to figure out what he was. We're actually still not sure but we put him near the water since his feet were webbed.


Extra Adventures
We still got to the pool a few days last week:) It was a great motivation to get all the school work done... a perk to starting school while the pool is still open:)

On Friday we began final preparations for the kids snack sale at Grammie's community yard sale. The kids sold snacks, fruit and drinks. We bought their supplies and then taught them about paying for the supplies before calculating how much they actually got to keep. I really think it was a good 1st "business" adventure and they learning a lot about giving change back and talking to adult customers!! They each got to keep just over $4! So a pretty good experience overall!

Getting Ready!!

The snack crew...  such welcoming faces!! Don't you love the 100% little brother!

Overall a fun, busy, great week!! Things just clicked for us and we got off to a pretty good start.... don't think it's all peachy here because then Week #2 happened. The honeymoon-like 1st week was OVER. LOL!!

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