Monday, March 7, 2011

Learning Update

Amirah is on the second half of Saxon 2 now. It still isn't to where Singapore was when we left it, but I think she still needs the slower pace. I still don't think we've quite hit the nail on the head for math. I may switch again in the fall after we see where we're at after finishing Saxon 2.

Raizel finished Early Bird Kindergarten Singapore Math, and is now doing their other kindergarten series, which is only slightly harder. Eli finished 1A in Singapore, but has really enjoyed doing Saxon 1 so as long as he's happy learning along we'll stick with that.

Eli continues to love this series. He has learned so much reading just by doing this that we haven't been doing Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading. He's learning everything he needs from Explode the Code for now. Raizel is doing the set of books leading up to ETC (Books A, B, C). Somewhat easy for her, but she LOVES doing it. I probably could have put her in Book 1 of ETC, but I'd rather not rush things or push her.

We have had so much fun with our astronomy studies. We can now identify the constellation Orion, and the stars Sirius, Aldeberan, Betelgeuse, and Regel. That's the chunk of sky that we can see easily right above the yard between the trees. :) The three oldest are keeping astronomy notebooks. So far we've added information about the sun and Mercury. We did watercolor paintings of Mercury, using white crayon to draw craters and pits all over the surface, then covering in gray paint. It looks a lot like the real thing! They each have an "In My Own Words" page where they put down as much as they can about each planet we're studying. I take dictation from Eli and Raizel, and Amirah writes down her own.

Most days we have had smooth sailing with chumash study. Today was not one of those days, but I'm hoping we return to our new normal tomorrow. I made a set of index cards, and each one has one word on it. I bundled them into one-pasuk sections. We go through the set of cards, and generally she has a 60% comprehension rate right off the bat. After we've gone through it once, we separate out the words she didn't recognize and she draws a picture clue on the back of the card to help her with the translation. Then we go through the deck again. She gets 3 points for reading and translating a word (including parsing out the prefixes and suffixes), 2 points if she can read it and translate it with the help of the clue card, and 1 point if she is only able to read it.

Other activities we have done:

•Putting all the cards out and having her put them in the correct order.

•Making a chart with the translation of the pasuk, then having her place the Hebrew word on top of the English equivalent and vice versa.

•Matching the shoresh to the word or words with that shoresh.

At first it was taking 2 days to really master it, but now we're down to 1 day. I'm hoping that June we'll be up to two pesukim per day and continue to progress through the summer. We're also back into Lashon Hatorah after a break of several months. The first book was really easy and we finished it in 1st grade. The second book gets a good bit harder!

Everything else is just humming along as usual. In history, we're studying England's 100 Years War and are about to get to the War of the Roses, and Spain in 1492... the Inquisition and Columbus. We're in the last 3 weeks of our spelling book; we'll just be rolling on into the next one. Writing With Ease and First Language Lessons continues to work well for us... I think my brain just got to the end of its usefulness this evening. Time for sleep! Good night, all!

No comments: