Homeschool Update

Friday, April 22, 2011

Boy, this post is long overdue...phew. It seems like I always have so much to say but not near enough time in which to do so. *sigh* Anyway, here goes....

A few weeks back (sheesh, this is really late), Caleb started Singapore 3A (Standards Edition) in Math. I can't say enough about how much I really love this program for him. It's sequential and logical in its presentation of math concepts, and consequently, Caleb easily gets it. I truly wished I learned math this way growing up. We have actually switched from the U.S. Edition to the Standards Edition of the program because I prefer the scope and sequence. I also prefer the color in the textbook (in 3A, the U.S. Edition changes to single color) and the spiral Home Instructor Guide.

Because English is not his first language, I chose not to use the Challenging Word Problems workbook when we started Singapore last summer. But now that he easily does them, I have added it to our mix, which also includes the U.S Edition Intensive Practice books.

Caleb continues to write his own narrations from his literature passages in the McGuffey and Elson readers. He'll write between 3-5 sentences, depending on the length of the passage. It's amazing how well this is going. Occassionally, he needs help with making his sentences complete. However, he's needing less and less help as time goes on. Not only is his writing improving, but his speaking is improving also. I can't tell you how excited I am to see this transfer.

As we wrap up our first grade year this month, I decided to introduce a new content area to our curriculum: History. During the summer months, we will continue to keep our skills fresh on our "light school" schedule. But this summer, I decided to give Story of the World: Ancients a try. I figured that now was a good time to add that subject, since it should be easier to implement this time of year. We've done four chapters so far. I have been happy to see Caleb really listening. He is so much a "math and science" kid, like his mama. So hopefully this will be engaging enough for him to continue listening and learning a little bit of history.

We are continuing to work through our science curriculum, Building Foundations Through Scientific Understanding. Again I say, I wish this was how I was taught! Humph. I love it, love it, love it! I enjoyed science when I was in school (although math was my fav), but it still came hard for me. Even I am learning with his program. And I look forward to teaching it. I also love reserving additional reading material from our library.

This month we also finished our A Beka Phonics First Grade program, as well as First Language Lessons 1. Since I want to keep Caleb's language arts skills fresh during the summer months, we are continuing on in our grammar study. He has already started First Language Lessons 2 and Growing With Grammar 2. This is going really well, as they are both so easy to implement. Caleb loves to identify parts of speech and types of sentences in daily conversation. It's quite cute.

Since Caleb is a really great speller for a six year old, I have decided to continue with my own spelling scope and sequence for him. We won't do much spelling during the summer, though. Instead, I have decided Caleb will start working on vocabulary.=) On its way are English From the Roots Up flashcards, (EFtRU) Red Hot Root Words, and Vocabulary Workshop Purple Level from Sadlier-Oxford. Although the Red Hot Root Words is for Grade 3-5, I chose it to supplement the EFtRU flashcards. The plan is for Caleb to work through this workbook with me; the Vocabulary Worksop workbook is one he can do on his own. We'll do these very loosely through the summer months.

On to Madeline...

Love this girl. She desperately wants to do school like Caleb. Insert "Mommy, my boots" (aka books.) Let's see. She can count to 10, recognize some colors (her fav being orange, at the moment) and shapes, and knows most of the sounds of the alphabet. She won't call the letters by name, though. If I point to one or say its name, she'll say its sound. A dear friend told me this was okay and actually preferred by some folks. So it doesn't bother me yet that she just shouts out her letter sounds. (And when I say "shouts", I mean it. This girl does NOT know quiet. LOL. )

She LOVES to doodle and does a fantastic job making lots of counterclockwise circles all. the. time. She has even taken the liberty of practicing those circles on her duvet in her bedroom. Lovely, isn't it? I prefer those beautifully formed circles on paper, though I guess she didn't get the memo. LOL.

Anyway, I think that about covers all the latest on the homeschooling front. Somebody light a fire under my hiney next time so these homeschool updates don't get this stinkin' long. I'm whooped.


Cheri 4/23/2011  

It sounds like the children are doing great! I, too, used Story of the World with my son. I've not started any history with the girls just yet. I've recently discovered Timberdoodle and just love their site and core programs. I'm been drooling over the products for about a month now, even though I'm in need of nothing just yet.

Good job, Mom! Sounds like Caleb might be following in his mom's footsteps, loving science. And Madeline is very, very creative!

Melissa 4/24/2011  

Wow, you all are very busy. Sounds like everyone is loving home schooling.

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About This Blog

This blog is the place where shared our lives while waiting to bring our daughters Madeline and Havi home from China. (Our son Caleb was already home before this blog began.) It is now the place where we continue to share our life experiences, both big and little, as we try to glorify God and raise our 3 dumplings from China.

Feel free to join us as we journey through life, while I try to capture our days...

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