Monday, August 22, 2011

First Days of School

We have rounded the corner into another school year.  Ethan took off yesterday as a middle schooler.  Jay took him to school for the first day without me.  It didn't help that Ethan announced that I was sometimes embarrassing with my photo taking. (gee, thanks, Ethan)  I am still wrapping my mind around his entry into middle school.  I remember those years full of social challenges and meandering foci.  My prayers is for him to be a tad more guided and focused as he navigates the hormone-infested waters that is the middle school pool.  This is the first year that he will change classes throughout the day, garnering a new set of classmates in each class.  In some ways this is a good thing in that issues going on throughout the day are not festered by being in the same environment.  However, he isn't around some of his friends for much of that day.  All in all, he seems very determined to have a banner year.

We began homeschool yesterday, although Sadie was sick.  I wasn't pushing too much with her, but went head-first with Lily. Lily was pretty enthusiastic, particularly with math.  She kept wanting to do more and more, asking when she would get to her times tables.  We still have to tackle subtraction with renaming before we get to that.  She is a girl who is constantly drilling in on patterns and sequences.  I love to see how her mind works as she discovers and creates these strings of order throughout her day whether in a store, nature, or her room.

Sadie had been running a fever for several days, but finally seemed to be coming out of it yesterday.  My kids are so rarely sick that on the rare times that they are, I am needlessly worded.  However, as the day wore on, she drifted into the bonus room and settled in to start some work...without being asked.  What a turn around from last year! I think having Lily at home is definitely going to be a huge encouragement.

Here is our plan for the first half of the year with the girls:

Sadie 4th Grade
Language - Abeka, Language A
Easy Grammer 5 for reinforcement and extra practice
Reading Comprehension - Jacob's Ladder- It is a very challenging program for gifted kids, so we are starting with 2nd-3rd grade level to get the swing of things. 
Writing - Daily 6 Trait Writing. 
Math - Singapore 4A, however I realized yesterday that we need to do about 2 weeks of 3A/3B review before moving to new material. 
Spelling - Spelling Workout, Level E
Geography - Around the World in 180 Days.  We will do an overview of World Geography for the first half of the year.  This is a great series because it offers several levels within the same book, meaning you can revisit it a couple years, drilling down deeper each time.
Science - Astronomy by Apologia. 
History - A Story of the World, Part 1.  We did this out of order last year, beginning with Part 4 which was a 4th - 8th grade level.  I am discovering that Part 1 will be a piece of cake for Sadie after doing Part 4. It is history through the last Roman Emperor.
Bible/Worldview - Who Am I?  by Apologia.  They have created a journal to go along with this series.  Can not wait to delve into it.

P.E.  Swimming 2x a week, Soccer
Arts:  Drama, Dance, Piano, Cake Decorating
Extras:  Lego Physics

Sadie has pretty decent handwriting, so I am not going to push her to do this every day.  It will probably be something I use as filler when we have a light day.  I also picked up some fun brain teaser books to break up the monotony of schedule.

Her goals for the year include:
1. Having a great attitude
2. Increasing accuracy in all her work.
3. All written work to completed in complete, grammatically correct sentences

She would also like to plan, shop for and cook an entire dinner this year. She is very excited about this.

Lily 2nd Grade

Language - Abeka, Language 2

Writing - Writing with Ease 2, which also serves as reading comprehension practice
Math - Singapore 2A, which I suspect she will fly through based on yesterday's work.
Spelling - Spelling Workout, Level C
Geography - Around the World in 180 Days.
Science - Astronomy by Apologia, in conjunction with Sadie
History - A Story of the World, Part 1.
Bible/Worldview - Who Is God? by Apologia.
Handwriting - Transitions

P.E.  Swimming 2x week, Soccer
Arts:  Piano, Dance, Music class
Extras:  Lego Physics, Marvels of Nature

Lily's handwriting and fine motor skills are pretty atrocious.  I am trying not to get too freaky about them, but know we have got to get serious about them.  She cannot tie her shoes yet, so obviously this is where we start to work.

Her goals this year include:
1. To become more independent
2. To learn to control her emotions
3. Read, read, read

I also want Lily to fix and clean-up breakfast for Sadie and Ethan, learn to ride her bike without training wheels, and tie her shoes (as mentioned above).

Here we go!

No comments: