Monday, August 29, 2011

School Week… School Year

A few new “Daily Program” additions I’m trying out as we enter what will hopefully be our first real week of school.

We may not stick with all of them through the school year, but I thought they’d be valuable, and they are included in my TeacherFileBox subscription:  Daily 6-Trait Writing, Daily Science, Daily Word Problems and A Word A Day.

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I’m not married to any of these, so I’ll just see which Naomi likes, if any, and go from there.  If I had to pick which one was the most important, I’d say the 6-trait writing (I don’t know what the traits are). 

Although Charlotte Mason doesn’t really encourage “creative” writing at this stage (narration is sufficient to ensure that they’re articulate and voicing their own thoughts), I think it’s fun to explore and pick apart the mechanics of good, vivid writing.  The exercises are low-key and only require a sentence or two of actual writing.

imageAlso new this week, the next artist in our Meet the Masters curriculum:  Piet Mondrian.  I know nothing about him or his life, and generally dislike modern art.  But we just saw an exhibit of modern art a few weeks ago, which will give us a framework, and there’s lots of background in the slideshow itself and online.  Should be educational and fun.

imageHere’s one I’m weirdly NOT looking forward to… starting Elemental Science.  However, now that I have a nice organized binder to do it with, it should go just fine. 

I AM looking forward to the readings.  But for some reason, I’m just baffled and overwhelmed about the experiments, even though for the most part, they seem very, very basic.  And I’m looking forward to building a science vocabulary (either in the form of index cards or in a notebook) so Naomi can see her own progress throughout the year.

We will also continue plugging away with the following:

MATH (5x/week):

  • JUMP Math 1.2 (almost done!)
  • First Time Analogies (occasionally, with math, for fun:  I call this her SK “SAT prep”)

ENGLISH (3x/week):

HISTORY / GEOGRAPHY (2x/week):

HEBREW / Jewish Studies (4x/week and more):

  • Kriyah v’Od, Book 2
  • L’shon HaTorah, Book 1
  • Bright Beginnings Chumash Workbook (Lech Lecha)
  • (I may add Migdalor Lech Lecha – but maybe not; it seems very advanced)
  • Tefillah Lapbook & ongoing Tefillah
  • Yom Tov Lapbooks, Readings, etc
  • Weekly Parsha Copywork (as created by ME)

SCIENCE (2x/week):

  • Elemental Science (as mentioned)

FINE ARTS (2x/week):

  • Draw Write Now, Book 1, then Book 8
  • Meet the Masters (as mentioned)
  • 3-month Composer Studies roughly following the Ambleside Schedule

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Sure LOOKS like it’s going to be busy around here! 

imageAs for preschool, I’m finding lots of material at the TeacherFileBox site to keep Gavriel Zev busy.  His passion this week is CUTTING.  Cutting anything, any size, shape, whatever.  He’s getting better and better, but has lost all interest in anything else, even his beloved same/different. 

We’re just about to start the FINAL nursery rhyme from our 12-rhyme unit, Literature Pockets:  Nursery Rhymes, which I bought in ebook form and just print off as I need.  image

I was starting to feel sad about finishing it, but then I discovered that Evan-Moor has ANOTHER Nursery Rhyme unit-study-in-a-box book called Learning With Nursery Rhymes, which I can download and print from TeacherFileBox.

Alternatively, timagehere’s also this e-book of Literature Pockets:  Folktales and Fairy Tales, which I can ALSO download for nothing, and I was thinking might be fun to do, co-op style, once a week with a couple of friends.  They’re a little more advanced than the nursery rhymes, but not much more so.  I guess we’ll see if they are interested.

I think we’re ALL really enjoying these super-light literature units:  Naomi can do the activities nicely, at her level, while Gavriel Zev can do the activities more quickly (except the cutting, which he LOVES, as I said!) and enjoys memorizing the poems and showing off as he recites them.

The only thing I don’t like about all these “pockets” resources (we’re also doing the History Pockets:  Ancient Civilizations along with our SOTW history) is that the pockets themselves are quite large (12 x 12) and, fully assembled, the pockets stack up thickly to make a JUMBO book that I have no idea where to store.

I guess that should be the biggest of my worries as we plow headlong into yet another amazing year at home…

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