Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Weekly Wrap-up ~ As we start another week
We pulled out of here on Friday as soon as Dawson got out of school to spend the weekend in Oklahoma. When we moved, I had promised that we would spend his 16th birthday weekend "back home" so he could spend time with his friends. So I am just now getting to my Weekly Wrap-up from last week. And we had a good week!
Maybe it was because I planned out all of our lessons first thing last Saturday morning instead of last thing Sunday night. Maybe it was because I went back to having a fun unit study planned. Maybe it was a combination of both, but our week was the type of homeschooling week I love.
Fire Safety. A highlight of our week was doing one of Eli's cub scout requirements. He drew a map of our house with an escape route in case of a fire. Then we practiced our escapes, including exiting out their bedroom window should that be necessary. We chose a meeting place outside and spent a lot of time discussing all of the "shoulds" and "should nots".
Writing. Our Write Shop lessons the past two weeks have been teaching us Introduction, Body, and Conclusion. With a theme of trains, Eli and Brynne wrote their stories, (reluctantly) allowed me to edit their work, revised them, and then published them by writing each sentence on a different train car made out of construction paper.
Spelling and Reading Comprehension. We are reviewing a product for the Review Crew, that I will post about this week, so we spent lots of time doing spelling lessons and reading fun stories and answering questions. It was a very enjoyable time of our day.
P.E. We had some extra fun P.E. time this week, due to our unit study on Senegal and Nigeria. We played fun games called Jumping the Beanbag and Playing with Seeds. Motherland Nigeria, where these games came from, was our Favorite Resource this week. Our Family Time Fitness lessons had us doing fun things like dribbling a basketball (but since we didn't have one, we just pretended to dribble a ball ... that actually provides a lot of exercise!), and walking around in crouched positions pretending we were monsters. The dogs chased us and barked hysterically.
Math. The kids also enjoyed our math lessons this week because we were doing measurements. They loved running around the house measuring things in both centimeters and inches. They also did some preliminary multiplication problems.
Bible. Our Bible lessons this week were centered around Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar. We learned the consequences of taking matters into our own hands, but how God loves us and will bless us despite our weaknesses.
Literature. We finished James and the Giant Peach. Wow! I wish I would have researched that book before we read it. We could have taken an entire quarter of our schooling this year and based lessons off it, everything from London, to insects, to weather, to monuments in New York City, and more! It was a really great book! I had never read it before and I am so glad that we did!
Unit Study. Our unit study was the highlight of our week. We learned about Nigeria and Senegal. There is a production in a nearby town this weekend with folk tales and music from those areas called "And We Will Share the Sky". I don't know if we are going to end up being able to afford to go, but our study of those areas was not in vain. The kids love geographical studies, so we had a great time even if we don't end up going to the production. We listened to music and to Pidgin (Nigeria's second language), colored flags, read books, played games, cooked, and read (and learned about) folk tales from those regions as well as from our own.
1. The kids playing "Playing with Seeds", a fun kind of shuffleboard game. They played this while listening to Nigerian folk music on the iPad. (The swords were to just give them a line for their seeds.)
2. They colored flags for Nigeria and Senegal.
3. The books we read this week: The Magic Tree, Bikes for Rent (Brynne loved this one), The Iroko-Man, Paul Bunyan, and a couple of geographical books on Nigeria and Senegal. We usually take picture walks through the long geographical books.
4. We made quick sand with cornstarch and water (Thank you, Confessions of a Homeschooler). This was SOOOO cool! I highly recommend that you do it! I only had a small amount of cornstarch, so ours was small, but we got the total effect of how quicksand is both a solid and a liquid at the same time! When you scrape up a hard clump of it (it feels like clay) and hold it above your bowl, it immediately turns to liquid and runs through your fingers. So neat! The kids played with toys in it, and Dawson even played in it when he got home from school.
5. The kids cooked Jollof Chicken and rice for dinner. Well, we are not huge fans of Nigerian cuisine. But, we each ate a small plateful. It was very bland, and I just don't care for ginger and cinnamon in a savory dish. They are really looking forward to their Thursday evening cooking nights, though.
Overall this was a really great week with a diverse amount of learning opportunities. We took the day off yesterday because we were traveling back from Oklahoma all day. But Eli had cub scouts last night (that both Brynne and I attend) and we got to hear a presentation about the history of our town from a man who was a boy scout here 68 years ago, in the same scout cabin. Very interesting!!
We are moving on this week to an exciting new geographical study of Indonesia (that you will be hearing a lot about in the upcoming weeks), starting a new writing unit, starting a new piece of literature for read-a-loud, learning about the life of Isaac, and much more.
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