Thursday, October 04, 2007

Day 28


  • got a day off Latin today since he's finished the 2nd chapter in the book. I have to figure out how to consolidate the first and second declensions in his head and move on to the third declension. Henle does it very carefully and well but I think it's a good idea to move slowly on that.
  • Math -- review of integers continues.
  • Greek and Vocabulary -- he did them and I told him there will be a quiz tomorrow.
  • He read King Solomon's Ring and Mere Christianity. I'm going to look through the books this weekend and devise a sort of outline of progress and some key points or things to discuss or write about.
  • That was about it for him. Oh, I had him look at the world map in the atlas in preparation for some of the other atlas activities we will be doing.
  • And he did his weekly chores and is now straightening his room. He continues the rehab stretching.


  • I showed him the atlas too. We looked up Assisi (since today is St Francis's feast day and I had given him a couple of books to read on Francis). I showed him the index, then showed him how to find things by page number and quadrant. We never did manage to actually find Assisi because I can't see any more without my magnifying spectacles! But we found Napoli, familiar from Dean Martin, and then I showed him the plate tectonics section and the prehistoric timeline and some of the other features in the atlas.
  • This is to start a research skills practicum -- I realize my tendency is to get so caught up in other things that I forget to teach my kids "how to's" like how to look up things. They usually figure it out for themselves in the long run but I thought it would be interesting to Kieron (and he did seem interested). So the other research activity was to look up snakes in the family encyclopedia. This was a review of ABC order as well.
  • He also did math (Least Common Multiples -- we skipped ahead in the book) and I went over Greek with him and assigned him his handwriting.
  • I assigned him the next chapter of Discovery of New Worlds.
  • Yesterday, I read to him while he exercises (see below)
  • I also taught him to use the sewing machine, and he made himself a cape for Halloween!

  • I worked with Aidan a bit on writing and phonics -- his attention span was short.
  • Yesterday afternoon we went on an extended walk and then I constructed a seasonal table (I do like that very simple and congenial Waldorf idea) and the youngsters got very interested in helping me do it. This was definitely a good thing.
  • I read a lot to Paddy last night -- he is into the first Little House books (the picture books) and they are nice because they are both focused on seasons (autumn and winter) with all the attendant preparations. Paddy loves to hear about the different activities Ma did with the girls -- he asked me to make paper dolls (soldiers! warriors! with swords and shields! well, not QUITE like Ma and Laura and Mary!) and reminded me today. So I made paper soldiers in between helping the boys with their schoolwork.
  • Yesterday, I also started a new habit of reading to Kieron while he exercises on the bike. We read (reread) the Great and Terrible Quest. Paddy listened a little too. Reading to Kieron, even material he can read himself, will have trickle-down effects to the younger crowd. SO it's something to encourage.
  • Today is homeschool Stations of the Cross. So maybe it doesn't matter that academics are shortish today. I do think we made progress.

Other things/concerns/issues:

  • Too much screen time! With so many kids, even a short time per kid adds up to the screen glowing for a good bit of the day. The main problem is Paddy.
  • Not enough challenge for Sean -- he's still zipping through his work too fast. Challenge isn't the word precisely -- he needs something to be meticulous and self-directed about, because he tends to zip through things fast. Busywork isn't the word, but maybe I'm thinking about the academic equivalent of his football practice..... a routine composed of different levels of skills and different focuses (foci). I wonder if this is making sense.
  • As far as Kieron's routine, it's going much better than it was when I complained about this a couple of weeks ago.
  • I have to keep in mind a second and third wave for the day -- where I can focus on the littlies, and on some longer-term projects for the older boys.
  • I am really thinking about a consolidated MATH day where we do a LOT -- perhaps on Monday -- and then the rest of the week I won't feel worried if we have only short lessons.
Action Plans:
  • SO, for lesson planning today and tomorrow and during the weekend..... go through the books we are reading and make chapter breakdowns and key points/questions -- use the Kolbe materials as a guideline.
  • And also, think of ways to integrate and extend different subject topics.
  • And think of ways to vary the rhythm during the day -- so the kids are doing more constructive activities. The duplos have been getting lots of use recently -- and so have the cars and racecourse. So that's good, and so are homemade activities like the paper soldiers. I am not that much of an arts and crafts person, but I am rediscovering my joy in improvised homemade games and crafts -- used to do this a lot with the older set when they were littlies, but somehow got away from it later on -- probably too busy and too worried about keeping the older lot on track with their academics.

1 comment:

  1. I always enjoy your learning journals, and I like the way you incorporate your thoughts, plans, and challenges.