Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Three weeks of school down

I can't believe we are already on the fourth week of school for this year. It is going really well so far. We have managed to stay on task for the most part and gradually introducing more work as each week begins. The fact that we continued Time4Learning, informally, during May & June, allowed us to get our groove back faster than normal.

This week I went ahead and formally moved Katie and Emily up a level on T4L. We had been floating back and forth between levels since July trying to find the right spot for both of them. Now, Emily is working at the 1st grade level for both Math and LA, and is excited to have access to the new Integrated Literature Studies at the 1st grade level. Katie is doing the 3rd grade level for all of her subjects, which she finds challenging but more interesting than 2nd.

In addition to T4L we've also been working through our unit studies. Currently, we've got three going: Weather, Whales, and Money and Banking. Although, each have their own assigned unit studies they seem to enjoy taking part in each other's studies. Mary is also doing a formal literature study for the first time while reading "Frindle" by Andrew Clements. Katie is reading the Classic Starts version of "Moby Dick" as part of her Whale study. I'm amazed that she is enjoying the book so much as I never personally cared for the story and she is only 7. Not something I would have thought she would be interested in. I offered to read it aloud to her, but she wanted to read it herself.

Our evening read aloud has been "Three Cups of Tea" by Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin. Since we have been reading about the impoverished areas of Pakistan, the news about the catastrophic flooding has been very important to us. We've followed it on the BBC site as American news is very lacking when it comes to international news. We wonder how many of the villages CAI has helped over the years have been destroyed by the floods and how sad for the people.

Outside of school we have already started fall sports. Katie has had softball practices for a couple of weeks now and they have their first game this weekend. Mary's soccer team is having their team camp this week in the evenings. They will start formal practices next week and the first games will be the end of August at the kick-off tournament.

Next week, Mary will be attending camp in the mountains again while the rest of us head to the beach so Emily can go to her first day camp. Katie and I will be taking the week to focus on her whale unit study. We'll cover the history of whale hunting and in particular the little known history of whaling in NC. Carteret County/Beaufort started off as a whaling port in the late 1600s. In fact, my first ancestors to settle there were whalers originally from Massachusetts. We'll look through some of the family history books my mom has and also visit the Maritime Museum while we are there. Unfortunately, DH has to stay behind and hold down the fort for us.

We'll also take off the next week from school lessons. The public schools will be starting that week, and as a reward to the girls for working so hard we are going to take the week to visit some museums in the area and hopefully do some nature walks. It will be nice to be out and about when everyone else is in school.



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A family of six living and learning. You might catch us outside in the mud or working on crafts. We always seem to be on the go, come on and join us.