Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Quarterly Report

Well we are a quarter of the way thru our school year this week. It doesn't seem accurate to me, like it can't possibly be true. We just got started! But we have settled into our curriculums (a bit) and have learned a lot!

We continue to use Sonlight Core 1 for History, Geography, Readers and Reader Alouds. All of us love it. Nothing can top the time spent snuggled on the couch reading and discussing these great books. I can't believe how much all of us are learning. Right now we are in Ancient Egypt. The only down side is that since we truly only use the core and not Bible, Science or Language Arts... it's a little much. I believe a quality education, especially in 2d grade, has it's basis in Language Arts, Math and Science. So Sonlight has been down played to 3x per week for about an hour in more of a Well-Trained Mind method.

Math we continue with Math U See. We have fallen away from the begging to do it a couple of times a day but we are still happily trucking along. This gives me confidence that while it's not a program I would have ordinarily choosen, it was definitely the right choice for pixie.

Language Arts - Welcome to the hodge podge =) We use First Language Lessons from the authors of Well Trained Mind (WTM) for Grammar. We all love it so much that we've also added their Writing With Ease program for Writing. Spelling continues to be Catholic Heritage Curricula, though I really question it's level. CHC prides themselves on gentleness. I guess after a couple of years of traditional Catholic School my DD is just bored by their ease. We use Explode The Code 4 to expand on spelling and phonics as well.

Science - We are in Earth Science & Astronomy. Never something that interested me, but we are making the best of it. We attempted to see the Meteor Showers earlier this month and have a fun packet from NASA to explore. We are using Seton Science for grade 2. We are also notebooking anything and everything we can to apply to this subject.

Religion - We are using the Faith & Life series at home in addition to attending CCD. We are also using the Devotional Stories from CHC for some religious ed and character development. These Devotional Stories just can't be beat. I see them as the shining star of their curriculum.

Art - Artistic Pursuits. We love Art here. The love for art is a gift from my mother. She's a painter. When I was maybe 3 I vividly remember setting up my little eisle to oil paint beside her. It's a love I hope to pass down to my children. I love Artistic Pursuits because it's a curriculum with real quality materials. Just like I was taught.

Music - We are actually ready to start something new. We are trying to decide between a beginner piano instruction or music appreciation. Both have pros and cons... not sure which way to go though.

For our Little Man we continue to do 'Pre-K' ~ He's just so proud.

We are following Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready written by a kindergarten teacher. For just basic childhood skills. Yesterday he spent the morning at the sink filling measuring cups with water and combining them. It was a blast.

He is also begging to learn to read. We continue to work with our letters and also have done some lessons out of Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. It's my understanding that it's not uncommon for the younger siblings to want school too. So we are very low key. We only attempt a lesson when he asks for it and only as long as he wants to do so.

He can be a little challenging in that he doesn't always like to share what he knows. If I ask him a question the answer is usually "Don't know." However if I really want to see if he knows a color then during an activity I will say, "Hand me your red cup." And he'll quickly correct me that the cup is yellow ~ or whatever the true color is. Which makes it a bit more challenging for me to gauge his levels.

Either way, my overwhelming thoughts of the first 9 weeks are that if I would have known that homeschooling was this easy and fun; I would have done it long ago. And the littles love it! Who wouldn't?!

1 comment:

Sherrie said...

Sounds like you guys are having a blast! I was going to ask you if you'd heard of Seton. :) I know now that you have. :) I have the first Artistic Pursuits book and ALL the supplies, but I think we're going to pass and just let Caleb absorb what he can in the semi-private art lessons. I just don't have a love for all things art really...so it's a tough one for me. It doesn't help that I'm not really artistically inclined. LOL!

And -- the workboxes are going great. It's not really that he's super excited about the extra activity (the last box), but it keeps him on track, and he knows exactly what he has to do each day. He goes and gets the number, gets the assignment, and we sit and do it. Then, it's on to the next box until the day is done. It helps things go much more smoothly I think.

Looking forward to seeing you soon. You going to make it to Bunco tomorrow night?