Thursday, August 31, 2017

Year 1: Week 11

For composer study this week, we listened to Beethoven's Razumovsky String Quartet Opus 59, no. 1.

Thanks to Children of the Open Air, for sol-fa, we learned Lucy Locket Lost Her Pocket.

The picture we looked at for artist study was Degas' "A Woman Seated Beside a Vase of Flowers."

In math, Gemma completed Life of Fred: Kidneys chapters 12 & 13, in which the reader finally learns why the book is titled Kidneys.

I especially liked this section of LOF: Kidneys (page 92), "But there is one leisure time activity that is more important than any of these, even more important than eating pizza! ... [L]eisure time gives you time to think, to ask the bigger questions in life. Many of the most important advances in the history of the world happened when people spent their leisure time thinking about *What makes plants grow? *How do stars shine? *Why is it cold in winter? *When will people stop doing bad things?"

At church, Gemma got the opportunity to practice playing handbells. :)
She also started Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Their first lesson was how to escape if a person grabs them by the wrist with one hand, or with two hands.
In Natural History, we read more about crabs, and learned that some crabs can climb trees! (We, of course, had to look this up on YouTube.) We also read (in Plant Life in Field and Garden) "The Story of a Turnip," which includes the parts of a flower, as well as how the different parts of a turnip feed different animals.

I checked out some of Freddie Levin's 1-2-3 Draw Books from the library. Gemma liked the Mythical Creatures one best. She drew the fairy, the unicorn, and the pixie.
At Classical Conversations, Gemma's class worked on symmetry, and drawing a bald eagle with Mona Brooks' "basic shapes."
Gemma's bald eagle...
As if the week weren't full enough, there was a bike ride with Daddy to the beach, dance class...
...and more...

Recitations: OT, Psalm 150, NT, hymn

Geography: The World By the Fireside (Iceland), and CM's Elementary Geography (ch. 6 "Our World and Other Worlds"). CM's book was written before Pluto was a planet, and then was not a planet, so it says there are eight planets, which is current. This chapter also discusses Galileo, and the way the planets reflect the sun's light. I didn't realize, but I now do, after looking it up, the name for this is planetshine (and earthshine).

Cursive: Gemma worked on signing her name, and writing ps and qs...and rs.

Tales: How the Camel Got His Hump (Kipling)

Fable: The Two Frogs

History: The Fall of Tyre & The Rise of Carthage. Added "574 BC Tyre (now Lebanon) fell to King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon" to timeline book.

Piano: continued working on "Caravan," reviewed other songs

Foreign Languages: songs & Duolingo

Bible: David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17)

We also read some Stevenson poetry.

For handicrafts, I found a second My Studio Girl sewing kit at the 99 Cent Store ($3.99 - a doll kit). It was the last one! I got it at the end of the week, so Gemma has only been able to sew and stuff one arm, so far.

Free reads: Voyage of the Dawn Treader, The Bronze Ring (from The Blue Fairy Book), and Phoebe the Spy (Judith Berry Griffin).

Week 12 - the final week of our first term - here we come!

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Year 1: Week 10

This week's handicraft was a cupcake sewing kit from the 99 Cent Store. It cost $1.99, and included everything (except scissors) needed to make the cupcake - two plastic needles (one for each color of thread!), more than enough thread, all of the beads with holes actually big enough for the plastic needle to fit through! We've used lots of kits and they usually omit materials. Now I'm curious about what other sewing kits "My Studio Girl" manufactures. 

The cupcake was a three-day project. First, Gemma sewed on the pearls and sewed the red and green pieces to the purple piece. A couple of days later, she attached the purple piece to the pink piece with a running stitch. The third day, she sewed the rest of the beads on and stuffed it.
It was great fine motor skills practice, as well as practice following directions. She also gained practice with failure recovery. One of the biggest lessons sewing can teach is that problems can be fixed. Seams can be ripped out and sewn again. Worst case scenario, a person can buy new fabric. With a little kit like this, the needle can go back up through the prepunched hole it came down; knots can be unknotted.

This week's...

Bible story: David the Shepherd Boy (from 1 Samuel, about Samuel annointing David)

Natural History: Plant Life in Field and Garden ch. 2 ("The Work Done By Leaves"), Gathered four, not six (as written), plants with different shaped leaves and noticed how they grow upon the stem, painted (with water brush) the four leaves, & The Burgess Seashore Book ch 10 "A Lobster and a Crab that Cannot Pinch"

Artist Study: Degas' "At the Races in the Countryside"

Composer Study: Beethoven's "Turkish March"

Piano: "Caravan"

History: ch 19 "The Dawn of History"

Geography: The World By the Fireside "The Water that Spouts and Boils" & "Mount Hecla" (both about Iceland). Gemma's narration involved physically reinacting the volcanic eruption.

Math: Life of Fred Kidneys ch 11
(Introducing exponents, 1 to any power is 1, 0 to any power is 0, a score is 20, etc.)

Cursive: m n o

Fairy Tale: The Frog Prince

Fable: The Angler and the Little Fish

Foreign Languages: Gemma is on a 27 day Duolingo streak. She decided to go back to the beginning and review earlier, easier, lessons, and I'm all for that.  She sang her foreign language songs, and watched one episode of Telefrancais.

Free Read: We're on the second to last chapter of Pinocchio, and we started Voyage of the Dawn Treader. I'm curious, which book do you enjoy more - Prince Caspian or Voyage of the Dawn Treader? My vote is Voyage of the Dawn Treader.

There were also some Stevenson poems, recitation, this term's hymn, the solar eclipse (which Gemma viewed using a pinhole camera box), her first week of Classical Conversations Cycle 3, and her first week of dance (Tap 1 and Ballet 1).

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Year 1: Week 9

This "week" was really two weeks - the week before I started back to work, and my first week back.

I knew I was going to be too busy to think about anything other than work, so I'm glad I made the decision to start our school year early.

What I didn't realize was that Gemma's swim lessons were going to take up the greater part of my post-work/pre-bed time. 

It was well worth it, though. She is now able to swim the entire length of the pool without touching the floor. She isn't yet able to swim the distance without getting tired and needing to flip herself over on her back for a short rest a couple of times. Her coach said she only needs one more round of Fish (to build up her endurance) before she can move on to Barracuda.

Post-swim, with her completion certificate...
With a kickboard, Gemma was the fastest swimmer in her class. She won the kickboard race every class for a MONTH! That's her in the lead...
She recited her OT passage, NT passage, Psalm 150, and the two Stevenson poems. We also read several new Stevenson poems (she read a couple on her own). We sang our hymn, and our foreign language songs.

Her fairy tale was Cinderella; she read it on her own and narrated to me when I got home. Her narration was, "Cinderella planted a hazelnut tree, with just one twig! I never knew! And the tree threw down three splendid dresses, each more splendid. The third one was splend-est. And the stepsisters cut off part of their feet!"

This week's fable was "The Dog and the Shadow."

This week's Bible passage was The Call of Samuel. 

For history, we read Our Island Story (Albion and Brutus), A Child's History of Art: Architecture (Mud Pie Palaces and Temples), and On the Shores of the Great Sea (The Siege of Troy).

She did Duolingo Spanish and French, and practiced piano daily.

For handicrafts, we made an origami elephant. I helped with the trickier folds, but Gemma did most of the elephant. She did the inside reverse folds on the tips of the ears, the feet, and the tip of the trunk entirely by herself.
For natural history, we read The Burgess Seashore Book "Reddy Fox Meets Big Claw" (about lobsters), and started a new book (Plant Life in Field and Garden). The chapter we read was "A Shepherd's Purse." In it, the narrator instructs the reader to go out and pull up a weed, and observe the weed's roots and rootlets.
The chapter also mentioned manure, so Gemma learned a new word.😉

For geography, we read chapter 5 of CM's Elementary Geography ("The Star"), which is the complete version of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star by Jane Taylor; we also read The World By the Fireside "Ships Set Fast in the Ice" (about the Northwest Passage, with a mention of the Panama Canal), and "Floco and his Ravens" (a story about how Iceland was discovered).

To enhance our geography studies, we watched some videos from the "Countries Around the World" series (each 13 minutes) and the "Families of the World" series. Our history lessons have been focused on the countries surrounding the Mediterranean, so we checked out videos from the library about Egypt, Israel, Turkey, and Greece. We also recently read about "Lapland," so we watched one on Finland.

We re-viewed Children of the Open Air's sol-fa 6A video (Bye Baby Bunting, with "la.") 

Gemma continued working on cursive...
For math, we did Life of Fred: Kidneys chapter 10. Not-so-secret secret: I don't make Gemma do math daily. We do math formally once or twice a week. In the future, this will change. (It would take f-o-r-e-v-e-r to learn, say, algebra completing only one or two lessons per week.) But can a child learn elementary math with only one or two formal math lessons per week? Yes. Another question I've gotten is, "Does Life of Fred provide enough practice?" People are used to math workbooks with 30 similar problems on one page. Life of Fred: Kidneys chapter 10 had only FOUR problems! But each "Your Turn to Play" is a multi-step problem. For example, number 4 was the equivalent of 15 problems!
For artist study, Gemma chose "Carriage at the Races," and for composer study, we listened to Beethoven's Turkish March (and just for fun and comparison - Mozart's Turkish March). Also, we listened daily to KUSC 91.5 - our classical music radio station - on the commute to and from swim.

Our current free read is Pinocchio. We're 2/3 through and we love it. In the car the other day, Gemma asked, "Mom, is it true that a person can die of sorrow?"

Pete also took Gemma to play with friends in the forest at Temescal Canyon, to the park for a Little Explorers lesson about space, and took her bodyboarding on his surfboard. That beach day was my third day of work. While my students were reviewing/learning procedures, getting to know each other, and taking diagnostic assessments, my daughter was "at school" surfing with Daddy.😆 I love it.

So, looking back over the past two weeks, we did quite a bit, and I survived the first week back at work.