Saturday, March 2, 2013

Schooling update

It's March!  Yesterday, Rachel was so excited that March 1 was the next day.  She was fully expecting it to be spring when she woke up and was ready to wear her t-shirts and skirts. Needless to say, she was disappointed when I explained the weather wouldn't warm up for awhile.  I know how she feels - my winter wardrobe is very old news right about now and we are done with winter around here!  I'm not sure if winter is done with us though.

Our school year is going well for the most part.  I have not been consistent with Rachel and Owen at all.  Not a big deal - it's just kindergarten.  And they're in good shape for first grade.  We've worked on reading some and done a bit with math.  They can write their letters and numbers.  Owen is fascinated with maps so we gave him a globe for his birthday and he loves to sit in the recliner with that and find things and ask lots of questions.  I'd like to get a more consistent with them so we can finish the year strong.  I think I know what curriculum I want to use with them next year and might order some things early and start now.

Tori is on her 3rd math program for the year.  I tried a new one at the beginning of the year and after 2 weeks, we were both crying when it was math time.  :)  So I switched back to Christian Light and things were going fairly well.  She would still get some things wrong once in awhile that made me wonder if she was really understanding what to do.  After talking with a friend, I borrowed a Math-U-See dvd and watched a few lessons with Tori.  I had used this in 1st grade with her and Brendan but felt like they relied on the manipulatives too much.  Turns out, the manipulatives really helped it all make sense to Tori.  I love having the dvd to watch and the worksheets have just enough practice problems.  Not too much and not too little.  Goldilocks is happy.  :)  And I am fairly sure we will continue to use it for the rest of her schooling.

Brendan switched to Math-U-See also.  I had been using a couple different pre-algebra books but I would pick and choose what topic we worked on and sometimes he would seem to catch on but then miss it the next day.  I borrowed the Pre-Algebra dvd from the same friend and loved that Brendan could hear someone else explaining what to do and then I can help him with examples if I need to.  Again, the practice problems are just the right length.  In the textbooks I had been using, there would be 80 problems!  Even assigning the odds seemed excessive.  Another feature I love about the Pre-Algebra Math-U-See is the honors problems.  These incorporate higher-level thinking skills with logic problems and involve multiple steps.  I am fairly sure Brendan will continue to use this program for the rest of his schooling also.

I think we're finally on the right track for math.  Now to figure out grammar . . .

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