Child, wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend

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I love the Lord as much as a broken person can; love and loved by my husband; blessed by 5 amazing little people who have helped me to learn much about me; grateful to serve even more as God gives them to me; blessed every day to be a home school teacher; college student; I hope to change the world by loving as many people as possible, because there is nothing greater than loving another.

Monday, August 2, 2010

A Fly By First Day, 2010-2011 Begins

WHEW! We did it! We started on time, although nothing else seemed to fall according to schedule. No worries, though, I expected as much and ended the day with a smile on my face, even if the day was 2 hours longer than hoped for.  Much of today was explaining how new things will work and familiarizing the children with their materials. So, there was no real science today, just "getting to know you." I also spent more time with the Elders, whom would barely see me on most Mondays. We also spent a lot of time filling in planners. Usually, we'll do this on Sunday nights, but last night I spent the evening cooking breakfast for most of the month, so we had to do it this morning. It is nice though, to have so many assignments already in their books. They might not enjoy it, but they do appreciate the organization. Darling yet Diva is using a planner, instead of a log, for the first time (big girl now, ya' know).

I never quite worked out memorization with the first round of elementary school, so this year, we're really adding that part of school to our day. I handed out a year's worth of hymns, bible verses, poetry, and a semester's total of history memorization. Not too many smiles about that, but once they got started and saw how easy it will be, Lil' Mother already knows her bible verse, they seemed to be fine with it. 5 minutes a day for 5 subject areas, twice a day, yet spread out is really very easy. It also makes a nice 5 min between larger subjects. I'm pleased with how it worked out.

I had a math lesson with the 2nd, 3rd, 5th and 7th grader, while the oldest two do math on their own, and Darling, yet Diva did a lesson of Family Math with Alexander the Great, our very happy K5er. That's the plan for a while. I want him to get a nice introduction, at his level, and begin to teach DyD "how to teach" so she's ready to home school her own children one day (fingers crossed). I sat with her first, so she could understand the book, then she went out and did it. Piece of cake!

Everyone completed piano....unusual, someone always tries to skip out! Lil' Mother will give instruction to her two little brothers, twice a week each. She's already better than I on the instrument...yeah! I'm not that great, so I'm so happy she's surpassed me!  The A-bomb (2yo) even played a little. He was a sweet boy and managed to avoid dropping bombs today -- praise Jesus!

Using SOTW (via TOG), History read aloud went well as we learned about the Opium Wars and completed a summary with noted "important" points of the Unequal Treaty. It sure was unequal! I showed the Little League how to find important points in reading and how to "take notes "from them. It was a nice review of what they have practiced in PR (Phonics Road) and I used the summary and notations as copy work for the day (heh, heh, I'm all about cross over!). I'm sad that DyD doesn't really like to listen to me read aloud. She says it's too slow :( I like to snuggle and read to her. Why does she have to grow up?

All elementary kiddos reviewed previous spelling lists and grammar rules. The users of PR are kinda across the board right now, so our plan is to get all subjects on the same week by the end of our first 8-week session. That means Diva reviewed spelling, did a 15 minute grammar lesson (I love PR's quick lessons), and won't need to do any literature for a few days.  While the Little League read aloud Farmer Boy to me, and only reviewed spelling and grammar. I gave each of them a "Handbook" of terms, which is really just definitions of all the "grammar vocabulary" they've learned previously. They like being able to refer to it as we remembered definitions. It's certainly easier than flipping through Building Codes (a part of the PR program).

We started a family read aloud on Hudson Taylor. We only have to read one chapter, about 12 pages, per day, which will be a breeze as there are lots of pictures and the pages are tiny. It took about 10 minutes at lunch. We love the Young Reader's Christian Library biographies -- oldies but goodies.

Since both of my Little Leaguers are reading well now, I have added a daily independent reading to their schedules. This time around, we'll use history books for a period. At some point, I'll change to science or bible; whatever floats my boat, really. Today they read, A Visit to China by the Roops

My big boys spent some time with me going over the Biology course. I was surprised that there was no whining. They see it as "TOG meets Biology" and they're okay with that. I can't believe my babies are in high school. They were both thrilled to begin their first online high school class. Rockin' Out Guitar Dude finished his first assignment for Driver's Ed in a few seconds --- he really wants to drive. Then he moved on to his Health/Nutrition/Life Skills class and said it was gonna be a breeze. Bard and Book Devourer wasn't as thrilled, but I think that's b/c he just wants to sleep all day right now. I wish I could let him sleep in, but we tried that and he didn't get his work finished until 7pm or later then and *I* do not want to be in school that late. If he progresses well each day, I will let him nap after lunch for a bit. He has to earn it, though.

I guess the last school part to report was handing out all our TOG stuff. This is old hat at this point, so it's no biggie. The only difference is the boys heading into Rhetoric level. They are pleased to write in their spines for notation and not as pleased to see how much more intensive the thinking questions are. I planned out the next 8 weeks or assignments for the LG/UG kiddos in my planner and I'm ready to roll.

The worst part of the day, once 2 of my dc got over the "I'm so tired" nonsense, was a computer virus. I'm on the dc's computer now. Mine is hurting. My virus protection has an order placed and I should get a call w/in 48 hours...48 hours?! Don't they know my science lesson plans are in there? Oh well. I choose not to be mad about this and instead be blessed to have a second computer. Thank God for the little things. If I didn't have this second computer, it would really hurt our schooling. Computer time will be tight until mine is fixed. Not optimal, but it is what it is.

So, after all that...I am long winded...we had a great first day. The only thing I didn't get to was a reading lesson with AtG. That's okay, though. I plan on 3/week, so I'll just pick it up some other day. He did do science, history and math; not bad for his first day of K.

Thanks for all the prayers and love. They worked!


Homeschooling6 said...

Great Tina, sounds like all went well. We just finished 'summer' school. I'm taking a much needed break. Sort of. I'm still teaching my nephew but other than that I'm done for a month. This mama needs a break =)
Glad to read about your first day of school and sorry to hear about your computer though.

Dee said...

Sounds like a great first day! I can't believe how much you got accomplished.

I got planners for my 10th grader for the first time as well...sniff, sniff. They are growing up...

Dee :)

Robin said...

Looks like a good first day.

How are you doing memorization? This is something I really want us to work on this year and I haven't found a system that works for us yet. So I am interested in how you do this work.

Tina said...

For LG, I start by setting a timer for 5 minutes. I take what we're doing and break it into 3 word phrases. I say the phrase and point to them, they repeat it. We do this 3 times. Then I say it, and point to one of them, they (the individual) repeat it. We then start with the next phrase and repeat the process. The next step is to take both phrases and put them together, so I now say 6 words, group repeat 3 times; individual repeat. If anyone stumbles, we focus on that person 'til they are confident.

I do this between core subjects b/c it makes a nice break. We follow this process 2 times daily, so they get 10 min. of practice for one memorization piece, but the 5 min. lessons make this easy breezy.

I also will take a familiar song melody and apply it, then we sing the words to a familiar song. It sticks nicely too.


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