I finally, only three days late, sat down for real with The Phonics Road Level 4. I won't be needing it for a little while, but the time of need falls between this and our next vacation, so I need to lesson plan now. I could easily use the program with weekly, even daily planning, but *I* function better when it's done. Truthfully, I am a procrastinator, so having the planning done facilitates the getting done around here. I tried last week, but my dearest Oman came home after about 20 minutes, ready to start his extended weekend, which meant, he was ready to be with his wife. Since I cannot object and only respond with batting lashes and blushing cheeks, PR4 was quickly left behind. ;)
Now that I'm back in business, even if tardy and in need of java, I can get this ball rolling and let you know about the hour and ten minutes I spent with the first five weeks of PR4. That's total time for those of us counting.I purposefully watched all of the spelling for this first batch, whereas usually and as soon as disk 2, I will fast forward through a good bit of spelling. There is a new element to spelling this time around and I wanted to make sure I didn't miss anything! PR3 brings into spelling Part of Speech Identification. PR4 takes that and builds using the word study from last level to spell, identify part of speech, then (here's the new part) change the part of speech by adding either suffix, prefix, or both. So, one column of spelling words, one for parts of speech, and one for the newly designed word. To borrow from the builders analogy, you're student will be adding some lovely curtains to the window she's designed. This is one of the features I love about PR --- application! You will practice those spelling rules via Rule Tunes and discuss word meaning, as previously modeled in Designing Codes. Aaahhh tying it all together! Okay, so perhaps the application is my favorite part as PR moves forward. Amazing and amazingly well done. My WTM buddies have heard me say time and again: Mrs. Beers is intentional and I LOVE it! The DVD shows how to implement. It's very simple. Since at this point, dd does the parts of speech all by herself (PR3 3/4 complete), she will continue to do the same in PR4 and I think the new column addition should take us about 10 min. together. At some point, I think she'll fly solo on that, too. I'll be sure to let you know as I complete the larger job at hand.
WHOA! Let me back up. As is the practice of PR, there is a spelling review at hand. Mrs. Beers provides specific instructions on how to customize this review so you are not wasting time unnecessarily. As is a pleasure in the DVDs, not only does she explain how, but models so with her jumbo sized materials. In other words, you continue to receive the auditory, visual, and hands on materials as a teacher that you have thusfar received in the previous three levels. Since there's not need for the cursive practice, the review is not as extensive as that in PR3. There will be four (4) tests over the next 4 weeks; additionally sound card review and practice; word study review also all "as necessary." By the time the student completes this level entirely, they will be spelling grade 13 words...that means through high school, baby! Ask me why I love, love, love PR?! Here are a few examples: proficient, privilege, lieutenant, victorious, sufficiently, theoretical. There are 34 total weeks of spelling lists.
In the interest of resale, I try to write on notebook paper and not in my Foreman's Guide (Teacher Manual). This method brings about a certain amount of redundancy in my notes. Not a lot mind you, but a bit, so keep that in mind for my lap times :) You will need Level 3 materials as reference tools for the grammar study, so don't file the Apprentice Guides away. Keep them handy! We used a different color notebook to help distinguish. You don't actually start Framing Codes until week 5. At which time, off you go! Since I've only planned through week five to hour, here's what you'll cover in your first week of grammar: sentences, fragments, subject, predicate, main/dependent clauses, and infinitives. That's three scheduled days. The methods used will include dictation, writing complete sentences from fragments, sentence parsing, including learning the new markings for clauses.
The fourth day will pick up with Designing Codes. For those unaware, Designing Codes (DC) are the word study components of the program that are tied in as mentioned above. PR4 will include 30 new Latin base words to help with more difficult spellings. You'll have cards for the lot and the fashion of DC will be the same. That means: cards for building; literal definitions; dictionary definitions; word derivatives; incorporation in spelling lists.
The literature study, the backbone of the writing component to the program, uses Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham. This 29-week study will generate a 70-page notebook for your student that will include all of the following (those italicized are in the first 5 weeks):
- character study
- plot elements
- composing paragraphs
- descriptive elements
- dictation/copy work
- understanding biographies
- dictionary/thesaurus practice
- word study
- transitional words/phrases
- the writing process
- topic sentences
- lecture or oral presentation notetaking
- touches of history, geography, astronomy, math, navigation, English monetary conversions and economics