Thursday, September 3, 2009

The Fourth Week.

As our fourth week of homeschooling nears its end, it's a good time to reflect on our first four weeks, as well as gear up for what's ahead. :)
The transition to being taught at home has gone quite well. The little students agree that their new teacher is "lovingly strict" and they're worked a bit harder than they would be if they were attending public school. ;)
We had a fun day spent at Six Flags New England at the end of August. A Friday "celebrate being homeschooled day" at the amusement park, if you will. Seems to have been a major highlight, as it's been the subject of several of the children's writing projects since. :P
The little boy's strong suit is mathematics. He's been wizzing right through and shows real excitement for math. He is also reading his first chapter book, of which will be the subject of a book report he has due on September 14th. We chose for him to read The Boxcar Children because Gertrude Chandler-Warner was from our home town and the Boxcar Museum is open daily here. We plan to pay a visit to the museum, which is inside a cute little caboose, once he has finished reading the book. He said he's really enjoying the book and often talks about what he's reading. It's amazing, especially because he was quite reluctant to read it!
A fine writer our daughter has proven to be! Language Arts is her forte, for sure. Her narratives have been simply impressive, and it's obvious that she enjoys the assignments. She's already completed the book chosen for her book report and stated that she may read it again before it's due back at the library.
American Sign Language (ASL) has been a fun adventure. :) The little boy is really taking to it and doing quite well. Surprisingly, hand coordination is not going too well with the little lady. Hopeful that practice will pay off, we'll keep reviewing the signs we've learned and incorporate signing as much as we can throughout our daily routine.
Most recently, we did some autumn projects together in anticipation of the coming season. These are now decorating our classroom, along with some of the children's artwork from prior years. Both did fantastic jobs on their posters! Two artistes! :D
The children were delighted to learn that they will have "report cards". Our daughter had homeschool report cards in the past. It helps keep them motivated and excited about learning, and it gives them a sense of pride in their accomplishments. We will also be taking school portraits this autumn, which should come as a surprise to all! LOL Perhaps we'll squeeze in a class photo, as well.
Nature was our classroom at the beginning of the week and the precious students absolutely loved taking learning on the road. It's interesting that things can be found that have been overlooked in "play" trips to the park which spark so much curiosity. Our next planned outing is scheduled at the middle of the month for Homeschool Day at Old Sturbridge Village. One of our scholars has never been there and is looking forward to it, while the other is putting it into her head that it'll be the worst day of her life. Haha! Nothing is set in concrete at this time, but a day trip to the new Connecticut Science Center is definitely in order, as is Mystic Aquarium, a local orchard, and Mad Science Homeschool Workshops. :D
We have also been discussing music and learning to play instruments. We have a female aspiring guitarist, but the little boy thinks he'd like to learn to play the drums. ??? With no drum set, in addition to living in an apartment ~ not too sure how that would be possible, but we don't squash dreams here! ;) Even if not the drums, there'll be another instrument for the little boy to learn to play. More work for teacher, as she has to learn to play first, in order to teach the children! :P

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