Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Homeschool Week 3: Dexter in Safety Goggles and Shopkins Dichotomous Keys

This was an super fun week because we had 2 days where we worked in Santa Barbara at Nana and Tata's house. We got to work outside in the gorgeous weather! It is what I always imagined homeschool to be. My parents and sisters got to help out and it was awesome. 


Language Arts: We continued our journey into the alphabet. This week we worked on the letters "Nn" and Pp". I am finding that Louie's retention is now what I thought it would be. This kid sees a commercial for a new toy one time and tell me where I can buy it, how much it costs and what size batteries it needs. But if we spend 3 hours working on the letter N, at the end of the day when I am tucking her into bed I night I will ask her. What letter did we work on today? She will look she straight faced and say "I have no idea".  To say it's frustrating does not even begin to explain it. I know that right now we are hitting the stage where the novelty of having homework is going to wear off. Louie is realizing that this is like not going to stop. We did a lot of worksheets this week. Big thanks to Tio Kelly who found a dice app when we couldn't find dice!

We played a few rounds of pictionary to review the letters "m,s,r,t,n,p". I gave her the letters on a piece of paper and then draw something. She would have to pick up the right letter. These games are fun but always end with Louie and I fighting over what my drawings are. For example, this is my ninja...

Louie was not buying it and after a 10 minute debate we ended the game.

Reading: This week we talked about how words are separated by spaces. We looked over some books to see how the spaces work. Then we talked about what a character is. This was fun. Since Louie is obsessed with Seussical the Musical ...

we talked about some of the characters and we picked the characters Horton the Elephant and Maizey la Bird. We compared the characters. She picked two really good contrasting characters and we were able to talk about how different characters make a story interesting. Then over the rest of the week, every story we read we talked about each character.

Writing: I am still trying to figure out the writing program that the teacher has given us. I think I am on the right track but I let the teacher know that if we are way off base to please let me know. This week was all about writing stamina. Louie continued working on her Peach the Bird story. This week she added 3 more pages and each time she had a 10 minute timer and had to write and draw the entire time. So last time Peach met a cat and 2 monkeys. This week the saw a fireworks show, went home and went to bed. The monkeys have a bunk bed!

Math: This week was all about 3.  It's the magic number you know. This week gave me another excuse to use Jack Johnson as a teaching tool.  After some worksheets Louie got to go on a treasure hunt with her Nana. They went out in the backyard and found things in groups of 3. She found bottle caps, oranges, flowers, leaves, pennies, and strings of confetti.

Social Studies: This week was about being a good citizen. This was an easy lesson and really review for Louie. She has been in girl scouts for 2 years and our troop is all about being good citizens. We read the book "What if everyone did that!" and Louie did her own drawing of what would happen if everyone picked the flowers from a rose bush. The picture was of Nana crying because all her flowers were gone.

Science: Tools of the trade was the lesson this week. We looked over the different types of tools that scientist use. We talked about what each does and why a scientist needs them. Louie drew a picture of her favorite, a microscope. And of course we had to pull out this picture of Scientist Dexter.

Dr. Dexter says safety first!


Language Arts: Phi read up through chapter 14 of Hatchet by Gary Paulsen and did the worksheets. Like last week she had to pick one project for a list to do. Since we knew that we were going away for the weekend we had to pick one of the more boring projects, an essay. An essay about the northern Canadian forest. We made the best of it and she wrote a pretty interesting essay about the area and how it effects the story. 

Math: We looked at making and understanding patterns in word problems. This was a bit easier for Phi to understand. I have to give her props, she is really trying her best to have a good attitude. So far each week focuses on one standard. The workload is light so that helps. The online resources at LearnZillion help too. 

Social Studies: We are on week 3 of memorizing state capitals and filling in a US map. Phi is up to 27 capitals memorized. This weekend she challenged Tio Kelly to a US Map battle. They each got a blank map and had to fill in the states. They finished at about the same time and after reviewing Phi was the big winner! She missed just one state and Kelly missed 2 because he mixed up Vermont and New Hampshire! We also filmed our first part of her state project video. Since we were in SB we took advantage of the tropical like weather and filmed the weather segment! 

Science: Do you know what a dichotomous key is? Yea neither did I. So after a quick lesson for myself we jumped in and it was a lot of fun. Dichotomous keys are ways scientist classify things like plants and animals using a series of questions. Here is a great example on how to classify candy...

Phi decided to make a dichotomous key to classify her Shopkins.  She did a great job and even went that extra step of typing up her report.

We had back to school night and both girls seems to be doing well. Her teachers are great at keeping the lines of communication open. Next week we will be focusing a lot on getting Phi's state report video done! 

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