We are wrapping up our study of the United States and get to go to Mexico next week. We spent all last year studying the U.S., so I for one am looking forward to moving down the road a bit. We added a couple things in this week and fine tuned some other things. I am feeling a bit relieved that we seam to be fitting in most everything during the week. I think we are getting in a groove, but I am well aware that grooves change, constantly.
Exploring Countries and Cultures
Bible: We read about the Navajo people in Windows on the World and learned some of the ways we can pray for them. We also started our study of Matthew reading about the genealogy of Jesus and discussing our family tree. We read and discussed Jesus' birth and the wise men's visit to Jesus. Zachary's weekly Bible verse is Matthew 1:23, "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel" - Which means, "God with us." We Israel, Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Iran on the map. We also read about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad in Hero Tales. Zachary has been writing the different character traits learned in Hero Tales in his notebook.
Language Arts: Zachary finished practicing his letters last week and started this week in language arts by copying his new Bible verse. On Tuesday he wrote his Bible verse by dictation. On Friday he will add two more words to his Vocabulary Notebook. Each Friday he gets two additional geography words that he illustrates and defines. Each week we go over the words from the previous weeks and add two more.
Spelling: We added in our new spelling curriculum this week. I have high hopes for it. We have chosen to use Spelling Power. I have been reading the teacher's manual and watching the DVD that comes with the program and had started to feel comfortable with the many steps involved. I kept hearing that it all sounds like a lot to absorb, but once you get started it is very simple. My Father's World suggests waiting until the third week of school to start up spelling. It gives you a chance to fold in everything more slowly, which I think is a wonderful idea. Unfortunately, the night before we were to start, I noticed something I had overlooked regarding doing this program differently if you are doing it with a student that is 8 years old or younger. It threw me in a bit of a tale spin (although it shouldn't have). I asked some questions about this on a couple homeschool boards I am on and got a few suggestions. After going over them I decided to proceed with the regular program knowing that I could always "tweak" it if something was not working out right. (Here in-lies one of the most beautiful things about educating you children at home!)
English: Continued in Primary Language Lessons. Zachary learned about ('s) which answers the question, "whose."
Math Drill: We have started a new way of drilling. I have purchased a great computer program for Zachary called Mad Dog Math. I had the pleasure of sitting in one of Julie Kotoff's workshops at the CHEA convention in July and her enthusiasm for math was contagious. She impressed on us how important math drilling is for mastering math facts. I had some trouble downloading her program and she kindly called me and helped me through the process. Zachary enjoys working on the computer, and doing math drills on the computer makes them fun. I think this program will be well worth it.
Geography: This week we worked hard on learning the states. Zachary surprised me by the end of the week with how many states he could name. We also did an exercise coloring in the states using only four colors and not having and bordering states the same color. We started at the four corners and worked out from there. It was fun and Zach got it with only one mistake that was easily corrected. We also studied our flag and the symbols behind the stars and stripes.
Science: We continued learning about forests and what kind of animals live in different areas of the forest. We worked on some tree identification using a tree guide from the library.
Read-Aloud: We have been reading Kingdom Tales. Our whole family has been enjoying it and the discussions it provokes after each chapter. The stories are fun, and they all point to our King.
I could go on and on... we have had a very full week indeed. I think I will share some photos of some additional activities this past week.
Zach and Emma working on labeling and coloring in North America on the world map.
Our World Cake!
Zach doing Rosetta Stone.
Emma working on some sorting in math for 1st grade.
Emma's completed scroll. She work several days on her printing and got to put all the pages together in a scroll.
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