April 07, 2006

School Update

We have now finished our third quarter of Charis' kindergarten year--only 9 weeks left of our Sonlight curriculum! I thought I would take a few moments to share how things have been going.

Bible--We continue to read our Bible stories during breakfast time. It seems to work the best for our family. We also review the kids' AWANA verses plus the home school verse of the week (taken from Right Choices).

Math--Charis is nearly 1/3 of the way through the Math-U-See Alpha book, having finished the Primer around the New Year (I forget exactly when!). Her latest lesson is adding with 9. The concept is taught in a fun way...the 9 wants very much to be a 10, and so he vacuums a unit away from the group being added to 9. Thus, 9 + 7 becomes (insert vacuuming noise here) 10 + 6, or 6 units and 1 ten, which is of course 16. She's doing pretty well with this, the first brand-new concept as of yet, since the book has primarily been reviewing concepts from the Primer (which is fine with me!). We decided to have me do the lessons and practice pages with her, and then Ted can oversee her tests so that he can keep up with what she's doing and be a little more involved.

Phonics--We are enjoying Phonics Pathways, or at least, I am! Though the reading exercises are well below her reading level--we just finished 2-letter consonant blends at the end of words, such as "lamp" and "best"--what I love are the "eye-robics" approach and the fact that she is grasping spelling without much effort! After nearly every lesson we do short dictation exercises. I choose either random words or else short sentences, and she writes them out with no help from me on the spelling. I've been amazed at how quickly she is picking things up...should I expect less from the daughter of an English teacher?!

Reading--Charis loves picking out level 2-3 readers from the library and would spend all day in her room reading if I would let her. Sometimes she is gracious enough to read to her brothers, and sometimes she reads to Mom and Dad. Her vocabulary is growing!

Literature--Lots and lots of great stories from our Sonlight collection!

History--We just started the Usborne book Then and Now (a part of our Sonlight package), which has already been a hit.

Science--We haven't really done much official science lately, though we did finish Usborne's What's Under the Sea? (another Sonlight item) a few weeks ago, and it continues to be a favorite. We did spend a lot of time over the last week picking weeds in our yard and examining ladybugs up close and personal, and we even invited one to live in a jar in our kitchen for a couple of days before letting her go. (All ladybugs around here are females! :-)

Guess that's about it! We're still having fun for the most part, though I have experienced some attitude issues here and there...I'll blog about some particular things later.

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