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12 September 2010

Weekly Wrap-up: Finding Normal Edition

So, we've got this new baby, and we think he's pretty special; he's hands-down a keeper. However, new babies do have a way of destroying any semblance of messing with a routine. We started rebuilding our routine this week.

Phonics: Monkey's getting there. I think I'm going to pick up the Ordinary Parents' Guide to Teaching Reading, not to use for him, but for me to make sure that I'm getting all the rules in a somewhat coherent order. I love Happy Phonics, and that will continue to be our primary focus, but I do want to have some reference material for what are the rules. I didn't learn with phonics; I'm pretty sure that I was taught with a more whole-language approach, and I want a little hand-holding to be sure that I'm not missing something important. After all, I've never taught reading before! Unfortunately, It's looking like I'll have to pay full price. On the other hand, if I do it through Amazon, I can get Mudpies to Magnets for basically $5, which is pretty good.

Math: The more we do from the Math Expressions book the more I like it. This week we did two things. We used felt tiles to show 4.

He put up 4 tiles in different shapes - they were still 4, no matter how he arranged them. We talked about partners in 4 in his different arrangements. And when it was all done he had a blast scratching all the tiles down. We'll be working with the other numbers 1-5 in the next while, but 4 is hid favorite, so of course we had to do it first.

For our other math activity, also from the Math Expressions book, we took our sidewalk chalk and went outside to make Math Monsters. Happily, Raven loves to be outside already, so he was a happy camper while were playing. As an added bonus, there was just enough wind to keep the mosquitoes off. Those things are so nasty this year, it feels like a sting, more than just a bite!

The idea is to have the child draw a monster that has a specific number of body parts. I knew this would be a challenge for his fine-motor skills, which is part of why I decided to do it in chalk: I was hoping to move into a more gross-motor direction with it. We also were in need of some outside time, so this worked well.

This particular afternoon, Monkey was all about the light sabers, and not so much into the chalk, so I started by drawing the monster on the left. He, of course, wanted to know what was I doing. So then we did the second one together. He gave instructions, counted parts, and drew the eyes while I was coloring the face. I think they both turned out cute.

Read-Aloud: I finally found Charlotte's Web; it'd gotten put away... on the wrong bookshelf. So we're making progress there again. We're also making progress on the New Testament again as well. I'm working on a Four Gospels reading chart to track our progress.


nikko said...

I'm needing some ideas for my little kids. We just bought more sidewalk chalk over the weekend. I think we'll make Math Monsters, too!

Ritsumei said...

Enjoy! We'll be doing that one again. I want to see if we can get some that he does a little more in the drawing, that are on actual paper so I can put them in his Math binder when we're done. But it'd be fun to do more outside too.

jonnia said...

Math Monsters are adorable! Your kids are even moreso!

Ritsumei said...

Thank you!

Becky said...

I love the chalk Monstors! What a FUN idea. Enjoy these years while they are young and embrace the years ahead! Mine are 19 and 12, and we still find fun in each day. I love seeing your ideas and will tuck them away for future grand's!

~ Becky


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