Sunday, September 25, 2011

Review of the past 2 weeks

It sure has been busy around here.  I have got to be more organized, my printer was jammed so I wrote out on paper what each kid had to do each week, but of course, we can't find those anymore and I'm pretty sure the kids haven't completed all their assignments these past 2 weeks.  I will definitely be printing new sheets and making sure they check it off with me each day before they can do anything else.    This is a new week and we will start off on the right foot this week.

That being said, we have made some good progress in some areas.  We finally started piano lessons and we did a couple of science experiments.  I had a thermometer so we could complete our science curriculum, but the babies broke it- at least it was only a $1.60-- but it's the time it takes to go get one- not the cost so much-- hopefully we can going on that this week also.  The girls are doing great with Latin with their Dad-- it is so nice for me to not have to teach that important subject.  We have also been working in a pre-algebra book and the girls are getting it and enjoying it.  They've been reading their history books and literature books.  They've also been completing their English grammar workbooks and writing in their journals.  The things they tend to forget are what we need the checklist for which is to read their scriptures, do music theory, practice their instruments EVERYDAY-- even on the weekends, and write their reports for their reading.  We should get there this week I hope!!

The boys are doing pretty well and since they don't have as many things to do, it's a lot easier to do it all without the checklist, but they'll need one too- to make it easier for me to make sure they did what they were supposed to.  #5 is reading pretty well and likes all his workbooks and being a big kid.  #4 has made another great leap in his vision and seems to have finally taken off in his reading-- yay!!  #3 has had a couple of crying tantrum episodes about how hard 3rd grade is and how he can't do it and doesn't want to, but since it didn't get him out of any work, he has learned to buckle down and just get it done.

We've had some nice group times, but we haven't implemented Spanish yet-- I'm bored with what we were doing so I'll have to figure out how to make it interesting and fun again.  Although we still sing Spanish and French songs, this is why I have to get more organized so that we can fit everything in!! 

Also, we had a long dentist visit filling cavities-- we need to practice better oral hygeine for sure!  We also had a birthday this week, a visit with my old high school friends, a mother daughter activity in our new ward, and a swimming party to go to, art class, ukelele lessons and of course soccer practices and 5 games on Saturday. We also picked tomatoes and dried them and froze peaches and pears. I did get to clean my kitchen ceilings and the kids helped clean a lot of spots and I got a lot of papers thrown away and other stuff put away so that was really nice-- oh and my husband and I celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary and we met with an architect to draw up the plans for our new house which really couldn't be moving any more slowly-- stress!!! And the power went out Sat night for almost 3 hours-- that was annoying!!!!  Oh and we had colds and I couldn't breathe out of my nose.  I can't wait to start exercising again!!  I always feel so much better when I do.

Well- this week should be much more predictable and calm and organized-- I'm excited!! I want to see all those checklists checked!!

Monday, September 12, 2011

First Week Finished!

We finished our first official week on Friday!!  It went well, although we will tweak a few things.  The main thing I will tweak is to have the girls' summaries and compositions due on the Monday following the week they read their required reading and history assignments so that they can use Friday to read, but don't have to write about it until the following week.  I have to buy a thermometer today so that we can do our science experiments and I have to teach piano lessons.  Science and piano seem to be the 2 things that are the hardest to stay on top of.  Traveling an hour away to our new ward and to our new co-op is taking a lot of time and gas money.  That just won't subside until we move- probably in December.  I need to get my mp3 player working so we can listen to audio books.

The girls started Latin and their dad is their teacher and he was very pleased with their knowledge of declensions, parts of speech, number, gender, conjugations, and word modifying rules.  They will have to move through the Henle Latin book rather quickly and it looks like they will be able to do so and be ready for the National Latin Exam in March.  This is a huge relief to see that the path we've laid out for their education is working!!

The boys got right into their program.  #3 want a wii game and wondered how he could earn it, so we went ahead and bought it and told him that when he finishes his math book and passes the test, he can have it, so he worked really hard and finished the last 30 page of his math book.  We'll do the corrections today and he'll probably take the test tomorrow.  I'm very proud of him.  #4 worked on his times tables and learned the  6s pretty well.  #5 loves his workbooks and sits for a long time working on them.  So this was a good first week.

The twins like being able to sit on my lap a lot while I read to the older kids.  They've enjoyed singing in group time and all the attention they get since I'm not trying to clean constantly.

Also I'm reading a great parenting book that focuses on being positive and encouraging to the kids.  I really needed the reminder because I think I was using their wii privilege too much as a punishment and not encouraging them to do things for the sake of being kind and good and benevolent.  They really respond better when I tell them what a good worker, strong boy, kind person and acknowledge them when they are kind and loving and hard working and diligent.

So off to a new week!

Friday, September 2, 2011

First Day of School!

It went well!!! I'm so happy!! We fell back right into our old routines and it was really nice to see the improvement in the kids. #1 said that her history book that was kind of hard last year was easy to understand. #3 was surprisingly fast on his times tables and finished his 4 pages of math quickly, he also had no trouble reading his assignments and he finished his language arts work pages for the entire week. #2 stayed up late Wed. night and finished her Greek book well- I was pleasantly surprised. #5 is still able to sound out words and is doing it more quickly. #4 drug his feet in math, he forgot how to do long division, but overall, it was a good start to our school year and I am very much relieved. The twins liked story time and music time. What I need to do today that I didn't do yesterday is set the timer for the individual time with the kids. #4 drug his feet so much that he took more of my time than he should have and #2 didn't get any of my time, because I wasn't expecting that she would need help with math. So today, they will each get 30 min. of my undivided attention and will have to wait their turn. That worked really well last year, I am reminded of why that is important. The kids all really liked having their lists ready of what is required for the week so that they have the option of finishing before the week is out, but it's a lot of work, I don't think they will be able to finish early, but they like that they can try. The girls were cute and packed their backpacks to "walk" to school, kept to their schedules and then "walked" home. Good day-- I think I will be able to do this. And I think I'm going to get rid of most the stuff in my house this weekend- one way or another-- so if you want anything- come on by-- I probably have whatever you may want and you can HAVE it!!!