Wednesday, October 5, 2011

September 2011 Wrap-Up


It’s the beginning of October, we’ve actually been “back-to-school" since July 18th and this is my first wrap-up of the school year.  Needless to say, I’m not very good about getting wrap-ups done Smile.  My goal is to do a monthly wrap-up ‘cause the weekly ones just come due too quickly!

So here’s the run-down of what we’ve accomplished since July…

Ds9 {4th Grade}100_8353

Math ~ He switched to Teaching Textbooks this year.  We loved our old math curriculum {Christian Light Math} and dd7 is still using it, but I wanted a math curriculum that ds9 could do independently since dd7 & ds4 need a lot of my time this year.  Ds9 is currently on lesson #29  of Teaching Textbooks Math 4…and he is loving it so far {well, at least as much as a 9-year old boy who’d rather be playing baseball could love math Winking smile}.

Writing ~ We’ve also switched to a new writing curriculum this year.  Once again, we loved what we were using before but it was time to ramp it up a bit…so this year ds9 started using IEW Student Writing Intensive A.  I am not in a rush, so he is moving slowly through it.  He is currently on lesson #3 {each lesson takes 10 days to complete}. 

Ds9 was not excited when I told him it was time to add writing in to our homeschool day {we stagger subjects when we start back to school}…but he was pleasantly surprised at how much he enjoyed Mr. Pudewa’s DVD lessons Smile.

Spelling ~ Ds9 is on Lesson #5 of Rod & Staff Spelling {no curriculum change for this subject}.  He is also completing dictation passages from our HOD curriculum about 3 days per week.

Grammar ~  Ds9 is using First Language Lessons 4 this year for grammar.  So far it’s been mostly review of information he learned in FLL3 last year.

Reading ~ I had a fourth grade reading list all planned out for ds9…but I switched our main history curriculum two weeks before we were supposed to begin so his reading list has changed {I’m coordinating reading with what we are studying in history this year}. 

So far he has read Pocahontas and the Strangers and Pedro’s Journal.  He is currently reading Almost Home.

Dd7 {2nd Grade}IMG_1523

Math ~  Dd7 is finishing up Christian Light Math Grade 1 and will be moving into either CLE Math Grade 2 or Singapore 2A when she’s done. 

I have to say that  I have been amazed at what the summer break has done for my little girl’s math skills.  I know they say that breaks often lead to forgotten information, but in dd7’s case, I think the break gave her time to mature a bit.

Writing ~ This kiddo loves to write.  She fills pages and pages of paper with stories and pictures and is always asking for the stapler or tape so she can keep her stories together. 

This past spring I came across a couple reviews for WriteShop Primary and it sounded like a fun writing program…one that would indulge my dd’s passion for writing.  So even though I don’t usually start a formal writing program this early in the game…I thought I’d give this creative curriculum a try.

We’re not in a rush to complete this curriculum so we’re taking it pretty slow…makin’ it fun for dd7 and I. 

Spelling ~ Dd7 is using Heart of Dakota’s spelling program which is included in our Bigger Heart’s guide. 

Grammar ~  Even though I love, love, love First Language Lessons {I have used the first 3 levels with ds9}, I decided to switch to Rod & Staff grammar this year.  It comes highly recommended by Heart of Dakota {our new history, science and more curriculum}. 

I really needed to free up some time so I could work more one-on-one with ds4 so I began looking for some subjects that dd7 could do at least partially independently.  We are almost finished with unit one and so far I have been very pleased with the switch.  Unlike FLL this is a grammar curriculum that dd7 can do semi-independently.  We do about 2/3 of each lesson orally {together} and then I choose a couple of problems for dd to complete independently.

Reading ~ This year I am using Heart of Dakota’s emerging reader plan from our Bigger Hearts for His Glory guide.  Dd7 is currently about 200 pages into The Beginner’s Bible Smile.  Heart of Dakota’s plan has her reading about 2 short chapters every day {she reads them aloud to me}, and then orally answering a few questions to check for comprehension. 

Family Subjects

Our new Heart of Dakota curriculum Bigger Hearts for His Glory contains integrated lesson plans for History, Bible Study, Poetry, Read Alouds, Geography, Art, Vocabulary, Science and more.

Bible ~ This year we are learning about character qualities while studying the book of Proverbs.  So far the kiddos and I have spent time learning about persistence, humility, boldness and trustworthiness while memorizing five passages from Proverbs.

History ~ The kiddos and I are using a biographical approach to study American History this year using Heart of Dakota’s Bigger Hearts for His Glory.  So far we have been using A First Book in American History as our main history text and we have studied the lives of Columbus, John Smith, and Pocahontas.


One of our HOD geography activities was making a graham cracker map of the world Smile.

Science ~ We’ve been learning about seashore life by reading through One Small Square: Seashore and doing experiments that go along with what we’re studying. 


One of our science experiments asked the kiddos to use different tools {representing different birds’ beaks} to pick up “food” from the seashore.

Read Alouds ~ We just finished up reading a biography about Phillis Wheatley, Phillis Wheatley: Young Revolutionary Poet.  Our next read-aloud is A Lion to Guard Us, which we plan to start this week.  We also just started a new missionary read-aloud: Spy for the Night Riders.


Wow…this turned into quite a long post.  Maybe next time I ought not wait so long to do a wrap-up post Smile.  And I didn’t even mention what I’m doing with ds4!


Forest Rose said...

Wow you've been busy:) Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment on my blog. HOD is great! I too struggle with wrap-up posts. What I started doing is doing my wrap-up from the week before so I have a whole week to complete it by Friday...Works for me. (:Now following your blog:) Have a great Weekend and week to come.
Love & Blessings,
Forest Rose

PrairieJenn said...

Love the graham cracker map of the world:) Now we've got to try that!!!


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