Saturday, August 15, 2015

Weekly Wrap-Up...Back to School!

Patrick and I are adjusting to being back at school with students, as public school in our area started two weeks ago.  This time of year is one of the few where we get little to no home schooling done, simply because we are too busy. W is still enjoying preschool, and we've begun doing a little 'after schooling' with him since he has so much to catch up on.  At this point, he's mostly coloring, completing very simple mazes and tracing to develop his fine motor skills, though we are trying to teach him his letters.  This week, his claim to fame is that...for the very first time...he completed a jigsaw puzzle!

Puzzle in progress!
I know the pic's a bit blurry...I took it with the phone and it doesn't compensate as well for motion as my regular camera does!  Seriously, though...I am ridiculously proud of W. He has tried to do small puzzles before (12 piece), but just couldn't get the hang of them - he would get frustrated and quit. Today, though, I bought Eli a new puzzle (1000 pieces), and W just really wanted one of his own. I found him a set of 24 and 48 piece jigsaw puzzles of one of his favorite TV shows. The one he completed was 24 pieces, and he was begging to do another (though I am making him wait until tomorrow). Hopefully, he'll begin to enjoy these as he gets the hang of doing them.  Next week, I may have him start to try dot-to-dot puzzles (with 5-10 dots). In the meantime, he has begun 'pretend reading' stories/books and saying "THE END" when he's done turning pages. It's really cute...! He has also begun to show signs of a slightly longer attention span and is beginning to really enjoy being read to.

The baby, Itty Bitty, is doing quite well, and is growing and smiling.  He's into more of his 3-6 month size clothes, and is a little over 11 pounds (he'll be 3 months old next week!). He is doing well in daycare and has begun sleeping at least 6-8 hours per night on most nights....which is wonderful for two working adults!

Eli has started back to preschool...again.  We will DEFINITELY use a similar, blended preschool/homeschool model again this year. His new teacher gave him a preschool assessment, and was surprised that he never missed a question...and he never hesitated with an answer. She then gave him some additional, harder questions...and was surprised that he knew the answers to those, too.  She tried to read a 'math story' to the class...but Eli so quickly gave the answer to each problem (things like 2 +2 and 3+ 4) that the other kids didn't have a chance to figure them out....and he sometimes shouted the answers before she finished reading the questions. His teacher has been asking what level he's working on...and understood when I said I would provide reading, language arts, and math materials that come from second grade curriculum in our state.  I may also be providing some science lessons - in the form of experiments for his entire class to do : )

This week, we didn't accomplish much in the area of science and social studies - although he found a katydid to play with on the porch this afternoon! We plan to continue our study of biology and our study of early American history (including some map skills) throughout the fall.

Powers of Observation!

 We often don't do as much when things get hectic around here - like they have been in the last couple of weeks. And since we are expecting some special family visitors next week, we may stay at a slower pace for a while. However, Eli did read three new "Curious George" stories, and has begun to enjoy his new "Reading Rainbow" app. We recently purchased a year's subscription for the app, and are hoping to get some good use from it.  I also downloaded a few new math games for Eli to try...and with one of them he taught himself to multiply this afternoon.  It was fun to listen to him figuring out problems like 3 x 5 and 3 x 2.  I'm not sure if he's yet generalized that a number times 1 is itself, but it was funny to listen to him reason out the correct answer to 3 x 1. He's been on the verge of discovering multiplication for several weeks now...but it was fun to watch him put it all together. He is also currently on the verge of discovering carrying in addition. In the last week, we've only had time for one "Life of Fred" lesson, but we will probably pick the book up a lot more this coming week.  Sadly, we didn't get time to swim this week; I am hoping to get him in the pool twice this week so that he can practice for swim team tryouts in's to hoping I can!

Weekly Wrap-Up

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