Friday, August 31, 2012

Week 4

We're starting to fall into a rhythm.  Our weeks don't vary a lot, but they certainly keep us busy.  Lydia started dance this week, so that was new.  She is always afraid of new things and experiences, so she didn't actually make it into the dance room this last week, but I did get her to sit and watch for a little while.  I assume it will take her a few more weeks before she'll be in there loving it.  She loves the little ballet class DVD I got from the library a few weeks ago, and it almost the same thing.

We continued therapy and went to a playdate at the park.  Besides dance class, the only thing really different this week was that we went on a hike!  It is quite the adventure taking a 4 year old, 2 year old, and 4 month old hiking on a trail by myself, but it was fun.  We went to lake Wedington, which is about 15 minutes from our house.  The trail I chose is actually an overnight hiking trail, but we just went in maybe half a mile or so.  We had to take a very slow pace because both girls stopped often to pick up sticks and rocks and nuts.  Eleanor even found some blueberries.  At least, I think they were blueberries, but I wouldn't let her eat them in case.  I don't know nature well enough to say one way or the other.  I've been considering getting a few Audobon guides for the iPad and taking it with us on hikes like this so that we can identify things, but for now, they are just learning what pine cones are and other information I have off the top of my head.

 After the hike, Lydia wanted to go see the lake, so we went to the lake and both girls threw in rocks and sticks.  Lydia was very upset when we had to leave. "Want to look at the lake some more!"  She said this over and over all the way home until I mentioned that we were having pizza for dinner, which was sufficient to distract her.

We've done well with school this week and Lydia is right on track to reach all the goals I have set for her by the end of the year or even earlier.

In Essential Math A, we finished pages 88-105.  This ended number order for the moment and moved onto shapes.  We finished shapes and are now working on patterns.  I think we may be stuck here for a while because patterns are difficult for Lydia.  I expect we'll be doing a lot of supplementary work on patterns using manipulatives.
In MEP math, we got through lesson 4 in Reception and will be doing lesson 5 this afternoon.  MEP is sort of weird and I'm not sure I get it yet, but she seems to be able to do the lesson material so far and I plan on keeping it up for the time being.

This is more of the same.  We are still working on cvc "a" words, but I've seen a marked improvement in the last few days.  Starting tomorrow, I think we're going to move on to cvc short vowel "e" words too.  She seems to have grasped the concept of blending and is doing much better with sounding out words.  She still has a problem with guessing, but I think that comes with the territory.  I've found ReadingBear to be a very helpful tool.  Lydia doesn't like to practice reading very much, but she will ask for more practice with ReadingBear.
She read her first 2 books all by herself this week (mostly).  They were just BOB books, but she did it anyways.  It is sort of funny, though.  I bought them thinking we might use them, but because of Lydia's personality, I didn't think she'd care about the "reading a whole book by yourself" aspect.  But she really seemed to feel a sense of accomplishment when she was done.  I was very proud of her.
We also continue to work through Progressive Phonics and are through page 7 of the first reader.

We've continue to do the day of the month and day of the week.  For memorization, we review all our past memorization and have continued to work on the continents and their locations.  Lydia is almost done with that, so we'll probably start something new early next week.

We got through pages 11-22 in Rod and Staff's Bigger Steps.  Lydia's fine motor skills are coming along very well, and I talked to her OT about starting her on a handwriting program.  She agreed with me that Lydia isn't ready yet for actual writing, but that pre-writing activities are good for her.  So we'll continue doing these workbooks, and I think I'll throw in some Scholastic preschool worksheets I have for pre-writing practice.  Pre-writing is tracing lines and zigzags and circles.  Things like that.  I'm also being very strict with Lydia about using a correct pencil grip whenever she is coloring or doing school work.  It is starting to pay off and I am having to correct her less and less.

That was our week.  It is raining outside right now and I promised Lydia that she could play in the rain if there wasn't lightning.  I think that will be our afternoon and it is a good end to our week.

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