Friday, August 16, 2013

Beginning of New Year and first Weekly Report: Days 1-6

We officially started our new school year last week.  Lydia recently turned five and will now be considered a kindergardener for our homeschooling purposes.  I'm so excited to be able to consider myself a "real" homeschooler now instead of a poser who does some worksheets with her 4 year old.  I've looked forward to homeschooling Lydia since she was 8 months old and now we're doing it.  And she's doing great!

But first, I thought I'd share some pictures.  I did have a cute picture that I took of her on the first day of school in front of our height-measuring ruler we have, but Daddy accidentally deleted them... so that's that.  We did go to the zoo a few days previously, so here are some cute pictures from the zoo.  Lydia loves animals and we spent the entire day there:

Looking at the elephants.
Brown bear
Touching a goat
Lydia's surprise favorite of the day: The Otter.  She looked at it for about 20 minutes and laughed every time it stood up straight.
This week she also drew a cute little picture of a duck.  I love that her pictures are getting more and more recognizable.

We have continued going to Little Sprouts almost every week. The girls enjoy the program and they enjoy exploring the Botanical Garden afterwards.  This week's theme was "birds" and we read some stories about birds, sang some songs, and then made little bird feeders out of pipe cleaners with cheerioes strung on them.  It was simple, but both girls had a lot of fun making them:

Eleanor making her bird feeder
As for school stuff, we've completed 6 days of school, so I guess we are 3.5% of the way done with our new year!  Lydia has really taken off in the last few days, but I'll go into that more in each subject:

We started Math Mammoth 1a a little bit ago and so far she has been able to complete and understand everything we've done.  And we're going at a good pace, too!  I am really liking Math Mammoth.  It really breaks down all the different steps and ways of looking at a problem.  Lydia also did some pages in Miquon.  Overall, I think my math plan this year is going to work out well.

Eleanor started MEP Reception level and has completed 3 lessons.  She is really enjoying having her own math and the style works much better for her than it ever did for Lydia.

Lydia is almost done with lesson 75 in OPGTR.  Today was a huge milestone for her, though.  It is the first time she hasn't sounded out more than half the words!  She would look at them, think for a minute, and then just say the word!  I am so proud of her and excited for this step.  She's really coming along well.

Since I have decided to be better about read alouds this year, I came up with a list of the minimum books that I want to have read to the girls by the end of the year. It is only 7 chapter books, and this week we have done pretty well.  The girls are almost done listening to me read Little House in the Big Woods.  We were already halfway through it, so it is cheating a little, but they love Laura.  We've been getting the illustrated My First Little House books from the library and they adore them, so it was an easy switch to the chapter book.

Lydia finished capitol letters and has started lowercase.  She is now officially halfway through the Kindergarten book.

Lydia finished Lesson 6 (short vowel "a") in All About Spelling and has started Lesson 7 (short vowel "i").  I discovered that if I let her write on the whiteboard instead of using the tiles, she goes much quicker and is much more excited about it.  I'm not giving the tiles up for good or anything, but for all the extra practice words at least, I'm going to let her hand-write her words.

Lydia finished John 7:17 and is working on the 4th Article of Faith.  She is also doing very well with our timeline of the world.  So far, she can list the first 13 items on it (up to "Assyrians").  We have cards on the wall and she is allowed to look at the pictures when reciting the timeline.  Almost every day we do school, we are able to add a new card for her to learn at the end.  She and Eleanor are both loving it.  Eleanor is doing pretty well too and helps Lydia if she gets stuck sometimes.

So that is our first bit of school.  Everything is going well and both girls continue to learn!

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