Saturday, April 14, 2012

Week 28: Going Once, Going Twice

First, the obligatory spring break and Easter photos...A trip to the National Arboretum was a lovely way to spend a day with my best pal and godson. Eating at Good Stuff Eatery in D.C. (that serves organic beef) was a highlight!

For Easter service this year we attended the sunrise service at our church--something I have always wanted to do but never have. We all enjoyed it so much. It was a gorgeous morning and the service was small and intimate, as opposed to the masses of people that crowd into church at the regular service times.
We went out to breakfast, then spent a very relaxed day with our dear friends, eating delicious food, taking goofy pictures, holding the annual peep-roast (peeps beat marshmallows any day of the week when roasted over a fire), and watching the final day of the Masters tournament.

I found this cartoon this week on Great Homeschool Conventions' facebook page. I've been giggling all week at the pictures of April and May because I can so relate! Spring break helped to some extent, but there is something about the beautiful spring weather and the weariness of routine that makes me feel exactly like the guy in April. The garden is beckoning me and the children have grown out of all their summer clothes. The garden and storage room are so messy that we can't walk a straight path through them. A patio outside the basement door has been promised to me by my son and husband...What does book-learning have to do with all of this, I ask myself.

My prayer has been for perseverance. I know that the children also are feeling weary of work, but I am determined to finish certain things, so we had a talk this week as we began our studies again about "finishing well." I want them to learn the discipline of finishing what is begun, and doing so with a good attitude. That means I must model it myself.

So...We began our three-week study of Africa in Tapestry's Year 3 Unit 4 this week. We are emphasizing the geography of the continent and so both Matty and Molly traced very nice political maps, and next week we will concentrate on the physical features. Molly and I read folk tales from West Africa, and Matty began to read a comprehensive book on the history and geography of the African continent. In literature he is reading The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling, and in art we are covering the Impressionists, as that is the era of history we are currently studying.

Matty began Zeta in Math U See, and I will try to get him to work through that book in its entirety this summer. Currently I am considering what I will do for pre-algebra. I am considering a change to the Art of Problem Solving, but this would be a big departure from the style of learning we have been doing. I have to admit that I am intrigued by their methods, and eager to present my son with a challenge that he will enjoy.

Molly continued working in Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading and is doing very well. I am considering our break from Phonics Road as coming to an end, and she needs to get back to it. I want to finish that this summer. We have really drawn out the use of that curriculum, mostly because mom can only handle so many videos. Molly loves the program, however, and especially enjoys the stories that she illustrates herself!

We are finishing up chapter 3 of Zoology 3, and learned all about bears and other caniforms this week--next week will be felines, my favorite!

This week we have a field trip to the zoo planned, and in another two weeks or so we will take a trip to the National Gallery of Art for a docent tour of the Impressionists--Hopefully these two events will help to break up some of the monotony of routine. We also have the beach to look forward to...we are counting down the days!

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