Monday, January 10, 2005

J and K took a "mental health day" on Friday so neither of them went to school. K is going through normal preteen angst, fretting about everything from her friends to her weight. J had a headache when she woke up. She has been going to bed 2 hours later than usual these past weeks and I don't know why. This makes her have a terrible time getting up in the morning. The teacher gave them a TON of homework this weekend, too. I got it from another mom. I was a bit annoyed that this teacher feels that smart/gifted=more work. J had absolutely no interest in doing it. She did the 4 pages of math, but that's it. She also had to read TFK and do a 2 sided worksheet, write a summary of the book she's reading using the 5 points, and do a page of cursive writing. I just noticed she left her math sheets home today. Sigh.

I was perusing around the homeschooling websites and keep on seeing how great the Singapore math books are. I went to the Singapore website and went through some "placement" math problems with her. She can do many basic problems in her head, which is great. I showed her things like like adding fractions and stuff about angles that she picked right up and wanted to do more of. We did a few different levels and then at 10 I sent her off to bed. She came back to my lap at the computer 5 minutes later and said she wanted to do more math. This was amazing to me. I love that she still has a bit of a spark left in loving learning.

I gave some higher level placement problems to K who knew a lot more than I thought she did and she really enjoyed working problems out on paper. School is a great fit for K. She has kept her love of learning and really retains what is learned and is able to use that knowledge in different situations outside of school. This sounds logical, but it's something I never could do well (and neither did my mom or sister). I feel J takes after my side of the family when it comes to feeling that school was total waste of time that we all ended up hating. Mom was an underachiever in school, but had a highly gifted level IQ. My sister and I were both in advanced classes, but niether one of us can look back fondly on school. WHY IS THAT????

I don't want J ending up miserable and falling into the wrong crowd by high school. She's already forming exclusive cliques, talking on the phone all day, and acting like a wise-ass to her family. She has mentioned several times that she really wants to be homeschooled and I know I should just do it, but I need to research and wait a little longer before making such a huge, life-altering decision. I wish it were easier, but it's not.

W has a wonderful love of learning that I see every day. This weekend he came to me wanting to "do words". This is his favorite game. We sit at the computer, open a blank Word document, and either I type a word and he sounds it out, or I give him a word and he types it. It's so much fun for him and gives him a great sense of accomplishment. He can sound out and type many 2 and 3 letter words now. I also have BOB books that are a series of stories using mainly 3 letter words. He enjoys it but gets bored with it after a few minutes. His new favorite thing is Leapster. He has already learned so much from that. As far as his schooling is concerned, he's currently happy in preschool. I would never take him out of school unless he has any type of problem, but I can see he is more like K and I predict he will excel at school like she does.

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