Friday, April 01, 2011

Academics This Week

W took a TT5 math quiz.  It had a little of everything - addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, word problems, inequalities, decimals, and fractions. He knows how to do all those types of problems, but will make the avoidable mistakes like adding wrong or mistaking his messy 0 for a 6.  I gotta start reminding him to take his time and stop getting distracted.  We're starting to really get into division now.  The few lessons he's had so far have pretty much sunk in.  He still enjoys Teaching Textbooks.  I was thinking about trying another spiral program, like Saxon or maybe even a mastery program like MUS, but he seems content to stick with TT for now.

This weeks readalouds were:  Joan of Arc (Stanley) , Macbeth (Lamb), and Robin Hood (Pyle).  The latter two have very difficult language, but I can see that he's finally starting to see past it.  Until recently, W would usually focus on the fact that he didn't  understand certain words and meanings - and that frustration prevented him from even trying to understand the stories.  Now he realizes that these words and phrasings aren't going away and that he has to push through and get underneath them in a sense.  This weeks narrations showed me he is doing just that.  I love seeing things click for him.  With Joan of Arc we used maps to point out England, France, towns, and rivers. Learning geography through the context of our readings is effective and well-retained.  It doesn't even feel like a lesson.

He's also doing great with that Word Study and Phonics workbook.  One page this week was all about words ending in "ind" and "old".  Another was putting the correct word into the sentence from a choice of 3 similar-looking words.  And another one was putting the correct long vowels into certain words in a paragraph.  It is truly unbelievable how this book is hitting on every area W has been struggling with.  Out of everything we've used so far, this workbook is W's favorite thing to do.  I already see so much improvement in his reading ability.  With 'A Cricket in Times Square' he reads silently, but has gotten faster.  I hear him read his math word problems out loud and you'd never know he has an issue with reading.  I'm so proud of how far he's come.

We're reading poetry every day and W still does his copywork from that.  Two lines.  I've notice his  handwriting is getting sloppier as the months go by.  I think it's time to get more focused on that.  He can write neatly if he wants to.  But then again, I'm the same way, lol.

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