Saturday, March 5, 2011

Friday- Week in Review

Duncan is my 2nd grader.
Mei is my friend’s 5th grader.

Over on The Well Trained Mind forums there is a thread about what you are doing consistently. I thought I would do a weekly update talking about the things that Duncan and Mei are doing consistently.

The Well Trained Mind is a history/ LA focused curriculum. The Latin-Centered Curriculum is of course focused on Latin. We do math, math, and more math. Is there a curriculum that has math at its center? If so, I probably ought to check it out.

The little man is wrapping up Key to Algebra book 3. I had pretty much planned on using Art of Problem Solving beginning in the fall… until I saw Foerster’s Algebra. Now I am the proud owner of the Prentice Hall Classics Edition of Foerster’s Algebra 1. I want to order the Math without Borders lectures to go with it. Instead of waiting until fall, when this arrives, we will go ahead and start Algebra.

Duncan still has quite a bit to go before he finishes the geometry section of The Complete Book of Algebra and Geometry, but this week I pulled out Patty Paper Geometry. I am debating whether or not to do this or MUS Geometry. I own them both and need to look through them to decide where I want to go next. Duncan doesn’t have fabulous fine motor skills and he isn’t very patient with origami, so I am leaning toward MUS.

Duncan is chugging through Kumon Math level G, but we are only doing a few sheets a day and doing multiple reps, so this level may take until next fall.

In language arts we are plugging away. Duncan is still working through MCP Plaid Phonics D. Towards the beginning of February he started Spelling Plus. I started at the beginning doing it orally just to make sure we hadn’t missed anything. A couple of weeks ago he started Early Reading Comprehension in Varied Subject Matter Book D. I wanted to start him where I felt he would already have complete mastery of skills in order to just work on this type of answering the questions format. When he is finished with this, I plan to go directly into Reading Comprehension in Varied Subject Matter Book 1. He finished his beginning cursive book and I don’t really want to start a new one this year, but he is asking for handwriting. Although we are on hiatus from MCT, I am still covering a couple of sentences each week.

Mei is plugging away at Saxon 65. She has completed through lesson 78. She was working in a Kumon division workbook, but this week she began working in Math Mammoth Division 2 and completed through page 16. She also started Future School Grade 5 Mathematics back in January. She will not finish this by the end of the school year. However, through its exams it is a good testing tool to determine if a skill has been mastered or as a quick review of topics that are not covered in this level of Saxon.

Mei began doing language arts grade 5 through Future School in January. I don’t think that it is unreasonable to anticipate that she will finish the entire year before the end of May. She is reading The Story of the USA for reading comprehension and to cover some of the US history that may be included on the 5th grade standardized test that she may take. She has completed Book 2 A Young Nation Solves Its Problems and is now working in Book 3 America Becomes a Giant. I hope to be well into Book 4 Modern America before the end of the school year. Mei is also still working in Evan Moor’s Daily Handwriting Practice: Contemporary Cursive. She is on hiatus from Winston Grammar, but we are still looking at a couple of sentences each week.

Both Duncan and Mei are using Classical Conversations as the spine for their history and science. This has been an easy to accomplish thing. I write the history sentence on the white board and we go through it many times while I erase sections of it until they can say it with the entire sentence erased. Then, we read about the topic in one of the many reference books that I own. We do the same thing for the science. Whenever we are in the car, we listen to the audio CD. I like taking the focus off of these subjects and placing it squarely on math and language arts. (alright, I admit it: primarily math)

The weekly presentation at Classical Conversations on Tuesdays has been great. Mei and Duncan are both talkers and a weekly presentation where everyone must listen to them is just fabulous. This past week Mei had to do a presentation on a prominent historical figure from somewhere around WW2. She did her presentation on Eleanor Roosevelt. Duncan had to do a how-to presentation. He had his class build simple catapults from Mini Weapons of Mass Destruction. (We have been enjoying this book. Thank you, Karen in CO!)

Mei sending a small marshmallow into our common area.

Duncan's marshmallow flying.
All our memory work is now from Classical Conversations and this too has been fabulous. This time the fabulousness is for me, because I no longer need to figure out memory work!

On Friday they both went to their art and drama classes which they thoroughly enjoy.

Duncan went to his individual violin lesson on Wednesday and went (for the first time) to a group lesson on Friday afternoon. Monday wrapped up school year swimming for Mei.

We also do a number of things inconsistently, but I guess if I cared about those things they wouldn’t be inconsistent!


  1. Thanks for sharing your week-- and your comment "if I cared about those things they wouldn't be inconsistent" made me LOL!

  2. I love all of the math you accomplish! It looks like you had a great week! Have a good weekend.

  3. Those catapults are awesome!

    Your math and language arts focus is great. They're developing the tools they need to excel later too.

    Terrific week.

  4. Sounds like a great week, we're math and science focused with LA thrown in there because I have to, lol.

  5. Sound like fun week! My boys would love to build catapults and use marshmallows for it!

  6. Those catapults are awesome; I'm going to have to look into getting that book! Who wouldn't love to shoot marshmallows with a mini catapult?!

    Thanks for stopping by & commenting!