Monday, October 3, 2011

Week 5

We made it through another week.  It was a busy one with us hosting another math salon on Wednesday and me teaching a class on the water cycle to a small group on Thursday.  The weekend was busy for other weekends, so I'm finally getting around to writing last week's report.

Language Arts

Mikaela has moved on to part two of her grammar book and is learning about the parts of the sentence this week.  She covered subject, predicate, subject-verb agreement, direct objects and indirect objects.  She did one assignment where she had to identify the parts of speech for each word in 21 sentences.  Some of them were tricky!  She's working on another similar assignment two sentences at a time while reading this next section.  In vocabulary, she started her third list of stems.  In poetry, she covered two and three syllable feet.  We're slowing working through each tiny step of a five paragraph research paper using at least two sources.

Samuel read the sections covering clauses and how to punctuate sentences based on their clauses.  He's studying some analysis examples.  He's almost done with the book.  He worked on lesson 5 in his vocabulary book covering the stems loco, sur, alter, contra, and stell and 100% on his vocabulary test (they are cumulative).  In poetry, he read about different types of meter.  He's working on the same writing assignment as Mikaela, one small step at a time.


Mikaela started Math-U-See Pre-Algebra this week.  The first chapter was on adding with negative numbers.  She did very well on it, earning between 90-100% on every worksheet and 100% on her test.  Yay!  She's getting her confidence back with math, I think.

Samuel had a fun week with math.  He spent close to an hour a day watching videos and doing practice at Khan Academy.  He loves the website for both the math and astronomy.  According to my coach's progress screen, he's viewed 16 videos and is proficient at 45 out of 201 exercises.  He's starting Art of Problem Solving's Pre-Algebra this week.


Both kids read the SOTW chapter about the invention of the steam engine, cotton gin, and standardization.  The chapter also covered coal mining and the dangers miners faced.  They also read two extremely easy picture books on turning cotton into t-shirts and jeans (I wanted them to see the process in pictures) and Growing Up in Coal Country.  They completed the map page, discussed the review questions with me, and took the chapter test.   We also watched a Dirty Jobs episode involving coal mining and noticed that they didn't seem to be taking precautions against black lung.  It occurred to me that it would be a good subject for an opinion paper.


In astronomy, Mikaela finished up her sun chapter.  Samuel began his second chapter which covers light and telescopes.  For our TOPS lab, I put a large newspaper figure on the wall and they had to draw it to scale 10 times smaller, 100 times smaller, and the correct scale to fill up the paper (5 times smaller) and figure out the ratios.

This is the figure I put up on the board.

This is the beginning of Mikaela's work.  I'm sorry the picture was taken at a funky angle.  We had to talk about her answer to 4a.

For meteorology, we took our work to a library in Tacoma and were joined by four other students.  We discussed the water cycle in more detail than you usually see it, completed a demo on condensation, made rain in a jar, tried splitting up the world's water (scaled down to 1000ml) into the correct amounts for each type of water, and played a game moving through the water cycle.

For geology, we tested the relative hardness of chalk, our fingernails, a paperclip, a penny, the rim of a glass jar, and a brick.

Foreign Language

Mikeala and Samuel are both working on Rosetta Stone three times a day for half an hour.  I only get progress reports once a month so I don't know how they are doing.


We completed a drawing of a jar of honey out of Draw Squad.

This is Mikaela's drawing.  I think she did a great job.

This is Samuel's jar which is great for his abilities.


Samuel continues with his tae kwon do classes a few times a week.  He really wants to test for his first stripe this month and for his second dan next June.

Both kids did flag football.  I think they worked on formations.  I was with the littles and not paying a lot of attention to football.

We also hosted a math salon in which five families attended.  Towards the end, a group of boys were gathered around having a ball with Blokus.  We had to remind them repeatedly that we were in the library.

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