Thursday, March 20, 2008

Weekly Review: 3/17-3/21

I know I'm technically a day early for a weekly review, but tomorrow is our nature study/math game/art study/composer study/geography light sort of day, and I have the RDI parent meeting to discuss the RDAs. So our work is basically done for the week, and tomorrow I will be wanting to discuss RDI, rather than homeschooling.

These are the times that try men's souls.

I'm pretty sure that is a famous quote, and it sums up nicely the way this week has felt. I know I had promised pictures and video from Austin's first game, but the game was full of unpleasant episodic memories, and I just didn't care to relive them. The team won, and Austin went 2-2 (meaning he got up to bat twice and got on base twice) with 2 singles (meaning when he hit the ball he made it to first base).

The trouble came at the end of the game, when he was brought in to pitch relief. He completely fell apart. He cried on the pitcher's mound after he walked the first batter, which is something he has never done before. The umpires saw it coming and I am grateful with the way they handled it: they both came up to the pitchers mound and sort of surrounded Austin and were kicking around on the dirt like they were showing him something. It gave him time to calm down. He never got into a groove though. He gave up two runs, but got out of the game thanks to the great defensive plays of his teammates.

He told dh/coach that he was nervous, which is so out of character for him. Usually, he is out on the field running a script almost... he's pitching in the major leagues and he talks to himself and is sort of in his baseball world. I'm not at all sure why he was so nervous and excitable, especially since we were up by 10 runs. It was really hard for me. Baseball is his 'thing' and he is good at it. So much else is hard for him. It was hard for me to see him upset. And I couldn't help but blame myself, because I wasn't there at the start of the game like I always am. Maybe that threw him off? The other coach's wife told me he kept asking her, "Is my mom here yet?" :(

Anyway, here is a picture of him before the game. I took this at Riley's dance class before dh came to take Austin to the game. He looks very sharp in this season's uniform.
Today we finished our human body study and diagrams. You can see from the picture below that they turned out really well, and they are very cool! Next week we're going to play a human body board game, and I would like the kids to summarize/narrate what we did during this study. I am proud of the hard work that they put into this set of lessons, and I'm excited to start Apologia's Elementary Astronomy next.

Austin got a B on today's math test, which surprised me in all honesty. He struggled with this lesson on Volume. I had assumed that he would breeze through these last lessons in the MUS Delta curriculum, but I assumed incorrectly. He would have gotten an A, except he gave two answers as "24 4/4" and "22 16/16" when the answers were "25" and "23". This is something he has been doing for quite awhile, so I would not give partial credit. He understands that when you have a remainder that is equal to or greater than your divisor, it means you have to go back into your division and rework it. But that doesn't mean he will apply it. Anyway, a B is still quite good. He was a bit flustered because he couldn't remember that there are 7 gallons in 1 cubic foot of water, and he needed that tidbit of information to solve a word problem. I told him the information so he could solve the problem, and assured him that I didn't know that bit of information until Mr. Demme told us in this lesson! ;) I told him that's what Google is for.

Reece is reading some of the Real Kids Phonics Readers, Level 1 from the library, and she read 3 of them this week. Austin and Riley each read through these books, though I remember them better with Austin. I think Riley read through the entire 3 level series in a matter of weeks! LOL They are a great set of books, with photos of real children and highly decodable text. I am not using a phonics program with Reece, which makes me a bit nervous, but she seems to be doing OK nonetheless.

Riley began the Singapore Primary Math 3B book last week. This book begins with mental math across the addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. It's quite possibly my favorite part of math! Riley always said her least favorite subject was math, until we started with Singapore. It's not easy for her, because it requires her to stretch her brain... but she does very well with it. She doesn't need lots and lots of review, so the extra practice books I purchased for her sit and wait for Reece to use them, I suppose. She was a bit concerned because she's almost done with 3rd grade, and she was afraid she wouldn't finish the 3B book by then. I assured her that "3B" doesn't necessarily equal 3rd grade math, and she is certainly not behind. She does feel more positive about herself as a math learner, which is important to me, because math and working with numbrs has always been one of my favorite things.

We did actually manage to get through our Ambleside readings this week, except for Children of the New Forest. That is a very good book, but the language is complex, both for me to read and for the children to understand. We are behind the schedule in this book by a long shot, but we'll keep plugging away at it. We are also nearly done with Nim's Island, which comes to the movies on April 4th. I cannot WAIT for this movie... and I'm taking the kids to see it the day it comes out! :) The book has been very enjoyable, and I hope the movie stays fairly close. You can access the trailer for the movie on this page: Nim's Island Official Site.

That's our week... I'll update on RDI tomorrow, and then Riley's turning 9 this weekend so I'll have pictures of her! And probably a video of her doing something besides dancing! :)

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