Little Hearts Unit 3

After thinking about how best to continue to blog about HOD when the girls aren’t all going at the same pace, I decided it might be best to focus on one girl each week.  So instead of the usual oldest to youngest, I’ll go youngest to oldest.

Princess M is on Unit 3 Day 4.  This past week has been a big one.  Her reading seems to be taking off!  While we had finished the Lesson 3 Fluency Practice Sheet over three days, she finished it in two days with Lesson 4.  She could have done it in one, but we only had a limited amount of time that day because of other plans.


Then yesterday, she read the first story in the Run Bug, Run book. When we flipped through the story she didn’t think she was going to be able to read it all. But when she finished, she was so proud!

In math, she powered through lesson 5 and wanted to start lesson 6.  But she was getting picked up by her Nanny (my mom) and so there wasn’t time. 

On Wednesday it was Crazy Hair Night at Awana.  So, since she is a Cubbie, we sprayed her hair blue.

(And even though I’m not writing about her this week now, I have to post the ones of Princess L who is on the yellow team this year.  Princess E decided to put pony tails all over.  The yellow hair spray really looked more green on her.)

I have been impressed with how well Princess M has been listening to and retaining The Adventures of Reddy Fox.  I usually give her some paper and some colored pencils and she draws while I read.  We always start out by trying to remember what happened in the last story we read.  She draws a picture while I read – sometimes about Reddy Fox, sometimes whatever comes to mind. Then I ask her what she remembers about the story, sometimes by asking specific questions, sometimes by just letting her talk.  She does very well.

One thing that seems to happen is that we skip science.  She has more fun joining in on what Princess L is doing, so if there is an experiment or a note booking page for Princess L, I’ve been just letting her do that for science.  I guess that’s what happens when you’re running four guides at one time.


2012/2013 Week 5

We finally have added in all of our midweek activities, and suddenly things are seeming hectic again.  Awana, worship dance, Princess E’s theater and writing classes and Princess S’s art and writing classes, and our vocabulary and literature classes have all begun.  Yikes! 
Princess M - LHFHG - PreK/K
This little one is taking to reading like a fish to water.  Well, okay maybe not that well, but I am amazed at the improvements over the last few weeks.  We are using All About Reading.  She loves it!  And I love it!  Here are some photos of the last few weeks.

This is the monster she created.  She “feeds” him the word cards that she reads.  This is one monster that is well fed.

This is the first fluency practice page that she had to complete.  It had 42 two and three letter words, twelve two and three words phrases, and nine two to four words sentences.  She was totally overwhelmed when she saw me take the sheet out.  But we used the little cut out frame that helps her to focus on just the one word or phrase.  We took our time, and at the end three days, she had read through the entire sheet.  To say she was proud of herself is an understatement.

After completing the fluency page she got to put on her lesson three sticker.  She has been wanting to read even on the days we don’t have a reading lesson scheduled.  Sometimes I let her, and sometimes I don’t because they are the days we are already so pressed for time.
We are halfway through Unit 3 Day 2.  For math, she is just going to start lesson 5.  She wanted to do the entire lesson 4 in one day.  One thing that has surprised me is her ability to understand that when you have to fill in nine of ten circles, that means that one will be left uncolored.  None of my other kids thought that way.  So does this mean I will have one child actually understand math?! 
Princess L - BHFHG – 2nd
We just finished Unit 4 Day 2.  While I had hoped that we could stick with one HOD day per day, the reality is that isn’t always going to happen.  On Wednesdays, both of the older two princesses are gone for two hours.  I had thought I’d be able to get through school more quickly with them gone.  But really, it isn’t working out that way.  So I decided to only get through a half a day’s work with Princess L.  That way each princess gets about an hour from me.  I decided to try not to stress myself out.  I hadn’t intended to finish this guide in one year anyway, so if we get a bit behind, I’m not going to stress out.  When she finishes it, she finishes it.  (Have I convinced myself yet?)  Because we weren’t always finishing every box in a day, I came up with an idea to keep us organized.

I placed these yellow post-its on top of each box that we are doing.  When it is time to do a box, I take the post-it off and move it to the same box on the next day’s plans.  When all of the post-it's are moved, then I know we’ve completed the day.  I am using a similar system with Princess M.
Here is one activity we did this week.  We learned about the compass rose.  She had to walk around to various directions I gave her.  This was about halfway through.  I wish I’d had taken one at the end because there were even more blue foot prints all over it.

For math, we are finally making a little bit of headway.  She has reached level 2 in her math book, and is picking up the pace with the facts that she does know.  Alternating grammar with spelling is working much better.  Spelling takes a bit longer mostly because with All About Spelling, there is some time involved with manipulating the letter tiles. We have a smaller board, which means you can’t just slide the pieces around.  She still can spell wonderfully during spelling, but then write a story on her own later using the same words we just did and get half of them wrong.  It’s frustrating.  I’m beginning to wonder if she doesn’t have some form of dyslexia.
Princess S - RTR – 6th
This princess is almost done with unit five.  She seems to be enjoying HOD, though she has a hard time figuring out exactly what it is she is to do in each box.  I’ve started highlighting what she is expected to do or turn in, and that has helped.  She is seeming to really get the hang of fractions in Epsilon.  She has finished lesson 4 and is doing very well.  We decided to start completely over in Latin.  However, we will be reviewing the lessons already completed at a fast pace.  It will mean going beyond May to finish the book, but that is okay.  She needs to finish this in order to be on pace with my plan for her.  She is enjoying her art class and her writing class that she takes on Wednesdays.  In the afternoons on Wednesdays, we began our Vocabulary Vine studies and our literature studies.  For literature, I decided to use Teaching the Classics that is taught in IEW.  As an English major, this method really spoke to me.  I purchased the course plans that combine it with Windows on the World.  Though they are aimed at early high school students, I worked to adapt them slightly to suit us.  We are working through the DVDs slowly.  I will be picking out books for us to do after we finish the DVDs by combining Center for Lit’s Reading Roadmaps selections with HOD’s literature suggestions, focusing first on those books we own already.  I figure we won’t get to the Windows on the World portion of the course until at least next year, and I plan to stretch it out over two years anyway.  I’d like to make sure Princess E gets it in before her junior year.

Though it may look like she is sleeping, Princess S is learning why snails move so slowly by trying to drag herself across the room using only her left arm.  While she moved okay the first few drags, she slowed up real quick.
Princess E - Rev2Rev – 8th
Princess E is loving her theater class!  She has a friend from dance who is in the same class.  She is a natural drama queen, so it is right up her alley.  She also enjoys being in a class with a lot of other kids.  The classes are held in a large church, so she feels almost as if she is in a “real” school.  She has been moving along in Latin, and will hopefully finish LFC-B just before Christmas. That means she will be doing Latin over this next summer as I wanted her to finish LFC-C by the end of 8th grade.  I am debating putting her in an online Latin class next year, and the only way it is going to work well for her is if she gets this good foundation.
For math, she has 88% of the Middle School One math course mastered.  She has to get a few sections mastered before it will let her do some of the other sections, so she’s gotten bored with doing the same thing over the last three days.  She will just have to bite the bullet and get’r done!  I’m hoping she will start Middle School Two by Thanksgiving.  I didn’t snap any photos of her, so I’ll post this video of her doing the song she performed at our county fair talent show. 
Princess E singing I Can Only Imagine.


HOD Units Two and Three

I will obviously not be posting every week, despite my wishes.  Life is just too crazy and chaotic to make that happen.  We just got back from a week of vacation with my in-laws.  It was fun, but now we need to move back into school mode.  Here is what we completed during week three of school.

Princess M - LHFHG - PreK/K
We are doing all of her work at half pace, so as of right now we are up to Unit 2 Day 2.  She has been learning about Creation and the Fall.  These aren't new topics to her, so it's fun to hear her interject what she remembers.  We have listened to the Hide 'Em In Your Heart CD for over a year, so learning her Bible verses is coming along nicely for her.  In math, she is up to lesson three.  She loves having her own book like her sisters.  Her reading is coming along slowly but surely.  We are halfway through lesson three in All About Reading Level 1.  She has a bit of trouble with blending, but we just keep on plugging away.  She can read the first book in the Bob Books series, but only because she had Princess L telling her the words all summer long and she memorized it.  I'll be giving her the second book some time next week, so I'll better be able to see how she can read it on her own.

Princess L - BHFHG - 2nd
After spending the first week at half pace, I planned to step it up a bit.  So we completed unit two at full pace.  To be honest, it was a little difficult.  I decided that I may alternate spelling with grammar, instead of trying to get both of those done every day.  That will save a little bit of time.  She has been learning about Columbus and Cabot and their trips to America.  She is enjoying the story of Ben and Me.  She is learning to identify the subject and verb of a sentence in her grammar.  We made a list of the "to be" verbs that are not something you can do. 

Princess S - RTR - 6th
She has completed through unit three.  She is learning about the early church during Roman times.  She has enjoyed the read aloud books on her own.  In math, she is cruising right along and is already up to lesson three in Epsilon.  She isn't doing so hot in Latin, however, as she really forgot most of the things she learned.  We started off with a review lesson and though she claimed she reviewed all the flash cards and reviewed all the endings, she bombed the test.  So I will have to teach her how to review for a test again.  She will begin an outsourced art class as well as an outsourced IEW-B class on Wednesday of this week.  She is excited for both of those.

Princess E - Rev2Rev - 8th
After three weeks of allowing her to do school her way in her bedroom, and seeing her take all day and beyond what it should take her, we will be trying something new this week.  She will be required to sit at the kitchen table between 8:30 and lunch time.  I'm going to see how much faster she completes her work, as I believe she has too many distractions in her room.  However, my strong-willed one will most likely try to beat my system and actually take longer at the kitchen table, so it may be a lengthy experiment.  She is enjoying Aleks for math, and will hopefully complete Middle School Math 1 within the month.  She will then begin Middle School Math 2.  She was working on the former all summer long.  She also will be retaking her last Latin test.  She will begin an outsourced theater class (which is an experiment and she'll have to prove she can keep up with all her school work in order to take the second semester of it) and the same outsourced IEW-B writing class.

All four girls will begin the new season of worship dance on Thursday, as well as the Wednesday evening activities as church.  It will be a very busy week for me.  I have things going on every night this week, so I'm feeling a bit harried.  But I will be enjoying some time alone with God every Wednesday night as I'm taking the year off from helping in the kids programs or nursery.  I've got plans to work through a few Bible Studies that I just never seem to have time for.  I'm very excited about the prospect.