Friday, August 13, 2010

Things they say

Tess- bringing me a heavily spotted banana- "Ew! It's a mess, Mommy!"

Me- Don't you love your sister?

Jack- Not really.


Maria- Doesn't Grandmom have a computer?

Me- Grandmom doesn't even have an ATM card.

Maria- How does she get money?

Me- She goes into the bank.

Maria- You can do that?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Henry rolls over

Videography by Maria

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The plan for Maria

Oh, you should see my google reader...I'm way behind on reading other blogs because I've been spending my little computer time writing in mine! But I'm almost done here...

Maria is in 8th grade this year. Oh my goodness. Eighth grade. I remember eighth grade so well. Starting a fire in Mrs. Silvas' physical science lab...barely making the audition cut to be in the show choir...that crazy mean girl who used to stalk my best friend and I and tell us she was going to beat us up for no apparent reason...anyone remember wearing Eastland loafers with two pairs of different colored socks? Remember rolling the cuffs of your pants? hehe.... Oh my goodness. I heard Guns and Roses on and oldies station a few weeks ago. An OLDIES STATION people. That's not possible! Oldies stations play the music my mother grew up with! If they start putting the music *I* grew up with on oldies stations, then were will they play the music *she* grew up with? Because, for heaven's sake, surely they will not put Guns and Roses on the same station with Engelbert Humperdinck!

"I'll dance the laaast waaaaaltz with you.....
Two lonely people together...."

Ok, anywho, back to planning....
Maria has been doing well in school. Writing and spelling remain her hardest subject,,,which makes sense with the whole dyslexia thing, huh? Still, she can follow the Mother of Divine Grace 8th grade syllabus pretty closely.

Religion- She's using the 8th grade Faith and Life book, Our Life in the Church, with a special focus on confirmation preparation. She will also continue to study and memorize the Baltimore Catechism. Religion looks like it is her main writing subject too this year. MODG doesn't teach a separate writing course. Instead, writing is woven into the other subjects, usually one subject in particular each year.

Math- We're using Saxon 87, which is a thorough review of basic math as well as a pre-algebra course. We're also using Saxon Teacher for the first time this year. So far this has been a wonderful timesaver for me!

Grammar- Easy Grammar Plus

Spelling- Oh. It's atrocious. We are trying All About Spelling this year...our fourth program and last ditch effort to get her skill level up.

History- Medieval History-the time right after the fall of the Roman Empire-this year with The Story of the Church, The Old World and America, and a slew of supplemental texts like Fingal's Quest and Augustine Came to Kent. On a related note, geography study will focus on Europe too. We are also trying in earnest to finish up our wall timeline. It looks so neat! And she's enjoying it too, which is nice because she doesn't like history much.

Science- Our last year using the Concepts and Challenges series...this year is the physical science book.

Latin- Our Roman Roots...we have been using Latin Christiana, but in a spotty way, hit or miss....I'm going to try something different with her this year. It was kind of impulsive, I have no idea how it'll work out!

Poetry- Shakespeare again this year. She is currently reading Macbeth. Next is The Merchant of Venice.

Art- Seton's 8th grade Art Through Faith series. I love this series. Love. It's just lovely.

Music- 100 Masterpieces of Classical Music

We are having some reality checking this year too,,,looking into Maria's future plans. She has always said she wants to work on an animal reserve, which is great, except we've found that you have to have masters degrees, usually, to work in these places. Maria doesn't want to go to school that long. She loves animals and wants to work with them in some way. So, we will explore that. We're starting to look into colleges as well. We would of course like a good Catholic college. But we may go the community college route for the first two years. She wants to stay close to home longer. That may change though in the next five years.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

mostly wordless Wednesday

I got all of us out the door EARLY for the first day of Maria's dance camp and said I deserved a medal. Maria made me this one.

Pictures from our family reunion trip to St. Louis, and a visit to the Magic House...

First day of school fun...

I always buy some extra books from my wish list, and new school supplies of course, some fun extras related to our studies, socks and underwear for all the kids. Weird, right? Isn't it odd how some things become a tradition? The kids also always get a cutsie new notebook just for doodling and journaling. They really love this for some reason. Even Tess got her own this year,..hers is that one with the puppy on the cover,,,and she has been quite busy filling it in with scribbles from her new crayons.

Check out these goofy looking "pencils" we had at lunch, hehe...

Our first day, and plans for Kain

Oy. I make plans and God laughs, right?

We tried hard to have our first couple of days last week. But three of the five kids have been ill to various degrees. Kain started it with a low grade temp and a junky cough. He never got above 99 degrees though and it was short-lived. Then Tess had diarrhea with a low temp and mucho crankiness. I spent two days just sitting on the couch holding her, when I wasn't nursing Henry. Though I did occasionally do both at the same time! Now Jack is sick, and he's the worst...103 fever, lots of vomiting. Yesterday he couldn't even keep water down. Today he seems better, so far. We'll see. Any more vomiting or fever and I'll be missing mass tomorrow....

Ok, so, plans for Kain. Kain is slowly rejoining us from the day treatment facility. He was home Wednesday and Friday of last week, and he will do that again this week. They will increase his days at home each week after that until he is home five days a week and then he will be discharged. This is providing all goes well of course. So, since he was especially home with us on Wednesday and Friday to start school, I felt like I should get started as best I could. Our first day is mostly fun stuff anyway. I filled the dining room table back-to-school fun stuff for them to find at breakfast. We played with the new goodies and I met with each child for their first-day-of-school interviews, and we talked about their new year. It was also Jack's name day, so we had his favorite dessert, brownies, at tea time, and his favorite dinner, pizza. He got a book of Old Testament stories, a bag of Goldfish crackers, and a Hershey bar as well.

Friday was a doozy. That was when Jack started vomiting in earnest, and he just wanted me to lay down with him all day. So, we didn't do much. I gave Kain some math to do. Other than that, it was a survival day. The plus side is that with Maria's help with the littles, I did manage to convince Jack to lay on the futon with me in the school room while I wrapped up my planning work, so we are already to go next week,,,providing *I* don't get sick, haha!

Ok, this was supposed to be about plans for Kain. Again, these plans mostly come from the Mother of Divine Grace 4th grade syllabus, with some allowances for Kain-ness.

Religion- Kain will be narrating Bible history stories, Old Testament, as well as doing some oral reports on several Saints that lived during the time period we are studying for history. He will also be studying the Baltimore catechism.

Math- Kain is very behind in math, like to the point of having a learning disability in math. Progress is slow and hard-won. He was working in the Abeka second grade book before he went to TDT last November. I was hoping he would have made enough progress in their classroom to start the 3rd grade book this year, but he has not. The bright side of this is that a "real" teacher, a special ed. one at that, has not had any more luck teaching math to Kain than I have! So, we will pick up the second grade book where we left off, but I will work at a quicker pace until he starts to run into difficulty, and then we will slow down. Hopefully we will be in the 3rd grade book soon. Because of his delay, we will do math every non-weekend day possible, including vacations and catch-up weeks.

Grammar- We use Intermediate Language Lessons for 4th is a gentle book that introduces grammar through copywork and dictation, as well as incorporating some picture studies. He will also use Handwriting Without Tears for cursive practice.

Spelling- Kain does not struggle at all with reading or spelling, thankfully. He will make a spelling notebook a la Writing Road to Reading.

Poetry- selections in the syllabus from this book will be memorized. There is an American/patriotic theme this year which aligns itself with his history studies.

History- early American history with Pioneers and Patriots and Evangelization of the New World, as well as many biographies and historical fiction books. He will also be using a map skills workbook. We will also be using Jessica's suggestions and this series of books to make a 50 states scrapbook over the next two years.

Science- this is with Abeka's fourth grade science book, a gentle and colorful book that covers a variety of life-science topics. He will be doing a year long project making a birding notebook as well.

Latin- a gentle introduction starting a two year progression through Latin Christiana I.

Art- drawing lessons with me using this book, and picture studies with these cards.

Music- baroque music this year...I have a list for him to listen from. We will also use the last of this workbook series for some basic music theory.

That's it folks! I have some fun extras set aside to pad his workboxes, but that's the core stuff. The baby is fussy and Saturday chores await, so off I go. Hopefully I can get on later to post some pictures.