All Girls School


Bones and Field Trip
October 23, 2008, 8:30 pm
Filed under: Bubba, field trip, mimi, science, writing

Bubba and I delved deep into the science of human bones recently. We read the information in our curriculum and then found a couple of sites that gave more detail about certain bones and had us guess where on the body one can find them. On another site we found the actual names of many of the bones and added two of them (femur and cranium) to our spelling list as bonus words for the week. We have a couple of human anatomy books that have sections on bones that we looked at, but the information beyond what had been discussed in the curriculum was beyond our level, so we didn’t look at those for long.

Mimi had her first field trip and got to ride the school bus for the first time. (A life long dream come true for her.) The other best part for her was that Dad got to go on the field trip with her class. When we told her that he would be going and riding the bus, too, she immediately asked him if he would sit next to her on the bus. He assured her that he would. They had a great time visiting a local vet, the fire department (her teacher’s husband was one of the firefighters), the police station and a local grocery store. For lunch they usually go to the park, but since it was wet and muddy, they went back to the school to eat their sack lunches and play on their asphalt playground.

Here’s Mimi trying out a firefighter’s bed.

Here she is practicing the skills she learned at the grocery store.

And here she is practicing some of her newfound letter writing skills with a Sharpie on the bathroom wall. It’s directly across from the toilet and beneath the towel rack, so bathroom users have something to read if they’d like and we can also cover it by hanging a towel on the rack. She’s so thoughtful that way.



Soccer Games
October 11, 2008, 1:58 pm
Filed under: Bubba, mimi, soccer

It was such a beautiful morning to watch some soccer games. This was Mimi’s first year to compete in matches as last year she just had practices where they focused on basic skills. She was so excited to play in the scrimmage. We decided to call her Freight Train because she just did not stop. She was up and down the field non stop. It was a lot of fun to watch her and see her stay engaged for the entire hour. Last year she only lasted about twenty minutes before she would want to go climb the trees or sit on the blanket instead of play.

Bubba played her game today, too. We’ve been watching her play with many of these kids for the past year and a half. They all look so big to me all of a sudden. It has been really interesting to watch them improve together.



Leif Ericson Day
October 9, 2008, 2:15 pm
Filed under: holiday

In honor of the holiday, we have taken the day off of school. Enjoy the holiday, everyone, and we’ll be back to school again on Monday.



Guitar Recital
October 6, 2008, 3:34 pm
Filed under: Bubba, guitar, music

Bubba had her first guitar recital on Saturday. On Friday she was really really nervous. Stomach ache nervous. We talked a lot about how everyone there watching was there to support her and not to point out any mistakes. She was still really concerned about missing a note. When she woke up on Saturday, though, her outlook had changed and she wasn’t as concerned any more, just excited. She worked really hard on her piece, too. She knew about the recital for about three weeks. At first it took her almost ten minutes to play the song. We instituted a new policy where, during her daily practice, she had to play her recital song three times before practicing anything else. By the second week she had it memorized and could play it in one minute. In fact, when she got up on stage she sat down, placed her music on the stand and the teacher came to help her plug in to the amp. Then she began playing and never once looked at her music. She just watched her fingers. It was so fun to watch her up on the stage, although I wish she had been given one more song to play so that I could have watched her perform longer.

Leaving for the show.

Feeling a bit of nerves and setting up.

Playing

Concentrating… but not on the sheet music.

Ovations.

With some of her adoring fans.



Quick update
October 2, 2008, 9:42 pm
Filed under: art, Bubba, curriculum, games, history, math, reading, science, writing

We’ve been studying the respiratory system. I’m a little disappointed because the curriculum that we’re using for science is a little too superficial for Bubba’s level. I find myself quickly scrounging for supplementary items online or in our book and DVD collection to feel that she’s getting something out of the lessons.

Our printer is broken, so we’ve been doing a lot of online math games. Bubba told me that she felt weak on her analog time-telling skills. We found a few games that dealt with that and within thirty minutes or so she was getting all of the questions correct. She needed a refresher from last year and I had no idea. I guess we have mostly digital clocks in the house because I felt like her time-telling was great. I’m glad she was able to tell me that she felt weak in an area and we were able to work on it together. She also requested that we play more games with math, so we’ve been playing cards and Yahtzee lately.

In history we’re hitting Ancient Greece. This is one of my favorite periods in history, especially coming from an art history background, so there are lots of tangents to hit. We’re gearing up to read a bunch of the Greek Myths, but I’m having a hard time putting our regular reading book aside. We’ve been reading The Mysterious Benedict Society. It has been a lot of fun for us as we guess the solutions to the different puzzles. Some of them are over Bubba’s head, but so far she has either been able to figure them out or understand them after we find the answer(s). We’re only about a fourth of the way in, though, and any of the negative reviews state that this is where it starts slowing down. I already see what they say about it needing some editing as there are a lot of passages that are unnecessary and some feel redundant, but the story has been intriguing and fun. We’ll see where it goes from here.

We’ve been doing a little handwriting because she has this block about the number 4 and the number 9. She always makes them backwards. It’s like she knows that she always writes them the wrong way so she overthinks them when she writes them and they are consistently wrong. I have to remind her to use clear and legible handwriting whenever we have written assignments. She hates taking the time to make her letters correctly. I wouldn’t mind if she used a quicker and more comfortable style of writing, but she really never mastered correct writing in the first place. You have to know the rules in order to break them. For our more structured writing lessons we’ve been discussing how to research a topic. We’ve been over the Dewey Decimal System at the library and I’ve been working with her on how to find things on the internet. We’ve also discussed the importance of making sure your sources are legitimate and that she never decides to just go Googling without her dad or I there with her.

In art we are working on shape. Bubba finished the line section two weeks ago. I like the curriculum that we draw from because there are a couple of projects that deal with the technical aspects of the element followed by a couple of really creative projects that incorporate the same element. We have a new project every Monday and then she has the week to complete it. This way she’s been able to take her time and not rush through any of them and the results are much more finished-looking pieces than when we tried to complete them all in one day.