Saturday, January 7, 2012

Weekly Wrap-Up: January 6, 2012

Yikes, 2012.  It feels really strange to be typing that.  Time sure is going by fast. 

We jumped right back into school this week, at least our core subjects, and even finished everything that was planned for the week.   Much better than I expected considering Georgie has pretty much spent the previous two weeks bouncing between the Wii and the computer. 

The living room is still a little rearranged from the holidays so we moved school into the dining nook.  We might stay there for a while since it worked pretty well.  I set up the kids office boards as a divider and worked with Vicki while Georgie started on his binder.


Once Vicki finished her official work she played with their TAG, did her wipe-off books, cut paper into little pieces or did wooden word puzzles.  Other than one incident of her cutting her hair, the week went very smoothly.


We seem to have settled on a good amount of school work for Georgie to do each day.   It is enough for him to continue progressing in all his programs at a typical pace (at least one grade level per year) but not so much that he gets whiny and frustrated by the end.   

What George is currently doing:

Handwriting: either a two page spread in the Handwriting without Tears workbook or a page of copywork each day.  The copywork is mostly a short quote from one of the What Your x Grader Needs to Know books.   He is about 2/3 of the way through the 1st grade HWT book.  I don’t think he’s even close to being ready for the smaller spacing of the lines in the 2nd grade book, which is why I added the copywork.

Phonics/Reading:  one lesson in Ordinary Parents Guide to Teaching Reading and 6-8 pages from Explode the Code each day.  We will continue this pace until he starts having trouble with the lessons.  He is currently on Lesson 75 in OPGTR and about 1/2 way through ETC Book 3.  He’s reading well ahead of what either of these are actually teaching. 

One page from Scholastic Second Grade Basic Skills: Reading Comprehension each day.

Math:  3 to 4 pages from Math Mammoth 1B/2A each day.  The pages are a mix of topics.  Usually one or two pages from the Adding/Subtracting within 0 to 100 and one page from Place Value, Coins or Clocks (2A) each day.

Grammar: 1 to 2 pages from Scholastic Grammar, Usage and Mechanics and McMillian/McGraw-Hill Treasures Grammar each day.

Spelling:  Two days to do one step in All About Spelling if he is able to spell the words easily.   Usually one day to introduce the rule and practice and the next day to make sure he remembers.  We do a mix of using the tiles, orally or writing on the white board or a magnetic doodler.  I usually prefer the tiles or orally since he feels the need to draw pictures for each word when he writes them.  We have five more steps to be done with Level One.


I’ve increased the amount of “official” work for Vicki since she is constantly asking for more.  She plays a lot with various games, puzzles, scissors and crayons but it’s the work we do together that I count as “official”.  She is not required to do anything and if she shows resistance, I put it aside.  She offers the most resistance to anything that involves coloring but actually likes tracing letters, circling answers and drawing lines to show answers.

Handwriting: one 2-page spread in the Handwriting without Tears: Get Set for School book and an activity using the Capital Letter pieces.  This week I also added a sheet to practice tracing her name since she has been asking to learn how to write her name.  We actually ended up ahead of my plan for this week since I didn’t assign any HWT pages on those days I gave her the name tracing but she asked to work out of her “green book”.

Phonics: 2 to 4 pages (one or two sheets front and back) from Get Ready for the Code.   She already knows all her letter sounds thanks to Leapfrog videos.  I printed out the sample Lesson 1 for the new All About Reading Level 1 to try with her but she is definitely not ready for blending yet.

Math: 1 to 2 pages from Evan-Moor Teacher’s File Box and/or 1 to 2 activities from Mathematics Enhancement Program Reception Level. 

I am hoping to add our elective subjects back in a week or so.  We will be studying US History starting with Native Americans, States Geography starting with our home state of New Jersey and Science starting with Geology/Rocks & Minerals.