Monday, September 16, 2013

Busy Weeks of School: Weeks 3 and 4 of 2013-14

The last two weeks have been crazy!  We had lots of appointments and started our afternoon activities! Things went wrong and things went great.  Mostly there was a lot of changes!  We also spent an entire morning looking for Bella's glasses... she learned a lesson about that! 
(This pic is from a few months ago.  It is my favorite pic of her in her glasses!)

Our phonics and math program stopped being a good match for Bella.  I don't want to start bashing the curriculum but it had too much expectations for a first grader.  So I went in search of how to replace it without spending too much money!

After looking into the best phonics lessons out there I found that most of them took the phonics lesson and thought them through using letter tiles to read/spell the words.  I printed off and cut letter magnet tiles.  A friend gave us the magnet paper so that was free. We use them on two pizza pans that we bought for $1.84!  We are using Progressive Phonics' free lessons with the letter tiles to introduce the new sounds.  Bella loves it and has stopped fighting me about learning new phonics rules!!!!

Next I looked at her math book one day and it said to teach her to count by 6's!!! Are you joking?!?! I might continue to use the program for the other parts of that are well done (addition practice) but I looked into other options.  I decided to get Mathematical Reasoning from The Critical Thinking Co.  I think she will enjoy it.  I will let you know how it goes!

 Mathematical Reasoning™ Level B

One thing I was worried about was that just using a phonics program would leave a gap in other language arts topics.  Bella does have a book that we work in about once a week that has some language arts stuff in it.  I wanted her to have something she could do every day.  So I got a book called Language Smarts also from The Critical Thinking Co.  Again, it is not here yet so I will let you know what I think when it gets here!

 Language Smarts™ Level B

I am really excited about both of the books from this company!

We did get around to doing an art project!  We had read a story that involved roses growing up the side of a wall.  I drew the rocks and Bella helped me color them.  Then we painted vines on the rocks.  Finally, we dipped our finger in finger-paint and made fingertip roses!  Bella loved this!

We finished reading "Helen Keller".  Then we watched the Disney movie.  Bella really enjoyed it!  We then read other "biography" style books.  We read another Helen Keller book as well as books about Duchess Kate, Alice Roosevelt and Laura Ingalls Wilder.  Bella want the biographies to be about girls!

Bella and Bear started gymnastics classes this week.  They have both been doing it since they where about 18 months old.  Both kids got to be in classes with kids that they knew so they had a great time! (This is a pic of Bella from a few months ago!)

Bella also started her Awanas group.  She moved up to Sparks this year!  She is very excited to get her vest and handbook.

Flight 3:16 Entrance Booklet

Our week ended with playtime with some friends at a playground.  The kids had a great time!!!

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