Monday September 14
Everyone was tired and not wanting to get into the school groove.
Sophie did some math and then hit a wall with copywork. Bella did some math and then copywork. While Bella did her copywork, Sophie and I read Morning Prayer together, taking turns reading verses and antiphons.
I did a math lesson with the boys and then Anthony copied words, making letters out of clay. He copied Lucia, Anthony, and Racky Raccoon (his favorite stuffed animal). Meanwhile Ben made race cars out of clay. Ben was not interested at all in doing anything with letters.
The kids all played pirates for a bit and then we got out the paints and painted until lunch time. Bella painted a map of Narnia and Sophie made a landscape with flowers.
Afternoon stories we read outside, sitting on blankets in the sun and the shade according to individual preference. I love the fall when it’s cool and breezy and dry. Perfect. We read The Hobbit. Out of the Frying Pan and into the Fire. Then Story of the World, about Nat Turner’s rebellion. Then The Saturdays. And finally St Elizabeth Ann Seton.
The girls have been playing a game of planation and slaves. Sophie is a plantation owner and Bella is a slave, doing all sorts of work. It seems timely with the history lessons as we gear up to talking about abolition and the Civil War.
Bedtime stories: Calvin and Hobbes.
Tuesday September 15
Another tough morning. Bella took her math book outside. Sophie did not want to do anything. So I called Bella in and sat Sophie on my lap and we prayer Morning Prayer together, the girls taking turns reading with me. It was lovely. After that Sophie did a page of math (we found a purple pencil to help) and then a little bit of copywork. She didn’t want to do cursive and I didn’t push it. Bella finished math and did a bit of copywork too.
Then I did a math lesson with the boys and I did a brief little letter recognition quiz with Ben.
Bella read This Country of Ours and talked to me about McKinley’s assassination.
Then I let the kids have some iPad time while I read a couple of books with Anthony. Lobster’s Secret, the Smithsonian book, and something else I can’t recall.
Afternoon stories: The Hobbit, the final chapter in The Saturdays, Elizabeth Ann Seton, The Microbe Hunters.
Bedtime story: Jan Brett’s The Hat.
Overheard during the day: “Where is the globe? I need to find Puerto Rico.” Bella reading ahead in This Country of Ours.
Dad took us out to dinner. Listening to The Horse and His Boy in the car.
Wednesday September 16
Bella did math and a bit of cursive. Sophie did math and no copywork.
I did math with the boys, at lesson 6 we finally hit a lesson we couldn’t finish. We need to go back and do a lot more with addition and subtraction. But they did seem to get the basics of greater than less than.
We watched a bunch of bird videos. Bella confirmed her id from a few weeks ago of the great crested flycatcher. How fun for her to have a new bird for her list. One I’ve never seen, too! We also watched some gorilla videos for Anthony.
Took my dad to the airport shuttle and then went to the playground. Still listening to The Horse and His Boy in the car.
Afternoon stories: The Hobbit. Lucy refused to nap, I was falling asleep, so one chapter of The Hobbit was all we read.
Sophie and I did a bit of Duolingo. She’s starting to take over the iPad more and more, answering questions for herself rather than watching over my shoulder as I do it. She’s highly motivated to learn French and though the format is a little too old for her, she’s plugging away at it valiantly. I do need to limit her time because if I let her go too long she gets frustrated.
Bedtime: Calvin and Hobbes.
The next door neighbor’s daughter, who is cleaning out neighbor’s house, did drop by with some old 1950s era books for the kids to look at. Bella spent some time punching out Eskimos and mounties and polar bears from an Eskimo punch out book. This is vintage stuff. There was also a book of US president trading cards that went through Eisenhower. Lots of science ones: mushrooms, human body, oceans. The kids descended like locusts.
Thursday September 17
Sophie did three pages of math, one in Saxon, two in Miquon. And some copywork and some cursive. Back on track.
Bella did half a page of math and some cursive.
I did part of a math lesson with Ben and Anthony.
At the grocery store Sophie was thrilled when she could read a sign in cursive. Bella was also recognizing letters on it. She’s not been as on top of the cursive as Sophie.
Bella read most of A Little Maid of Philadelphia. Sophie started reading A Little Maid of Narraganset Bay. They looked at U.S. Presidents trading cards and butterfly and moth cards and several of the books from the next door neighbor.
Afternoon stories: The Hobbit, Bible story, Story of the World chapter about the Opium War in China. Also some Calvin and Hobbes.
Bedtime stories: Otis and the Tornado, Green Eggs and Ham.
Bella was reading Pagoo.
Ben spent some time doing simple sums on the dry erase board and tracing some letters too.
Still listening to The Horse and His Boy in the car.
Friday September 18
Sophie did math, copywork, cursive. Bella did math.
We went to the homeschooling start of school year Mass. Ironic, a bit, since it’s not the start of anything for us right now. But a chance to meet up with friends, go to Mass, dedicate myself once again to trying to put God in the center of this homeschooling endeavor.
There were fewer families than in previous years. Less than 20. I’m guessing part of that was the time of day. Mass at noon. We almost didn’t go because I know the noon hour is tough on kids who are used to eating on a schedule. But recently we’ve had some later lunches, getting back from the grocery store after noon and such. So I gave them some crackers when we got there at 11 and figured it would hold them. It did. Even though Mass started late and went long. It was a long haul for little ones, but they did it. Still, next year if Mass is at noon again, I’m not sure if we’ll go. But if it’s before noon. Say at 10:30 or 11:00, we’re totally there.
It was nice to chat with other moms. To talk about curriculum. To renew friendships.
It was jangling on my introvert nerves. A very noisy basement room for the lunch and socialization. And the kids playing on the piano most of the time. Some of them were quite good, mind you, but so very noisy on top of all the running and laughing and yelling and everyone trying to talk. It made me anxious. I prefer outdoor gatherings where the noise dissipates and the kids can run wild a little more easily. And I can hear other mothers without feeling oppressed by the noise.
Still, it was a nice day. Even if I was exhausted by the time we got home and to beat to deal with making dinner. We ordered pizza. It wasn’t the end of the world.
Oh and on the way there and back we finished up The Horse and His Boy and began listening to The Silver Chair.
Bedtime story: The Fantastic Flying Adventure.
The girls are reading The Little Maid books. Sophie is reading Narraganset. Bella has finished Philadelphia and is on to anther one. I’m not sure which. She’s also been reading Pagoo.