Learning Notes Week of February 14

Toothpick Fenway Park.

Toothpick Fenway Park.

Sunday February 14

Too cold to go to Mass, -8 degrees. Car wouldn’t start.

Kids exchanged Valentines and made more and exchanged those. So sweet to see all the dear cards. And nary a piece of candy. They really don’t know it’s celebrated as a quasi-Halloween in most places.

Read the day’s Mass readings and discussed them. Read picture book about St Valentine.

Ben made me a Valentine. See it says Mommy.

Ben made me a Valentine. See it says Mommy.

A Valentine from Ben.

A Valentine from Ben.

Lucy makes Valentines

Lucy makes Valentines

Bella made Sophie a Star Wars Valentine

Bella made Sophie a Star Wars Valentine

Ben with Valentines tulips.

Ben with Valentines tulips.

Monday February 15

Holiday so no morning school time. I went grocery shopping with Bella while the other kids stayed home with Dom.

Sophie meanwhile read through almost our entire collection of board books to Lucy with Ben and Anthony listening in too.

Afternoon stories we did have, just a few and just the for fun ones: Pigeon Post, Lord of the Rings, and by Anthony’s request, Story of the World— chapter about the Sino-Japanese war in Korea and especially about Queen Min.

Lectio Divina at dinner. Not much discussion, but Bella at least was attentive.

Bedtime story I read Blue Hat Green Hat to Lucy who is obsessed with it. Oops! Dom read Anthony’d pick.

Bella read Miss Happiness and Miss Flower.

Sophie reads all the board books.

Sophie reads all the board books.

Tuesday February 16

Began with saint of the day: Onesimus. And then the day’s readings with Gospel.

And then a Frost poem: The Death of the Hired Man. Sob. I began by reading them the line, “Home is the place where, when you have to go, they have to take you in.” Which intrigued the girls. So then I told them a bit of the story and read the lines immediately before and after than one. And then they were well hooked so I went back to the beginning and read the whole poem.

Then Sophie did math and copywork, finishing up her quotation from Genesis about the creation of Adam and Eve. And read to me part of a chapter of Chronicles, stumbling over all the very hard names. She really likes the reading me random bits of the Bible and I encourage it to give her a sort of familiarity with different parts and maybe to whet her appetite to read more.

I did a short math lesson with Ben and Anthony, nothing written except on the whiteboard. Then I played a letter matching game with flashcards and letter tiles with Ben and he found me five little f’s in the text of a poem. Then Anthony did a Y page. We looked up a picture of a yak. And then he read me a Bob book.

I read the boys the story of the wolf and the seven kids, inspired by a picture in the boys’ math lesson.

Bella read This Country of Ours, created an imaginary island in the north Atlantic on our wall map, naming it Lackis and then we created a page for it in her notebook with longitude and latitude marked down and a description of the landscape and animals. We decided it was in the Gulf Stream and was very rocky but had some forests and plenty of seabirds like gulls and albatrosses. She thought about monkeys, but decided not.

Then she did her math page, calculating perimeters. And looked at her Latin lesson, reviewing vocabulary and we discussed a bit of grammar. And then she went outside for a tramp in the rain before coming back in to do copywork, more of the Ent and Entwife poem.

Sophie was talking about ninjas and Bella added to the conversation that daimyos would send ninjas to kill their enemies.

Afternoon stories: a couple of poems from the Barefoot book. If You Give a Pig a Pancake. Inos Biffi Catechism. Faith and Life about the Ark of the Covenant falling into the hands of the Philistines. Pigeon Post. Story Book of Science about metals. Lord of the Rings. Finished The Mystery of the Periodic Table.

We watched the final episode of Wild China. I read some more board books to Lucy.

Bella and I listened to The Office of Readings and discussed the plagues of Egypt.

Lectio Divina at dinner: more Jesus of Nazareth, why Jesus was not a zealot.

Bedtime stories: Chanticleer and the Fox.

Bella was reading the children’s Plutarch.

Bella discovers a new island.

Bella discovers a new island.

Anthony reads.

Anthony reads.

Wednesday February 17

Bella did a math page about temperatures— all in Celsius. And copied out another line of her Ent and Entwives poem. And looked at her Latin book. Today was a Tolkien day and she was reading more of the children’s Plutarch.

Sophie had a very hard day. Everything was a struggle. But she finished her math page and did her copywork and read to me from her Bible.

Ben and Anthony did a math lesson and Ben wrote his name on a couple of Valentines. I also looked at letters with him in a very informal way: looking at his shirt, the box of Mac n Cheese, etc. Nothing that felt like pressure or school.

We ran errands: the post office, the library, the grocery store to return the bagels I bought on Monday which were already moldy. I picked up some lunch meats and rolls and cheese for them.
We spent an hour looking at my old photo albums from my semester abroad after we’d got talking about Europe somehow.

Story time: Pigeon Post, Catechism, My Path to Heaven, Lord of the Rings. And a handful of library books.

Movie time: Monkey Thieves. A sort of reality show about a troop of macaques who live in a temple in Jaipur India and who go raiding in the city. Obviously pretty scripted, but with nice looks at the monkeys and an interesting peek a life in India. It was a bit hit. Immediately the boys began playing monkey thieves.

Dinner reading, since Dom wasn’t here I skipped our family lectio divina and instead read them the first two pages of the novel I just picked up: Giants in the Earth.

Bedtime story: a library book.

Thursday February 18

We read about St Simeon, the brother of St James the Lesser and the second bishop of Jerusalem.

Sophie woke up with a cold and needed extra care. That explains the cranky yesterday. Nonetheless she managed to perk up a bit after breakfast and did a page of math and a line of copywork. She’s still loving doing cursive.

Bella had trouble getting started but then did a page on converting units of liquid measure: cups, pints, quarts, gallons. She got quite excited over seeing a pattern with multiplication of fours and eights. Her copywork is looking quite nice now and we had a conversation about how much easier reading and writing and math have become for her. She has decided to start working in the Little Latin Readers workbook. Voluntarily doing the exercises and filling in the blanks. Last year extra writing even in that small amount would have had her in tears.

I didn’t do any work with the boys.

We went to the Fuller Craft Museum’s free family day where we saw toothpick buildings and all sorts of different crafts. They had some hands-on exhibits and crafts for the kids to do. Bella made a quilt square (fabric glued on paper) and was quite sad we couldn’t stay to build with toothpicks. But Sophie was getting tired.

Bella was excited to spot some bufflehead ducks in the pond outside the museum. A new species for her.

We came home and had a late lunch– the kids did have snacks at the museum.

Then short afternoon stories: Pigeon Post, Catechism and Faith and Life, Lord of the Rings.

Then the kids watched an episode of Wildest India and then one of Monkey Thieves.

Very short lectio divina at dinner.

Bedtime story: Mouse Paint and a book about crayons called Red.

Lucy looks at the frozen pond.

Lucy looks at the frozen pond.

Toothpick Empire State Building.

Toothpick Empire State Building.

Toothpick Titanic

Toothpick Titanic

Toothpick Eiffel Tower.

Toothpick Eiffel Tower.

Toothpick Taj Mahal

Toothpick Taj Mahal

Toothpick White House.

Toothpick White House.

Children color at the craft museum.

Children color at the craft museum.

Lucy colors at the craft museum

Lucy colors at the craft museum

Friday February 19

Bella did a page of math, she’s working on conversions of gallons, quarts, pints, and cups. She did a page in her Latin workbook, and did a line of copywork.

Sophie tried to start her math, but was still feeling very under the weather and just fell apart.

Bella and I discussed The Whiskey Rebellion.

Afternoon stories: Pigeon Post, Biffi Catechism, Faith and Life, Lord of the Rings. Selections of poems.

Anthony and Ben watched Monkey Thieves.

Bella reads about Alexander Hamilton.

Bella reads about Alexander Hamilton.

Saturday was Anthony’s birthday. He’s five now. And weighs 49 pounds, just two pounds less than Sophie.

Saturday night out at dinner Bella gave Dom and I a long and elaborate narration about Arron Burr, especially his life after he shot Hamilton. His attempt to create a personal empire in Louisiana, his arrest, his trial for treason and his many misfortunes after that. She was quite animated and she remember so many details. It was rather impressive.

3 Responses to Learning Notes Week of February 14

  1. Valerie, NZ February 22, 2016 at 3:17 pm #

    Fantastical toothpick creations! Looks like your family enjoyed their visit to the Craft Museum. I hope Sophie is well again now. Best wishes.

  2. scotch meg February 25, 2016 at 3:58 pm #

    Giants in the Earth? From the Well-Read Mom? Or did you just happen into it?

    And, oh, “The Death of the Hired Man” – one of the sources of comfort to me at the moment, when life with an elderly person gets… difficult.

    Thank you for sharing!

    • Melanie Bettinelli February 26, 2016 at 11:35 pm #

      Actually, you mentioned Giants in the earth when you were here. And since my friend Jenny had already mentioned it, that was enough to push me into picking it up from the library.

      I’d read Death of the Hired Man before, of course; but I’ve never really read that many of Frost’s longer narrative poems. They used to put me off. Now I’m intrigued and wonder why I didn’t like them. I guess because they feel more like very short short stories than like poems.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes