You know what that means: time to audit the books.
And what i've found is that we need a whole new approach to the science and spelling areas. We also need to spend a few days "catching up" here and there. We aren't as bad off as before, but we are definitely in need of an extra lesson or two a day for a couple weeks to get ourselves ahead again.
November had 17 possible school days, December had 20 and January has had 12, as we took a long Winter Break. All totalled from the beginning of our "year", we've had 72 opportunities for a school day. So here's how it's looking:
Math: Lsn 51 (we spent 2 hours on Monday finishing four lessons...hopefully we can get more of that done during this week.)
- We've ditched the reading guide because it was too babyish and i am currently investigating an alternative that is a phonics and spelling program rolled into one.
- We've also taken on a new approach to the spelling workbook. Instead of making C.monster finish on the list work in the book, i have her focus on writing paragraphs about the theme of the lesson. She i have her do an enrichment exercise making sentences for five words from the spelling list. Today, while administering the spelling quiz, i was met with C.monster's skill and wit--when i asked her to spell words like sea, meet, real, & week they were met with the questions, "What kind of..... Do you mean sea like 'i see a cat' or do you mean the ocean? Do you mean reel, like an Irish dance or do you mean it like a fishing reel or do you mean it like 'is that real food?'" Smart-alec kids these days! :o) That being said, she is already in the second book of the series and on lesson 11 out of 35. Our cirriculum says that she should finish the 7th book by 4th grade. I think that won't be a problem.
- For her grammar, we've been continuing in First Reading Lessons and she is humming right along with 58 lessons completed (more than have way done with 1st grade grammar.)
History is atrocious. We've only progressed 8 lessons. We're working on that this week.
Science is also abominable, so we are working on reworking it. This picking up books at the library every week is getting old...especially because we would rather not leave the house in favour of staying home to work on school and projects. So, i will try scheduling a science reading day once a month to work on reading about animals, but then would rather get her fired up about basic chemistry experiments and she's dying to learn about the human body other days of the month. During Spring, i'd like her to study plants. I think i am going to try a different approach to science and just work on a different unit of study once a month.
Religious Ed: December about killed us. We had 25 lessons requiring 15 minutes a day to keep up with. Needless to say, we opted for weekends, when Moose could be home to help with them. We managed to finish somehow, personally i believe it was a Christmas miracle, a now we have 30 new lessons to complete by Feb 3rd. Oy! I am not very pleased with this set of lessons, not only as the next class falls on our wedding anniversary, but because our parish has asked us to teach the kids about abortion this month. Now....really!?!? My child is 7. I could see teaching it to the 8th graders or the high schoolers, but my 1st grader?? One of the reasons we took her out of public school is because of the things she would learn there that would not keep her a child for much longer--one being AIDS education in kindergarten. :o\
The lesson was debated between Moose and i, but i firmly believe that there is another appropriate time to teach my child about abortion...especially when she doesn't even know how babies are made yet. She asked once when she was 5, but i gave her a simple beginning and end story. I wasn't about to tell a 5 year old that you insert tab A into slot B and yada yada yada...10 months later, boom, you have a baby. I told her that making babies was like a recipe--the mommies have the eggs and the daddies have another ingredient and when the ingredients are mixed together, poof, you get a baby. I am certainly not looking to explain this any further until she's needs to learn about the changes her body will be going through. And sensoring the process required to make a baby but not sensoring abortion didn't seem right. Like putting the cart before the horse, so to speak. Moose has a different experience though, coming from a strong, Catholic family where they were told at an early age that abortion is just plain criminal--and that i won't deny. I respect that, but i fear that if we were to tell C.m. about certain people willing to kill a child, she is still young enough that she would be horrified. I could hear her asking anytime she'd see someone pregnant whether they were going to kill their baby. I just don't think she needs to know this yet. She needs to be a kid while she can...and i remind her of this when she asks to watch more teenage appropriate programming, or when she wants to wear make up like Momma to ordinary everyday church or when she talks about being older and married and having kids. Right now, she needs to focus on book learnin', silly songs like "I Always Wished That I Could Be A Cubby", and playing with dolls....cause much too soon, she'll be a pre-teen and it will be time to introduce her to the cold, ugly, cruel world that she'll all too soon after that be an adult in. Sheesh!
One thing is for certain, we've learned a lot about the homeschooling process this year!