Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Another day, another bit of progress

Well, kind of.

I think we did take a good step towards establishing some good routines. It's slow going, but that's the best way to make sure the routines will take. It was complicated by the fact that I have come down with some sort of virus, which had me awake at 3:30 this morning, going through about 20 Kleenexes, a headache and slight fever (which thoroughly messed up my brain--twice I went upstairs to get some Advil and later, once back downstairs, I couldn't for the life of me remember if I'd actually taken any, which means I didn't take any after because I didn't want to overdose; I think in the end, I did take some Tylenol, but didn't actually take any Advil the whole day), both my kids were on the grumpy side, dd slept until 9am, both had pink faces later on and a slight fever. *sigh* Joe was a little stuffy and his brain was having a hard time processing even stuff that had nothing to do with school.

So, what did we accomplish given all that?

Joe started off the day with handwriting. After a tiny bit, I was going to move onto something else. He said, "That's it? What's the point if that's all?" lol. So, I had him do more. Then we did Sequential Spelling (I started him off on Level 1, but I'm skipping over various words). At that point, he and dd were chatty and I decided to not continue with ELA, but switch subjects. We then covered the intro part to his unit on the environment in science. After that, it was break time, even though we were only an hour into work. That's still pretty good for around here. ;)

Break time led to being on Facebook. Not sure that I like that idea. Too hard to get them off the computer--maybe using a timer would be helpful. But given I had a headache, couldn't think straight, Joe and dd were sluggish (ds was playing with his cousins--my one niece doesn't have school today, but will be back there full-time as of tomorrow), I let it go while I ate and proceeded upstairs to get Advil that I don't think I ever took.

After that, we reviewed some of the trig. I don't know how much Joe actually processed. I ended up using his Blackberry to text with his sister, which he encouraged because, I'm sure, it meant no more math for the time being, then we tackled a sample learner's license test. He just about passed. He would have passed had he paid attention to some of the questions better, but he was trying to just go faster and be done with it.

We were slow to get to lunch finally, but we did, then I continued reading a bit from "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy." What a great novel for Joe to have as a novel study! Totally has his interest.

By the time that was done, we were done for and I decided to put on a movie I had recorded, "Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium." It's one of those movies where the first time through, I wasn't really sure what I thought about it. Since then, I've seen at least most of it more than once and it is now one of those movies that I just love watching!

So, that was the essence of our school day. The progress was more in the kind of work feeling first thing AND actually doing some work after lunch. I think I have to put the novel study after lunch most days--it's just a kind of relaxing thing and fits best as a final thing to do for the day.

I did tell Joe that he has to get the first trig lesson actually completed tomorrow. I may take a Charlotte Mason approach with it, having him do some of it, then do a different subject, then come back to do another bit of it. I'll at least suggest it to him if he's not getting into the flow, give him the option of gracefully moving onto something else, with the knowledge we will be coming back to it shortly.

I also had an idea that I'll have to mull over a bit. He has a tendency to crumple up loose leaf paper, even if it has work on it. :/ There is also the issue of switching papers or notebooks when switching subjects. I had the thought of him just having a single notebook. Each morning, he writes in the date, then proceeds with his work there. His handwriting could be there, spelling, math, etc. Everything would be all together, no loose papers to lose, and he would progressively get sensorial feedback as to how much he's actually working. Getting through a single notebook could help create a sense of, "I have worked, and I've done all of this." Just a thought at the moment.

As for my kids' work... Um... With both feverish and ds getting his last day in with both girls, I'm not sure what they really accomplished. Ds looked at some science experiment books tonight to start thinking about what sort of project or experiments he'd like to do. Dd decided earlier in the day that she wanted to work on the nervous system for biology. I'm thinking it might be best to start off with books on the topic, let her notebook what she finds, photocopy and paste in the notebook certain diagrams, etc. I'm not sure if we have anything in the house at the moment that would work. I have a copy of the grade 12 text, but it's the grade 12 text and, well, I do prefer more living-type books. I think a medical text could be better done and more interesting than the high school text. Of course, the big challenge is finding a living book that covers the nervous system. Hm...

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