Me and my kiddo

Me and my kiddo

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Mommy School 2011

This year's Mommy School is off to such an awesome start!  We had a vacation right after school got out, so we started at the beginning of this month.

This year, I decided to focus on four things.
Math- I wanted him to finish memorizing the multiplication table.  Since he'll be skipping second grade, I think having that solid will help him be able to handle the start of school challenges by being ahead in academics again. That is particularly useful for him in the first month when his social challenges make learning new things so difficult.

Writing- This is the one area that he's not already way above grade level, so I wanted to do all I could to help these skills develop in a positive environment.  It's a fine motor issue along with a profound lack of interest in making his letters look better than barely recognizable.  (He doesn't have the fine motor skill to do typing yet and balks at that just as much as using a pencil, but we're hoping that will change because he's practicing moving one finger at a time while we practice...)

Music- My husband bought a beginning piano book and is teaching my kiddo and I at the same time.  I have a thrilled child watching to catch my mistakes and he's very interested in improvising :)

History- We're giving the History at Our House another try and he's loving it!  Of course, he balked when it came to writing for a test, but we made it count for writing practice and he really remembered more than I'd expected.  He bounces all over the den while listening, but he's clearly absorbing something.  He keeps asking for extra history classes throughout the day!

Here is the schedule that we use and cross off as we go (he picks one from each category):

Mommy School
Cameron Binder- 
practice like third grade choices:
Five sentences about something interesting, like Worms!
Mommy worksheet
Five clues for hide and seek, written in full sentences.
One class
You Pick:
multiplication race
multiplication table
multiplication kahn academy
One lesson
One Day of Life Errands
Play land, gym, park, bike trail, obstacle course, jiu jitsu, back yard, bubbles, chalk drawings, other ideas?

The favorite writing so far has been the hide and seek clues.  We each write five and then take turns hiding.  The key here is writing as well as he can with properly formed letters, spacing, and punctuation.  He's never picked journaling (Worms is a favorite video game).  Here is a sample of the worksheets I make:

Writing Work Sheet
Hobbit 1
Answer the questions with these words:
three eat moon
yes arguing swords
hole no
captured stone
sun adventure
wizard rested
  1. Gandalf is a                      who visits Bilbo's hobbit                        to invite him on an                      .  Bilbo first says              and then he says              .
  2. The first fright they had was meeting                      trolls who ________ them and then wanted to _________ them.
  3. Gandalf tricked them into                       until the              came up and turned them into                     .
  4. In Rivendell they                        and found that the map had                     letters and they found out the name of their new _________.
Write complete sentence answers:
  1. What would you do if Gandalf showed up on your doorstep? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
  2. How would you get away from trolls? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
  3. What would be your favorite thing to do if you visited elves? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

For math, he first loved watching the Kahn academy videos on multiplication and now we've been working on filling out the table as quickly as possible.  He's getting good!

The life errands idea is to take a break on Wednesdays and do errands where I make him as independent as possible i.e. no hanging out in the car while Mom returns the book or pumps gas.  It's been a full success so far!

He moves his body so much throughout the day, that we've never had a specific body moving exercise yet.  I offer, but the homebody in him usually wins out.

So... we've been having a delightful time continuing learning each morning for about two hours and engaging the rest of the day with various values.  I do lots of reading out loud and I'm hoping to get him into the Eragon series next after we finishing reading The Hobbit for the third or fourth time :)

My monkey on the monkey statue at the zoo :)

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