Me and my kiddo

Me and my kiddo

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Mommy School 2011- Evaluation

As tomorrow is the last day of summer vacation, I wanted to sit down and evaluate how this summer of Mommy School has gone.

Math: I've been floored!  I wanted to make sure we got the multiplication table down... he can multiply into the septillions.  He learned long division.  He is converting fractions to decimals to percentages.  He's delving into pre-algebra too.  While I had glorious moments like this.  I also had plenty of upset moments as he demanded an incorrect answer was right or whined about learning efforts.  I don't know how much of this is to be expected as the trials of learning something new, but I think I have plenty to learn about keeping the process positive.  Those rough days make me not want the job of academic teacher because I enjoy our positive times so much.  He challenges the school teachers much less, but he learns so much less there and he's so bored.  Keeping things challenging and interesting while maintaining a positive attitude in a student that is easily discouraged... WORK!

History: I've been double floored!  My kiddo had the occasional whine, but mostly just lapped up the full American History course with HistoryAtOurHouse.  I developed a game of Taboo with the historical figures from the course and he aced it gleefully.  I made a history Go Fish game this weekend and we're already moving on to not using the historical figure's names, but describing them instead "Mr. Peace-Without-Victory, Mr. 95 Theses.".  I am just amazed by how much he has made these historical figures a part of his life.  He has learned from them and keeps them close as he does his favorite literary figures.  Last week, I thought we were going to have a normal trip to the egg farm, but it turned into a detailed discussion on what makes a good president.  He stated an opinion on a particular president and I just kept asking questions.  He drew on his knowledge of the founders and came up with quite the list of what is required for a good president... not the usual chat with a seven year old!  EXCITING!

Writing: This remains a non-favorite, but he has made progress and I've really worked to keep it fun.  Lately, we've been focusing more on organizing writing instead of handwriting.  I'm content with how this worked, but I was often faced with him trying to bargain for smaller amounts of writing.  I didn't like being the external motivator and it made me feel uncomfortable.  I'd love to find a way to keep this more positive, like it started... he did love writing the clues for hide and seek :)

Music: This was the dud.  It started off with eager interest in piano playing.  He did not want to keep at it at all when he found both rhythm and coordination difficult.  (He still loves to improvise.)  We tried the MusicAtOurHouse course and he balked at listening too.  I really want music to stay a solid positive for him and that's not what I'm seeing unless he is completely in play mode.  He doesn't want to put in any effort to learn more.  He did complete the full Kindermusik curriculum and he has some video games regarding notes.  I haven't found that thing yet to make this optional value higher on his list.

Overall, I'm ecstatic with the progress made this summer, but I think I have some key work to do in keeping the tone more consistently in this zone.  Depending on when we move, I'll likely take over finishing this school year myself and the more prepared I can be for the adventure, the better.
Definitely having fun!

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