Tag Archives: attention

How did that happen?

Where is all my time going?  Seriously, that’s not rhetorical – where is my time going?

Well, some of it has been spent on these activities:

Remembering how to count by 2’s and by 5’s.  Repeating how to count out loud by 10’s.  It is this rote work that is the killer for my lad.  Using manipulatives has made it more concrete to him and more like a play activity.

A lot of time has been spent ferrying lad between guitar lessons, gymnastics, extra tutoring provided by NIDES, science classes at Courtenay Museum and Paleontology Centre (lots of Octopus so far), and all sorts of fun things like visits to the Pumpkin Patch!

Guitar lessons are progressing slowly.  When we measure progression we aren’t talking about his ability to play, rather, we combine a few things like paying attention, retention of material heard even if he is moving around furiously while listening, respect to his teacher, and other ephemera not normally the focus of music classes.  After three lessons, he is progressing.  Yay, team!

We’ve spent some time on Dolche words and words in connection with our major interest at present (Pirates, don’t ya know!) and unit studies from ABC Teach and EdHelper and other online resources.  Thankfully, NIDES has a huge choice of subscriptions for us ‘facilitators’ to take advantage of.

In math, we’ve started our Life of Fred “Apples” unit and Mr. D. continues his new-found love affair with math.  We’ve also done some flash card math and made a tiny start on Mathletics for the year.

Our main science focus, aside from the classes at the museum, is a curriculum provided by what used to be Los Banos and it is an elementary, multi-level course on the human body.  We are very, very, close to finishing the section on cells; Mr. D. is in a rush to get to germs and organ dissection, so I’ve deliberately slowed this down so other things can get done.   Another source of great ideas is “Sandwich Bag Science” by Scholastic.  We’ve done desalinisation and attempted replicating a human stomach, but this latter had to be abandoned after the muscular action on the sandwich bag turned into direct squishing of the contents!  We will replicate this experiment in a week or two!

Here are our photos of the ‘action’.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Another Sunny Saturday

So why aren’t I outside?  Because my son is acting as if he has never had medication at all in his life.  He, his sister, and their carer are off to the playground right now, Daddy is still working on putting together the outside playground (carer helped, which was so nice of her) but it won’t be finished today, and I’m inside, weathering my various pains and aches but not in a very stoical manner.

We’ve done very little formal work over the last two weeks.  Mr.D. is caught up in two obsessions at present (that I know about):  one is everything Chinese, especially dating back quite a ways, and two is everything First Nations.  He is very disappointed he can’t be First Nations when he grows up but in serendipitous timing NIDES – our distance learning school that he attends one day/week – had their celebration of Firs t Nations culture on Thursday.  We skipped WildSpirit and attended that instead.  Lovely to see his interest in the salmons being filleted, then cooked using a wood brace.  Mr.D. liked the story telling and really enjoyed the drumming session; then, we all enjoyed seeing the mural the kids had worked on – all grades – that now decorates the school.  He was particularly proud of his work, the addition of some waves, and the whole work took its inspiration from the First Nations Group of Seven!  Look it up – you’ll be amazed at the vibrancy and variety of the works.

I’m also including some photos from Easter because I just didn’t get around to posting them.

My other big job at present is planning things for Mr.D. to work on over summer as his formal, interactive, school days are almost over for this year.  Bye bye Grade 1.  We’ve purchased Meet the Masters – an art programme  which can be done at our own pace.  Includes a little art history, highlights one particular technique that an artist may be famous for, has some paper and pencil work to develop technique, then has a larger art project.  I’m excited and I know Mr. D loves to paint so hopefully this will be a winner.

We’re completing a small unit of study now on the background of the Cheyenne of the Great Plains and their art (thank you, Cincinnati Art Museum for the good quality kids programming) and that should be finished this week.

Before laying out big money on any sort of language learning, we’re using Live Mocha to learn one phrase at a time.  As Mr.D. often has trouble with retention, we’ll go through four or five phrases but I only expect him to remember one.  We practice that one all week, then review, then move on to the next.  We have both French and Mandarin Chinese ready and have started on the Chinese, which he is determined to learn.  He also wants to learn characters, rather than pinyin, which is difficult but we’ve got some good books and a great app on the iPad to help with that.  So far we are looking at different salutations for different times of day .  It is a beginning.  So if Mr. D. runs up to you and says “Ni Hao” you’ll understand where he is coming from.

Okay – gotta leave the updates for now – I’ve left the salmon marinating and we need to get the BBQ happening.  Enjoy the sunshine while it lasts!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized