This Week…Slow and Steady

This week at Great Peace Academy, Little Man worked very steadily all week. He also worked very slowly. Sometimes I struggle with knowing how to balance letting him work diligently with encouraging him to work faster. Do I morph the lesson plan to let him work at his own pace or do I hold him to the lesson plan and only skim the surface? The mom in me demands the former while the teacher who answers to the state wants the latter. It is a struggle for me and one that, after 5 years of teaching, I have still not found a solution to. Many times I wonder if my expectations are simply wrong. Do you as a teacher/mom ever wonder if you will get it right?

This Week…
Bible: In Bible he is continuing in studying about Joshua and the Israelites conquest of Canaan. Specifically this week he studied in Joshua 10-12. Joshua 10 highlights the day that the sun stood still while the Israelites defeated the 5 Amorite kings who had joined forces against them. He also did a study showing all the lands that were a part of the conquest. 

Math:This week at Khan Academy he focused on decimals. I’ve come to realize that I need to stay near while he’s working even though he technically can work at the program by himself.  The math part comes easy for him, except occasionally he makes a mistake, as we all do, with something quite simple that he knows how to do but tries to rush through. That’s when, far too often, I’m seeing too much emotional intensity. This is one of the hardest parts altogether about the training up of Little Man. I’m just beginning to understand that amongst the ‘gifted and talented’ population this type of intensity is the norm. I’m working to teach self control and coping skills rather than try to invalidate what is truly his feelings. 

Spelling:  We are nearly finished with spelling! I’ve decided that for this year, when he finishes this book I’m stopping and not adding in the next grade level until next year. This will give me a bit more time to focus on writing.

Writing: After big struggles earlier in the week. I’ve changed focus. I’ve gone back to basic grammar. We spent an entire day on grammar! I am excited to see that he truly does understand the basics of parts of speech. I was getting worried there. He also understands the basic types of sentences, which is what I tried to focus on this week. So I think it’s going to come down to the building of sentences as the place to go back to and go from there. So for a while we will be focusing on sentence building rather than paragraph building. I explained to him that he just needs to refocus for a while and learn to build good sentences which will help him to build better paragraphs. At first he was not happy about this, but I then introduced a new (to him) online game Grammar Blast that tests grammar skills and he found that to be fun! Yeah! A writing assignment that he found fun!
History: He finished reading the Trojan Horse. We are still reading through the Iliad for boys and girls. 

Science: This is where the slowness in other subjects really took it’s toll. He read through the lesson for the week about “Matching and Hatching” and did 1 “Try This!” which was to see what the air pocket inside an egg looked and feels like. But he wasn’t able to do much in the way of his notebooking journal because there simply are not enough hours to get it done when he sits and stares at a page and can’t seem to figure out what to write! But I”m working on helping him with that.

Art: He read a little in his Ancient Greek Art book and discovered the Greek Alphabet, the Discus thrower and that there is a lot of pottery in Greek Art. Again, due to slowness there was no time for him actually creating his own masterpiece this week.

Music: He’s working at perfecting Variations on Canon in D by Pachabel. He is struggling a little with the melodic rhythm, he instead wants to make it choppy. But Ms. Lori, has reminded him of the gentleness with which the piece is written. He is doing pretty well in his study of finger exercises. At least by my own perception, which is limited by very little actual knowledge of how to play piano. 

Making Memories: We finished up our 3rd quarter in co-op this week. We did a study of Finance for kids loosely using a bit of the Dave Ramsey finance for kids as a structure. We also are back to having Vocal Choir and so a bit of voice lesson is happening.

I added in the vacuuming photo’s because earning money was on his assignment list for the Finance for kids class. He does not get paid for regular chores! EVER! We fully believe that children should learn to complete chores like making beds, helping out with dinner, taking out trash, etc. as a part of life responsibilities and as a role in the family. BUT if he does extra work, above and beyond the normal chores he gets to earn a little cash. Plus! I just love seeing my Little Man run the vacuum. 🙂

Renée

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