October – look back and forward.
I think September was a largely good month all in all. I think the summer in general was excellent.
The good things that happened were:
Lots of socialising.
Lots of time with people who love them.
Lots of trips out.
Lots of new opportunities in how we do stuff round here.
The worksheet phase is gradually petering out. its not so much that Fran has gone off them but that the time slot for doing them has expired a bit; i’ve got a fan folder with things she likes in it and if she asks, i dole a few out but i’m not too worried about pushing it. I’m keen to keep going with the writing practise every day but she is also doing lots more of that herself and as Maddy is also quite keen to write, they are inspiring each other. There are things i can do to encourage that but for now i am taking a back seat and seeing what they make of it. If Fran and i can practise one sentence and one or two letters a day then i am more than happy. I’ve just been glancing at the Spark Island site and Fran is not a million miles from achieving the Year 3 targets really; i think i can safely say that she has mathematical apptitude and leave her to enjoy it. I’ve got plenty of stuff about she can do as and when, we have lots of games like Jump Ahead and Reader Rabbit, she gravitates towards the maths games in those and she is learning lots from them.
Over the next month i will, if the moment comes up, teach her vertical addition because she is more than ready for it. I think both of them would benefit from getting the miquon out and i might have a look for some stuff in there that uses splitting big numbers into smaller pieces to solve problems but that is really only a “this might interest them” thought, it can be done later if it doesn’t.
Reading is going well too. We have a challenge for the next couple of weeks; if she can get to the end of the next box of Bob (B2) and do it with understanding, she can have a Rainbows uniform. I was really pleased to hear her (in the back of the car today) starting with the word pig and then swapping the vowel in her head and sounding out the new word. Thats a BIG step up for her – tonight she sounded out “Happy days” from the back of Mr Meddle too. So its been worth it, not my preferred choice, i do not try to force skills but she is happy to have it happening now. If we get to the end of B2 we can get out the Flying Boot stuff before Sarah needs it for Joe! Fran and Maddy each have a compendium of Thomas the Tank Engine stories which they have stashed in the pockets in front of their car seats and i can hear them looking at words and pictures on every journey!
The other thing i am still really pleased with is the CM reading – we have completed 9 weeks of (our version of) the schedule now and its been really popular. I’m pretty determined to keep going with that for the full 36 weeks of it now – its given a shape and interest to our weeks that i have enjoyed. plus bedtime stories are a real focal point of the day now and i am SO pleased about that; i must make the effort to keep it up when babe arrives.
This week and this month – well obviously it could change at a moment but the plan for tomorrow is the second part of our Saturday Science project – the Human Body (although given the state of colds in the house at the moment we could all have died of plague by morning!) – i’ve got a printout of a skeleton to do and various other bits and bobs but i really wanted a body organs thing to print out and i can’t find one… grumble grumble. Last week “babies” went down very well, especially with Maddy who is now much more knowledgeable!
Next week i want to carry on with Van Gogh and do some more on him; get some paint out and so on. Zoe is going to do more baking with them and i am going to attempt one more thing on Africa as well.