Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Home Schooling Update

I love to teach. It is in my blood. My dad was a teacher and that is what I always wanted to be, too. I taught school several years before I got married and had twins. I think God gave me twins so I wouldn't go back to teaching. Other teachers at our church's school would teach with their young ones in class with them, but that did not seem possible with twins.
Naturally I am continuing to have school with the twins. We do about three days a week for about one and a half hours. They enjoy it and I love it. Josiah loves to join in with them. He even seems upset when I do not have a paper for him to do like the twins. Abby is really doing well with her reading and Robert is right behind her. We are starting to talk about sounds that two letters together make such as “sh” and “ch”. We talked about how “bossy” R is and they loved all the sound effects I used. I have also introduced the magic “e” that makes the vowel say its name. Abby is getting it, but it will take Robert a little longer. That is fine and I try not to push him.
Last month when my aunt was here Abby read several little books to her that my aunt had just given them. Robert even read a book for her. He is not as willing to show off as Abby is. I love getting new books and learning things from my aunt. She enjoys spoiling the kids, too! On our recent trip to Phoenix Abby read an entire Dr Seuss book several times and has increased her reading vocabulary. I was surprised she read the book. I had planned on reading it to her. When she got stuck on a work she would ask me for help. It is defiantly time to go further with the phonics rules. Robert read part of the book, but gave up after a few pages. Now when I give her a book to look at she asks, “How do you read it?” We are daily amazed at what she can read to us without any help.
In math we are still going over the calendar daily. We use a pattern to mark off the days. This month our pattern is balloon, kite, cake, balloon, kite, cake… We then count the days until the next special event such as birthdays or upcoming trips. We review the months of the year and the days of the week. Then we count on our counting chart. One day we count by ones to 100. The next day we count by 10’s to 100, and then the next day we count by 5’s. We just started counting by fives. Some days we do a paper for writing their numbers, other days we practice adding one to a number, and some days we go over the clock and telling time. We have also started talking about money.
Josiah is learning the names of his shapes. We do this two ways. First he points to a shape on the chart on the wall and then I say the name of that shape. The other thing we do is name a shape and he points to the shape we called out. Abby and Robert join in with this game and clap for him when he gets it right (which is most of the time).Their handwriting is improving. Abby loves to sit and write everyone’s name in the family and some names of her friends at church. She is a people person!! Last week I started getting them to spell words on their paper. We were using blocks with letters on to “build” words. The only problem was that Josiah wanted to run off with the blocks to build his own tower. :)
This is just the learning we are doing during our "school time". Tons of learning happens throughout the day. We read signs, count items, and play learning games. I have the Phonics Game that I got for $20 at a yard sale. I love this game. It teaches the phonics rules in a fun, easy to understand way. I have used it for many years with students that needed help in reading. Rueben was one of the first students that I helped using the phonics game.
Rueben is continuing his home schooling. He is close to half way through his 11 grade work. It is going better this year since we are not struggling with algebra.=) He is determined to finish school for which I am glad. He is doing business math this year and he says it is easy. English is the subject he doesn’t like - too much thinking to write sentences and reports. :(

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