Monday, October 18, 2010

Unit Study: I and Indiana

M6's 'Explode the Code' books are still working our wonderfully.  He is learning the last of the alphabet, which are the vowels, only has three more vowels to go!  He has begun reading, spelling, and sounding out words.  His spelling tests will change next week from writing down the letters I name, to actual words that he has learned to spell.  What an accomplishment!  This week he is learning the letter 'I'.

So, while M8 is off on a trip to the beach with her grandparents, M6 and I are doing a 'mini-unit' on the state of Indiana.  Because I have relatives in Indianapolis, we are traveling there for a few days.  M6 will learn many facts about the state, and we will visit several places that he learns about.  I've made him a notebook which includes printables of the state flower, tree, flag, and bird, as well as facts that we will discuss throughout our stay.  We plan to visit the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, as well as the Eagle Creek Park and the Earth Discover Center which is found there.

As Maya's trip was a spontaneous one, our trip is as well.  I'm hopeful that we will find more things to do once we get there and talk with our relatives.  M6 is taking along his math workbook and his Explode the Code book, so he will be one full week ahead of M8.  Wonder how long it will take her to catch up?  :)

Have a great week!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Reading, Writing, and Field Trips

We've entered the month of October and have officially begun the Book It! program.  M8 will be reading chapter books and writing about one of the them per month.  She has 'starters' to choose from for each book, and her writings will be posted on her blog.  I will read specific books to M6, and he will draw pictures about them, create a model, or tell me the answers to questions I have prepared for each book.

We have also changed the way M8 practices her spelling words.  Instead of just writing each word several times, she uses them in sentences or stories at least two days per week.  This takes the place of her 'grammar' on those days.

M6 has begun reading and writing words! I had no idea how long it would take to reach this goal, but am shocked that it happened in our eighth week of school!  His determination to be able to read like M8 has been the deciding factor in hitting this milestone.

We took a field trip last week to the Creation Museum, which was a huge success for all the children.  As we have been talking in depth about God's creation in our study of Autumn, this was a great trip for them to visually learn about what we've discussed.  M6 particularly enjoyed the planetarium, the dinosaurs, and the film about dragons.  M8 was fascinated by the depiction of Noah and the ark.  We are now looking forward to our first co-op meeting this week, and getting to know the families involved a little better.  What a busy life the homeschool family leads!