Week in Review: August 24-28

Fall is almost here! Actually, we are already seeing leaves turning even though it is a bit early in NC to see this. I’m over-the-moon to see fall come! I appreciate all seasons now after living in Florida, but Autumn will always and forever be my favorite with winter/Christmas coming in at a close second.

Rose: 5th grade ~ Creation to Christ Unit 17
Like many homeschooling mamas before me I’m always concerned if I’m doing enough. Rose tends to get the brunt of this because she is my oldest and with her it is always new territory! As I discussed this years curriculum with my husband he did a great job of helping me think through what was necessary and what was fluff or overkill. One of those areas was vocabulary. I guess the traditional school mindset of a set of weekly vocabulary words was just stuck in this English teacher’s head. We have been using Vocabu-Lit for the last few years and I really liked it, but I realized my voracious readers don’t really need a formalized vocabulary system in addition to what Heart of Dakota does throughout the guides. So we’ve dropped that. Rose was disappointed at first, but I think she likes having one less assignment, especially since the reality last year was that she knew every word before we even did the lesson!
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Dictation continues to go well for her now. It took us a while to really get that, but she is progressing more quickly now. I do think All About Spelling has had a lot to do with helping her see spelling patterns more clearly, so we will continue through that entire program. She’s almost done with level 4 and we will soon move on to level 5.

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We seem to be hot or cold with math. She loves it, or hates it. Geometry has proven to be delightful for her and I anticipate beginning back with Life of Fred for supplement very soon.

History went well this week, I just forgot to take any pictures! History is never an issue with my girls. For them, that is the frosting on our homeschool curriculum cake. They love all of the books we read and tend to pursue history outside of our schooling as well. Although my husband and I both love history I really give most of the credit for this to our curriculum. Rich literature and engaging activities is what has drawn my girls to love learning about our past!

Beth: 3rd Grade ~ Preparing Hearts for His Glory Unit 2 (2nd half)

Beth is settling into our routine with this new guide. My goal is to have my girls independently reading the history by the end of the guide to prepare them as they move into Creation to Christ. This made the transition smooth as silk for Rose so I’m planning to take the same approach with Beth.

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Beth loves activities that are hands on. I really appreciate that even as the guides mature in learning there are still hands-on components. I was also pleased that she remembered all of the continents and where they were! This is something we have learned and reviewed since Little Hearts for His Glory. Seeing the progression and retention of something as simple as this helps me love Heart of Dakota even more.

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Timelines are a favorite in our house. While many other programs give pre-printed timeline pictures Heart of Dakota encourages students to draw and create. It doesn’t matter how advanced of an artist they are, just that they draw a meaningful representation of the picture idea given. This week Beth drew Noah’s ark and it was neat to see how she drew it much like the Draw and Write Through History book showed, which is much more accurate than many traditional drawings.

Just like her older sister, history is the icing. She has loved reading about the Ice Age and is anxious to get back to Grandpa’s Box soon!

Grace: Kindergarten ~ Little Hearts for His Glory Unit 23
Grace has so much energy! This girl dances everywhere she goes. She has so much joy for life and that translates into her learning as well. Usually, no matter what we are doing, her response is, “Math? Goodie!” or “Handwriting? Yay!”

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This week we learned about the Pilgrims and she really enjoyed the activities. On this one she scooted along the floor pretending she was on the Mayflower and then landed on Plymouth Rock, which was supposed to be a pillow, but she wanted to use a real rock from her ever growing rock collection.

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First math test….drum roll…100%!!! Grace still just gets effort based grades from me since she is technically in Kindergarten, but since she is working on 1st grade math I want her to get used to seeing it graded. She loves math and I really like how Math Mammoth lays out the teaching. All three girls are thriving with this which is pretty amazing considering they have very different learning styles.

Learning Together

PicMonkey Collage

We are doing more “together” learning this year. Since we don’t utilize Heart of Dakota science after Beyond Little Hearts for His Glory we are going to do that together throughout the year as we have time. We are also going through a sweet little health course from Rod and Staff. It is very traditional and I personally love it. Not to mention it is a great price! All three girls are participating and it was a fun first unit. Even though it is graded for 2nd grade it didn’t feel too old for Grace or too young for Rose. it will be a great fit I think and they seemed to really like it. My girls don’t typically balk at our schooling except for the amount. Every once in a while they feel I give them too much, but that hasn’t come up yet this year. 

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