Friday, September 22, 2006

Another week is coming to an end

It's amazing how quickly time flies. Here it is, the end of the 3rd week of school. That's rather scary. lol. It's really just the feeling that the two oldest haven't done a whole lot. But they really got to it yesterday and we're making progress, so it'll all work out in the end.

I love what homeschooling can do for students. I'm thinking that, in some ways, I can be even more 'Montessori' with the eldest than if she were in a Montessori high school. From what I can tell of the few Montessori high schools out there, there tend to be schedules because there are different teachers for different subject areas. There may be a bit of freedom in some ways to move at your own pace, but it really is much more like a regular school than the other levels. Maria Montessori hadn't really planned it otherwise. She felt that after the Erdkinder period--ages 12-15--if those needs were satisfied enough, the student would be ready for more serious study.

Where this differs at home is that the 15yo, largely because she is mature and self-motivated, has created her own schedule and determines a lot to her own pace. Instead of perhaps having a group studying Shakespeare and she has to wait until the appointed group discussion or what have you, she has the option of flying through it, if she so chooses. Which she has chosen. Instead of reading a novel she'd brought from home, her silent reading time is usually occupied by Shakespeare. This is then followed by her watching a BBC version of that scene or act. She originally thought Shakespeare was going to take her several weeks (I think she actually said 9!) and within a span of two weeks, she'll have read the play, watched two versions of it, discussed things and done written responses. We've schedule LA to take the full year instead of one semester, as is usually done in schools here, but the way she's going, she may very well finish everything in one semester!

On another note, I tried to skip the handwriting focus in WRTR to get to the spelling rules notebook with the 12yo. Big mistake. It was so horribly sloppy, it looked like a child in grade 1 or 2 had written it. So we discussed this a bit yesterday and I did the first set of letters that start at the 2 o'clock position: a c d f g o s qu (I think that's it). I did share about the rules ahead of time--like letters need to rest on the baseline and short letters don't go above the midpoint--and followed pretty much the script for how to do each letter. What a difference!! He didn't want to let on too much, but you could see he was proud of the improvement. It just took him paying more attention to the details and knowing what the specific details were. We'll keep working at this.

On a totally different note, my stupid monitor is still problematic. It turns out it has nothing to do with how the thing is plugged in. There's something electrical going on inside and when it isn't working, you have to turn the power on and off for a while until it gets going again. At least, that's how it is right now. Dh and I need to decide what we're going to do: Do we see if it's still under warranty and get it fixed or replaced? Do we buy a new one? Is either option worth it since we have a computer that spends a considerable amount of time crashing and nobody can figure out what's wrong with it? The darn thing spent 4 days at a shop and didn't crash on them once. argh.


Debbie said...
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Debbie said...

WRTR (or RIGSS as I was taught) is awesome for the formation of letters. It's helped ME! Now when I print something for the children to copy I'm confident that they're getting a good example. The clock letter system has helped my daughter, too.

PS The above comment was deleted by me. I wanted re-word my thoughts. I wasn't aware it would leave a message behind :0)

Daisy said...

Debbie, you had originally asked about the spelling book. For kids grades 3 and older, they start off their books with some 'rules' pages. The first page starts with consonants and then the vowel rules, combined with the special WRTR coding (c with a 2 over top to indicate the second sound for c, /s/). After that, they do spelling words, using the special coding and the rules they've learned to spell words they haven't necessarily seen before.

Very simplistic way of explaining it--best to check the book at the library if you'd like to learn more.