Sunday, December 03, 2006

Haven't posted in a while

It's been cold. I've been tired. We've been busy.

We've only got 3 weeks until Christmas. omg! I've done no Christmas shopping yet, we haven't figured out when we're having our homeschool Christmas party, the girls are going to the ballet soon, we were hoping to go to Millennium Place before Christmas, Monday Park Days... Time is going by quickly.

The 15yo is having a mad rush on her social studies. She let it go for quite a while and now has a lot to finish before the end of January. She doesn't HAVE to have it done by then, except that she wants it done then to do the exam, get it done with, then work on science. It also looks like she may be adding a distance learning course (FLA 10-2--French Immersion French, but at an easier level) that she will want to have done by the end of June. This means making sure she knows what she needs to in order to begin, so there will be some intense French instruction, too. She has just been so unmotivated, though... I'm kind of worried. I don't know how to help her find the inner motivation she needs to reach the levels she wants to. She has gone back to wanting to be a pediatrician, which is going to require a ton of hard work, not only once in the medical degree program, but just to get there. I haven't touched the book "What Smart Students Know" in some time. Perhaps doing the little assessments on attitude will help. And discussing together what it will take to reach her goals. And what her image of a student who plans on going to medical school is and how does she match up to it. Fortunately, it's only her grade 10 year, but still...

I do know one thing I have on the plans this week is to work on goal setting with the two oldest. Long-range goals, the sub-goals that have to be reached to get there, etc. I guess that should help with the 15yo a bit. Have her see it all written out what it will take to get to where she wants to be. With the 12yo, I'm going to have him set 1 goal for the week that is something aside (although perhaps still related) from the work I require of him. It can be academic--read a chapter a day in his Geronimo book or finish his ecosystems lap book--or behavioural--like not laying on the floor or doing front rolls in the living room instead of being in a chosen spot to work.

Another thing I have planned is to work on memory strategies with the 12yo. I might do it with the others, too, but definitely with the 12yo. I came across a book in the library catalogue called Super Memory, Super Student. I read a part last night about kids with learning disabilities and how they lack strategies, and specifically how the types of strategies in the book not only help with their learning, but with their confidence since doing the activities in the book show the student he can learn. I've noticed little regressions with the 12yo in terms of his approach to reading and writing and even just his auditory processing, although he did develop his own strategy the other day for remembering the 4 times table in order: use every other number in the 2 times table. I told him that was a great strategy and that it was obviously working for him. He seemed very pleased to see that he could do it so easily. I think doing the activities in this book will help him even more. And I also see just how much visualization is incorporated--crazy visualization--and I think that would work really well with him. I did the first activity myself and, without even trying, memorized a list of 10 items in order. I'm pretty sure I still remember them: lamp, paper, bottle, bed, fish, telephone, window, flower, nail, typewriter. Yep, still remember them. I can even do it backwards, although you probably won't believe me since I've got it typed 'forwards' right there. ;)

Other than that, I'm working on a new FlyLady control journal so that I remember to do things like Homeschool Tracker, which I haven't done in so long. I also have a little notebook that I will be keeping out to track what they do so that I can put it in later. I hate that I've paid for this program and am not using it!

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