Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What's in the workboxes?

Monday was a very long school day. I'm not sure if it was from dawdling or if I just overloaded the workboxes. Maybe both. Obviously there's still some fine-tuning to be done here.

So today I purposely filled them "light," and we spent the afternoon at the library and doing a couple of other errands.

Tomorrow (Wednesday) is going to be a heavier work day again, but I added "time cards" to most of the boxes, to give everybody a sense of how long (I think) things should take. We'll see how it goes. I don't add markers for things like breaks and lunch--Squirrelings don't need to be told when those things happen. Also, sometimes we work in some free computer time to check on emails or Webkinz pets, or to look at Ann's How to Feed a Brain Every Day links. One we enjoyed today was the September 14th Last 24 Hours in Pictures, starting with skateboarders in Moscow. This is wonderful! (Small warning: one of the photos in that slideshow is of a crime scene, but it doesn't look too graphic.)

Don't forget we also do Bible, hymns and exercises (usually outdoors) before we get to the workboxes. I've started shifting French to a group time later in the day--I found it dragged things out first thing in the morning.

One activity I've started adding a couple of times a week is a 15-minute visit to our "French library." That's a box of French books and magazines, as well as a set of picture word card puzzles that belong to Ponytails. Some of the resources are ours (we even have some Scholastic Bonjour magazines going back to my own sixth grade French class), but I've topped it up with picture books and CDs from the public library. The idea is not to understand every word, but just to get some exposure to written French, in a fun way.

Ponytails

1. Key to Geometry workbook, and any science assignments from Dad
2. Carmen Sandiego Math Detective
3. History: Abraham Lincoln's World, written/drawn narration
4. Write with the Best (work with Mom)
5. Group time: French
6. Play Perquackey with Mom
7. Readalouds (poems, novel) with Mom and Crayons; Artistic Pursuits lesson
8. Make milkshakes.
9. Read part of Leon Garfield's retelling of King Lear. (and short surprise activity afterward)
10. Work on friendship bracelet
11. Extra reading list
12. Evening math and science work with Dad.

Crayons

1. Memory poem
2. Miquon math activity
3. Reading with Mom: Blake poems, Lassie-Come-Home (a switch of books, owing to the fact that our copy of Hurry Home Candy turned out to have a whole section of missing pages starting in chapter 3, and the library doesn't have a copy either. That's okay, Crayons has decided that a different dog story is fine).
4. Canadian Handwriting, one page (and a short surprise activity afterwards)
5. French with Ponytails
6. Nature Friend Magazine
7. Reptiles project (independent work)
8. Readaloud and art time with Ponytails
9. What's the Secret? (a CD-Rom she hasn't used yet)
10. Extra reading.

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