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Homeschool Journal, Discussion and Newsletters
Monday, 22 September 2008
Newsletter 5
Topic: Newsletters and Journal

Newsletter 5-Week 8

This is week is a continuation of our Fall/Fire Safety/Johnny Appleseed Unit.

Basic Skills Menu: (This week we will do lots of basic skills; here is the menu we choose from).

`Horizons Workbooks (Kate, Phonics-vowels; and Math -tens and ones place value; Dom, Phonics-basic letter formation and sounds; and Math-basic counting and number formation, some basic addition).

`Various worksheets: Kate, money; Dominic, patterns, sorting, left vs. right, etc.

`Extra practice: Kate, money, 10’s, teens; Dom, tracing numbers, letters

`Kate’s First Grade Readers

Books used all week and last week: Fire Safety-“Stop, Drop and Roll” by, Margery Cuyler; “Arthur’s Fire Drill” (activities with this book)

Johnny Appleseed- “Johnny Appleseed”; and Apples-“ How Do Apples Grow?” (activities with this book)

Fall-“ I Am a Leaf”, “Why Do Leaves Change Color?”, “Country Fair” (“My First Little House” book series), “The Deer in the Wood” (“My First Little House” book series).

Journals Week 8 (5 of them): Wrote a story about fire safety, “Fall weather is…” “I like to play in fall leaves…”, My 5 senses in fall-“In fall I see…”, etc., My 5 senses with apples-“My apple looks…”, “My apple tastes…”, etc.

Read Aloud: “Meet Felicity”

Verse and Bible Theme (continued from last week):  John 15:12, “This is my command, that you love one another as I have loved you.” Theme: Adam and Eve

Spelling Words (continued from last week): (Taken from our Johnny Appleseed reading): apple, plant, tree, hero, money (Kate wrote these words 5 times each and wrote a sentence for each one to gain a better understanding of their meaning. She will test on them on the last day this week.)(We bumped her spelling test to this week since we are making this unit a two week unit).

Day 1:

We started the day today with the kids having a picnic outside.  It was a beautiful Fall day out and the kids enjoyed sandwiches and grapes (prepared by Kate!) for lunch.   

Kate started the school day by playing a “vowels” game on

Bible Study: Our devotion for the day was taken from, “Right Choices”.  We read a story about being polite and using, “please” and “thank you”.

Reading: We read, “Arthur’s Fire Drill” and practiced-stop, drop and roll, discussed our escape route out of our house in the event of a fire.  Furthermore, we had to identify several key words in the book after we read the story and put a sticker with a picture of the word next to the corresponding word (Kate read them to us.)

Journal: Kate and Dominic had to write a story of their own on fire safety, after having read the “Arthur” fire safety story.  Dom told his by illustration, Kate wrote hers with phonetic spelling. 

Basic Skills: Kate-Kate worked on several pages in her Math Horizons workbook.  She had to write in missing numbers, count by 10’s and *this is new: work problems using the ones and tens columns in place value.  Then, she read from her First Grade Reader.  Dominic-Dom worked on several pages in his Phonics Horizons workbook practicing the letters “P” and “R”.  He also worked in his Math Horizons workbook and counted items, wrote numbers and did basic addition.

Day 2:

We started the day today by Kate practicing some vowel games on while I made an alphabet book with Dominic.  He and I made a page for each letter, and cut out magazine cut outs of pictures that started with each letter. For example, an apple is on our “A” page.  A cookie is on our “C” page, etc.  This is to reinforce to him the sound each letter makes.

Bible Study: Our devotion today was taken from a book we have on “Families on Mission”.  It is a book about how families with young children can do mission together. It takes simple concepts of missions (serving others) like: love, care, give, help- and gives Scripture to back up the concept and ideas to do the concept. For example, today was “love”.  So we were given ideas on how to show love-write letters to those we love, make heart shaped “leaves” with loved one’s names on it and make a “love” tree, etc.

`Then we sang, “Jesus Loves Me”.

`Also, the kids continued with our Bible theme for last week and this week: Adam and Eve, by coloring a mini book telling the story from Genesis.

`Finally, we reviewed our Bible verse from last week and this week-John 15:12.

-At this point we did our calendar work by going over the month and day of week; then we crossed off days on our “countdown to baby and Halloween” calendars.

Reading (and brainstorming) and Science: We read from “What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know”, about the seasons, specifically fall.  We brainstormed (again) things that come to mind when we think of the season fall.  We came up with-football, cold, windy, leaves falling, apples, Halloween, etc.

`Then, I read the kids a book called, “How Apples Are Made”.  This book is from a series of books called-“Let’s Read and Find Out”.  It couples a story with a science concept.  It was a higher level book (ages5-9), on the scientific process of how an apple is formed.  Despite some of the scientific concepts being a little over their heads, the kids got the basic idea that apples actually start as flowers!  It was a neat book.

`After reading that, I then read the kids the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”  We discussed what that means.

Journals: The kids journaled-“Fall weather is…” Kate and Dom answered the same: cold and windy and Halloween is in the Fall.

Basic Skills: Kate-Kate did a money review sheet, then worked from her Horizons Math workbook working on: place value and counting by 5’s and 10’s.  Finally, she read to me form her First Grade Reader.  Dominic- worked in his Math Horizons workbook on simple addition, number recognition, and tracing numbers.

Read Aloud: Finally today, we read a chapter from, “Meet Felicity”.

Day 3: A Reading and Basic Skills day today.

Bible Study: For our devotion today, we read from, “Right Choices”.  This lesson was on forgiving others.

Reading (brainstorm) and Science: We read lots of books today.  We read, “Why Do Leaves Change Colors?”  We brainstormed about the fun things we like to do in leaves: rake them, jump in them, throw them, etc.  I showed the kids a picture of them playing in the leaves in Germany, during the Fall of 2006 while on vacation.

`This book is in the same, “Let’s Read and Find Out” series of books (which yesterday’s book-“How Do Apples Grow” also comes from) that couples a science lesson with a story.  So again, the science concepts were a little over the kids’ heads (book for ages 5-9), but they got the basic idea and we had a good time reading and brainstorming.

`Next, we read, “Stop, Drop and Roll”, another book on fire safety.  We again, discussed our escape plan and stop, drop and roll. 

Basic Skills: This was a basic skills day. Dom focused heavily on his new flashcards-putting the sound of the letter to each letter.

Day 4: We started the day with a special-Kate read a book, “I Am a Leaf” to the boys and I and I videotaped it. J (Reading and Science).

Reading (and Social Studies):  I read the kids two stories from the “My First Little House Series” (The original Laura Ingles stories, just re written in ages 3-8 format)-“County Fair” and “The Deer in the Wood”. Both took place in the Fall.  I love these books, because they are also a bit of a history lesson.  The kids learn about the times in which Laura Ingles and her family lived: carts, buggies, wagons, making preserves, hunting, etc.

Art and Science: The kids did leaf rubbings.  We went out in the yard and found several leaves. We came inside and put a piece of paper over top of them.  Gently rubbing a crayon over the leaf brings about a leaf impression on the paper-leaf rubbings.  We rubbed several leaves in fall colors and made quite an art display.  In the process, we discussed that the “lines” in the leaves were called veins, etc.

-At this point we did our calendar work by going over the month and day of week; then we crossed off days on our “countdown to baby and Halloween” calendars.

Basic Skills: We did special activities for Basic Skills today, not picking from our usual menu (listed above).  Kate- `Made herself a worksheet on the computer. In her own phonetic (invented) spelling, she made a worksheet for herself with the instructions: Fill in the missing numbers to earn a sticker, then draw a picture using fall colors.  She had 0__23___56__8__10 and had herself fill in the missing numbers. J  She is hilarious making her own homework!!  `After she did that, she wrote a letter on the computer to her cousin in proper letter writing format.  `Kate had also written two pieces on the computer, one a letter to her Grandpa and the other a story entitled, “Daddy and the Cat”.  I let her use inventive spelling and didn’t bother her about capitalization and punctuation while she typed. I let her free flow ideas and just create the letter and story.  But after, we printed two copies of each; One to keep the same, and the other to proofread so I can start to show her proper form-capitals and punctuation marks.  We edited one copy of the letter and one copy of the story.  Dominic- `Kate also made a worksheet for her brother in which he had to follow the same directions above-fill in missing numbers and color a fall picture.  (She stressed to me, “Mommy, make sure he knows he HAS to use fall colors-red, yellow, orange, brown, NOT blue, ok?” J)  So, he did that and `he also practiced writing his ABC’s and 123’s while I worked with Kate on her projects listed above.

Journals: The kids journaled-“I play in fall leaves…” and they wrote sentences on what they do to play in the leaves-rake them up, jump in the piles, etc.  Kate wrote on her own; I wrote for Dom and he copied a few words. 

`The kids also journaled about their 5 senses applied to apples and their 5 senses applied to fall.  “In the fall, I see…”, “In the fall, I hear…”, etc.  AND “Apples taste…”, “Apples look…”, etc.

Extra and Art: We did some extra odds and end work in which Kate colored a coloring page in a “Sparky the Firedog” coloring book in honor of the fire safety we covered the last two weeks.  Dominic colored a picture of a firetruck.

Math: We did a worksheet in which the kids had to count the apples in a tree and write the number on the line.  This was too easy for Kate, but just right for Dom.  He did really well!  He counted the apples himself, wrote the numbers himself! When he was unsure of how to write a number, he looked at his number chart for reference-very resourceful!!

Bible: We simply reviewed our memory verse of the last two weeks together, John 15:12.

*We have some odds and ends from the Bible unit this last two weeks we still haven’t tied up, so we will finish that up early next week before moving on to a new Bible theme.

Extra and Poetry: We read from “Weekly Reader” magazine about apples.  After we read about apples, the kids had a small matching activity worksheet they completed about apples.  `We also read a poem about apples form the “Weekly Reader”.

*We still have some odds and ends from the fall/fire safety/Johnny Appleseed-apples unit we have yet to tie up (Kate’s spelling test, a few journals, etc.).  We will gather those loose ends early next week before moving on to our new theme for next week- “States” and “Flat Stanley”.

*I have, however, decided that I am going to continue allowing for fall related journals all throughout fall, regardless of the current theme.  The kids enjoy writing and coloring about fall, so even if our theme is Ancient Civilizations or States, we may still throw a fall themed journal entry in there, in addition to the current unit theme.

Next Week: States and “Flat Stanley”!! Bible themes: Noah and Samson.J



Posted by dskdgfamily at 8:13 PM EDT
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