Monday, November 24, 2014

Work Plans for the Week of November 24, 2014: Visual Organizers and Thanksgiving

We're all excited about the short week ahead of us, and I'm using that enthusiasm as my wedge to pack in a good bit of productive work before our break.

MONDAY: We've got Math Mammoth today (Will's last week of long division; Syd's second-to-last week, I think, in telling time), our usual volunteer gig, and First Language Lessons, but we had to return Song School Spanish to the public library, so we'll have a couple of weeks of hiatus from Spanish before we can get the book back and return to our lessons there.

Will begins another week of Minecraft Homeschool today; her class is six weeks long, and Syd has already informed me that she'd like to take the class when it resumes in January. We only have one Minecraft log-in, so taking turns at the class seems fair.

Our endangered animal study is still going REALLY well! I'm happy to continue it for as long as the children remain interested, because they're doing some great researching and reporting. I've become quite enthusiastic about visual organizers--posters, infographics, timelines, etc.--lately, since they still involve the same research and reference skills, but the kids are happier to produce them.

TUESDAY: The kids are still enjoying their Hoffman Academy keyboard lessons, and I'm still enjoying their independence in completing them. I know that for an instrument to be successful, I really need to get involved, but... baby steps. I'm already handling about all I can handle right this second.

Next week the kids have a brunch with our Girl Scout Co-op, in which they're going to receive the badges they've earned this semester, so I need to sit down soon and look at what they've done, and encourage them to finish up the last bits on their own, but for now we'll continue the First Aid badge work that I'm guiding them through. Mind you, this biography and report on Florence Nightingale is a requirement that I've added to the official badge work, but my additions are designed to turn each badge into more of a unit study, and I think that it gives the activities, overall, more of an impact.

Will has a Robotics Workshop on this night, so she'll be having fun programming LEGO Mindstorms, and Syd has a playdate that overlaps the workshop, so she'll be having fun, too!

WEDNESDAY: Syd pitched a giant fit during last week's spelling test, so I don't think that Matt was even able to establish then which words she knew and which she didn't know, sigh. Perhaps he'll have better luck this week...

We're going to complete a quick Nutcracker unit study this winter, just to help the children put Syd's peformance in it into context. The revised Hoffman book is our current bedtime read-aloud, and this activity, in which we'll watch George Balanchine's version of the ballet and then the kids will create a timeline with that, a coloring book that we own, and a short performance summary as their references, will nail down their understanding of the ballet's events and its "plot."

The kids are still working very hard at aerial silks. Matt and I are working hard behind the scenes to figure out an at-home rig that we can all play on--any advice is welcome!

THURSDAY/FRIDAY/SATURDAY/SUNDAY: Hello, long weekend! We're not traveling for Thanksgiving this year, because next week is just going to be incredibly busy and stressful. Instead, we're going to focus on relaxing our hearts out this long holiday weekend. On Thanksgiving, each person is going to prepare two favorite dishes for our feast--almost all sweets so far, but oh, well. Life is tough. On Friday, I imagine that we will do some shopping, because there are things that we need and if Black Friday can bring them to us at a discount, then so be it. Friday night is a huge celebration downtown. Saturday is aerial silks rehearsal. Sunday is a children's show at the public library.

And then Monday through Sunday is hours and hours and hours of Nutcracker. Performance hair. Tech week. Dress rehearsals. And five shows in four days. But we're not going to think about that on this long holiday weekend, are we?


Tina said...

I love reading through all your work plans for the girls. I keep wanting to go back to our loose schedule we have, but trying to pick it back up with Thanksgiving and then Christmas seems a little silly.

Instead, I think I might have Emma focus on her 4-H project workbooks. She is interested in enough of them that each day can be devoted to one subject, or something like that. We might still throw in a few Math Mammoth sheets here and there, but I think that's about all I can handle at the moment. I pretty sure that this last year of being super mom (or what felt to me like being super mom) has totally burnt me out it every aspect of life.

So, I am going to cut myself some slack and start fresh with the new year.

Hope you all have a wonderful and relaxing four days before next weeks crazy sets in!

(I can't wait to see Syd's performance!)

Tina said...

What type of keyboard do the girls have? I'm thinking a keyboard might make a nice holiday gift...

julie said...

Ours is just from Goodwill, but I did do a lot of research beforehand, so I actually do know what you're supposed to buy!

Professional musicians recommend that you buy a full-sized keyboard with weighted keys and one that you can at least buy a foot pedal accessory for. That mimics a "real" piano the most closely. If one of you grew interested in advancing further in your music study, you'd have the ability, then, to set it on a stand of the correct size, get a bench of the right height, buy the foot pedal accessory, and basically have a decent piano set-up at a fraction of the price.

Tina said...

Cool. I did finally just google it and Hoffman Academy actually had an article about what we should look for.

If we lived closer to my mother-in-law, I would just "borrow" their real piano :0) Maybe next time we are out there with the truck...


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