As I mentioned before, ever since I got sick, my bed has been my dashboard. So though they could theoretically work somewhere else, the younger boys usually choose to sit right in my room with a coffee table or propped on their elbows on the bed, and work that way. Even my senior comes and does his math in the room so he can ask if he isn't sure about something.
|Paddy's pile of books|
I went back to Latina Christiana I for Paddy because First Form Latin was just too stiff with no prior experience in Latin. He was being good about it, but I could see it wasn't going to be the best thing. LC1 is just perfect.
I also signed Paddy up for CCD so he could get a bit more time with kids his age. They use Faith and Life too! So he's still using that book (the revised and updated version), but I'm not teaching it anymore.
I gave up on Cursive and switched to Getty-Dubay Italics. I used this with my second born and though he wrote with all capitals until he was 12, after he went through GDI he had the best writing of anyone in the family. Paddy seems to be doing well with Italics.
It will be a while before we get back to reading aloud together. So no Life of Fred right now. He is working through Math Mammoth. I started him behind his grade level because I wanted overlearning and because in Life of Fred he is squarely on grade level (doing Life of Fred: Kidneys right now). The rule is that once we finish a Life of Fred book -- we started all the way at Apples during the summer and went from there) -- it is Fair Game. So these are next to his bedside a lot of the time.
No Lord of the Rings, alas. I miss it. We gave up on Farmer Boy. He read the Greek Myths in about a day or two so we haven't been reading that formally. I would like to get back to reading aloud but have to be patient with this recovery process.
He is doing something I call Guided Reading on my planning sheets, but that's probably too official a term. It's probably is like a baby cousin of Erin's "Leaping into Literature". It just means that I pick a few books that I think connect somehow to what I want him to learn, but that he might not necessarily read on his own. Then he reads them. Right now he is reading The Questing Knights of the Faerie Queene.-- because we are in the middle ages, you know. Before that he read a retelling of Don Quixote, and one called We Were There with Richard the Lionhearted. I do this guided reading with Kieron, too, but that is for a different post.
We are not doing any formal science yet, but Paddy reads a lot, and sometimes he reads science-related books on his own. To fill the gap, I just started having him read The Sassafras Science Adventures. It's cute, though not great literature by any means. He also runs our backyard feeder and does a lot of nature observation. I am looking forward to going outside with him and seeing how things have changed in the last month.
I got this clipboard at the dollar store. I like it because you can open it and put paper and pencils and flashcards inside! IT's handy for putting Math Mammoth, his checklist, and other loose papers for the day on top, then storing the completed papers inside until the end of the week.
Not a very good picture, but here is Paddy's daily checklist. You can see it here. Before I got sick, I wrote his checklists by hand and drew the cute pictures, but my hands cramp now and I can only write a little. I work from my own weekly checklist. Paddy has told me he wants to have a weekly checklist like Kieron's so he can choose what he wants to do for that day, and I'm fine with the idea (after all, one of my goals is to get him more independent this year) but I have to figure out the logistics. Mostly, I am afraid that if he sees a week's work in front of him it will just tire him out before he starts. We will see.
Goals for Paddy
My big goal for Paddy for this year besides getting those times tables down cold is getting him writing at least something in every subject. With my other kids, I generally didn't do this until later. The older kids were in 8th grade before they did much writing of their own work, I think. We usually did a lot orally. Which is fine. Sean was younger because he was such an active kid that he did better writing his own work than waiting for me to get around to listening to him. Kieron has been later because he had major problems mastering his pencil grip. I want Paddy to be comfortable with a pencil in his hand (and Aidan, too -- Aidan learns way better if he can write).
On this, some days are better than others. One day Paddy wrote everything happily, sitting on his elbows (which is a great strengthening position according to Aidan's OT), humming and having conversations with the page. He colored a map and marked it. He seemed to be in his zone. Today he complained a lot. So we haven't gotten completely there yet, but some progress has been made, I think.
I will talk about what Kieron and Aidan are doing in another post.