This week, I have been tired and not focused, or rather there have been other things in my life requiring my focus. This week has been a good opportunity for the children to step up and take some ownership with their studies, to show initiative and responsibility. This is just what I have seen.
Josh opened up a new game on Sunday evening National Geographics Expedition. Even though the box says for children age 10, the older ones have helped Daniel (as much as he wants to be helped) and they have had a great time with it.
Playing games is always an avenue for character training. You deal with issues of competition, being a good looser, being a gracious winner, you deal with saying kind words when a younger sibling is not understanding, you have to have self control when you are the younger sibling feeling very frustrated! The list goes on. I love to see the kid playing challenging board/table games together as I know there is going to be a jump in their relationships. Sometimes there is a rocky road but the end is always an increase in togetherness.
Talking of jumps, Daniel has taken a jump in his awareness of the world around him in other words his learning! On Sunday afternoon we watched a history documentary that all the children enjoy. It took us back to the Roman times. In opening up the Expedition game, Daniel noticed the Coliseum and came running Mummy, this is what Ive been learning! I remember the other kids making these connections while doing FIAR. It is very rewarding.
Another amazing connection Daniel made during the week was when he was reading a Bible Reference book Children Bible Dictionary or the like, that has a close up map of Israel with cartoon characters of a few bible stories sitting on the locations. Since Pete went to Israel earlier in the year we have had a satellite map hanging on the wall. Daniel brought his book to the map and stood there studying it intensely and then declared, Mum, I know where Jesus and his disciples were in the storm. He jumped up to indicate the Sea of Galilee.
Daniel has been working on the fine motor skills kit that the OT left for him. We have tried a few times to sit down with our FIAR title, The Salamander Room but without much success. Daniel asked to start his math lessons so we have had one lesson in place values. He has also become quite fascinated with the need to know if something is true/real or not, especially while watching TV.
Jessica has really taken on her study of Egypt with producing notebook page after notebook page. We have begun to edit quite seriously so she has to pick up on some grammar at this stage too. One afternoon I told her she could have some free time and later in the afternoon we would come together for some focus time. She commented, I can focus in my free time cant I? Yes, you can! Josh commented Jess always focuses! I picked up on this thought and said, Yes, Jess does always focus and it will get her places; this lead to a light-hearted conversation on the benefits of focusing.
Jessica spent another ½ hour or so with Daniel doing some art I think it worked out to be over an hour by the time they all finished and cleaned up their messes! They painted abstract art by rolling marbles in a tray of paint and then taking prints. Nomi ended up joining them as it looked like so much fun.
Nomi has picked up independent writing this week, with writing a letter and a notebook page. We will need to work on her spelling/phonics rules. Nomi has also opened up a few art kits we have had in the cupboard for ages and completed those a 3d Joseph and his coat of many colours and a card kit. She has also made a wax relief painting/bookmark. This certainly says something for having free time time to think and to create.
The one thing I have noticed in Nomi this week is that she has increased her outdoors imagination play. Daniel often joins her. They have really enjoyed mud cooking, science experiments and observations, and playing under the sprinkler (the weather is getting warmer).
Joshua has begun his new science curriculum Apologia General Science with Creation. He has enjoyed the 2 experiments he has worked on this week. We decided, through a discussion together, that he would like to do ½ hour every day (4 days a week). This means his 2 hours of discussion studies a day are broken to ½ hour science, ½ hour history, and 1 hour of study as he would choose this can include further research in his science or history, his reading list or creative writing. The two books he is reading this week are Banker to the Poor and Alien Intrusion. He has been keeping a reading journal for Banker to the Poor and that is bringing out a lot of thoughts of character and charity especially in a businessman. His history reading has been on Islam.
Thursday morning we had a homeschool workshop making art pieces for an exhibition. The kids learnt to work with wire along with the whole creative thing of making an idea you see into your own piece.