Friday, December 28, 2012

Thor That Wanted to Pick Some Berries

Munchkin wrote this adorable story in school today for our language lesson.  The assignment was for him to tell a story about someone going berry picking...

Thor That Wanted to Pick Some Berries
Untrue Story

1985 – One time there was Thor. He wanted to pick some berries. He walked and walked and walked but since he was in the desert in Texas, he could not find any berries. Then all the sudden there was an earthquake. So he decided to leave Texas and go to Ireland and see if there were any berries there. So he walked and walked and walked and walked and walked until he came to a mountain. He went up, up, up, up…but the mountain was very high. He got to the tippy-top. Then he found a little place called Berry Hill. Then at Berry Hill there was a sign that said
“There Are a Lot of Earthquakes Here”
On the bottom, it said
“There Were Eight Earthquakes a Day”
So he went up there until there was the earthquake and he went to Blueberry Hill.  And then he found a big, big blueberry bush and there, at the blueberry bush, he got off his horse and went to pick all the blueberries. And then all the blueberries went in his bag. And then he needed a lot more bags. And he only brought one so he traveled all the way, all the way, all the way, all the way back to Texas because he was in North America at Utah. So he had to travel all the way back to Texas because they didn’t have airplanes back then. So when he got home, he gathered up all of them and then he went back to Blueberry Hill and said, “Whoaaaaaaaa!” He couldn’t believe his sight. Can you guess what he saw? He saw the whole mountain was covered with blueberry plants. So he picked all the blueberries, every single thing, every single one and then he traveled all the way back to Texas and then he got more bags.

Then he went to Raspberry Hill and there the sign said
“There Were a Lot of Tornados There”
And under it said
“There Are Ten Tornados a Day”

So he went to the place where all the raspberries were, then he went back home. Then he got more bags and went back there. And there he couldn’t believe his sight. There were more raspberry plants than at Blueberry Hill. And he picked every single one! Then he went back home to get more bags.

Then he got to the rainforest. There was a trail that led to a big grassland. There he found very, very few berries. He only found like one or two berries. But he went back home and he found out how many berries he wanted to pick this time. He counted, “1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30.”

Then he started counting by tens, “10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100.”

hen he started counting by ones again, “101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109.”

Then he started counting by tens again. He counted to a million! Then he found out that he needed just 5 berries. Then he went back to Raspberry Hill but he couldn’t find any berries because last time he picked all the berries. So he found a hill and he thought it was a regular hill so he passed it. But then he wanted to go back to make sure he was right. So he picked all the berries.

The End

Munchkin's quote: "Mom, I'm very proud of my story!"  As he should be.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Sonlight K - Week 10

This week was pretty fun but we had to work some this weekend because a lot of things came up this week (doctor and dentist appointments, surprise trip to Disneyland, fun time with Grandma).  Here are the highlights from our week:

Munchkin worked on sentence length.  
Here he changed a short sentence (Sam ran.) into a longer sentence (Sam ran fast at the race!)
We discussed how adding descriptive terms to sentences help the reader envision the story better.  After lengthening some sentences and shortening others, Munchkin decided that when he grows up he wants to be a Dad, Author, Illustrator, Knight.  Very cute!

I also gave him a group of words and asked him to sort them into like categories. I thought I might need to help him through this one but he did it all by himself.  I was very impressed!

left to right: body parts, food, animals, men, etc.

We discussed the first explorers and I Munchkin worked on this worksheet while I read.

Munchkin loved this and asked if he could have more of these!

We also discussed how explorers navigated using homemade compasses.  In order to see what it was like, we made our own homemade compass.
we confirmed our experiment by comparing our findings to my husband's phone

Meanwhile, I took this picture of what Ditto worked on one day while Munchkin and I were having school.  I thought it was so cool that he was making such a cute effort to write letters.
Because of this, and after discussing it with a very eager Ditto, I've decided to start Letter of the Week (based on books) activities this Monday.  We're all excited!

We continued to work on our double facts as well as adding one number facts and adding zero number facts.  Munchkin understands all of these concepts perfectly.

On Friday, he tried to figure out how many different ways he could make the same shape with a different pattern?  This was just the perfect amount of challenge. 

We finally finished up our Preview Lesson of Meet the Masters.  Dad worked with Munchkin on making his portfolio.   
not part of the preview- a quick lesson on color mixing

On the front is a palette with all of the artists we will be studying this year (including Munchkin's name) and he decided he wanted to paint this picture on the back (a knight on a horse with a knife and a castle in the distance)
This week we learned about "living things" and cells...
To help cement the information in Munchkin's brain, we made edible cells...
animal cell
plant cell
And watched Magic School Bus Goes Cellular. Not the best video but the boys enjoyed it.

Another day we discussed the "animal world".  I decided to take a different route with this and first discuss vertebrate vs. invertebrate.  We did the activity below to make sure he understood the difference...
Then we watched this video...twice. Great video!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Sonlight K - Week 9

This week we started having chores for both of the boys.  Munchkin has had a chore for a while now (clearing the silverware out of the dishwasher) but this weekend, it was decided that Ditto would also begin to help around the house.

So now, Ditto clears the silverware...
and Munchkin wipes off the guest bathroom counter daily and sweeps the front walkway regularly.  Since we have been discussing "service" this week in our family scripture study, this was a great way to put it into action - serving our families.

Among other things, we used linking cubes to measure the length and width of our office desk...
 Munchkin enjoyed this so much that he wanted to measure our kitchen table...
 We ran out of linking cubes (we only have 100)...
...but we just determined that our table was more than 100 linking cubes long and 56 linking cubes wide.

Although I feel pretty confident in Munchkin having learned his double facts (1+1, 2+2, etc.) I wanted to do one more "fun" activity to cement his understanding and confirm my confidence.  So, this week I read Two of Everything by Lily Toy Hong.  The boys LOVED this book! They requested I re-read it multiple times (at lunch, before naps, at dinner). To make it an active reading, I had Ditto count the pictures and I had Munchkin figure out the doubles.  We also read Double the Ducks by Stuart J. Murphy. I had the boys do the same thing (Ditto - count, Munchkin - double) and then Munchkin completed a few pages from this Double the Ducks Activity Pack.
We also continued working on graphing and graphed a handful of a pattern blocks a few times...

We have been discussing a great deal about our planet this week. To enhance the reading assigned by Sonlight, we read some very enjoyable books.

On Monday, after reading about the destruction of the rainforest, we read The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry. After reading about pollution we read The Berenstain Bears Don't Pollute Anymore. And after we read about the extinction of animals, we read The Hunter and the Animals by Tomie dePaola.  Munchkin really enjoyed each of these books and even though it was a lot of reading it provided a great opportunity for further discussion and understanding of each of these subjects. 

On Tuesday, after reading about global warming (Sonlight assignment), we made these fun earth crafts.
the original idea came from To The Lesson

They really enjoyed these and worked on them for a very long time.  

On Wednesday, we read about ways we can help our planet and afterward we made a bird-feeder.  

This week, I decided to start Munchkin on writing in a journal. I want him to develop a real love for writing and even though he practices his handwriting daily, I feel free-writing in a journal will allow him to practice without even knowing it.
 After his reading work, we worked on defining the word cab...
...this process really cemented the meaning in his mind (we have read more stories with this word in it as the week went on and he still remembers).

Munchkin has been doing extremely well in spelling. He hasn't misspelled any words yet (granted he is still spelling phonetically spelled words and sometimes writes his letters incorrectly) but this week he advanced to my dictating phrases to him and him spelling them...
...he did well (this provides a great opportunity to work on handwriting and word spacing).

That sums it up for our week!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Sonlight K - Week 8

Among other things, this week we worked on lots of math.

Each day, Saxon Math 1 asks the child to count from 1 to 100. That would be too easy and too boring for Munchkin, so to "spice" things up, I have him use his Montessori Hundreds Board. He has the entire week to work on it and I already noticed that through this process he is beginning to understand number patterns.
He began learning his +1 addition facts. We used our hundred chart and ghost counters to understand the +1 concept...
...and also number cards to understand the +1 concept
Since it is the month of October and the week of Halloween, we used our felt pumpkin and ghost erasers to act out addition stories.
Changing the manipulatives we use definitely keeps his interest.
He continued to work on the double facts. To make things fun (and not just review flashcards) we played this Slides and Ladders game...
 He absolutely loved this game!
After playing this a few times, over multiple days, he got better and better...
The first worksheet he completed, he scored 5 out of 25, next worksheet - 15 out of 25.  (At the time I am posting this - 11/09/12 - he now regularly scores 25 out of 25 on his double facts.)

We also started an Art curriculum as part of Munchkin's kindergarten curriculum.  We are using program called Meet the Masters
This is just the introductory lesson. He was fascinated and is very excited for his dad to complete the lesson by doing the hands-on portion next week. 

Great week!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Sonlight K - Week 5 Day 4

One of Munchkin's favorite part of our schooling is traveling the world learning about other cultures.  This week we have been learning about the Vikings and each day, as soon as we start school, he dresses up in his homemade Viking costume...
...and listens attentively as we read about the clothes the Vikings wore, the food they ate, their homes, and finally, today, their ships. He loves it! And today and yesterday, Ditto even sat in on our lessons to read about what the Vikings ate and their ships.

To celebrate our week of learning about the Vikings, after I put Ditto down for his nap, Munchkin watched Lyle, the Kindly Viking. Then, while I was eating lunch, he came to me all on his own and asked if I would show him what Viking letters looked like.  I found this image and he wrote and drew this picture...
It has been a fun Viking week!

For our language lesson today (Lesson 73), I read Munchkin The Snow Man by Mildred Plew Meigs and then asked him to retell it to me.

He had such a tough time with this.  He kept asking me if he could just read it because he couldn't remember anything about it.  I told him we would just take a little break and try again later today or tomorrow.  (We'll see what I can come up with to help him understand how to do this better.)

In math today, Munchkin was introduced to fractions...
put together is a whole
taken apart is half
and then we enjoyed a delicious snack and...
...saved the seeds for a future math lesson
Number writing practice (we each circle our favorite and discuss why they are our favorites - we both liked all  number 16s)

this week we are asking ourselves, "Do all apples have the same amount of seeds? Does each half of an apple always have the same amount of seeds?" Throughout the coming days, we will be eating 9 more apples, recording the seed information, and then graphing our findings to answer our questions
 In All About Reading, we worked on the "nk" blend.
 And we finished our day with a little math review...
Short bead stair memorization work
 And finally, Munchkin worked with some Montessori materials...teens board. This is very easy work for him but I just wanted to make sure I didn't make any assumptions as far as his understanding of numbers.

Meanwhile, Ditto did not take a nap today so he joined us for some of our school time today. He kept very focused and busy by working on these Halloween/Fall pattern cards and manipulatives.  I am just working on matching with his right now and later will begin to work on continuing the pattern. 
Another great day!

My hubby and I are heading to Chicago tomorrow (our first couples trip since before Munchkin was born...that's 5 years) and we don't get back till Tuesday so we won't have any school posts for a few days.