27 March 2015

Day 77 / 104 - Gym Days

Topping the list of my son's favorite things has been his Jr High/High School gym afternoons.  Three months of dodgeball, volleyball, and basketball filled our Wednesdays this winter and truly provided some bright spots in an otherwise dreary season.

Day 76 / 104 - "Easter Pals"

The monthly canvas painting classes continue to be one of my daughter's most favorite things.

20 March 2015

Day 75 / 104 - Intro to Human Anatomy

I mentioned in the fall that my son's Science strand had him weekly researching and reporting on various organisms.  This spring, that strand has shifted to an introduction to human anatomy.  We will memorize nine different body systems by drawing and labeling their parts.

This style of learning works so beautifully.  When my son was in the CC Foundations program, he memorized lists of anatomy systems.  This year, in Challenge A, he explores those lists more thoroughly.  All of this prepares him for the day he will study Biology in depth since he will have a wealth of vocabulary about the subject memorized.  This frees him up to learn at an unfettered pace in order to enjoy the goodness and beauty of all subjects.

These four pictures I chose (of the heart, digestive system, the tooth, and the respiratory system) are not his finest work.  They were quickly sketched one morning while eating breakfast (you can even see food on the paper.)  Two were drawn on one side of the paper, then he flipped the paper over to draw the other two.  But to me, this showcases our education at its finest.  The fact that he can quickly sit down and recall this information encourages me that we are training his brain to retain.  Most importantly, we are teaching him how to learn.

18 March 2015

Day 74 / 104 - Menu Math

While attempting some cleaning and organizing a few weeks ago, I unearthed this book.  My guess is I purchased it years ago (I haven't lived near a Half Price Books in almost three years) in hopes of doing something educational with it.  Then, like most things, I quickly forgot about it.  Fortunately, locating it now was rather appropriate.  I passed it off to my 11-year-old daughter.

The book is full of fun menus for pets, from outer space, by location, and more.  Each menu gives a student the opportunity to apply mathematical skills and thinking to a lifelike situation.  There are worksheets that accompany each menu.

However, my daughter's favorite activity has been to set us up in a restaurant, take our order, and provide us with our total.  I often tell her I'm paying with a $20 and require her to make change.  It's been a blast, especially for her.  Math can be fun !!

16 March 2015

Day 73 / 104 - Pi Day

Last Thursday, for a Pi Day activity, I challenged our Challenge A and B classes to locate circular objects throughout our host church, measure the diameter, and then calculate the area and circumference using the data they collected.

They measured and calculated roughly 200 items.  Not bad for 12 students with 35 minutes of time. 

24 February 2015

Day 72 / 104 - National Geographic Geography

Since my son and I have been studying Geography in depth this year, National Geographic has been one of my favorite accounts to follow on Instagram.  For awhile now, I've wanted to locate the pictures on a map with my children.  Since we are snowed in (still!), we had some time to review this morning by identifying the pictures' locations from the National Geographic account on a map.

This took very little time.  In fact, so little time, that I told my son we should complete this exercise a few times a week.  We had to consult our Atlas for a few locations, but overall he was able to pinpoint most countries from memory.  Geography strand for the win!

23 February 2015

Day 71 / 104 - Life Happens At The Table, Week Three

On Valentine's Day, it snowed eight inches.  Then the following Monday, it snowed another ten.  Our road, and our driveway, is hilly and semi-rural.  My husband was out of town.  We didn't leave the house until Friday.  Needless to say, there was some activity around our table.

My mother-in-law made a quick visit into town (and fortunately was able to escape before the worst of the snow) to help my daughter with some sewing projects.

My son is keeping track of his chores and his fitness for two different merit badges. Last week most of this, for both categories, was accumulated through 'shoveling the driveway'.

Everyday, I taped new butcher block paper to the table, and that is how we completed most of our learning.  Since we were stuck at home all week, we reviewed quite a bit.  Latin and History earned posts of their own.

We played games.

Friday, we saw the light and exited the house for a mere three hours.  Then, Saturday brought us approximately 14 more inches.  Now, our road is even more impassable and reminds me of a remote, undesirable, Siberian gravel path.  My prayer is that it is plowed sometime in the next 24 hours.  If not, this week we'll be living around our table again.