Saturday, November 3, 2012

October 28 - November 3, 2012

What we did this week:

  • Saxon Math 1: Lessons 54-56 (writing the number 49, identifying one half and one fourth; writing the number 50, identifying odd and even numbers; writing the number 51, numbering a clock face, drawing time to the hour on a clock)
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 105-107 (review of the long-u vowel pairs and patterns; the vowel pair OO as /oo/; the vowel pair OU as /oo/)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting Kindergarten: Pages 131-135 (writing numerals, writing number words, writing words)
  • Henry's doing at least one lesson per day.  At this rate, I think he'll finish the whole thing before our free trial runs out!
We're continuing our daily reading from The Illustrated Lives of the Saints.  I haven't been pushing our Who Am I? lessons because there aren't many in the book.  We'll probably do at least two this month before Advent begins.

In science news, our tersa sphinx moth caterpillar still lives!

It's kind of hard to make it out in the picture, but it's there.  Caterpillars go through phases called "instars" as they approach their metamorphosis.  This one has molted once already and gotten much bigger with darker markings.  We're adding fresh food each day.  Fortunately, its host plant is an abundant weed in our yard.

We added another couple of caterpillars to the collection today.  Last week, Henry picked some pretty red flowers for me.  I stuck them in a cup on the countertop to keep.  Today, Matt noticed there were two little caterpillars clinging to the bare stalks.  Apparently, there were some eggs on the scarlet milkweed flowers and they hatched.  We now have two monarch butterfly caterpillars in the fourth instar phase!

At this point, these guys can eat one leaf an hour, so Matt and Henry went to the garden center to pick up a milkweed plant.  We've got them set up in our butterfly habitat and we'll keep any eye on them there.  I noticed about seven more eggs on the leaves of the plant, so we'll watch those too and see if we can spot them earlier in the life cycle.

What I would like to do is have Henry compare the metamorphoses of the moth caterpillar and butterfly caterpillars.  If we can get to it this week, I'd like him to draw a picture of the leaves of each caterpillar's host plant, along with a picture of the caterpillars themselves.  I'm hoping that both species will move into their pupa/chrysalis phases around the same time, but we'll just wait and see.  Either way, it will be fun to watch them both.


Oliver did well this week in therapy.  The center arranged a trick-or-treat expedition to the surrounding businesses on Halloween day, so he got to wear his costume there and get a practice run.  His therapist said he did really well.  We certainly saw that he knew what to do later that evening when we took the kids out for candy.  His only issues were that he didn't want to skip any houses and he kept wanting to go inside of the ones we went to!


Jane is starting to pick out letters.  She confuses a lot of them (she'll say "w" when she sees a "u" and "u" when she sees a "q," for instance), but she's figured out that each one has a name.  Time to ramp up the letter section on


Peter has been finicky and fussy this week, which leads me to believe he's about to hit another growth spurt.  Thank goodness for hand-me-downs.

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