Saturday, February 23, 2013

February 17 - 23, 2013

I have that "spring is approaching" curriculum fever again, although it's about a week earlier this year than last.  Why am I spending the morning researching microscopes for fifth-grade biology?  Must. Stop. Now.

What we did this week:

  • Saxon Math 1: Lessons 99-102 (writing the number 90, counting nickels; written assessment #19, oral assessment #10; writing the number 91, counting nickels and pennies; writing the number 92, identifying the geometric solids - cones and spheres)
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 149-152 (the silent D before GE; the silent letter B, sight word: gone; the silent letter H; the silent letter U after G)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting 1: Pages 74-77 (Ff; review C, E, F)
Henry's reading has definitely leveled up.  I plugged some excerpts into and determined that he's easily reading independently at second grade level and reading with some prompting at fourth grade level.  Thank you, OPGTR!  His daily practice time has increased since we linked his game time to his reading time.  Right now, his ratio is 1:1.  If he keeps reading for an hour and a half to two hours at a time, though, that may go to 1:2.  I want to keep the video games to no more than an hour a day.  Very unfair of me, I know.

How about some pics?
Math is best done in pajamas, I always say.


Oliver's homework did not start off well.  The first time I sat him down for a table session, his face just crumpled and he started sobbing.  I don't think he liked me turning into a therapist.  So, I had to back off and approach it in a more natural way.  We wound up just playing with his cars, with me asking for the car he was holding, then making him mand for it to get it back.  That worked out a lot better.

His therapist is starting echoic shaping using the mand training foundation that they've already established.  We've been seeing glimpses of this at home already, with Oliver sometimes saying "cah" while he mands for a cracker.  I'm very hopeful that he'll pick this up quickly and we can start turning all of the different sounds he makes into meaningful requests.


Lots of Starfall.


Lots of fussing.  Please, teeth, just come out already.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

February 10 - 16, 2013

So far, so good with the new sleeping arrangements.  Most nights, Oliver is sleeping in his bed, in his room, and not waking up.  The other kids are doing great, too.  We're keeping our fingers crossed that everyone keeps it up.

What we did last week:

  • Saxon Math 1: Lessons 95-98 (writing the number 86, counting by 100s; writing the number 87, drawing congruent shapes and designs; writing the number 88, measuring to the nearest inch using a ruler; writing the number 89, subtraction facts - subtracting two from a number)
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 146-148 (the silent W before R; the silent W before H, review sight words; sight words: what, does)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting 1: Pages 70-73 (Cc, Ee)
Lent has begun and we're keeping it pretty simple this year.  Each night, we're gathering around our little table and praying the Family Stations of the Cross from our book of Lenten devotions.


Oliver now has homework assignments.  We're doing short table sessions at home for the mands his therapist is working on at the center.  They are getting ready to really start testing his limits, so they want us to reinforce the things he's already mastered at home.


We're doing some casual counting lessons right now.  She's a bit enamored by the abacus, so we're doing a lot of counting to ten using the beads. 

I've noticed that Jane's memory is quite good.  She's been reenacting entire episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba using her "Gabba Friends."  I think I'll increase her Starfall time and see how much she can remember.


Peter is rolling all around, pushing himself along the floor on his back, and reaching the end of his swaddling days.  Time to move to a SleepSack.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

January 27th - February 9th, 2013

Yes, this covers two weeks worth.  Things have been busy around here and it doesn't look like it's going to let up any time soon.

Other than a couple of piles of homeless office supplies, the Great Reorganization is complete.  Everyone is settled into their new rooms (or in Jane's case, her new bed) and doing pretty well.  We're all a little tired, but I think it's going to be okay. At least, I'm hoping it's going to be okay.  Hoping and praying. (Please, God.  Let them sleep.)

Here's what we did and what we'll do tomorrow:

  • Saxon Math 1: Lessons 90-94 (written assessment 17 and oral assessment 9; writing the number 82, counting by 10s from a single-digit number; writing the number 83, adding ten to a number; writing the number 84, ordering the numbers to fifty; writing the number 85, addition facts - sums of ten; writing the number 86, counting by 100s)
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 140-145 (the silent letter pair GH: OUGH as short o and long o; GH as /f/, sight word: laugh; review the GH letter pair; the silent letter G before N; the silent L; the silent K before N)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting 1: Pages 65-69 (Dd; O, A, D; writing a story)
  • Spelling Workout A: Well, I regret to say that I have no more patience for this workbook.  Henry can easily complete an assignment, but he has no idea how to apply the concept.  I don't know if it's the material or if he's too young for it or what.  All I know is that it's currently a waste of time.  For now, we're dropping spelling as a separate subject.  I have my eye on Spelling Power, but the author recommends starting it in second grade.  That's fine with me, although I'm open to other programs between now and then.
  • Who Am I?: Lesson 6K (Church Leaders)

The biggest thing with Oliver is that he's now in his own room and in his own bed.  When Matt has put him to sleep, he has slept all night.  When I've put him to bed, he's woken up each night.  Tonight should be my night to put him down, but we're going to have Matt do it instead and see what happens.

Therapy is going well.  He's been doing a lot of vocal play and imitation at home, so they may pick that up again soon.  Overall, Oliver is just a lot happier lately.  He laughs a lot now and makes funny faces at us and is generally more playful.  It's nice to see.


Jane is in a regular bed now in her room since she learned how to escape her crib.  She is doing great in it, too.  She stays in the bed all night with no issues.  In the morning, she climbs down on her own and comes out to find us.  I'm so glad that we waited to move her until she was getting out of the crib on her own.  I think it made the transition a lot easier.


Peter is now in Jane's old crib, sharing a room with Henry.  Up until now, he's spent most nights in the swing, so he's doing rather well, considering. 

So, how are we liking having the schoolroom downstairs?  It's nice.  Really nice.  It means that I can keep an eye on everyone while I cook meals, or sweep the floor, or clean the kitchen.  We're doing lessons at an adult-sized table, so I'm not hunched over the little kid one from the playroom.  We got a couple of new bookshelves to hold the schoolbooks and supplies, so everything is easy to get to and in one place.  And, since everything is downstairs, we don't have the looooooong transition time between breakfast and school anymore.  Once we're done eating or taking Oliver to therapy, we move right over to the school table and get our lessons done for the day.  Much, much easier.