Friday, May 31, 2013

May 26 - June 1, 2013

  • Math Made Easy 1: subtraction, subtraction tables, counting down, clocks, digital clocks, matching times, minutes/hours/days/weeks/months/year
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 217-221 (the ending TURE: tu as /ch/, the endings IBLE and ABLE, sight word: only; more common endings; prefixes; the letter X as /z/, silent P before S)
  • Getting Started With Latin: grammar - singular and plural
  • Architecture - It's Elementary!: What is your favorite place?
  • Origami Math: Kitty cat
  • Life of Fred - Apples: None this week

Oliver is still potty training and making good progress.  We're seeing some big leaps at home with him letting us know when he has to go, getting on the potty himself, etc.

We've also started him on a new supplement.  I don't usually chase the "miracle cures" around, but this one piqued my interest because it was the subject of a double-blind peer-reviewed study.  Although the study sample was small, Dr. Chez has stated that he's used l-carnosine with over a thousand children with the same results.  I figured we'd give it a try and see what happens.

The l-carnosine we got is in liquid form.  The product info says it's more easily absorbed than the powder and recommends a half-dose.  The study had kids taking 400 mg twice per day, so we're giving Oliver 200 mg twice per day.

I actually started him on a very low dose last week to make sure he didn't have any adverse reactions.  He did have some increased irritability and tantrum behavior, but the product makers stated that was common.  We increased him to the full 200 mg, twice-per day, on Monday.  So far, we are seeing some small improvements in behavior and a definite increase in his babbling.

The study had the kids taking l-carnosine for 8 weeks.  90% of the children who received the supplement had a statistically significant improvement in communication and behavior as measured by multiple behavioral scales.  We've advised his therapy center that he's taking this so that they can observe for any changes on their end too.


Jane is loving Song School Latin.  She sings the songs constantly.  Today, she told Henry, "I love you, frater."  (He responded in kind with, "I love you, soror."  She's finally letting me read to her now and then, thank goodness.  She's just so very active and doesn't want to sit still for long, so I'm having much better results through having all the kids play with their Legos on the floor while I read.


Peter is rapidly approaching his first birthday!  I can hardly believe my little baby is going to be one. He's crawling around for real now and has six more teeth all coming in at once, poor kid.  We are still trying to find a sippy cup that he will take, but so far we're unsuccessful.  He also doesn't want milk.  All he wants is formula.  I've tried mixing half and half, but he takes one sip and drops the bottle.  He is killing me.  None of the other kids did this.  I'll keep trying.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

May 19 - 25, 2013


  • Math Made Easy 1: addition properties, most and least likely, using clocks, tables, numbers, 1 less or 1 more, tallies, using a table, patterns of 2/5/10, more or less, fractions of shapes, doubles, fact families, addition, subtraction
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 209-216 (Y alone as long I in multi-syllable words; our as /ur/, D and DI as /j/, the endings ER and EST, the endings LY, LIER, and LIEST, review of sight words, the ED ending, practice reading four-syllable words, the endings TION and SION)
  • Getting Started With Latin: practice and review
  • Architecture - It's Elementary!: Neighborhood walk
  • Origami Math:None this week
  • Life of Fred - Apples: Chapter 13

Saturday, May 18, 2013

May 12 - 18, 2013


  • Math Made Easy 1: reading numbers, tens and ones, comparisons, 10 more or 10 less, ordering, halves and fourths, place value, expanded form, adding dice, adding, crossing out, subtraction, sets of, sharing
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 200-208 (Y as long e, sight word: busy; EY as long e; IE as long e; two-syllable plural words that end in ES; hyphenated words; three-syllable words)
  • Getting Started With Latin: vocabulary: est
  • Architecture - It's Elementary!: None this week
  • Origami Math: Jumping frog (shape, measurement, distance, height)
  • Life of Fred - Apples: None this week
I've started skipping through Math Made Easy since it is supposed to be review.  There are things he KNOWS and I don't want to waste a lot of time on them.  There are also things that we've never covered later in the book, like Venn diagrams.  I'd like to touch on those before we pick up with Saxon again.

I thought that the later lessons of OPGTR would take longer, but they're actually taking much less time.  It's kind of odd.  Henry has more issues with sounding out smaller words than bigger ones.  I'm still reminding him that "the e on the end makes the vowel say its name," but he'll spit out multi-syllabic words with minimal hesitation.  I can still hear him decoding, so I don't think he's memorized the longer ones.  It's not like he could have anyway, since he's seeing most of these words for the first time.  I guess it's just one of those developmental things.  Only 21 lessons left!

On a side note, I am all of a sudden noticing how many people wear shirts with inappropriate slogans on them.  We went out to eat the other night and a kid at the table across from us had this shirt on.  Which Henry promptly read, of course.  Thankfully, he forgot about the "n after m" rule so he was just rather puzzled by what he thought said "every damen night."  Sigh.

The Boxcar Children is a hit!


Ollie is still making steady progress with the training protocol.  He also made some pretty big steps this week.  On one afternoon, we took all the kids to a local playground.  Although Oliver didn't follow along with the games the playground kids were doing, he did make a point of remaining in the midst of the group.  As they wandered from activity to activity, he went along with them and we could tell he was enjoying it all.  He also started counting along with us on his fingers!  I was counting fingers and toes with him and when I started holding each of my fingers up, he exactly imitated what I was doing.  So now, when I count to ten, he holds up each finger in correspondence.

Unfortunately, we've had a big regression with sleep this week.  I'm not sure if it's seasonal changes or what, but Oliver has woken up almost every night this week.  Most nights, he's gone back to sleep fairly quickly, but it's having a definite effect on his mood during the day.  I hope we'll get this nipped in the bud.


We received our Song School Latin CD on Wednesday and have been listening to it in the car.  All of the kids love it, not just Jane.  Thankfully, the songs are pleasant to my ears also so sum bene!


He had one upper tooth break through this week and another is soon to follow.  These aren't near as bad as the bottom teeth were. 

Friday, May 10, 2013

May 5 - 11, 2013

  • Math Made Easy 1: 26 - sets, money, ordering stories, time, graphs, 2D shapes, 3D shapes, writing numbers, counting, counting on by 2s, most and least
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 194-199 (S as /zh/, sight word: people; review two-syllable words; possessive words; contractions, sight word: been)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting 1: Finished!  Days of the week, months of the year, writing quickly
  • Getting Started With Latin: vocabulary: es, poēta
  • Architecture - It's Elementary!: human proportions
  • Origami Math: noise popper (spatial reasoning, shapes, measurement, symmetry)
  • Life of Fred - Apples: Chapters 10-12

Oliver's still doing the intensive potty-training protocol.  We're not able to mimic it at home because of the other kids, so I'm getting smaller sessions in during naptime and working on practicing mands and tacts instead.  He's getting pretty good at identifying things using signs.  It's a slightly different skill than requesting, but it's coming along nicely.


Jane's memory is a little mind-boggling for me.  We walked her through her bedtime prayer (the good old "now I lay me...") line by line and she picked it up pretty quickly.  She memorized our prayer before meals (the good old "bless us O lord") just from listening to us.  We started saying a family Hail Mary on May 1st during our evening ceremony for Mary in May and she has that memorized already.  She has episodes of Yo Gabba Gabba down pat, including the movements of the characters.  And she remembers our Latin lessons, too.  Right now, she's running around and singing, "sum nauta, sum nauta, sum nauta, I am a sailor!"

I'm curious to see how she would react to more singing-type lessons, so I ordered Song School Latin today.  I just got the CD, not the workbook.  It should be here next week and I'm going to keep it in the car to listen to on our trips back and forth for Oliver. 


Peter is still army crawling, is sitting up well, is able to sit up on his own, still has two teeth coming in the top, and is refusing every sippy cup known to man.  He has one month left of the bottle and then it's sippy cup or nothing.  (Big words now.  I'll probably be backtracking in five weeks.)

We're still on track for a July 1st start date, but I'm not sure what things are going to look like around here for long.  We are going to be moving out-of-state in the fall, so we had to put our house up for sale.  Amazingly, we got an offer on it the first day it was listed and we've already signed the contract.  We'll have to move to a short-term rental in the next couple of months before making the big move in October/November.  Part of me wants to get as much done as possible before the move; part of me wants to take an extended vacation and not start first grade until we're settled in our new home.  I'm sure we'll wind up with a mix of both.  For now, we'll just take it one day at a time.

Friday, May 3, 2013

April 28 - May 4, 2013

Very quickly...

  • Math Made Easy 1: 16-25 - ordering, more than or less than, greater or less, comparing, halves, quarters, adding up, adding animals, subtracting, counting back
  • The Ordinary Parent's Guide to Teaching Reading: Lessons 189-193 (CH as /k/, sight word: choir; the soft sound of the SC blend; silent W after S, silent T after S, silent M before N; TI as /sh/; CI as /sh/, SI as /sh/)
  • Zaner-Bloser Handwriting 1: Pages 122-126 (Zz; X, K, Z review; writing sentences )
  • Getting Started With Latin: vocabulary: nōn; grammar: verbs
  • Architecture - It's Elementary!: acting out structures
  • Origami Math: instant cup (spatial reasoning, shapes, volume)
  • Life of Fred - Apples: Chapters 8-9
Let's see, today we're going to play some Uno and I think we'll start a read-aloud of The Boxcar Children. Henry will get a kick out of having the same name as one of the main characters.