Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Where are we?

10 yo finished Horaiyot in Mishna and moved right into Bava Batra. Why? He is planning to finish Nezikin. He also taught me that Avot (Pirkei Avot) is in Nezikin. So far he has done Sanhedrin and Makkot, so it makes sense. He is also fired up (today) to learn Gemara. I said that it is up to his rebbe.

In Chumash we are nearing the end of Vayigash. He is comfortable, flying right through. We normally do five pesukim a day, but today it was genealogy, so he chose to do more. He also noticed that both Reuven and Peretz have a son named Hetzron. "Must have been a popular name!" I never noticed it. I look over Rashi before we start and decide which ones to do. Lately, it has been working out to one-three Rashis per day, although I never refuse a chance to do more, if he asks me a question that Rashi answers.

10 yo finished Level II of Rosetta Stone. We also read our way through a Hebrew paperback, a few paragraphs per day. He did not mind pulling out a dictionary to look up words that he did not know. I supplied him with some words that I did know, but left some important ones foe him to look up. My Hebrew was nowhere near the level where I could read the whole book and understand every single word. I hope to read more of those books this year.

As far as Lashon haTorah, he is in the middle of workbook hey, on tzivui. It is easy, and I am almost stretching it out for him.

In math, we are slugging through Math Mammoth, which obfuscates with its Common Core garbage. An example is the drawn-put and confusing explanation of how to multiply decimals. I think they are pushing for understanding that numbers can be rounded off to whole numbers, and that answer still needs to make sense, but I am getting impatient having to explain yet another nifty (and useless) approach to something that can be shown much more easily either with fractions, or with whole numbers. Just teach the kids to stick in decimal point later!

8 yo finished 1st grade spelling program from I used it to build up confidence, and he really learned how not to get totally frustrated when he does not know how to spell a word. Now, whenever he writes something, he tries to spell, or asks me to help him instead of refusing like he used to. He also seems to see the patterns to spelling rules. Now he tries to write the word out, and read it, and see if his spelling makes sense. While it seems silly to rejoice that he can spell on the 1st grade level, I feel that we have a major accomplishment here.

He is in the middle of Keyboarding Without Tears. He likes those trophies, and always chooses to do typing first. I wonder whether this constant input of words has helped with his spelling and his writing abilities.

We are doing First Language Lessons slowly. He tends to do them on a more sophisticated level than the book expects, which is fine with me. He finds them easy, and annoying sometimes.

In math, he is on par with Math Mammoth. He is reviewing telling time from analog clocks, and it seems to click much better now than it did before.

The boys keep on reading, a lot. 10 yo took put first volume of Harry Potter out of the library, and read it in two days. Now he felt ready for it. It was always available, and he was aware of its existence, but a part of him was not ready to read it until now. After our vacation, he commented how not reading anything besides Calvin and Hobbes for a few days made him moody.

4 yo does her own thing: lots of coloring, lots of imaginative play, lots of snuggles and reading on the couch. I keep beating myself up for not doing more "academic" things with her, but she seems to be thriving. One thing, though: she keeps on playing "school". She is always going to school, coming back from school, and, in some way or other, involved in school. I have a lot of my own reservations about putting her in school next year, but, due to this persistent theme, I am thinking about it.

1 yo is a walking, talking, eating machine. He still spends a lot of energy on unclear communication, but he is doing all normal toddler things: tearing up the house, making messes, coloring where he shouldn't. He now has his favorite books, and will sit through a whole book.

As an overview, I see how we are slowly getting there.

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