Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Notable Noah – A hobby

We haven’t done much school at all this past week.  He was sick pretty much the entire week – cough/fever. 
But, now we are getting back into the swing of things.  Over the weekend we went to a garage sale which had many (13, in fact) magazines on woodcarving.  Noah bought them all (at 10 cents a piece).  They renewed his wanting to do some woodcarving. 
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Admiring his work.  For this first project, he is making a quilt design.  After carving, he will paint it. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Living Math?

When discussing pleading with Noah last week, about how he NEEDS to memorize those multiplication facts, a thought occured to me….
Why is it so difficult for him to come up with the correct answer on a worksheet, but I KNOW he knows them (at least most of them). 
… to look at his worksheet you would think he knows nothing about multiplication.    Here’s the (in my mind) strange thing.  If we are having a conversation – he can multiply without skipping a beat.  
Things like this.  “Noah, here is your medicine.” and my mom gives him five children’s tylenol.  He says, “Will they last 20 hours?”  Just. like. that.  If he had  4(the number of hours the medicine last), so 4 times 5 = ___ on his paper it would have taken a few minutes.   This happens all the time!  So, I jokingly, asked if I had to come up with a story for each of his harder math facts.  He said that would be very helpful! 
First of all, I am not that creative.  So, my next step was to research to see what was out there.  Can you believe I was not disappointed?  It has a name… Living Math. 
Honestly, I am not sure why I hadn’t thought of it earlier, cause I am all about “reading for learning” method by using living books instead of textbooks. themselves. 
Much to Noah’s delight, we will be playing math games,  reading math stories, and using Life of Fred.  This set of math books looks awesome, I had no idea someone had come up with a way to learn math by telling stories and funny ones at that! Certainly saves me from doing it…

Some Living math books listed by categories can be found here and here.
The only books we have done so far are these types of books.

We will still be using our CLE Math in addition to our Living Math method… for now anyway.  Oh, and using Life of Fred means he will write the answers to the problems down in his Math Notebook, so he does write down answers to problems.  This way just seems to be more up his alley…we shall see. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Our first week of school

I wasn’t sure exactly how the first week would go…
Considering, I have A LOT planned for him to do, but he had no problem doing all of the work, and in many cases liked it.  School 2011-2012 001
He dug right into what he had to do.  This is our 4th year homeschooling.  He loves reading.  Though will not pick up a new book on his own to see if he likes it.  He would rather just read the ones he read over and over.   …that is until I give him another one I want him to read, and suddenly it’s his new favorite.  This was the case with this week’s book of Homer Price by Robert McClosky.  (Noah now wants a workshop in his bedroom like Homer). 
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One big surprise is how much he enjoys his writing book.  I decided to start this year with teaching Noah how to write.  We will take our time about it, but his end of the year project is to write a persuasion paper.  In the book we are using they have what is called 10 minute writing plunges, where he just writes about  a choice of 4 given subjects for 10 minutes.   The goal being to begin forming a love for writing and the writing process.  Noah likes that I don’t grade him in this.  He even asked to write longer than 10 minutes. 
77222_jumbo This is the book we are using.  We are taking two years to do it. 

On another note, we had to cut Thursday’s work short because Noah got sick.  He has a fever/cough.  But, he is a trooper because on Friday, still being sick, I couldn’t find him.  Only to find him, in the schoolroom, doing yesterday’s unfinished work.  What a good boy! 
(I later found out that he thought he wouldn’t be able to go over Grandma’s if his work wasn’t finished for the week.) 
We don’t do school work on Friday’s, as long as he had his work finished for the week.  Friday is left for field trips, and fun. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Notable Noah – He’s so creative…

So, Noah has been asking to have a picnic at the lake we swim at for a long time now.  Finally, I got it together to do so.  Noah was creative with his sandwich,  using baby carrots he made the eyes and nose.  The “mouth” was already shaped that way. 
So, here his Noah’s version of food art

Tuesday, August 9, 2011





Every year, before school begins, I try and make a goals list of things I would like Noah to accomplish throughout the year. 



Goals for 4th grade year

1. Have all multiplication and division facts MEMORIZED

2. Write everything in cursive.

3. Know all 50 states and their capitals

4. Write a persuasive paper

5. Memorize at least 3 poems

6. Improve in spelling

7. Begin learning at least one musical instrument (he wants to)

I may add to these in the future…

Monday, August 8, 2011

Getting ready to begin a new school year!

I don’t really know about Noah, but I am excited about starting school again!  I think he is too.  I have been rearranging… AGAIN…and came up with a great school area. 
I thought it was time we got a map.   Geography will be one of our top priorities this year.
I like that it has the country flags on the bottom.  I got this map from Costco.
I have been seeing all kinds of great quotes lately both on Money Saving Mom, and Pinterest.
Thinking they would be some great motivation for Noah, I print them out.  The top one says “Don’t Quit: Every difficulty is an opportunity in disguise.”  The middle one says “It always seems impossible until it is done.” and the last one says “Don’t be afraid to fail.  Be afraid not to try.”
The books on the very top are the books he needs for the week for history.  I know it looks like we do workboxes, and believe me, we tried.  Something, I would love to do, but it doesn’t work for us.  So, we use the drawers instead to store the stuff Noah will need. 
His desk, with his, pencils, highlighters, and notebook all ready.  :)  In the space on the wall is where our white board will go, but I haven’t got that up yet…obviously. 
It’s going to be a great year.  Noah is going to learn so much, and his mom also….

Noah's 4th grade reading list

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