We're down to two weeks before our Christmas break and we'e been really been doing a great job staying on track (for the most part).. The kids have finally got into a rhythm as to how we're doing school each day and there're pretty happy with it..
The kids started the week (or I guess you could say ended the last week) by attending the annual Christmas tree lighting festival. There they got to see Santa and Mrs Claus, ride in a carriage drawn by mules, play in snow made especially for the event and enjoy free hot chocolate and cookies.
For our school week, we're still following A Gentle Feast for our morning work. We are currently on week 14. For our Bible work, we read John 2: 12-25, Genesis 12: 10-20, Psalms 14 and Proverbs 10: 20-32. We read about the Norse God Bragi, God of poetry, and learned about the lives of Hildegard von Bingen and read the poem At a Solemn Music by John Milton as well as a selection from the play Twelfth Night by Shakespeare. To get us into the Christmas mood, we also read A Gift of the Magi by O Henry and The Thieves who Couldn't Help Sneezing by Thomas Holding. To round out our morning work, we also finished reading The Wind in the Door, the second book to A Wrinkle in Time.
For Language Arts, we did a few writing prompts from Jump In 2nd Edition to get Garrett to really begin to focus on writing. (After the holiday we will actually begin writing an opinion essay). The kids also completed Week10 of IEW's Fix it Grammar, learning about using apostrophes. For our literature selection, we are currently reading The Hobbit and ended the week completing Chapter 7, putting us at 48 percent of the way through the book.
For Science, we completed Module 5 of General Science, which the kids tested over and did really well. This module was a general overview of Astronomy, covering topics such as forms of light wavelengths, stars, planets, galaxies, comets, meteors and such.
Our history lesson had us learning about the immigration of the Dutch to North American and their settling in New Netherlands which then became New York after England took it over.
For music, both kids are practicing both their Twinkle Twinkle complex as well as feeling out Jingle Bells on their instruments. For music theory, they learned about the different types of rests. I am hoping both kids will be able to play Jingle Bells together on Christmas, but that remains to be seen.. lol Garrett has done really well in figuring out the music where Ashleigh on the other hand doesn't seem to want to put the effort in.
For her art lesson this week, Ashleigh did the Polar Exploration drawing with Creating a Masterpiece. She has now completed all the Level 1 drawings and will be moving on to the Level 2 drawings.
This drawing was using both a white and black pencil color on black paper. I don't think she was a big fan of this particular art option, but I wanted her to complete it before we moved on to the next level.
The kids are both still using Smartick math (a product we reviewed not that long ago) as a math supplement in addition to their daily math lessons. I have gone back to using Math U See with them daily and then use this 4-5 time a week.
This week, we also went to the Strong Family dinner here on base. This is a monthly dinner for military families, usually catered by a local restaurant (3/4 of the time it's Chick-fil-a), and served by our base commander. This month, dinner was provided by one of our family's favorite establishments, J's Hideaway, who provided us with Tri-tip, mashed potatoes, green beans, mac and cheese and salad. The housing office provided Christmas crafts for the kids to make as well as goodie bags to bring home. Ashleigh and Garrett both enjoyed making these Christmas themed photo frames which they hung on our fridge when they got home.
This week, we had both a science test over module 5 in our Apologia General Science course, Lesson 1 in Math U See, as well as Test 3 for Garrett's Greek and Ashleigh's Latin 1 Test. I have to say that Garrett has really improved on his study skills, as his first few tests this year he absolutely bombed. This week, they did so well on all their tests. Both kids made 100's on both Math and Science, and for Foreign Language, Garrett made a 97 on his test and Ashleigh made a 100.
To end the week, we had visit from Sailor Santa. This was the fourth year in a row that the Navy unit on our base has dressed up as Santa, rode upon a Fire truck and visited each neighborhood to distribute toys to all the kids. Sailor Santa is always a huge hit for Ashleigh and Garrett and the weather was pleasant enough for us to sit outside and drink hot cocoa while we waited.
We have one more week of school for this year and then the kids will have two weeks off, returning to their studies on January 6th. They will continue to use Smartick as well as practice their instruments while we are on break, but outside of that, they will not be working on studies during that time.. :)