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Archive for July 2nd, 2010

My goal this summer was to have Satori reading chapter books. We took a pretty long spring break, and still have about a month of our reading program to go. Even taking two weeks off, we should be finishing Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading around mid-August. After that, we’ll be reading for fun, improving fluency and vocabulary.

I took this photo a few weeks ago, but thought I better post it now before it becomes seriously outdated. But here’s her lesson from a few weeks ago and an example of what she can read. She’s now into 3-syllable words and learning new word endings.

Just out of curiosity, I did place an easy chapter book in front of her and she read the first chapter no problem. Most of you will probably be familiar with The Magic Tree House series. I took a video of her reading, I’ll try to post that soon.

I am so tempted to get their 28-book Boxed Set, they come with a timeline and world map, but I’m just not sure as anything could happen. She might not get into these books, could find them boring, she might move past them quicker than anticipated… Some people consider them twaddle, but they all have some kind of useful lesson in them.

We’ve also started our Nora Gaydos readers again, we’re on Level 4 (the last level before the Independent topic books). I have the Science book lined up next, it looks pretty neat. These books come in a set of 10 books in a magnetic binder and have stickers in the front, 4 for each story. They’re cute and colorful and make Satori laugh, so I’m glad we have them.

I really want Satori to love reading as much as I do, but she doesn’t pick up books to read as often as she sits down to write a story. I do not push her to read on her own, and we’ve never really focused on early readers, as I want her to read books that are more exciting. This fall, after we finish OPG, we will start practicing our reading until she’s fast and fluent. Here’s my methods:

  1. Mom continues to read-aloud good literature.
  2. Satori works on Explode the Code workbooks as long as she wants for phonics practice.
  3. To take the place of our 20 minute OPG reading lessons, she will read 10 minutes of reading that I’ll select to be a bit of a challenge.
  4. At night she will read material that is easy for her, to build confidence and speed.

Here’s a few things we’ve been learning in math and science.

For math we filled 5 different containers all up to the same level. Satori then had to guess which container held the most liquid, and all the way down to which held the least.

She wrote down her estimates on paper and was pretty close. The bowl with the tapered bottom threw her off. We then measured them with measuring cups and wrote down the milliliter amount of liquid.

For science, we learned about sound and sound waves. After experimenting tone and pitch with rubber bands and guitar strings, we then did an experiment to see how the sound waves traveled through the air. The marble experiment was a hit with Satori, really drove the lesson home. This is explained in our science program, Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding. We shot one marble at a group of 4 marbles touching each other and only the last shot off. The energy of the moving marble transferred to the next, lost its energy and stopped. The energy kept transferring until it reached the last marble, which was the only one that moved. Just like particles in the air transferring sound waves.

Then we fired up our BrainPop and BrainPop Jr. subscriptions to see what Moby the robot had to say about sound. Satori really thinks he’s so hilarious!

So we love BrainPop, but I have to renew our subscription. They have a 5-day trial if you wanted to check BrainPop out.