Friday, January 10, 2014

Academic Year 2013 In Review

2013 was a solid year for all of the children.  What I planned last January can be found here.

Circle Time changed and grew and adapted as needed, but stuck generally to the plan at the beginning of the year.  We fell of the horse sometimes and climbed back on it sometimes (the end of the year not so much).  We learned hymns, catechism, Bible passages, and poems.  We read stories - even some Parables from Nature - Fairy Tales and Manners.  I failed to update our plans weekly, but started writing down what we did.  Having a specific plan as a checklist made this work.

Everyone is moving right along with Math.  R-girl is around 30 lessons into Year 2.  N-boy is 5 lessons from the end of Year 2.  M-girl is part-way through Year 3, maybe 50 lessons? I wish she were further ahead, we did no math over break though. 

Logic was the big hit of the year.  Crypto-Quote Mindbenders, Mindbenders, and the Detectives Club books were all worked on, and all but the Detectives Club were finished. 

We finished Story of the World II in History.  We all enjoyed it, the projects, and other literature that were suggested.  Science was a bit of a slog.  We completed God's Design for Science, the Astronomy and Geology books.  We decided we really don't like the series as it is dull and dry.

For Geography, R-girl finished the Evan-Moor Beginning Geography K-12.  M-girl and N-boy did a fine job with some map work, but we decided what I selected was a little too difficult, and they worked instead on Memoria Press' States and Capitals.  It is very straightforward, perhaps a little too little for the cost of the program (don't buy the teacher's guide!), but self-contained and I can assign it, so there you go.

Writing across curriculum got a good toe-hold in the fall.  Assigning copywork, narration - oral or written, or dictation from their literature, history, and science helped.  Literature was very much tied to writing.  I enjoyed incorporating ideas from Teaching the Classics and Lost Tools of Writing into thinking through each book and to prepare for the Homeschool Book Club which we thoroughly enjoy.

Latin was a success with R-girl.  She is almost done with Prima Latina, just three more lessons.  I really like Latin For Children, and the children are learning, but I need to do a better job of being on top of the assignments. It might take us 2 weeks to get through each lesson.

I continue to love First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind for Grammar.  R-girl is almost done with Level 2, N-boy isn't far from the end of Level 3, M-girl is well into Level 4.  M-girl is working through Memoria Press' Poetry, N-boy has worked some in Music of the Hemispheres.  M-girl has done some of Sentence Composing, but kind of hates it.  We'll get back to it, though.

In Penmanship, M-girl and N-boy have finished their Cursive First learning.  Both completed Dance Mat Typing and are practicing on NitroType with applied practice on GoodReads.  R-girl is close to finishing Cursive First and begging to learn to type, but not until she's 7.

Art and Music continue to be a joy for me.  We do our Art with Friends group every other Thursday. Once a month we've been going to an Art class at the Columbus Museum of Art.  We've done a couple of the Simply Charlotte Mason Art packets, too.  For Music, piano lessons have advanced quite well.  We've listened to a lot of music and read a couple Opal Wheeler books.

For Gymnasium, Soccer, Baseball, Swim Lessons, and a start for Basketball have been a wonderful way to exercise our bodies and become involved in our community.

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