Thursday, April 29, 2010

Having fun with language arts

This has been a good week in our homeschool. I decided to start slowing down because of the beautiful Spring weather and to concentrate on one subject a week. We do some of the others but not every day and only as the mood takes us. I find that Spring is the hardest season in which to do school, so we take it easy every Spring. We enjoy the warm weather before it becomes too hot and humid.

This week we concentrated on Language Arts. I dislike that term. Why Language Arts? Why not just grammar, literature, creative writing etc.? Anyway, be that it may, we did a lot of work with Shurley English. The kids were really enjoying the grammar part of Shurley this week. We ended up doing 3 chapters instead of the single one we normally do each week.

This was the week we wrote poetry. I have never heard so much giggling as I did while the children were writing their poems.
Larger than Hershey and looks funny,
Very short ears and large tummy.
Likes running, playing and walks,
Balls and sometimes sock.
He likes balls but not crates,
and has been neutered so he has no mates.
~ Ben, age 9

We spent hours reading poetry. Jack Prelutsky had us rolling on the floor.

I think they read Poetry Speaks to Children so may times that they know it by heart.

Shurley English had an exercise where the children had to write a personality poem based on a particular outline. These are some of the ones the kids wrote:

Temperamental, funny.
Very tall, long hair,
Reading, riding, writing, sleeping ,walking,
~ Ben, age 9

Brainy, careful,
Grey eyes, tall figure.
Horses, watermelon, friends, family, peace and quiet.
~ Shira, age 9

Demanding, brainy,
Tall figure, stern grey eyes.
Teaching, reading, Facebook, e-mail, mothering.
~ Shira age 9

Cheerful, clever.
Brown eyes, charcoal hair.
Parenting, reading, technology, astronomy, Wagner.
~ Shira, age 9

Notice how differently Ben sees Shira from the way she sees herself?

They wrote a lot of limericks. I think the worse they were, the more the kids laughed. This is the only one that survived in print.

There once was a king of Parcheesi,
He always forgot his sneezy.
Snot few wild
and hit a child,
He said it was very easy.
~ Ben, age 9

Much to Shira's delight, we worked through a bunch of exercises in Prufrock Press's reading comprehension program, Jacob's Ladder. I'll write more about this program in another post. Suffice to say that it is streets ahead of any other comprehension program I've seen. It's not a check the box program. It has the children thinking beyond the story.

One of our favorite online stores is Mindware. The kids love their building toys and adore their puzzle books. This week they were having fun with Word Winks. Each book contains over 300 visual verbal puzzles.

I'm embarrassed to admit that my children are better at these puzzles than I am.

I was tickled pink when Ben made one for "No one left behind".

No 1 left behind

No comments: