Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Day at a Glance 9/6/11

After Labor Day weekend, Gilgamesh has really jumped feet-first into home learning. It's been inspiring to see how much he seems to have missed the writing and drawing. He learned stuff while we were away, like at the Festival of Sail in San Diego where we got to tour historic tall sail ships and a U.S. submarine. But he seems so comfortable back home with all his school supplies, showing me his words and asking me how to spell more complicated ones. Today he wrote Queen by himself and then asked for help in writing Cookie. 

Here are a few more things he did on his own today:

Gilgamesh's Independent learning this morning:

  • made alphabet "cards" - letters in squares, then cut them out.

  • copied down the vowels (A, E, I, O, U and sometimes Y) three times, twice by pencil, once by foam letters.
  • Built words with foam letters while watching Word World

  • Wrote down a series of words in pencil.

  • picked out a few Leapfrog learning videos

with Mom:

  • Listened to a 7-year-old Australian kid play Flight of the Bumblebee and get praised.

  • Listened to an older man sing an opera song from Les Mis.
  • Alastor went through the Starfall.com flash alphabet and repeated a few things: "A, a, apple." and "I, i, igloo." He also did a few letter sounds. He especially likes, 'T.'
  • Gilgamesh did nine whole 'papers' in the Starfall Listening and Writing book about the sounds of words.
  • We read Uncle Wiggily and the Tame Squirrel, which made Gilgamesh want ice cream like the kids had at their party. Then we made a fruit smoothie and enjoyed it. :) 
  • We also did the Move and Jump activity suggested in the Sonlight curriculum. We hopped like frogs (Gilgamesh got out the foam letters and spelled FROG without any prompting from me). Alastor did his first somersault ever. He looked really surprised when he ended up on his back. :) We also practiced jumping and landing with our feet both apart and together. A precursor to jumping jacks? The boys loved it. 
Yesterday, upon returning from our family reunion over Labor Day weekend, Gilgamesh went right back into school stuff. Monday, he wrote a whole bunch of words on a piece of paper, including rock, tree, and dragon. His first spelling of dragon was 'jagin.' He also wrote 'Hiccup' a la How to Train Your Dragon. Daddy read two stories from

The Lion Storyteller Bedtime Book: The Mouse Deer's Wisdom and The Two Brothers.
  The Lion Storyteller Bedtime Book

My Review: This is one of my favorite Sonlight story books. The stories are short with colorful illustrations and compelling yet simple plots. Great for bedtime or any time. 
When we read The Mouse Deer's Wisdom, we talked about smells. Gilgamesh said his favorite smells are hot dogs and marshmallows. :) In case you were wondering, we did just get back from camping. He counted ten coins into a pot and listened to them clink against the metal just like in the story. We talked again about saving up for the wagon he wants. He's motivated to do extra chores and behave well so he can get more money in his wagon bucket.

We also opened up Things People Do: The Schoolteacher.

 Things People Do

My Review: This is one of those busy books with lots of stuff going on in the illustrations and little words to explain what people are doing. The names of the people in the town of Banilla are pretty funny, like Sue Prano, the music teacher. It's a little too busy for my four-year-old, but would probably be excellent for a slightly older child with a longer attention span. I look forward to looking through it with my son when he's more capable of focusing on the tiny details that make this book so wonderful.
We did the memory verse both yesterday and today:

Genesis 1:1 "In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth." Gilgamesh has begun to beat me to the punch on the last few words. I'll call and he'll repeat most of it, but right after he says 'heaven' he rushes into 'and the earth!' like it's a race. I'm glad he's getting it down by memory. This'll be his first memorized scripture.

Tomorrow, we'll focus on the Language program Sonlight offers: lately we're working on writing down our address and phone number and learning new vocabulary via the Picture Dictionary. I'll have more to say about that tomorrow. Tonight, I'm beat.

I hope your Labor Day was awesome!

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