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Saturday, September 18, 2010

JD's First Game

JD's first game went good for me as a non-football educated woman. We won 12-7. JD played right guard today. It's hard to take poictures and watch the action too. But I managed to scrable for a couple of good pictures.

In this 1st picture he is blocking on the left side of #51.

In this picture he is running in between #15 and #51. They had made a wonderful block that allowed for the first touchdown!

In this picture JD is on the kickoff return team.

So that's what I know...until next Saturday at 10:00am.

Friday, September 17, 2010

A good day

We did our devotion and then moved onto the social studies lesson. We reviewed the basics about South America and went onto learn more about it. We read about the geological history and the physiographic regions (terrain.) We Googled many pictures of the Andes, the Amazon, and the Highlands and added them to our map. We learned the Andes are the second highest mountain range in the world and the Amazon is the second longest river in the world. (However, there has been discussion in the recent past that argues that the Amazon is currently longer than the Nile. I’ll let the experts decide.)

We did math next. I had JD show his classmate (Grammy) how to solve an “Order of Operations” (string “formula”) problem. I don’t know how to type “division” sign so I’ll use the “/” key and I don’t know how to type the exponent number other than the # followed by “s”. Here’s an example of the type of problem JD solved for Grammy. 32x(2+4)4s-38x4. Of course she was lost and wondered under what math category that fell under; like: algebra or geometry. I said, “It falls under…who knows…I’ve never needed to use it. Maybe it’s for scientists.” Then, we looked over the lesson JD watched on Wednesday. It taught him math word problem solving strategies. It also taught him to look for the info that was important, how to organize the info, what strategy to use to solve the problem, and asked him to check to see if he answered the question correctly. (Sometimes those word problems can be tricky and full of unimportant information.) We worked together on a unit quiz and got a 70%. I’m not upset. It was asking which type of strategy to use out of the nine possible choices. So the possible answers were really based on preferences.

We stopped and had lunch. Lyndell asked earlier if she was going to be the “lunch lady.” I told her she didn’t have to be. During our lunch time we watched a new video series I ordered from the History Channel. It’s called “America: The story of US.” It was on the History Channel from April to June this year, but we didn’t watch any of it. I figured if I got a video of American History JD would remember it better. He LOVES the DVD! (Grammy and JD started watching it yesterday.) I had JD start over again so I could take notes on what we watched. The DVD is so PACKED with facts, names, place, etc…that my fingers cramped up just before the Boston Massacre. We learned about the Jamestown Settlement, the Plymouth Settlement, and started on the British nosing their way into the new life. I called for a pause because my fingers were tired.

We did science next. I reviewed with JD about traits and genes and ALL those new vocabulary words that we learned about last Friday. Then, we did seven short worksheets of reading and answering questions together. I ordered a 5th/6th grade science book from Amazon. It gives me many ideas about what to teach JD. It doesn’t really teach him, it’s more of a workbook. Today we learned about Gregor Mendel and his pea pod experiment where he crossed a green pea with a yellow pea. He was looking at seven specific traits on the experiment to see if the pea pods give the genes to make different peas. JD and I did a small experiment where I took two flat rocks and wrote an “X” and “Y” on either side of one rock and an “X” on both sides of the other rock. JD shook the and “rolled” them ten times. He did this to see what the chances were of having a boy or a girl. Turns out seven out of ten rolls produces a girl child. We talked about traits you can and cannot change. The last thing we did as a class was to find dominant and recessive traits in our classroom of three (thanks to Grammy.)

Today for Language Arts we worked on memorizing the “Parts of Speech.” If I can teach JD anything in a song or a rhyme he learns it quickly. So I found this cute little rhyme to remember the parts of speech.
Three little words you often see Are ARTICLES: a, an, and the.
A NOUN's the name of anything, as: school or garden, toy, or swing.
ADJECTIVES tell the kind of noun, as: great, small, pretty, white, or brown.
VERBS tell of something being done: To read, write, count, sing, jump, or run.
How things are done the ADVERBS tell, As: slowly, quickly, badly, well.

CONJUNCTIONS join the words together, as: men and women, wind or weather.
The PREPOSITION stands before a noun as: in or through a door.
The INTERJECTION shows surprise as: Oh, how pretty! Ah! how wise!
The whole are called the PARTS of SPEECH, Which reading, writing, speaking teach.

I took this poem and cut it up in pieces. After we repeated it three times I had him line up all the articles of speech and then the applicable words for each lined up under the correct category. He did pretty good.

Grammy sat on the couch most of the day. JD was more talkative today than most days. I think that’s because he had an audience. The word of the day today was “FOCUS.” I think Grammy did well in school today. She didn’t get in trouble once for talking.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Teacher work day

We did not have school today. It's best summed up to say it was a "teacher work day." First, we had a Dr appointment for JD at 08:20 am for his school/sports physical. The Dr checked off a bunch of things she didn’t even really check. That’s our military medical care for ya. The only thing I noticed was his left eye was not as strong as his right. He’s reading at about 20/40 in his left eye.

We got home at about 9:30 am and this is where the teacher work day came into play. I knew I still had to mow my neighbors lawn. I do that for him every two weeks. He’s currently deployed and he and I agreed that I could cut his lawn for him since he knew I was a stay at home mom. So I cut his lawn and edged it for him.

The next task was to head over to the house cleaning job I picked up. I left here at 2:00 pm and returned at 5:00 pm. I got JD changed for football practice.

We watched JD practice for two hours and came home. So here I sit catching up on the blog at 10:00 pm. I usually don’t cancel school days for my “extra” jobs, but when you add on a Dr’s appointment the day was pretty much shot.

Classes will resume Fridaty. I told Lyundell to get ready to catch the bus by 07:55 am near the bathroom.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

A good half day

Today was more like a half day. It started with the devotion. From there JD asked if he could read his book for thirty minutes. I agreed because I had to shower in order to get ready to pick up Lyndell. She will be with us for almost a week and a half. Once JD finished reading for thirty minutes I had him move onto an online lesson. It was teaching him an acronym about solving math word problems. **Side note - During JD’s Dr’s appointment yesterday the Dr asked him if he had any questions. JD asked her, “Why do we need to know when train “A” and train “B” will meet?” Not anything medical related, just an off the wall question. How ironic that he would have a math lesson ALL about math word problem solving. It taught him “what info he really need to solve the problem, how to organize the information, how to reach for the right strategy, and how to check to see if he answered the question.” We then left the house for our drive to Greensboro.

On the way I had JD read two pages more out of his literature book. Then he had five worksheets to do. They reinforce writing “complete” sentences, building sentences, vocabulary, using verbs, past/present tense, and adverbs and adjectives.

After we met up with Lyndell and Jim the school day was complete. I couldn’t possibly imagine trying to get him to concentrate on anything else after seeing his Grammy!

So while there wasn’t much to blog, we went from picking up Grammy to football practice and I was wiped out at the end of the night.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A better math day

Today was definitely a better day but we still did not get much accomplished. We had our usual devotion time and I had JD read for 30 minutes. He actually only read for 25 minutes because he whizzed through another book. I took the remaining 5 minutes of his reading time and dictated a verbal book report.

Then, we moved onto the dreaded math lesson. We picked up right where we left off yesterday. I reminded him to write the math string out and rewrite each line after you figure out the portion of the problem you need to. I wrote the numbers for him and asked him what are we doing first and what do I write. He started daydreaming again, UNTIL I ripped the calculator out of his hands and pounded it on the table. I was really talking more out loud or to myself but I stated, “I really don’t have time for this. We have a Dr appointment to go to and a quiz to finish.” He apologized and was fine from that point on. We crippled our way through the first problem and I showed him how easy it is to make a mistake. I had transcribed the problem incorrectly. Then I also stumbled on the second and third problem too. But we managed to finally get through all 10 problems and go off to JD’s Dr appointment.

JD went to the Womack Army Dr today to have them check his thyroid. After a very long wait we finally got in to see the Dr. She was very nice and inquisitive. She did a mini physical and found nothing wrong with his thyroid. Even though something on the 31 Aug blood work report alerted our Dr at Pope AFB. All I know is something is causing him to gain weight. He has gained 37.7 pounds in the last year, but he’s also grown 1 ½ inches too. The Dr suggested healthy eating habits and more exercise. She did also mention JD is right around the corner of “Puberty.” Oh joy! I absolutely dread if his puberty and my menopause (no not yet) meet in the classroom. I really don’t know who would win. (smile) The Dr asked him things like what do you want to be when you grow up, and what are your goals. He said, “I want to be an army officer. My goal is to be a 4-star general.” (That got eyebrow raises from both her and the army captain in the room.) Then he asked her, “Did you know Patton died in a car accident?” She admitted she did not know about Patton. But she promised to study up on him.

We left there and went to eat lunch. When we finally got home at 2pm I was exhausted but tried to start a social studies lesson. I was unsuccessful and called it a day. I got a “Thank you mommy.”

We had about an hour to clean the house before we had to leave for football practice. So it’s been a busy day for us. Tomorrow we pick up our foreign exchange student (Lyndell) for her stay here. She's coming to see JD's first football game on Saturday, and staying to see JD in action at school. She’s a bit intimidated by having to learn or relearn some of the stuff JD learns daily. (I’ll keep you posted if I have to put her in the corner for talking too much. I understand that was her biggest problem in school.) I’m here to tell you I run a tight ship at Faith Christian Academy.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Definately a Monday

Today was one of those days that both JD and I should have crawled back in the bed and just called it a three day weekend.

We did the devotion and moved onto math. It really was designed to be an easy lesson. But today JD wanted to debate, argue, sulk, and procrastinate. So instead of me teaching him the basics of multiplication it was him talking over me and telling me the answer I did not ask for.

Let’s say I show him 25 x 2. Ok looking at it we all know it’s 50, but I showed him 2 x 5. I asked, "What is 2 x 5?" He said, "The answer is 50." I asked again, “What is 2 x 5?” Again, he said, “The answer is 50.” I said, “I didn’t ask for 25 x 2, I said 2 x 5." I did this to emphasise the steps. I remained as calm as I could through THAT process because along with the wrong answers was a negative attitude. Then I showed him division again. This went more smoothly than did multiplication. So once he agreed he understood both I handed him a worksheet with four out of the 25 problems circled. I told him it would take approximately 3 minutes to solve each one. I told him to show me his work because they were hard problems anyone would need to write out. I actually gave him 20 minutes to complete what should have taken no longer than 12 (even for JD.) I noticed he found everything he could to distract himself and I think he even worked in a daydream. I asked him about half way through the time how he was doing and he started banging his head and stomping his feet. (He recognized that he was not on track.) I then informed him that was now homework.

I gave him a short break and then we got started on a different math lesson. This one was really a repeat from last year but they renamed some terms for the sixth grade. It was one of those string of math problems where he had to recall which step to do first. Steps: 1. Parentheses 2. Exponents 3. Multiply 4. Divide 5. Add 6. Subtract. JD knew how to do it but added his own rules after watching the 20 minute lesson on the web independently. So I had to watch the video myself because of one rule I didn’t remember from last year. The whole time I sat with JD telling him to solve the first step and then rewrite the rest of the problem in order to do the problem correctly. Did he? NO! ( I was absolutely ready to loose it on him,) but recognized my mood and called it quits on the quiz. I finally just printed three quiz problems and had him solve them while I showered to get ready for a part time cleaning job in the neighborhood.

I had JD go get his backpack and pack up the math, reading and literature book to bring to the house I was cleaning. He read for 30 minutes, did his three math problems, and started his literature worksheets.

A couple of weeks ago I took a cat sitting job for a couple in the neighborhood. She liked my pet care and knows I'm a home school mom looking for work-at-home jobs. She offered me a position as a house keeper. I thought about and told her I was interested. So now I will be cleaning her house twice a week. Jonathan and her son are about the same age and hit it off right away. She allows me to bring JD there too so it works out for all involved. She’s a really nice client and easy going so I think this will work out. I plan to save my pet sitting money and my cleaning money for our trip to Europe in the spring.