Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Photos from Biltmore

My cousin, Jamie, has posted about our visit to Biltmore Estate in more detail than I have time to manage today. She has great photos, too. See her post here.

Cullen took photos everywhere. Here he tries to capture the rainbow in the fountain spray.

I'll just share a few of my favorite photos. Here is Cullen and his cousin, Kathyrn...

Learning to orient a map and use a compass...

Hands-on demonstration of the way a system of pulleys and ropes can help a couple of kids move a thousand-pound log...

Cullen takes a turn at the butter churn...

Then gives a wink of approval for the finished product!

The gate into the walled garden at sunset...

I'd love for this to become an annual trip!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Weekly Report

We discovered very early this week that even a loose routine is critical to a smooth day here! Our time off recently got us completely out of whack, not that we generally follow a tight schedule by anyone's measure. Here it is Friday, and I am finally feeling like we might make it now! I tend to be very random and can float all over the place with no concern on my part. Cullen, however, is much more like his Dad in his preference (need) for some structure and predictable sequence to his day - at least if he's going to cooperate on any level!

We did manage to cover most of the bases this week, but not as much as I'd hoped. I am fighting my urge to "catch up" to my penciled out schedule of when we'll cover what. As resistant as I am to a daily routine, I am surprised at my own need to check off the list! Main lesson for me this week: relax!

Math, reading, phonics - all going along very well. We are just begining to look at cursive after a year of begging and pleading. I am not entirely convinced that Cullen is completely ready for this, but there are plenty of folks who introduce it early with success. We'll see. All work for notebooks, copywork, writing, etc. will still be in manuscript for some time still, so he'll have continued practice there.

For History/Social Studies, we continued learning about Ancient Greece, reading some myths, a few of Aesop's Fables and making a couple of colorful paper theatre masks. Cullen read a book from the library about our state and learned a few things that he didn't already know about Georgia.

Science is taking us into a study of the animal kingdom, beginning with sea jellies, anemones, etc. this week. Cullen made a little model of a jellyfish with a styrofoam cup and some colorful string. We used it to act out the sea jelly's life cycle and also to attack some action figures lying nearby. (He is a boy, after all.)

Next week we'll cover worms. We've already set up a worm farm and are both looking forward to this with some admitted heeby-jeebies!
We've had so much rain here lately that I am ready to jump at the next sunny day and take off for some time outdoors. If it were just a little bit warmer, we'd just go out in the rain! Maybe next week...

I am laughing now - I just took a peek at Cullen's journal writing for today. After the most confrontational week of homeschooling we have ever experienced, he just wrote about the two of us, closing with this: "We get along good."