Friday, September 3, 2010

Our first week! (well, kinda)

We eased into school this week :)  Since we're following the schedule of her older sister, we too had orientation and getting to know the teachers and classes.  Math, history and a smidge of grammar were started this week.  Next week we'll add literature, vocab., and science. 

Daisy took a placement "test" I cobbled together, just to see what her gaps are.  She needs to have all fundamentals mastered before she can start true algebra.  Turns out she never learned division of fractions (?????) so that was first.  I then presented a lot of word problems (but Mommmmmmmmmm) to make sure she was setting up the problems correctly.  I'm of the opinion that she hadn't done enough word problems in previous years.  So far, so good.  Next week, a quickie review of decimals, then percents and then on to more fun topics.

(Tuesday) Daisy read the introduction to Human Odyssey and we discussed time (BC/BCE, AD/CE), timelines, lattitude and longitude.  I dusted off the old globe Mike's grandmother had given us years ago and she used it while doing some scavenger hunt type activities from the Student Pages and National Geographic's Xpedition site.

(Wednesday) She drew continents onto an orange with a Sharpie, peeled the orange, then flattened the peel as a simulation of creating a map projection.  Using the various projections in the atlas section of Human Odyssey and on the Xpedition site, we discussed the pros, cons and uses of the different projections.

(Thursday) Daisy read the first section of Chapter 1, From Hunter-Gatherers to City-Builders, about the Stone Age.  We explored the cave paintings of the Lascaux (France) Grotto through this amazing website spending at least an hour looking at every single drawing and reading through all the textual commentaries.  Fascinating!

Next week in history, we'll begin our study of ancient Mesopotamia.  The last library requests were picked up this afternoon!  In addition to the Human Odyssey text, we'll be using The Ancient Near Eastern World (Oxford Press), DK Eyewitness Mesopotamia, Hands-on Ancient People Vol. 1, and Outrageous Women of Ancient Times.  She will read Gilgamesh the Hero (Geraldine McCaughrean) as a literature selection.

Nothing very exciting, just the first few lessons in Voyages in English 6 (orally) to get her feet wet.

I have to take more pictures of the index card house to share.  It is now fully furnished (index card furniture), decorated (marker and colored pencil wallpaper, post-it carpets), with an entire index card family moved in.  They even have a treehouse (index cards, paper towel roll) in the yard!


  1. Sounds like a great first week. My kids were fascinated by the Lascaux drawings when we studied ancients last year. You'll have a blast this year.

  2. Aww, wish I had seen that site last year! Looks like you had a good week!

  3. Love the idea of doing a map projection with an orange. Very neat. Looks like a very good week!

  4. I had to go back and find the picture of the index card house--very cool! I wanna see the updated pics :)

  5. I will have to go back and find the pictures of those index card house--they sound quite neat. We're enjoy Human Odyssey also though we are nearing the end. Sounds like a great week.

  6. Hi, got here from WTM. Really cool idea with the orange.