Friday, February 10, 2012

Pompeii gets destroyed and Thoughts on Learning to Read

This week we continued to learn about Rome, namely Pompeii.  Of course we read "Vacation Under the Volcano" and a couple other books about Pompeii.  To sink it all in we made a volcano of course!  We briefly talked about how Romans were master engineers and made arches.  We made our own arch to represent the town of Pompeii.

And for our other "history" activity we got valentines ready for next week and talked about how cupid is a Roman myth...kind of stretching it, but what ever.

For science we continued to get ready for the science fair.  Maxwell chose to do the electricity experiment that he had done last year that's like the game of operation.  There's a wand connected to one end of a lightbulb and battery and then a silly shaped wire connected to the other end.  If all the wires connect, the light bulb goes off and you loose.

We also went to this amazing China celebration put on by the Cardston Homeschool organization.  The boys LOVED it.  Daniel was SO proud of the panda he made.

Now, my thoughts on teaching reading.....

Maxwell is now half way through his reading program.  The Common Sense Program has these "assessments" to see if he's ready to move on, and he passed with flying colours.  Reading hasn't come natural for Maxwell, but it's good to know according to something, he's right on schedule...well, a few weeks late if you're looking at the school year because of my missing a day here and a day there.

It's kind of a labour of love and patience to teach reading, and sometimes it feels like it's never going to click.  I can't help thinking of all the other homeschoolers I've met over time and compare. I have divided all  these moms into four groups:

1.  Moms who taught their kids some 15 minute lessons at the age of 3 or 4 and the kids got it and started reading simple chapter books by the time they were 6.  Some of these moms think that any child is capable of this if just given the same nudging.

2.  Moms whose kids haven't caught on to reading early, and so teach small lessons to their kids daily and consistently, hoping that someday their kids will have something click and have reading come naturally.

3.  Moms whose kids haven't caught on to reading early, and so teach and teach and teach their children hours and hours using every method they can think of trying to make sure their child WILL learn how to read effectively.

4.  Moms whose kids haven't caught on to reading early, but are not concerned.  These moms read TO their kids, and this is enough for them.  Eventually, when the child is ready to read, they will because the child will finally have the self-motivation to do the work it takes and this work will be minimal because they are ready for it.

I am definitely in the mom #2 category.  I'm not saying that the other categories don't have their advantages, but I have my reasons why #3 and #4 are NOT for me and my family.  Although I am tempted, I will not expand on these reasons.  WHY can't I be a category #1 mom?!?.....lament.....okay, I'm over it.

Well, Maxwell really is a brilliant child....really he is.  I can plug away and be patient.  Patience....ugg.

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