Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Home School Table

It's a named table. "Mummy, I want a sandwich to eat at homeschool," said Emer. I thought it was part of a game. But no, she wanted to eat while looking out the front window.

However, it's also where they like to do maths worksheets and dot-to-dots and puzzles and drawing. The light is much better than in the dining room. So I have a little basket of stuff nearby, to make it all easier. The current Peter and Jane books, some folders of worksheets of various kinds, some exercise books, workbooks. If they sit down to do it at all, Linnea does it for between one and two hours, which seems like rather a lot to me. I may be biased.

Linnea has been reading far fewer pages-with-new-words and putting a lot more into reading with inflection and expression. Today for the first time she managed to read three pages (um, something like 15 words a page, at a guess) without needing to repeat herself at all; she was happy that she'd got the sense right first go.

I, speaking as the one who listened to many many repeats of every-bloody-thing the other day, was delighted.

Also, she's going back to the parts of old maths worksheets she found "boring" and doing them, for whatever reason. That's good too. I like whole pages to be filled before I throw them away. In fact, I'm running low on good websites for worksheets and dot-to-dots and mazes and things. I may have to buy books of them instead.

Other recent highlights include "Mummy, let's play Banks!" wherein I had an account at a bank which would only accept deposits in square numbers and only allow withdrawals of funds already in my account, in bank-determined numbers, and Emer illustrating things from the Book of a Thousand Poems (oddly, although I have a ton of poetry and a ton of children's books, I have limited books of excellent children's poetry, and the excellent one I DO have has no illustrations at all, which may be an advantage).

I need to persuade the children that inside the house is both bad and boring, so that I can go to a big shop and buy stuff. We have a good pencil-sharpener now, but I still need a sellotape dispenser and some nice tape for it (for some reason we only have awful stickytape in the house at the moment, all yellow and inclined to shred) and big sheets of card to mount pictures on and things. I'd like a good look at some Usborne books too, body books and astronomy mainly.

Today's most difficult question was "Why does big shops opening mean little ones close? Tesco is the biggest supermarket we know," rapidly followed by "Can't the little shop owners all work in Tesco?" I'm open to further ideas on how I should have answered that.

Oh, and there's always "Why doesn't that word have E for Emer?" but the answer to that is "Because it's a pointless and inferior word, my dear, and you must disregard it."

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