Homeschool record 4-10 February

It was a very intensive week for us – they are not all like this by any means.


We had finished the maths program up to the beginning of March last week, and planned to concentrate on language stuff, French especially. I wanted to make time for narration and recitation which have tended to get squeezed out due to lack of time. I decided not to include any other subjects for a week or two, and just keep things short and simple. One of our goals has been to help her make a bigger voice through recitation especially – her dance teacher mentioned that her contributions can’t be heard well, in a group of six kids. I think we are making progress in this direction.

  • Reading: re-reading through Leo and Lea to iron out a few difficulties and gain confidence upto section. The current problem is that she tends to read the same mistakes she makes as she is speaking, instead of being guided by the phonetics. Lessons 1 – 38.
  • Recitation: learned Le Ver, by Pierre Coran and La Biquette from 101 poesies et comptines. She initially tried to learn Le Secret, by Rene de Obaldia, which she loved, but it proved too long and complex for her.
  • Narration: we have started the Feuilleton d’Hermes again. In which I learn the value of doing French narration first thing in the morning. She does it well when she can summon her confidence, badly when she gets all tied up with the idea that she doesn’t know how to express something (she does!). Episodes 1-5.
  • Writing: we started off with our regular dictations, but have switched to a rapid review of the more complex French spelling sounds and some basic grammar in view of the upcoming inspection.

The Unschooled Stuff

Language Arts

  • Dictated two poems for her blog, marking a turn away from her previous nature and prettiness orientation towards humour and funny characters.
  • Wrote a postcard to a friend, addressed and posted it.


  • She likes to read aloud with me, each of us taking a turn to read one page. We’ve read The Enchanted Tree House 2, started 3, also Horton Hatches the Egg (again!), and one French book where she played the relatively minor role of Josette.
  • I know she has done some reading on her own in French and English, but I have only a vague idea of what.
  • I’ve been keen to emphasise French, so I’ve read loads of French picture books, + our usual dose of Horrid Henry.

Maths and logic

  • Worked through some puzzles from her puzzle book.
  • Telling time for real and some practice from Lapin Malin CE1- she’s got the hang of the 24 hour clock, but it takes her a while to figure out the time. Some opportunities to figure out durations, time till some future event, etc…
  • She’s playing around with the multiplication concept in various ways
  • Money: she’s buying little things with her pocket money, we’re keeping her pocket money accounts weekly, and she’s getting some additional practice from Lapin Malin,
  • Addition and substraction practice also courtesy of Lapin Malin
  • She’s weighing out her ingredients for recipes unaided.
  • Invented a game called beehive with quite complicated, but workable and consistent rules.

Science / Nature

  • Out at night examining hailstones and building with them.
  • Two other shortish outdoor walks at night to look at constellations, the new moon, and to convince herself that she is very brave!
  • Long nature walk to favourite stream: especially noticed male and female hazelnut flowers, toadstools and lichens, mosses and the variety of their spores. Investigated some new spots in the area, now that there is little undergrowth.
  • Interest in clouds sparked by dance class, discussed cloud types and looked at cloudspotters gallery
  • We watched some of the David Attenborough documentaries: Life on Earth, reptiles, birds and mammals

History/Social Studies

  • Finished reading the comic strip history of the Isere vol1 – prehistory to 1000 AD
  • City walk: we’re working on general observation and awareness in the urban environment and orientation skills, but I also asked her to pick and photograph a fountain. We might start a little collection, though they have no water at this time of year.
  • Sent postcard, so we ended up discussing workings of the post, which box to post the letter in, pick up times, etc…

Practical Life / Cooking

  • She made two batches of sable cookies pretty much following the recipe by herself.

Arts / Crafts

  • She finished her big unicorn coat sewing project, and has toyed with a few smaller sewing things.
  • She made a drawing of Mr Clever with speech bubble. Her drawings suddenly have a more polished, rounded look.
  • Made a very nice Kapla jug
  • She made numerous paper masks this week, and a small abstract paper artwork in an envelope.


  • We have spoken vastly more French than English all week, and I really think I can feel the difference. Some stubborn grammar errors are starting to fade away, or at least, she’s developed the ability to recognise and correct them.
  • Watched two episodes in German of Pippi Langstrumpf
  • Listened to video of kids songs in Hindi


  • After much work on the Cuckoo, Suzuki 1, piece 3, she has declared it ‘finished’. She has already taught herself the right hand of piece 4.
  • Has done a great deal of piano improvising and managed to pick out a couple of tunes she knows.


  • Dance class – I think they are spending all term on sky things, she is really in her element there.
  • Swimming class – went brilliantly for her
  • We spent some time playing throwing and catching games with balls, balloons, stuffed animals…

Out and about

  • Trip to the library.
  • Three park/children’s playground trips.
  • Wild play afternoon and dinner with friends
  • Nice shopping trip to choose things for her
  • Hung out at the local pizza joint for a while

Special mention

  • For autonomy and consideration in getting her own breakfast and entertaining herself all morning while her sick mother recovered a bit.

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