Weekly Wrap-Up: Cells and Volleyball

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Happy Friday!  This week’s wrap-up is an early one because I’m getting ready to wrap school up today and send the kids off to the grandparents’ for the weekend.  My and Brian’s anniversary is next Tuesday.  (Is there a grammatically correct way to say that?  If so, was that it?)  We’ll be celebrating 19 {mostly} wonderful years of marriage.  Unfortunately, we’ll be celebrating on the actual day with school, volleyball practice and a softball tournament.  So, we’re celebrating early this weekend.  Nothing terribly exciting, but it will involve a meal or two that I don’t have to fix and time alone with my husband, so I’m not complaining.  It might also involve me getting to see Eclipse again.  Maybe.  I’m just sayin’.

I don’t know about you, but this week has flown by for me.  Our second full week of school has gone reasonably well.  We added in writing on Tuesday, with Institute for Excellence in Writing.  The first day went well, with everyone watching the DVD lesson together.  It was long, but there wasn’t really any complaining.  Andrew Pudewa is an engaging and funny speaker, so I don’t think it’s going to be a problem keeping the kids’ attention with the DVD lessons as we go along.

Having the kids write their own paragraphs from their key word outline was a different story.  Brianna did great on her own, but this is Josh and Megan’s first experience with formal writing and they needed a lot of one-on-one help.  There are two of them and only one of me.  Not a good combination.  I was going to split them up next week, for the writing part, since that’s ultimately what I wound up doing this week — sending one off to work on something else while I worked with the other.  However, I think next week I might just let them work on brainstorming and writing the sentences together.  I think talking it out might help both of them and I don’t think it really matters, at this point, if they wind up writing essentially the same paragraph.  Once they get the hang of it all, they’ll be writing their own.  Anyone who’s used IEW have any thoughts on that?

We’ve had a lot of fun with science this week.  We’ve been studying cells with REAL Science Odyssey and it’s been one of those weeks where I’ve learned something myself.  We’ve looked at eggs many times as an example of a cell that you can see without a microscope, but nothing I’ve ever used has ever pointed out that little white dot on the yolk (the blastodisc) is what the chick develops from.  I always thought the chick developed from the yolk (don’t laugh, it’s not  nice), but that’s actually what feeds the chick, you know, in case you didn’t know either.  Reason Number 102,339 why I love homeschooling.

cell lab

We were supposed to make a three-dimensional cell, you know, the whole Jell-O thing, but somebody — I won’t say who; it might have been the youngest male in the house, but I’m not saying — ate our orange nucleus.  I got a new orange and hid it, so that will be on the agenda for next week.

Brianna had her first volleyball game Thursday night.  Her team lost, but they played so well!  They have improved so much since last year.  Their coach had told them that this would probably be the toughest team they played all year, so we were all very excited to see how close the scores were.  Our girls lost, but they didn’t get stomped.  A couple of the games (sets?  matches?) were very close.  If this was, in fact, the toughest team, I think we’re going to have a really good season.

Next week the craziness begins.  Brianna starts her Spanish class, taught at a local church for a small group of homeschoolers.  It’s supposed to be a pretty tough class, so we’re a little nervous about it, but it’s an extremely reasonable price and a much better idea than me teaching Spanish, so we’re going to see how it goes.  The following week, Megan’s last year of music starts and we’ll be at a full load of subjects and outside classes.  Yikes!

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20 Comments

  1. Sounds like you all had a great week!

    I *think* the proper way to write your sentence in question is "Mine and Brian's." This makes it make more sense since you're using two possessives. However, someone with more grammas prowess than I possess might chime in and correct me! 🙂

  2. Where is she taking Spanish? Are there spaces still available? I need details. ;)Can you send them to me?

  3. @ Amy — I stared to say "Mine and Brian's." That's how I would normally say it in conversation. However, I usually tell my kids, when trying to decide between I and me, take away the other person.

    For example: Brian and I played ball or Brian and me played ball.

    I would be correct because you would say, "I play ball," not "Me play ball."

    That's when I started wondering if "My and Brian's" might be correct, even though it sounds wrong, because I would say, "My anniversary," not "Mine anniversary."

    I'm not arguing with you or saying that you're wrong, just explaining my thought process because neither one of them sound right. I'd love to find a definite answer because I wonder about it at least one a year…you know, on my — mine — our anniversary. 😉

  4. I really like the idea of writing your paragraph as a group project. They get the energy of each other and then you get to model what is expected of them. I taught IEW and am doing it again this year (starting today!) and that is how we do the first few weeks. You could even practice a few kwo before you move on to the writing of the paragraph (not sure how old your children are…this would be better for youngers).

    I also did this at home with my two 7th graders last year. For some reason it was sooooo much more difficult with them than with my co-op class. But my son, who is NOT a natural writer, did so much better with this program than my daughter who writes all the time. She had a very hard time working within the boundaries (which…actually describes her whole personality..but that is something else all together. sigh)

    Leslie in tx

  5. Would it be "Brian's and my anniversary" because that way you're keeping with the rule to put the other person's name first? (as in "Brian and I went to the store.")

    I just say "Our anniversary" because I know that is right! LOL

  6. We've using IEW. Yes, let them talk it out and brainstorm together for the Key Word Outline. They will still end up with different paragraphs when they write from their key word outlines as everyone says things just a bit differently. I'm only using this with my 9yo (oldest) so I'm her brainstorming/talking partner. She does much better when she's got someone to bounce words back and forth with.

  7. Hi, Kris! Happy anniversary! And I agree with Loving Our Homeschool's point about the grammar question. (Your explication was good, too, in your comment.)

    Also, I love what you're doing in science!

  8. @ Loving — That makes sense. It definitely sounds better than the way I wrote it.

    @ Tristan — We do all brainstorm the KWO part together, but I'm thinking of letting Josh and Megan do the sentence writing part together, too. Neither of them are writing well enough to do that part independently without asking me to spell every other word.

    I think they just need to build their confidence a bit right now. I think they're capable of doing that part on their own, they just need to have the confidence to put what's in their minds down on paper.

  9. Just like Andrew Pudewa models in his sessions, it is perfectly fine to write together and make a group paragraph. My very visual learners needed to do the whole thing on the whiteboard at first, with everyone contributing. I would do this for the first few weeks and then see how they do on their own. Modeling is always good.

    I would always say "our anniversary". 😉

    Happy Anniversary!

  10. Happy Anniversary! have a great time before all the other back to school activities hit. Boy that was us this week!

  11. Happy Anniversary! Even though I KNOW the egg thing, I always seem to forget and think of the yolk as the chick part. Maybe because it's yellow? Ew.

    And I vote for "Brian's and My". 🙂

  12. Happy Anniversary!
    We just finished our first week & it went splendidly! What an incredible way to start the year 😀

    We, too, are using REAL Sceince Odyssey LIFE this year. I'm totally loving it so far! I was getting all giddy just now realizing that we would be going through the year together, but…I'm throwing a kink in things and covering the animal kingdom in the fall and then human body & plants in the spring. I'll try to blog about our science journey so you can see what we've been doing to 🙂

  13. Happy Anniversary!
    You know you're a homeschooler when your son eats the nucleus for your science project. 🙂

  14. Happy Anniversary!!!

    I'm sorry to hear about your missing nucleus. We had some missing ducks this week. Must be something in the air. LOL

  15. YES! Happy Anniversary! Sorry, I did laugh @ the chicken egg thing 🙂 Only b/c I'm so smart and I have chickens. (Laughing @ myself here, believe me)

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