Archive for the ‘Second Grade’ Category
I can’t believe how fast this school year went by. This was our last week of 2nd grade (which was almost a month ago, I’m finally all caught up!). I very clearly remember the first day of school and wondering how I was going to do this homeschooling thing all year long. But, we made it and we both loved it!
Hailey on her last day of second grade. I wish I could slow down time, she is growing up so fast.
Here are some of the things we did during our last week:
We finished up our author unit study about Tomie dePaola from Around the Kampfire. After we read “Little Grunt and the Big Egg,” Hailey created a book about how she would care for a prehistoric pet if she had one.
On the first day of school Hailey made the top picture (which Hunter colored on while I had it hanging up on the wall ). On the last day of school, I had her do the same paper and then we compared how her answers had changed or stayed the same.
Our butterflies hatched! Hailey was able to watch one come out of its chrysalis.
We started with 5 caterpillars and ended up with 5 butterflies that were all able to fly away. One seemed to have damaged wings, but when the time came to fly away it was able to fly.
Inside the first flap. The top shows the life cycle of the butterfly.
On the bottom there is a little booklet where Hailey wrote out the life cycle of a butterfly. Then she made a butterfly diagram.
This is inside the next flap of the lapbook.
On the top there are butterfly cards that show many of the types of butterflies. Next to that is some butterfly math. Underneath is a Venn diagram comparing butterflies and moths.
On the bottom of this flap there is a little booklet that shows the predators of butterflies, another booklet that shows the defenses butterflies use to protect themselves, and also a little booklet to show the lifespan of a butterfly.
This is the last page of the butterfly lapbook.
On the top there a book to show the different flowers that butterflies like. There is a observation journal where Hailey wrote about what she observed in the caterpillars we watched turn into butterflies. Then there is a little caterpillar with some facts about caterpillars.
This section has a butterfly Hailey made to show the symmetry of butterfly wings. There is also information about what caterpillars and butterflies eat.
We had an amazing first year of homeschooling!! We are enjoying summer vacation right now and waiting for our new baby to arrive
I’m still trying to catch up on my weekly review posts, and now I’m another week behind. Last week we had a thunderstorm and I heard a huge crash of thunder and suddenly all sorts of things in our house stopped working- the washing machine, the air conditioner, the tv, the blu ray player, the light in our dining room, the internet (ahhhhh!). Anyway, once I figured out how to reset our ground fault circuits everything started working again except a couple things, including the internet. I was hoping when Rich got home from work he would be able to get the internet working again, but he couldn’t. First he replaced our wireless connection box, but that didn’t help. Since this happened right before the 4th of July we had to wait to get a new modem, which we now have. Thankfully everything is now working again, but we were without internet for several days. Anyway, all that to say- now I am an extra week behind in posting.
This was our last full week of school- so we decided to have a fun backwards day. Hailey and Hunter wore their clothes backwards and both of them thought it was pretty funny.
Another day they wore their pajamas and both had a blast playing in shaving cream.
Hailey has really gotten into reading American Girl books lately, so here she is working on the latest book she is reading.
Hailey finished up All About Spelling.
For most of the year we just did spelling lists to work on spelling words. Hailey usually did well on her tests at the end of the week, but then didn’t remember how to spell the words later. So, we switched to All About Spelling this spring. So far it’s going well and we have both learned a lot of rules for spelling.
Hailey made a really fun memory book about second grade- What’s Your Superpower? She loved working on this book and it will be great to look back on in the future.
We played some fun games to work on multiplication- in this game each person drew a card and then multiplied it by whatever the number was that we were practicing. For example, if you’re working on the 3s tables- and you draw a 9, you would answer 9×3. If you get the answer right you get to keep the card, if you get it wrong it goes back in to the pile.
This was Hailey’s favorite multiplication game- Each person flips a coin- on one side was written x2 and on the other was written x3. (You can use any number you want to practice any of your multiplication tables.) Then you draw a card and multiply it by whatever number you got on the coin. Then using a colored disc, find the answer to your multiplication problem on the paper and cover it up. The first person to get 3 in a row (or 4 if you want it to last longer) is the winner.
History has been a bit of a struggle for us this past school year. We started out really enjoying it, but then as time went on it seemed like we were spending way too much time on one topic. Hailey started asking if we could please study something else. So, for most of the year I came up with our own history curriculum. It was time consuming and not something I want to do again in the fall, especially since I’ll be busy with a new baby. So, I have been busily searching for a new history curriculum.
We were given the opportunity to review a history curriculum from Veritas Press. I checked out what they had to offer and decided that we would just start at the very beginning and review the Old Testament and Ancient Egypt, which one of the Veritas Press Self-Paced History choices.
There are 5 different courses available:
Old Testament and Ancient Egypt
New Testament, Greece and Rome
Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation
Explorers to 1815
1815 to Present
The courses also have flashcards that are very helpful in learning all of the major events during the time period your child is studying. We were able to use the Old Testament and Ancient Egypt Flashcards, which cost $19.95.
The courses are completed online, so you will need internet access. Be sure to check the FAQ to make sure you computer and internet connection will meet the minimum requirements.
The first thing your child has to before starting any of the lessons will be the tutorial. This is a great way to become familiar with the way the course works.
When your child first logs on each day, she will be able to go to look at her assignments. This page shows the lessons that have been completed as well as the upcoming lessons. Your child’s current grade is also displayed at the top.
The lessons have different actors teaching the information. It is all very interactive and the students have to answer questions very frequently, which helps to keep them focused where they should be.
There are also talking characters, which will certainly keep your child interested in the information!
In addition, there are interactive games, which are educational as well as fun.
Every 5th lesson has a test, which is usually pretty short, but very complete.
So, how did we use Veritas Press?
Hailey started out using the tutorial. With these courses you have to complete the tutorial in order to move on to lesson 1. Then lesson 1 must be completed in order to move to lesson 2, etc. I had planned to just have her do the tutorial on her first day, but she begged to go on and check out lesson 1.
Each day she completed 1 lesson. Some of the lessons were longer than others, but I think they average around 20 minutes each. Of course, that is going to depend on how long it takes your child to complete the questions and interactive games, so it could be more or less.
There is a fun song to help your child remember the 32 major events in the time period being studied. The first day Hailey heard the song she said, “I’ll never be able to remember all of that.” But, it’s a catchy little song and before she knew it, she had most of it memorized. I often heard her singing it when she was taking her tests.
We also used the flashcards- this is the front of the first flashcard. Each flashcard has a picture on the front…
and some information, as well as resources available on the back.
On the back of the first flashcard the 7 days of creation are listed- so I had Hailey make her own art work to go along with it.
This is her completed version of the 7 days of creation flashcard.
Veritas Press Self-Paced History is an amazing program! Hailey absolutely loved it and would ask to do it. Some of the lessons were a little bit shorter than others and on those days she would beg to do just one more lesson. She learned so much from the time that we used the program- and I did too! In addition to the online lessons and the flashcards, there are several historical fiction books that are recommended to use along with the program. I was not able to find them at our local library, but they are available for purchase through Veritas Press. Hailey asked if we could please keep using this program when we start school back up in the fall. So, we are definitely planning to continue to learn all about the Old Testament and Ancient Egypt.
Here is what it boils down to for me:
Very easy to implement
Fun characters that children enjoy listening to
Very little teacher prep time- most days we just watched the lesson and didn’t have to do anything else. There are hands on activities that can be done as well, which would involve a little bit of prep time, but not much. This will be perfect for us since we’ll have a newborn in the fall.
Hailey loved it, learned a lot, and asked to do it every day
It is only available online, so you have to meet the minimum requirements in your internet connection
Cost- I think $199 is expensive for one subject
Want to see some more of Veritas Press:
I am a couple of weeks behind in posting my weekly reviews, so I am going to do my best to remember what we did.
We continued our author unit study about Tomie dePaola from Around the Kampfire.
Hailey really enjoyed reading the books we used in our author study!
We read several books that had Big Anthony in them and we talked about cause and effect- how all of the things that Anthony did were the cause, and then the effect was the result of his actions.
On the left, Hailey wrote several things that Anthony did and on the right she wrote the results of those actions.
Hailey also made a post card pretending that Strega Nona had gone on vacation- she decorated the front of the post card and pretended that Strega Nona was in Disney World.
On the back she pretended to be Strenga Nona and wrote a message to one of Strega Nona’s friends- she decided to write to Bambolona and told her about the fun she was having on vacation.
Our caterpillars arrived at the beginning of the week to go along with our study of caterpillars and butterflies.
Only a few days after their arrival they were already preparing to go into a chrysalis.
By Friday we only had a couple left that hadn’t formed a chrysalis.
We did a comparison of butterflies and moths and learned how to tell the difference between the two.
Hailey and Hunter painted one side of a butterfly, then folded the other side over to show how butterflies wings are symmetrical.
Hunter’s butterfly on the top and Hailey’s on the bottom.
Every day Hailey read us a book about butterflies. She even used a butterfly puppet when she read on this particular day. Hunter definitely enjoyed it!