Saturday, May 21, 2011

Adding it all up

    We have 5 days of school left until summer break.  As usual, I am anticipating our two months off as much as the kids, especially this year because we did not take time off for spring break and have been going since January without any significant break.  I know you cannot really quantify education.    Learning and knowledge cannot really be measured in numbers but I was thinking about it all, and at the end of the day on Friday it will have added up like this:

  • 1 teacher/mother, 4 school-aged students, 1 always-curious toddler
  • 183 days
  • Approximately 732 math lessons
  • 49 counting bears (pretty sure we’re still missing one red one), two protractors, three rulers, quite a few tears
  • Approximately 179 spelling tests
  • 100 10-step study sheets, 2 1/2 levels of Spelling Power mastered
  • 3 kids reading at the beginning of the year, 4 kids reading now
  • 1000’s of words slowly, tediously sounded out 1 letter at a time
  • 4 beautiful science notebooks busting at the spirals with information about every sea creature imaginable
  • Approximately 549 journal entries
  • 38 Sunday Gospels studied on Thursday mornings in preparation of Sunday Mass, so that 8 little eyes could meet mine as the familiar stories were proclaimed the following weekend at Church
  • 1 history/geography fair project that we worked hard on for 6 weeks
  • 11 “Five in a Row” books studied and loved
  • 11 literature books read aloud together (list to follow)
  • 35 “thinking skills” games
  • Approximately 256 art projects
  • 7 pencil sharpeners that broke on us throughout the year (3 of them expensive electric ones)
  • 3 fun field trips with our friends, countless field trips on our own
  • 5 parties with our home school group
  • 8 packages of loose-leaf paper, at least 3 reams of copy paper
  • Approximately 50-60 trips to the library, with about 25 books checked out each time= about 1,375 books borrowed
  • 5 days of the "Iowa Test of Skills and Achievement" 
  • 17 workbooks completed
  • 26 letters learned in loopy lopsided cursive
  • 5 inches of height my oldest daughter gained since her birthday in September
  • Our history/geography fair project- a group effort, all about Russia
  • And finally…. 5 million times hearing the word “ma-ma” as my toddler tried desperately to coax me away from the school table to play with her.

My list, of course, does not really reflect what my children and I learned and experienced over the last 9 months, the conversations we had, the discoveries we made, all the hard work we endured.  Still, I think it adds up to a pretty successful year over all….

Working on one of the 256 art projects

Our Literature Selections--
The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Spring
s by Betty G. Birney
St. Paul the Apostle by Mary Fabien Windeatt
The Wheel on the School by Meindert DeJong
The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
JRR Tolkien: Master of Fantasy(a biography) by David R. Collins
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeline L’Engle
Arabian Nights ~various authors and translators
Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary
On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder

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