Monthly Archives: July 2012

Maths and Khan Academy

So, Puggle has finished Right Start C. I love Right Start, and think it’s given him a fabulous maths foundation (he started with Level B), however, the practical aspect of having maths requiring my undivided attention—while also teaching Bilby to read, and giving her that same Maths attention (and maybe working with Cygnet, and playing with Howlet), has driven me to make a change. I’ve decided to shift to Galore Park‘s Junior Maths books (and he’ll skip the level 1 book, and I’m expecting him to finish book 2 by the end of this year) next. But it isn’t actually here yet. (And how grateful am I that it’s available through Book Depository? Quick to arrive, and no shipping!) And Paddington pointed out that Khan Academy (who have a fantastic collection of short teaching videos on a huge range of topics, now have practice questions available in maths. And it turns out, it’s not just individual questions. The have a web of topics (showing connections, so you can see what are pre-requisites for other topics), with structured sub-topics, with questions for each.
Even better than that, if you give your child a child account, they need to have a nominated coach (and it’s now possible to have more than one coach, so both Paddington and myself are able to watch his progress from our accounts). He can log in, and do whatever topics he chooses from this topic web. With the basic stuff, he just works through answering questions and collecting leaves and energy points. They all count towards badges and patches, so he can see how much effort he has applied. But when he chooses to do something more involved, perhaps something he knows nothing about, he can have a go. If he doesn’t understand what to do, all those videos are there (the appropriate one is linked from the question page). If he still doesn’t know the answer, there’s a hint button, which can be used a couple of times. So it’s not just a review site, it provides a number of learning tools as well.
And Paddington and I can watch. We can see how much time he’s spent on the site, which topics he’s attempted, how many he got right, what videos he’s watched. It means he can go ahead and work on what takes his fancy and I can see if he’s having problems.
I’m still a little worried that he’ll jump all over the shop, and not actually cover all the basics, which is why I’m planning to stick with a text, but when the book arrives, he can do a couple of days on each:-)
And so far, he absolutely loves it:-) And I love the fact that I can spend that time focussing on the basics for the other kids—knowing that I can still easily keep an eye on what he’s doing:-)

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Filed under Home Education, Maths

Making Fresh Mozzarella!

Making cheese is one of those things I keep meaning to try. I still haven’t got there yet, but Mozzerella looks like a good place to start!

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Filed under Domestic Life, Food

latin update

Chapter Three of Latin Prep One finished… It was pretty twisty. That’s not a recommendation against the text… just the reality of finally reaching the bit where it’s actually all new work… and it’s hard. Not too hard, but definitely requiring of attention! I’m feeling very glad I ended up getting the workbooks, as their forcing me to really practise the new learning!

I think I’m going to take a break for a few days from actual latin, and get the flash cards up to date. I still haven’t printed any other than nouns and verbs, and I need to rectify that. I also realise that I need to add some into the nouns that are along the lines of ‘genative plural of girl’, so that those kind of translations are more off the top of my head. I’ve already done that for verbs (‘second person singular of sing’), and it makes a difference!

Hopefully I’ll get it sorted so that on Monday, I can return to the book, and chapter four:-) I am still really enjoying it though, so that’s a plus…

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The secret to next year’s happiness! « A Brave Writer’s Life in Brief

Here’s a really useful post from Julie of Bravewriter. Not so timely for us in the middle of the year, but I’m noting it so I look at it when I’m starting to think about next year.

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Filed under Home Education, Planning

Into the Thicklebit

Oooh! Melissa Wiley (and her husband) have just launched a new web-comic… And it seems as though they’re taking inspiration from their daily life—including homeschooling their long family. I’ll be keeping an eye on it!

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7 tips for family music time

Meg at Sew Liberated has a great article on making music in your home. I like to think we do a reasonable job of that in our home, but there are some good suggestions here.

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Filed under Domestic Life, Home Education, Music