Mar 1, 2013

Bird's-Eye View of the Week: TGINF (Thank Goodness It's NOT February)

I hate February. 
(so glad it's over.)

By this, the middle of the school year and the middle of another cold, dreary, perpetually cloudy, neither-snow-nor-sun, Mid-Atlantic winter, I always feel our school is stale, lifeless, and boring.  (I even develop a comma addiction.)

What, not you? You live in California, I bet.

Typical weather, but at least we're outside.

Simply Charlotte MasonSometimes what it takes is some new curriculum. For instance, try as I might to get Simply Charlotte Mason's "Spelling Wisdom" to work for us, I just can't. Don't get me wrong. It is a wonderful book. We both love the rich quotes. Mei has even run across some a couple of years later in their original works and remembered them. 
But it's just too much "me" work--dictating, discussing, dictating again. I find it slipping through the cracks too often to the point that we are on the first book after three years. (There are six.) 

I'm also still not convinced that she is learning to spell. (Sorry, Charlotte.) It does not rely on spelling rules or phonetics, so it becomes just a shot-in-the-dark approach. It presupposes that Mei will remember the words simply by having studied them for a couple of days. Maybe ALL spelling curricula more-or-less end up that way, but I'm not sure. Mei wants to continue to use it for copywork though, her idea. Intriguing since we don't do copywork anymore.
So I have ordered Evan Moor's "Building Spelling Skills Grade 6+". It works along the same 5-day format as their Daily Geography that has been very successful here. Open the book. Do. (It's nice to a have an occasional workbook to rely on. A CM curric does demand a lot of "me." ) If you've got any other ideas, I'm listening.

The Handbook of Nature Study blog's monthly Outdoor Hour Challenge nature study themes have been another Febreeze-for-school that I highly recommend. The focus in February has been birds, my fav topic. (I'm Mother Robin for a reason!)
It's gotten us outdoors, or at least LOOKING outdoors! You can read more of our birding adventures here and here. And you can find info about outfitting YOUR yard for birding here. You can probably guess I take  this subject seriously!! :-)  

She makes braces look good, doesn't she?
And how I could I forget that Mei got new chrome bumpers top and bottom? She's taking it like a trooper. The morning after she casually mentioned that some wire might need trimming as it had cut her finger during the donning of the rubber bands. Now That's Fortitude.

There has been an unexpected sign of spring though. Can you guess what it is? Hint: this is NOT a rose by any other name cuz it will NEVER smell sweet.

Guess what's NOT coming up roses?

Got cabin fever? Got a cure? Tell Mother All About It!
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