Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Homeschool Highlights - weeks of October 18-31, 2009

Sunday: We went to see the movie, Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. Unfortunately, our small town theater did not have this in 3-D, but it's probably just as well with Shayla's sensory issues.

We don't go to alot of movies because it costs so much, but this movie was based on an all-time favorite book in our house. So this time we splurged.

I have to say, I enjoyed it as much as the kids. There is a lot of adult humor in the film, similar to Toy Story.


Therapy: I finished the assessments in the Disconnected Kids book. It appears that Shayla has a significant left brain deficiency. Soon we will be incorporating the exercises that are used as therapy. Lots of outside time, so that she can better understand where her body is in relation to the world. As well as, visual and sound therapies.

I know it sounds like a lot of new age stuff, but I have read volumes and I am willing to give the techniques a try. At the risk of falling even farther behind in our studies. On the other hand, if we don't try this, we will always be behind in studies. So much for summer break this year!

I know that we are going to be outside as much as possible, enjoying the Indian summer days, that we have been given. I'd much rather bounce in the sunshine, rather than get out the mini-trampoline in the house.

Reading: Finished up on Speeding Seal. Played the long e sound games at Starfall. Shayla played these games with Dad. He's on layoff this week.

Shayla chose to read: Bathtime for Biscuit. It's an easy reader about giving two small dogs a bath. Maybe we'll do that to our little "biscuits" as a reward for reading. LOL!

Multi-subject: Fall/Leaves. Shayla shared the book Leaf Man, with her Dad. That's a fall time favorite. You have to read it. The illustrator uses different leaves to make pictures. Then, they went outside and made their own leaf man/scarecrow thing.

Tuesday: We started the day with some of the exercises in the Disconnected Kids book. My plan is to start each day like this. I hope to explain more later.

Counseling. Shayla was eager to show Miss DeeDee her scrapbook. She still has not spoken or participated in much play therapy.

Wednesday: I'm sure we did something, but I honestly don't remember.

Thursday: Wee Discover Nature Program. The topic this week was acorns. She also made a leaf craft. With special paper, the kids colored the leaf shape with markers, then sprayed it with water. The colors ran and created beautiful leaves. We did a similar project at home using coffee filters.

Friday: After the basics were done, (exercises, reading, phonics, handwriting and math) Shayla asked to play a computer game. She rarely does this. Since it was cold and rainy, why not? She played Jump Start Preschool for 4 hours! I hope I don't get a barrage of hate messages for allowing my daughter to play for 4 hours. She usually spends 4 hours a year playing computer games! I know I probably should have encouraged her to play something more challenging, but I did set the game to the hardest level and she was having great fun!


Living Inside Out Children's Church: Monthly theme: Wilderness Express. Shayla was much more relaxed - way less clingy. I think she enjoyed that they broke the girls and boys up for small group time. She made a binocular craft and did color pages.

Computer time: Two days of computer in a row?!? I introduced her to the JumpStart Spanish program. She loved the coloring book part of it. She laughed when it said the Spanish color names out loud. Her favorite was cafe - brown. Needless to say, she colored a lot of things cafe! LOL!

I think she enjoyed the attention she was getting, too. Big sister, Morgan, who is a second year Spanish student, was watching. She was not-so-patiently waiting her turn. She said the video section is stuff that they are just now covering. Funny, the game cover says it's appropriate for children ages 3-6.

Therapy: Shayla's counselor thinks that OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)might be part of Shayla's diagnosis. Well, when I stop and think about this, it makes sense. So, I explained to her that sometimes her brain gets stuck on things. I will answer her question no more than two times. After that, she needs to move on to something else. She seemed to accept this and seems happier?!?

Monday: Exercises. *Update: We have been incorporating the exercises as part of our homeschool. At this point, we are spending a minimum of 30 minutes, but up to 2 hours a day doing our physical therapy. Yeah, that seems like a lot, BUT. . . I am already seeing improvements. She seems happier, like trying new things - without nudging! Her concentration time seems to be improving. So, it is definately worth it! I am feeling improvements in myself, too. I have to do the exercises with her. I have noticed increased energy.

In anticipation of seeing the Rainbow Fish show on Wednesday, we found some fun things to do. First I read the book aloud to her. Then we used her stuffed rainbow fish to talk about sharing. We enjoyed this fun online rainbow fish puzzle (although we were not able to solve it).

Handwriting: Shayla finished up writing out and memorizing badge 3. Next week we will begin Badge 4. This is a great way to incorporate scripture memory and handwriting. Shayla likes it because of the reward.

Kings Kids program: We attended and Shayla did not cover her ears once. She showed signs of independence by not clinging onto me and she ate her snack and did her own craft. Yay!

Exercises: The cold, damp day did not keep us indoors. We got a lot of wind and rain overnight. It dropped all the maple leaves onto our trampoline. It was completely covered. It was fun to jump on them.

Doing relay races in the wet grass - not so fun. Oh well, I'd rather be outside in the fresh air as long as possible!

Rainbow Fish: We made this cool craft. I drew a simple fish shape onto a cereal box and cut it out. We colored the fish with crayons, then used glitter glue to apply little pieces of recycled tissue paper.

She has also been coloring pages in her Rainbow Fish coloring book.

Wednesday: Children's Theater Foundation Production of Rainbow Fish. As expected, this show was packed! We enjoyed it from our front row seats.

Thursday: Last Wee Discover Nature Program until Spring. The topic was teeth.

Friday: School with Dad

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