Friday, March 4, 2011

Reading and Writing

Oh yeah, remember when this was a blog about home schooling?

We are plowing through the lessons. It is getting challenging for my daughter. She is on lesson 63 of 175 lessons of McRuffy Reading and Phonics 1st grade. We began in mid-October, so that's not too bad, but we can't move any faster. It is a thorough program. Today she was learning contractions vs. possession with apostrophes. The spelling list just jumped from 10 words to 15! Yikes! And, the list is harder than before. She does not remember how to spell. I mean, she can retain the words (some of them) for the week, but then most are simply gone. But, she can read more and more. So, I know she is retaining the words in the lessons. She can now read nearly all Step 1 reading books, that I can find. We will be moving on to Step 2 books this fall, probably. Her reading comprehension is very very good. When I read aloud to her, she can answer questions, and asks good questions about the story too. We read good literature. This week is: Understood Betsy. We have read Little Pear, Henry Huggins, A Year with Miss Agnes, and Mr. Poppers Penguins. She loves it when I read chapter books.

Writing is so challenging. She has nice handwriting. She prints fairly neatly- not awesome, but good for her age. Her copy work is good. She can't wait to begin cursive, which is next year. But, to do independent writing/creative writing - she cannot spell. She has so much to say, and so many big words. She doesn't do inventive spelling. She wants it right the first time. She struggles to write a single sentence. And, we practice constantly. We have tried using the computer. That is a little bit better. She is using a picture dictionary for some words, but it is tedious. If she dictates to me, she can create wonderful stories. Is this a learning disability or will it just take time? Maybe my expectations are too high.

She loves to write cards and notes. She loves to use Skype and type silly stuff to her Daddy. I feel like I need to nurture this more- but, I am struggling as to how.

On a more positive note, Math is going great. She is going to finish just after summer- maybe we will have a couple weeks left. But, she gets it. She works hard. She is a perfectionist, but that is for another blog. She is very interested in Science, History, Geography and Health. She is a hard worker.

I just want to be the best teacher for my children that I can be. There is no time to take a teaching course anymore : ) And, I had my fill of those back when they paid me to teach other peoples children, a life time ago.

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