Weekly Wrap-Up # 11: The One That's Better Early than Late

It's only Friday as I write. But it feels like Saturday because Jeff's had the day off. And so, since I won't be able to post tomorrow when I usually do, I might as well get a jump on things and write my Weekly Wrap-Up now!

I had my annual check-up on Tuesday, which is, of course, generally both too personal and too mundane to mention. But I'm thankful for the blessing of quality medical care - my nurse practitioner is awesome and the technician was great! And I'm even more grateful for an encouraging clean bill of health, particularly in light of the fact that two friends have recently been battling breast cancer and because of my "scare" last year. Good health is nothing to take for granted.

In terms of writing this week, I:

It was a busy educational week around here as we wrapped up the introductory material for My Father's World: Exploring Countries and Cultures (ECC), our year-long study of geography and ecology, among other things.

With ECC, some highlights were making "Hands Across the World" paper dolls, baking and decorating a world map cake (not too bad considering the media with which we worked!), and trying our hand at creating our own local maps.

On map-making day, I dug out some maps I'd made during my "summer of cartography" as a high school sophomore, when I'd attended Badger Girls State and was elected "town mapmaker" for the week. Then, for the rest of the summer at home, I was consumed with making my own maps of idealized towns and - surprisingly for me - I'd saved all my work and - who knew?! - they came in very handy for this lesson! So, in keeping with my models and rather than having the girls attempt to map out our actual community as the teacher's manual suggested, I let them design their own imaginary towns, and they later added onto these maps because they enjoyed the task so much.

Of course, we also continued with many of our other subjects. Among other things, the girls took a big unit test in math, enjoyed typing so much they asked to do it beyond their required lesson time, and worked hard to master their piano pieces for next week's special group lesson. And Abigail completed our first reading project of the year.

Based on the humorous book Capyboppy by Bill Peet and using directions in Book Projects to Send Home by Lori Sanders and Linda Kimble, she created two Character Tube Puppets and a Personality Profile of the main character, Capyboppy. And today she shared her project with all of us in the form of a brief oral report and Q&A session. She was nervous at first, but clearly enjoyed it once she got going.

Finally, Jeff did another lesson from Artistic Pursuits today, having the girls create tissue paper overlays demonstrative of the work of J.M.W. Turner.

We had a visit on Monday from N., one of our Teachers' Tots friends, whom we had not seen since early June. Rachel and Abigail spent all morning anticipating her noon arrival and, apparently, she'd pestered her mom for several days about when she could see the girls. Then on Thursday, we had a quick visit from little T., the four-year boy I usually watch on Friday afternoons. I'm so thankful for the relationships the girls have with my Teachers' Tots children and for my relationships with their parents. I'm looking forward to the start of everyone's return for the school year, beginning next week Wednesday.


On Thursday, Jeff's parents celebrated their 49th wedding anniversary, an accomplishment far too few couples strive for anymore and one, sadly, that widowhood bars some from reaching. We're very thankful for Jeff's parents' model of commitment and their ability to mark the milestone together. Congratulations, Mom and Dad!

Jeff and the girls had planned to camp in the backyard tonight, but this afternoon we got one of the heaviest downpours yet in a summer filled with monsoon-like rain. Yet, never one to want to disappoint his girls, Jeff has moved the campground into the playroom for the night, where they're sure to make some great memories.

And, on a positive note with the rain, Abigail reported that she's no longer afraid of thunder, a paralyzing anxiety that's plagued her all summer, including when today's nasty storm began. She'd asked me to pray with her when it was starting - which we've similarly done during each previous storm - and it seems that today was the day God chose to say yes - because, when the thunder was still booming, she came to me grinning and said, "Guess what, Mommy? I'm not afraid anymore. I've decided that thunder's just a cool sound of nature!" And, when I asked how that happened, she smiled knowingly and simply said, "Jesus."


Tomorrow the four of us will embark on a little family adventure. Of course, that's both the reason I can't write as usual on Saturday and an inevitable post topic for next week. So I'll talk to you then!


Jennifer Hoover said...

Sounds like you Had a marvelous week. I am very excited that Ecc is working out so well for you. I loved your cake and hope I am able to have the children make one of their own.

Jeff and Sarah said...

I love love love what you did with the maps! I would love to hear how you went about the teaching part of map-making...maybe you could do a post about it? I know how to make a map of our house, but I think it would be hard to explain how to my girls. I guess first I would need to explain to them what kinds of maps there are and in which ways they can be useful...but how would you suggest I go about that? Are there any resources that you would suggest? Sorry if this is too much!

Your husband is a good man to crawl down there into the tent with your girls! Not comfortable (I know from experience) so it's truly a Daddy sacrifice, isn't it? :)

Lord bless your homeschool, Tina!


Jennifer Hoover said...

Okay, we just finished up our paper doll assignment and my children had absolutely no interest in coloring the dolls or anything. I don't want to force them b/c that won't teach them to enjoy things like that, only resent them. Of course, I am dealing with the "from public school to homeschool" mentality and they have came a long way since I pulled them out around Thanksgiving last year. :)

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