Wednesday, April 18, 2012

School Day

Kal-El contrasted short-oo and long-oo words today using the movable alphabet.  He built long-oo words on the left and short-oo words on the right leaving the red "oo" in place and replacing just the black letters.  Some long-oo words include:  cool, roof, food, moon, smooth, scoop, tooth, spoon.  Some short-oo words include:  wood, good, book, cook, stood, shook, wook, and crook.  But, this will vary by region.  I was preparing some other short-oo work the other day that Kal-El will do later this week and had to move a bunch of words out of the short-oo list and into the short-u list like "pull" and "bull."

Me Too wrote some sentences with the movable alphabet.  You can probably see the effect the dreaded "Bob Books" are having on his creativity.  I pulled the BOB books out of the closet because I knew he would enjoy reading them, but after seeing this I think I'll put them away.

Kal-El worked with the snake game today.  It was the first time he built a snake that required exchanging during verification. It was also the first time he had beads left in the end that couldn't be exchanged for a ten-bar.  While we were working with the snake Me Too surprised us both by labeling a short bead chain.  I don't know what we thought he was doing over there in the corner, I wasn't paying a lick of attention.  But, when we turned around at the end of our snake there he was:

He chose wisely...the short five chain is probably the largest chain he can count since he hasn't done the tens and teens boards yet.  We discovered over spring break that he can skip count by 5's and 6's better than Kal-El even can.  Me Too is an aural learner and a great example of the advantages of being one of the younger children in a multi-age classroom.  On the other hand, Kal-El is enjoying his status as the oldest child in our multi-age "classroom" as he is a very patient and helpful "teacher" to Me Too now that Me Too is reading.  He really cheers from him.  Sometimes the first thing out of Kal-El's mouth when Daddy comes home is "Me Too was a great reader today!"

Eventually, Me Too moved on to the math work I had planned (go fetch with the large number cards)...

...while Kal-El narrated the life-cycle of a chicken to use while completing a layered puzzle (of the life-cycle of a chicken).  That kid would be an excellent cruise director someday.

Kal-El read some nomenclature books (insect and fly) to himself in preparation for a dissection and set up everything we needed in the kitchen.  He's decided it is too hard to find body parts in the carpet of the school room.  He'd rather take his chances on tile.

Today the boys took turns dissecting a fly:

Kal-El never needs my help focusing the microscope anymore.

Me Too's favorite part of dissections is using the tweezers to transfer things in and out of the viewing dish.

Home of: The Ultimate Montessori Blog List
The Ultimate Montessori Search Box
The Ultimate Montessori Homemade Materials Collaboration

Would YOU like to be added to the Ultimate Montessori Blog List?  Contact me!


  1. Are planning on taking a break for the summer? The boys seem to be moving ahead in all areas of their learning.

    It is frustrating finding just right books for new readers. Have you seen Miss Rhonda's Readers I am temped to purchase "All About Reading" for the readers. I think it is hard for kids who have been exposed to a rich variety of literature and vocabulary to motivated to read over simplified earlier readers. I am hoping all of preparatory work using the Dwyer approach will give my son the tools to read books that are interesting to him.

  2. Anon,

    I have *heard* of Miss Rhonda's Readers but haven't seen the inside of one. I LOVE LOVE LOVE "Phonics Practice Readers".

    I should just throw the BOB ones in the trash. I only pulled them out because I thought it might be nice to read single words on a page before trying sentences ;(

    I will see if I can get some Miss Rhonda from the library and take a peak. One can never have too much reading material.

    I don't plan on taking a real break this summer. My husband job follows the public school calendar so we tend to also. Having him home messes with our routine. But, I don't think the boys would let me take a break if I wanted one. We do minimize considerably.

    Last summer we did reading (Kal-El only) and violin every day and focused on "swimming" "bike riding" and "gardening." This summer both boys will do reading, violin AND math every day and I hope to finish the primary zoology and botany albums.

  3. I need to do a better job of proofreading my comments!

    I agree that you can never have too many reading materials. There is a sample one of "Miss Rhonda's Readers" on her website. All the different sets and levels of the "Phonics Practice readers" always confuses me. Which ones do you have? There is a good selection of readers at our library, but hard to find the ones that match what we are working on.

    Sounds like a good summer plan. In the heat of the summer our cool basement studio is a welcome relief. My son also plays violin and will be doing a week long Suzuki summer camp in addition to continuing group and individual lessons.

    Thank you!

  4. Awesome work! I love it when you look over and realize that your younger one just "did" something that you had no idea they could do! ;) Pup has been doing that alot lately!
    We do have the first set of the Miss Rhonda's readers. They are really nice. They are beyond the BOB books in the fact that they have sight words like the, here, and so on. Bunny really enjoys reading them (at least as much as she ever enjoys reading to herself, she would much rather have me read to her). I will have to check out the readers you mentiond though. We have been through all the ones I have and I have been making some on my own. Lets just say illustration isnt my gift! ;) I wanted to have some non fiction readers for Bunny so she can practice reading and learn while she is doing it. The Waseca Biome Study has some nin fiction ones to go with their contient study! They are free, all you need to dois print and assemble! I am waiting till we get to that point in the program, but they are really cool!
    I hope your summer goes well! We are going to try and keep the biome study going this summer too!

  5. Anon,

    The Phonics practice readers have three SERIES (A,B,C) and each series includes four SETS. In every series, the skills for each set are the same. Set 1 is short vowels. Set 2 is long vowels. Set 3 blends. Set 4 digraphs. Each set has ten books. So, if you only need ten books at each "skill level" you only need to buy one series. It doesn't matter which series you buy, you don't have to have done one series to have done another. If you wanted more than 10 books at each skill level (we did) you would use more than one series. In our case the library has series A (all 40 books, 10 at each 'level') so we use those for free. We purchased series B (all 40 books, 10 at each 'level) to be our set at home and have had enough practice without seeking out series C. Other than that, I know that the books in series C have larger dimensions...designed to be better for showing a group of kids. Hope that helps!