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  • The “Class”

    Avery, Naim, Aaron

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February-March, 2014

Dude, if I get this in today, it counts for March!

We are doing pretty well. My main challenge is just that I am ridiculously overworked with too many projects and I cannot let any of them go. We are digging ourselves slowly but surely out of the last few months challenges.

But! Here we go!


We were organizing school stuff. This is pretty much this years’ curriculum.

Curriculum highlights:

  • Math…They finished the 1B book in Math in Focus. We are in Chapter 3 of the 2A book which is subtraction of 3 digit numbers with regrouping. We are chugging along.
  • Reading…Naim is on the last lesson of Ch.1 in Reading Horizons. We need to wrap up the test stuff before we go on to the next book. He is doing fairly well with his “Most Common Words.” He can read a lot of stuff and I notice him reading other stuff out in the world on the fly. We are sloooowly coming along.
  • Reading for Aaron…he finished all of Master Reader and thus the whole 5 year Hooked on Phonics Curriculum. I tried to have him read on his own, but he doesn’t really do it well. So now I bought him a curriculum from the Teacher’s Mailbox which is just 36 cards with some non-fiction reading, questions, and then a writing assignment. And then somedays he will read a National Geographic or something.
  • We have started to read “Little House in the Big Woods.” After finishing Mr. Popper’s Penguins and Ramona, Age 8. There are two more Ramona books but I think they needed a break. So far, the LH book is doing OK for them.
  • They are both moving along in Sylvan and Sylvan Spelling.
  • Aaron is midway through the first Cursive HWT book. He is doing ok with it.
  • Naim and I have just bought some practice handwriting books from Learning Palace and are just working through them. I do think his handwriting has improved in legibility, although it still has a way to go.
  • We have done two Atelier Art projects. One was on Van Gogh, the other was a chalk and glue mixed media tactile thing.
  • We are on Lesson 13 in Music.
  • We have started Real Science for Kids Chemistry (the primary book.) There are ten lessons. We read a chapter from the book, do an experiment and write up a lab report, do a sort of lap book study guide and then take a test. We have just finished the first lesson on the basics of atoms.
  • We have started reading the UNICEF book ¬†“A Life Like Mine.” It is based on the UNICEF charter of rights for children. It talks about the right, then shows how different children around the world live in regards to that right. So far we have read the first unit on Survival, which had chapters on water, food, shelter and health.
  • We have done a bit of Angel Bear Yoga.
  • Oh, we did a Little Passport or two. I think I only have one left. They want to do the states one, but I don’t think I can afford it right now.
  • This isn’t really curriculum per se, but we continue to work on what I will call ADLs (holdover from special ed) Activities of Daily Living, AKA chores! We are working on having upstairs and downstairs partners to get work done. It goes incrementally slow and tedious. But that is pretty much how housework goes.
Aaron finished HOP Master Reader! The poster behind him shows his progress.

Aaron finished HOP Master Reader! The poster behind him shows his progress.


  • Aaron did a good job in Art at PCAS. I heard no major grumbles from the teacher. Naim actually tried a trial day and liked it, so we are thinking of switching them next term.
  • Naim was the Emperial General in the Emporer’s New Clothes at NWCT. He did ok in the play. But I am kind of thinking that he needs to take learning lines more seriously if he wants to continue in theater. I really wish I could find him a good improv class, because I think he would enjoy it.
  • At Village, Aaron had Explorers, American History, Pirates, and Legos. Explorers was fine. AM we had trouble getting him to read the assignments. Pirates seemed ok except I am suspicious over what happened when they had a treasure hunt and Aaron “won” a giHUGic lego pirate ship. This mystery has never quite been resolved. Legos was OK but he had some incidences getting picked up because he often lost something he brought and put everyone through hell until he found it. Because of this and some other meltdown problems, I am pulling him out of VH for a term.
  • Naim had Explorers, Schoolhouse mash-up, World History, and Fun Sports. He did well in all of them.
  • They took 2 days of Spring Break Zoo Camp while I dealt with a medical issue. One day was Zoo Clues and the other was Animals of the Northwest. There was another meltdown on one day concerning aftercare and pickup with Aaron. So….
  • Our Homeschool PE class got canceled, so now we are starting swimming (for Naim and Avery only for now.)
  • Avery has continued to attend Goddard two days a week and is doing well.

Field Trips:

  • Let’s See…Naim and I went to OMSI and saw the Tony Hawk exhibit, the usual OMSI stuff and toured the submarine.
  • We went to VH’s Bloom fund raiser and talent show.
  • We saw Goodnight Moon at NWCT (with Avery! His first play and he did very well.)
  • Kids and I went to see the Lego Movie.
  • Naim went to a youth symphony with his friend R. They also made several trips in the snow to sled.
  • We’ve done some of the usual 53rd Street Park and Outdoors In, also Bagley Park. We also went and checked out the new library.
  • Avery went to a birthday party for one of his Goddard classmates at Oregon Gymnastics Academy. He did really well after the first few minutes. It really helped that his former teacher, Tracie was there because her son is also in his class.

Other stuff:

  • As I mentioned, A has been having meltdown problems again, after I thought it was getting better. The final straw was taking him to get his haircut. He just had a screaming fit. When we talked later about it and about how he had other options (one being sitting and enduring a few minutes of discomfort respectfully) he said that he did not know that was an option. (!?!?!) So I have been reading up on self-regulation and executive functioning skills and trying to come up with some strategies. But for now, (and because there are consequences for his actions) he has been pulled out of every class except drama (which he is at right now!) My thought process is that maybe he might learn some self regulation in drama (it is just intro to acting, all games and no play). And he needs something to work with so he can earn back the privilege of more classes.
  • Naim got braces! Finally! It is the first step and he has them on the bottom only until May when they will finish the top ones. He has done really well and is very compliant. This is another reason we thought he might like to chill out in art and not have to worry about a play. Talking hurts right now, he says.
  • We had some fun snow days in February. (this is really out of order, no?)
  • Aaaand…Naim learned to ride his bike in like, one afternoon.

We are getting there, we are making it…slowly!


March 4, 2013

Avery had Goddard for the day: Report

Big kids:

  • We finished the enrichment stuff for Chapter 12. I tried to back off and they did better, but I do think some of the questions were easier.
  • We read “What was That?” Said the Cat for Discoveries in Reading, did the discussion questions and did the workbook pages.
  • They did 2 pp. of Sylvan and the Sylvan spelling words.
  • Aaron read the DVD and book stuff for Lesson 8 in HOP
  • Naim did the Bonus workbook and flip book for Lesson 10 in HOP
  • Naim did the Ll, Tt, Ii review stuff in ZB
  • Aaron finished the lesson in HWT about writing on different kinds of lines. He also did a ton of the iPad app for handwriting on his own.
  • We watched Rights and Responsibilities in BrainPop Jr.
  • Aaron went to Art at PCAS, he made some sort of cannon thingy out of cork and also glazed some sort of ceramic thing. He drew “the undead.”
  • Naim went to drama at NWCT.

October 16, 2012

Naim wanted me to take a picture of his 2s chart.

VH Day

Naim had math playground, drama and interact theater. Aaron had engineering in which he made a small catapult out of craft sticks, binder clips and a spoon. Apparently this lead later to raisins being shot across the interact classroom, which scandalized Naim. Aaron did say that he picked them up and we did have a big talk about how Naim agreed to let him share the class with him so he needs to be respectful of that. Naim and I talked about how Aaron’s behavior is Aaron’s responsibility and Hillary and I will work with him on it, he does not have to worry about it. Hillary did not say anything to me, so either she handled it or we just didn’t cross paths.

Avery and I played in the playroom, went to Library story time where the theme was opposites and he did a craft, and briefly played at the park.

I started Tuesday/Wednesday homework.

  • Naim did Sylvan 4 pp., a practice page of numbers and worked with the hundreds board on skip counting with 2s.
  • Aaron did not have his new Sylvan book yet (came the next day) so he just did the ¬†numbers practice and the hundreds board.

Naim had soccer.

September 25, 2012

VH Day.

Avery and I played for an hour, then went to the library for story time where the theme was frogs and counting. He made a frog picture and we read a book about trains after. Had lunch and then time to get big kids. Did not have much outside time.

Naim had math playground and drama and drama. The Westward Expansion Play looks a bit intricate. He plays Daniel Boone and the script is thick! Though it does include song lyrics. He is supposed to be listening to the songs (on CD) and practicing lines now that we have them.

Aaron made a “leonardo” bridge with his class in engineering outside. It looked kind of cool in the handout instructions. I wish I would have gotten to see it finished. He had legos with Stockton now, so that made him happy. Then he got kicked out of art class, for having a meltdown. Which pissed me off. I’m not mad at the teacher, and to an extent I’m not even mad at him. OK, I’m a little mad at him. But now I have to fill that time for him from 12-1, which sort of screws up my Avery schedule and when is that kid going to grow up?

I’m honestly looking into Village Free School for him for one or two days a week instead of VH. Nik would have to take him probably. It is about ten minutes from his work. It is tuition based, but I would have to see how it compares to VH. I’m just sick of fighting him on the free spirit thing. It is only going to get more structured and demanding at VH. I don’t know if Village Free School is right for him or not, but think it might be worth checking out. It won’t be for this year, maybe next year, or maybe when he is old enough that he could go to work with Nik and then take the last ten minute bus ride himself. I don’t know. He has oodles of talent and brains, but can’t seem to get it together for classes and I’m sick of this constant problem where all the teachers want to kick him out because he meltsdown at the slightest provocation or challenge.

I might see when their next open house is and just start investigating. We so need to live closer in.

Also, Naim had soccer practice.

September 18, 2012

Avery’s playtime!

Big kids VH schedule is all straightened out after our disaster last week. I think we will be happy now.

Avery and I played in the playroom for about an hour, went to library story time, ate lunch and played on the playground at the park. So we pretty much have a whole preschool of a day there. Avery made a shape picture in storytime.

Naim had Math Playground, Drama, and Interactive Drama. In that one, he has homework. He has a CD and has to learn 5 songs. It is a musical about Westward Expansion.

Aaron had Engineering, where he took apart a doorknob, a keyboard and watched a lawnmower engine being taken apart. He then had Legos and Art. I saw his art project from last week hanging on the hallway wall. It was his hand, all decorated with rings.

Naim had soccer practice tonight.

September 11, 2012

At math playground with Stockton.

More with Naim and Stockton at Math Playground.

Avery returns to the VH playroom.

Village Home Day.

And we didn’t make it through the day, because of, well, Avery.

Naim had Math Playground, Drama, and Interactive Drama.

Aaron had Engineers, Legos, and Art

They did not make it to the Music class, nor Aaron’s creepy, crawly class nor Naim’s Fun Sports class. (The last two classes of the day.) Avery was just being an ultimate Monster and he was not going to make it. I felt bad, but to sit there for longer was just going to kill us all.

We need to do some rethinking for next week.

Naim had soccer practice after that.

May 15, 2012

Kids went to VH. Math Playground was something about going outside and standing in a circle in human knots and unknotting themselves. Book worms was about Mexico, I think. Science seemed to be about layers of the earth and they made some concoction to represent the layers. Aaron made bionicles in Legos.

Avery and I played the first hour and read one of the Ladybug bookshelf books on the iPad. We then went to the library for story time which was all things cat. Avery played with a glue stick and kinda sorta glued cats on a piece of paper. Also got librarian to help me find books for everyone. Aaron was ancient Egypt, Naim was Magic Schoolbus, and Avery was some board books. Took Avery to park and the fountain was on, played on playground etc. Went back and had lunch. I really do have my own Avery preschool going on those days. For FREE!

Cat craft at Library Toddler Storytime.

Morning at VH. Alone with cars is the best thing evan!