Saturday, September 8, 2012

Project Week

We tried something a little different this week. I had planned a unit study week because of the Labor Day holiday. I've done tons of these in the past...where I did all the planning, directing and guiding. This time I decided to let the kids pick their own individual topics and do a week study/project around that. I'll get to my reflections on the week later.

Tera picked Benjamin Franklin.   This first picture actually has nothing to do with good ol''s an entry in the fair she finished on Monday.

Anyway, Tera started by checking out some books from the library.  I found a couple of websites with unit study ideas.  Homeschool Share and this one.  She decided right off she wanted to do a lap book.  So, she worked, researched and put together a nice book all on her own.  She experimented with print making, diagrammed the human eye, experimented with sound...all kinds of things.  She talked about how much she really enjoyed making a lap book. 

Another fair project

Daniel's week looked a whole lot different... I found this book for 25 cents at the library book sale.  I didn't realize it was a magic book until just a few weeks ago.  So he read the book, did experiments and tricks, wrote some observations.  I wish his part of the week went as smoothly as Tera's, but it did not.  We didn't have some of the things required for the tricks or some were too hard or he just didn't stay focused.  I have to admit I was a bit frustrated at how everything played out. Until I took a step back and realized that even when things don't turn out like we had hoped...Learning still is taking place!    

We finally put the book aside for a while...did some other science kits and science experiments from different books, played some computer games reviewing math, reading and typing, watched some Drive Thru History.  It all turned out fine! 


I was reminded how totally different learning styles my kids have this week. I learned that I could assign Tera more lap book type work, in addition to (or instead of) our regular assignments and she would see that as a reward. She loved doing lap books! 

I was reminded Daniel needs structure to function well...he seemed a bit lost this week with more freedom. He needed a learning contract with a specific check list of things to accomplish.  I needed to be more prepared by looking at the material ahead of time and gathering the materials or make that apart of his check list.  He seemed to wander around looking for things and get frustrated when he couldn't find the exact thing listed.  I felt frustrated for him, too.  I know he's going to go back and use this book again and again, especially now that he can just pick and choose the tricks he wants to set up.  He loves "doing" science, so I need to make sure to schedule that doing into our weeks. 

I think I'll take these reminders back to our regular school schedule next week and try to accommodate my individual learning styles a bit more.  From their perspective, it was a great week! 


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