ivey league kindergarten: week in review

Today we finished up our third week of kindergarten.  :)

This week we tried a different approach to reading.  We still did a few pages in Hooked on Phonics (we learned -ip words), but Caleb seemed to get stuck once we got to the fourth little book that came with the set.  He was very overwhelmed that the sentences said things like "Pig can hit" and kept saying he couldn't do it.  Plus I noticed he often confused lowercase b and d (a common problem for his age, I've read).  So we switched gears and did a couple of activities to help him learn the difference between those pesky look-alike letters.

We also utilized the letter word-play flashcards that came with our HOP set to build words.  Sometimes I'd asked him to build a certain word (like "cat"), and then ask him what letter he should switch out to make another one (like "can" or "rat").  So this way we could work on both beginning and ending word sounds.  Caleb seemed to really like this activity so I'm going to find other hands-on kind of stuff for us to do.

Today (Friday) I really wanted Caleb to give that little book a try, but he shut down as soon as I pulled it out.  I was conflicted...I didn't want to force him (and possibly make him hate reading), but I also didn't want to give him such an easy way out.  The kid needs to learn that you don't quit just because things get challenging!  So I took out our whiteboard and started writing words.  Caleb would read them and then we'd do the thing where I ask him how to change one word to make it say something else.  He did pretty well, and he also wanted to show me he could write some of the words too.

He's Cyclops from the X-Men today.  I told him he could wear the shades as long as he did his work!
Then I started writing short, simple sentences similar to the ones in the book he was so afraid of, only I made them kind of goofy to see if Caleb was really comprehending what he read.

He thought these were hilarious.  He'd say, "Mommy, you're not a cat!  I'm not a man!"  Then I went for broke.  One by one, I'd write a sentence from that little book, making sure Caleb could tell what I was doing.  The only different thing was that for some of the words, I'd underline the word endings to help him remember what word family they'd belong to.

And the kid did amazing.  He got stuck on "did" because he tends to mix up b and d, but he read most of the words himself.  I think this helped him see that his anxiety was over the book....he had his mind made up that it was hard to read and that he couldn't do it.  So I guess our focus this week was to show Caleb that he can read better than he thinks he does.  We also read a few of his own books, and when we'd come across a word that Caleb has learned in the past few weeks, I'd stop reading and make him read it.  Luckily the books we chose were ones we haven't read in a long time (or else he'd probably just know the words by memory!).

Caleb made sure we did math every day.  That's one subject he doesn't find too daunting at all.  His numbers are getting better too.  This week the workbook delved into addition and counting by 10s, as well as some calendar work.

We finished reading Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle this week as well.  Caleb really liked it, and we decided to make an upside-down house as a fun project (the title character lives in one and he found the idea of it pretty amusing!).  I found the furniture and other features in an Ikea catalog, so I must say Caleb's house is pretty trendy.

For Bible time, we learned about the Tower of Babel and then God's promise to Abram.  Caleb built his own Tower of Babel out of mega-blocks (and like always, knocked it over before we took a picture), and we did a simple art project for Abram that focuses on the verse where God promises him that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky.

Our C verse for this week was Psalm 56:22.  Caleb's having a bit more trouble memorizing this one so we'll most likely carry it over into next week too.

Links (all free!):
Letter Discrimination Coloring and Graphing Activities (Teachers Pay Teachers)
Abram Coloring Page (Coloring Pages 7)

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