Friday, October 30, 2009



It was a great week. Anna was in a good mood most of the time. She really enjoyed her birthday party last Saturday and was delighted by her presents. The weather was great – crisp and sunny, perfect for spending some time outside. A theme of the week in Anna’s school was Halloween, and they made a lot of interesting crafts there – toilet paper bats, painting candy corn with marbles, spiders, etc. She was in a crafty mood at home too and quite willing to go along with whatever project I had in mind. She was also very sweet and constantly told us how much she loves us. I truly enjoyed our time together.


Phonics. Anna’s reading really took off this week. It’s almost like her reading muscles need rest from time to time to gain new strength. She was asking for her “reading words” every day, and her fluency became much better. She doesn’t need to sound out many simple words any longer, she reads them as a unit. And she read two Bob books even though she still resorts to guessing the word a lot based on its first sound. I am really proud of her progress and her new confidence in her reading abilities.


Math: My parents gave Anna this game called Addition War some time ago. I put her into her so-called “workboxes” in the kitchen about a month ago, but she wasn’t interested in the least. On Wednesday she pulled it out and wanted to play. I removed the cards where the sum was more than 10, and we played a round. She caught on very quickly and made a counting mistake only once. Interestingly, we tied in the end :) Simple math seems to come naturally to her, I don’t really use any kind of curriculum for it. We reinforce high counting by playing ball games when we count each throw.

My Own Human Body

Science: We are still focusing on Human Body – Anna seems to be very interested in the topic, and she plays doctor a lot. She is not interested in making her dolls and animals well, only real playmates will do. She really likes My Own Human Body book that we received from my parents more than a year ago. It ties well with her favorite birthday present – My Human Body puzzle. She does this puzzle a few times every day and discusses how our muscles and bones work. It’s fun to hear her voicing her learned opinions on how important sunscreen is and why we have hair.


Arts and Crafts: We did many things this week – more than usual. Probably it was because this week Anna was always happily awake by the time I got home. Sometimes it takes her a while to get going in the afternoon, then we don’t get to do much. Anna “decorated” pumpkins, put together “a ba-a-ad witch”, drew her first real picture and did assorted other projects. I love it when she is truly engaged in her art, and I hope that she will inherit some of her papa’s creativity.


Fine Motor Skills/Prewriting. We didn’t do a lot of prewriting activities outside of crafts. I see a lot of great ideas for fine motor skills on the blogs I read, and The Adventures of Bear has an interesting series going on Pincer Grasp Workouts. I often think, “I should do that!”, but somehow can’t find the time. However, Anna does get some fine motor skills workout simply through play. She was very lucky to receive this Tinkertoy Classic Set from one of her friends, and putting together those rods and connectors is not an easy task for a three year old. Papa showed her how to build “a magic wand”, then she built one herself. In the background there is the Tinkertoy swing that papa had put together in about 2 minutes while I was still struggling to understand what can be done with this set. Boy, I sure hope that our daughter will inherit papa’s building skills too :)

To see what others are doing this week, visit two great weekly wrap-ups: Learning Through Love at My Family My Forever and Preschool Corner at Homeschool Creations.


Christy said...

I know I have said this before, and I am starting to sound like a broken record here, but I cannot believe she just turned three. She is going to have to skip Kindergarten at this rate! Great week! I love reading about her progress.

Ticia said...

I too keep saying I should do that, but rarely get a lot of those things I say I should do done.
Okay, I'm going to be good now and go get my insane cleaning needed before the in-laws get here done.

Virginia Lee said...

Sometimes you just fit in what works for your family and let the rest go. I have to remind myself of that because I am always seeing things on blogs I feel like we should be doing too.

Very cool tinker toys. She seemed very interested in them. It's nice that her mind is mechanical like that. I wish mine was.

whisperingwhispers said...

I often think the same thing about the fine motor skills with Selena, but like you I find that Selena works on this area daily through play.

I read an interesting article, that pointed out where pushing a child too early to write, and holding pens and pencils correctly at too young of an age is actually creating dexterity problems in how they write when they get older. I wish I could remember where I read this at, I should have bookmarked it!

Anyway Anna is growing up! She is doing fantastic, you two have a lot to be proud of!

My Boaz's Ruth said...

Thanks for the comments on Tinkertoys. We were looking at them for Christmas, but I think I'll hold off until our Obed is older.

The Fifth Street Mama said...

Hee Hee My husband has Tinker Toys. I should really have him play with them to develop his fine motor skills.

Do you have any tips on number recognition? Hudson is struggling with this and i don't want it to become a source of frustration for us.

Nicole {tired, need sleep} said...

I love tinkertoys - what a great birthday idea... we'll have to think about that for Christmas. I love the counting while throwing a ball, M would definitely enjoy that. Too bad we have a no throwing rule in the house and the weather is horrible outside.

Adriana said...

She is such a sharp little girl. D seems to be very strong in language right now but not in math. He can't count past 15 but he can switch between English and Spanish in a split second. I guess all kids have their strengths. I have not thought about Tinker toys since I was a kid. D would love those. Happy Halloween!

Susana said...

Wow, Natalie, she blows me away with her reading ability and now her math as well! Amazing!

I'm glad she had such a productive, fun and happy week.

Mrs Adept said...

At three I think it's amazing that she is already reading - I don't do much in the way of writing until they are usually after 4. Although sometimes I look at my current 2 year old and wonder........she holds a pencil pretty good, better than the 4 year old.

Jolanthe said...

You are doing so much in supplementing and working with her at home ~ so exciting that the reading is getting better!!

Love those tinkertoys too! I'm thinking our boys would love some of those!

Tara Rison said...

I am totally amazed at this little reader! So cool!

Wes loves his Tinker Toys, too! He comes up with some really interesting creations.

SANDRA said...

Sounds like a great week. It is great when children learn basic skills through play