Friday, April 8, 2011

Anna is 4 years 5 months old.Mar30_Outside

April has brought us beautiful weather, and we are trying to enjoy every minute of it. We took a lot of our activities out of the house, and Anna was spending her evenings in our backyard or playing with neighborhood kids. The water hose season was open too – “running in the sprinkles” is one of her favorite things to do. Her theme at school was Insects/Butterflies.


Reading. As always, Anna read a lot this week. I think she’d rather give up all her toys than her books. Her chapter book of the week was Little House in the Big Woods, which she read in two sittings. Big books or small fonts don’t intimidate her in the least nowadays if she is interested in the story, but she still likes me to read them to her later so she can ask about every word she doesn’t know.


Math. We are going easy on math lately. My husband made a good point to me saying that “advanced” math is really not a critical skill for a 4 year old. I had to agree with him – there will be enough time for daughter to master her math facts. She still gets a bit of workout playing her favorite Teach Me Kindergarten game on my iPod and doing from time to time exercises from Daily Math Practice, Grade 1. Usually it takes her less than 5 minutes to complete 5 daily exercises, but it gives her a chance to practice more formal math and also improve her number formation.


Art. Last Saturday we went to an annual art show in Anna’s school. My favorite was this display of self-portraits drawn a little more than 6 months apart. It was amazing to see how all the kids progressed in their skills in this preK year. We also joked that the pictures express Anna’s feelings about her school in the beginning of the year and in its end :)

Little Travelers JapanGeography. We don’t do country studies this year, but opportunistically watch geography-related programs. Anna was asking to bring back The Little Travelers Japan DVD for a while now, and I highly recommend it for “Japan” unit. It’s not necessarily an educational DVD, but it really immerses young children into the life of a different country as experienced and narrated by two young American sisters. You will know what the Japanese eat, how their houses look like, how they pray and a lot of other interesting tidbits about Japan.


Play. As I said before, most of the play was taken outside this week – to the parks, to the street and to the backyard. We have a pretty good neighborhood with many kids, and the boys usually have enough nerf guns to spare. She is also trying her hand at batting with a baseball bat. At home the most popular game was “packing for a trip” with top bunk being an airplane and the bottom bunk being her new house in the new city.


Quotes of the week. Anna (mixing food on her plate). Look, mama, I am making California! Asparagus is for cactuses in the desert, rice is for snow, and beef is for mountains. We have everything!

I had to look for a while before I was born to find a perfect papa for myself, but I already knew you at that time.


Elise said...

Sounds like you are enjoying the weather and making the most of it with your outdoor play.

The difference between the two self portraits is amazing. It is so lovely to have these and a visual record of how much difference six months can make.

Christy said...

I love the self portraits - that is such a neat idea for a class project.

R LOVES Teach Me Kindergarten on the ipad. C plays Teach Me First Grade, but it is really too easy for him; I have to see if there is a second grade ipad app.

Still so jealous of your weather. It is mostly in the 40s here.

love2teach2day said...

Wow, is she ever reading at an advanced level!! I love her self portraits too!

Ticia said...

packing for a trip is a very popular activity here too.

Kim said...

Yay, water hose season! I wish we could find those Little Travelers DVDS... Crumpet has some questions about Japan right now, and that sounds like a good resource. Crumpet loves packing too..

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

We haven't even turned our sprinklers back on yet! But, it's fun to get a peek at your beautiful green grass :)

Brimful Curiosities said...

I'm looking forward to nicer weather like the kind you are enjoying currently!

To answer your comment about the Poetry Speaks to Children book, my daughter and I read about 1/4 of the poems together. The others were too advanced. I like that the book grows with the child, and it the only poetry book I know of with an accompanying CD. It's neat that kids can listen to poets reading their own poems. Thanks for mentioning Bill Martin Jr.'s poetry book. It is one we have not read.

MaryAnne said...

Anna's quote about looking for the perfect papa is so sweet! I love her dinner art, too, especially if she went on to eat it!

We are thoroughly enjoying warm Arizona weather today! Hopefully Boston warms up in time for our return!

Kylie said...

Wow the growth in her portraits is amazing!

Debbie said...

This is a great post all the way around. We are so looking for nice weather to move on out side. Had a couple of days, but rains return tomorrow. I love that quote about finding a perfect Papa!

I also want to say I agree with the math, we do some very early math mostly to reinforce Selena's counting forward and backward, and number recognition.

learning ALL the time!!/Susan said...

I love Anna's quotes, especially the one about finding a perfect papa.

I wish we had that Little Travelers Japan DVD in our library system!

Our Homeschool Fun said...

I always love reading Anna's quotes.

Natalie, her self portrait progress is amazing! I am impressed!

Hope you enjoy beautiful weather this week too.

Eva said...

those quotes are adorable :)