Saturday, October 31, 2015

# The Week In Review: October 31, 2015

## Highlights of the Week

I cannot believe that the busy month of October is behind us. We had Smarty’s birthday party at a local Pump-It-Up last weekend. She had a blast with her 10 friends. It’s probably the last big party we do for her, and we are glad that she enjoyed it. She was so busy the rest of the week that not even all presents are opened yet. It cracked me up how different her favorites were – a 3D drawing system (a gizmo, in my opinion) and cute beanie animals that joined a zoo of stuffies in her bed. On Sunday, we dropped her off with friends and went to see The Magic Flute in San Francisco. It was a birthday present from me to my husband. His birthday was in July, and he was eagerly looking forward to the day of the show. We should have splurged on Smarty’s ticket too – the opera was in English and a lot of dialog was added to make it more… accessible. We really enjoyed it.

## School

I met with our teacher to discuss what I consider a setback on meaningful math differentiation. In the beginning of the year, gifted students were placed in a separate group and were given a differentiated work. Then, as a new unit started, they were pulled back into regular work. I don’t necessarily think it’s wrong for them to actually learn (or refresh) a topic of mean, median, average, etc., but I know for a fact that my daughter does not really need 3 weeks of worksheets to master it. The teacher was a bit defensive at first, but then we had a reasonably constructive discussion. We’ll see how things unfold once they move to the next unit on probability next week. In addition, GATE program finally starts next week, and this year students will have one hour a week of math pullout to solve math Olympiad problems. I volunteered to help in this program and very interested to see how it unfolds.
In more positive news, it was also a week of a field trip to an art museum and a Halloween party. Smarty really enjoyed both events.

## After School

Every year I take Smarty to a small parking lot pumpkin patch near where we live. I think she outgrew it already, but she still wanted to go. We picked pumpkins for Halloween, but we still did not have time to carve them. Luckily, Halloween is on Saturday,  so we will do it this morning. Smarty had a bit more homework this week, but she is still able to complete everything within 15 minutes.  She also had the first super long rehearsal for Peter Pan show that ended at 7 pm. Next week they will have these long dress rehearsals every day and performances on Thursday and Friday nights. Smarty still had enough energy left to practice her trumpet on most nights, explore pre-algebra with Life of Fred and, of course, read.

## What My Child Is Reading

This section contains affiliate links, for full disclosure please click here.  We did not make it to the library this week, but Smarty raced through another of her birthday presents – The Sword of Summer, a new book of Rick Riordan. I was a little surprised when she stopped reading it in the middle (because her Kindle ran out of power) and switched to a book that she brought from the school library, The Journal of Curious Letters from 13th Reality series.  However, with her speed of reading, she was able to finish off a pretty thick 13th Reality book in a few hours on Wednesday, then she went back and finished The Sword of Summer. She said that the book was good and now she is anxiously waiting for the next book in The Gods of Asgard series, especially because she is a big fan of Norse myths.

## Favorite Memory of the Week

Goofing around with friends during her birthday party…

## Most Popular Posts This Week

Phyllis said...

Happy Birthday! How old is Smarty now? What is a Pump it Up? I don't think we have those here. What a fun week! Good luck with your relationship with her teacher.

Ticia said...

I didn't like Sword of Summer as much as his other series, it felt way too similar to the Percy Jackson series, just slap different gods in the place of Greek gods. But, it was entertaining.

maryanne @ mama smiles said...

It looks like Smarty enjoyed her birthday!

The Magic Flute is probably the most kid-friendly production out there. Although I have seen a few productions of it over the years that became bizarrely non-kid-friendly...