Weekly Update – 2nd April 2011

Usually I write my weekly updates just for our family, and keep them with all the documentation I usually stow away for our monitoring visits. Sometimes we will reread them just for our own memory lane kind of activity, thus giving us an insight into how far we have come and what we have covered. However we have decided to share these – as often as we can – hopefully weekly with anyone who cares to read them.

This week has seen us extremely busy with our reading. Nik has enjoyed the progressive phonics books along with our nightly reading as we read together from the book Disneys Bedtime Stories. This book has fast become a nighttime favourite. Phinee has also enjoyed a good week of reading. It is always hard to try and keep up with not only the names, but number of books she has read in any one particular week. This week she has finished reading The complete collection of the Brothers Grimm’s Fairytales and The Roman Mysteries book 1 -The Thieves of Ostia, however I know that she has read a number of books that I have not written down, which is something I should have done. Note to self for next week – write the names of the books down for future reference!

Finally we finished reading our family read aloud book Elizabeth by Katheryn Lasky. This was a very good read and left us wanting to read more. The discussions that occurred through the reading of this book were also very interesting. We discussed the fact that Elizabeth only had one stable person in her young life, which was that of her nanny. The fact that she was never meant to be a queen and what that meant for her in life, as well as how it affected the way her father approached her and her upbringing. We also discussed her relationship with her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots, and how the beheading of her Mother, Anne Boleyn, affected her throughout life, even though she was very young at the time her mother was beheaded Elizabeth was greatly affected by her mothers passing.

Phinee can name the order of Henry VIII’s wives, she also can explain the differences between his three children, who are all half siblings, and who their mother’s where. She has learnt the order of the demise of Henry VIII’s wives also….

Divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived!

We are now looking for our next book to read together. Not sure which book that might be…. but we will choose from the following books. I have a sneaking suspicion that as we are studying the Kings and Queens of England and Scotland in depth the winner will be ‘Henry VIII  Wives‘, but you never know!


Other things we have been up to this week include a lot of cooking. The girls enjoy this kind of activity very much. We have tried a few new recipes as well as some tried and true old favourites. They included choc chip cookies, scouse, rum balls, bean and tomato soup and kotletti. I had taken some photos of the girls cooking, but the memory card in my camera decided to become faulty, so I have lost them. Thankfully I have managed to order a new card and hopefully it will arrive on our doorstep on Monday, so we don’t miss out on photo opportunities too much in the near future.

This past week has also seen Phinee get back into the swing of Netball, which started a few weeks ago. She is playing well and keeping on top of the other players she comes up against. So far they have played four games and won two out of four. Nik on the other hand has started dancing up again. She first started dancing a few years ago, but with us moving and different things happening in our lives, it just never stuck. Anyway, Nik has now started her dancing again, which she is very excited about. So we went and purchased her some new pink leather dancing shoes and also some tan Bloch tap shoes. She has her own black leotard and top. The dance schools colours are deep purple and black, so I am hoping to eventually find her a purple top or leotard to mix and match her black dancing clothes.

We have started reading and looking at Aesop’s fables. This came about while reading ‘Elizabeth’ as it talks about her reading Aesop’s Fables and actually translating them from Latin into English. We however have just started reading them and trying to take a deeper understanding of certain one’s. I purchased the following book – Literature Pockets, Aesop’s Fables and we have been using part of it along with our own study pages to explore Aesop’s fables and all they have to offer. The girls are enjoying this, especially Nik.

Nik has been working hard in her Spelling Rules A and Comprehension Checkpoints workbooks. The more she uses them the more she enjoys them and feels a sense of achievement. Nik is also using the Targeting Handwriting Book 1. We have found these textbooks to be great for our homeschooling needs. Nik loves the fact she has her own books, that are similar to Phinee’s and that she can do the ‘same’ book at the same time as her bigger sister. Phinee is however using the Spelling Rules D book as well as Targeting Handwriting 5 and Comprehension Checkpoints 5. Other books Phinee utilises are Mighty Mentals and Signpost Math 5.

Here is what some of these books look like –

Targeting Handwriting: Year 1 Student Book
Mighty Mentals: Bk. C
New Signpost Maths for Victoria: Student Book 5 (Signpost Maths)
Targeting Handwriting: Year 5
Spelling Rules!: Makes Spelling Stick: Bk. A: Student (Spelling Rules! S.)
Spelling Rules!: Bk. D: Student (Spelling Rules! S.)

I am sure there is a million more wonderful things we have been up to this week, but for now I shall wind up the weekly wrap up and if anything comes to mind I shall put it in a separate post!

Enjoy your upcoming week, as we definitely will!