With Clara and Sophie at home for school this year, the dynamic of our home has once again changed. Inge is getting used to being home without the other littles to play with. She's been very good most days. But there have been times she's bored, and needs a little direction in occupying herself.
While digging out homeschool stuff for Clara and Sophie, I found some hanging files that I was organized enough at one point (must have been in a previous life), to assemble. They are mostly photocopied worksheets and pages ripped out of various activity books. And they are all filed by subject and approximate ability level. Inge's been keeping busy with the pre-school and kindergarten ones, learning her beginning consonant sounds, writing and working with letters and numbers.
Donna, Stella, and John have been sick this week, and those files have come in handy to occupy them, too. During their recovery hours they've had fun "doing school" with Clara and Sophie.
This morning, John worked in a geography book. He's very interested in the German language and Germany, since his social studies teacher, Mr. F., teaches the kids a little bit of German throughout the year. He asked first to do a Germany map. But since the book is organzied by geographic region, rather than country, John chose to study Europe. He filled in the names of the Countries of Europe on the blank outline map. Then he went onto the computer and did some interactive practice with those same countries. He worked with one of my favorite learning game websites, Sheppard Software.
He also found some worksheets on our national symbols, so he worked through those, and then did some reading on the internet, on Ben's Guide to U. S. Government, a child friendly site filled with information on our country, much of it at two learning levels. I asked John to read the sections on our National Buildings and Symbols. He also read about Mt. Rushmore, since we were recently there; and the USMC Memorial, since his brother is now a Marine. Then he took an online quiz on the national symbols at the Texas Law Related Education website. He said it was really easy, but when I asked more specifics, he admitted it probably wouldn't have been easy had he not read about the symbols ahead of time.
Inge just brought a worksheet to me: What do I have to do here?
theMom: In the lines on the top part, you practice making 8s. On the bottom, you draw eight cookies for Cookie Monster.
Inge, with her high, squeaky amazed voice said: But I already know how to make 8s.
What a blessing it is to have my kids home! And what a blessing to have such wonderful and caring teachers to which to send them since I can't do it all.