Our October has been so busy and filled with homeschooling activities despite the sadness and boredom that hit us every now and down because of being cooped up at home a lot.
For Science, majority of our lesson were centered on preservation of flora and fauna as well as the importance of tress and forests on humankind. We watched a lot of documentaries, wrote essays, answered worksheets, and did art related to these topics. Nereus prepared a PowerPoint presentation entitled “Can We Live Without Trees” as referenced from a book of the same title by May Tobias-Papa. He also wrote a reaction paper on the video documentary by NatGeo he watched that is related to the topic at Youtube, entitled “The Lost Forest”.
We have also discussed food chain, food web and traits that are hereditary. As final performance task for this month, he and his dad assembled a model of the earth that came with his brand new book, “Awesome Planet Earth”. He also completed the observation of growth lettuce that we are growing hydroponically with grow light.
Ian studied about insects, in particular, the moth and butterfly by plotting the difference and similarities in a Venn diagram. He also did an illustration of the life cycle of a plant as well as the different types of plants according to size and shape: shrub, tree, and vines. He also finished assembly of the moon that came with his book about space with the help of his dad.
For Science and Health, we made aroma stones made up of flour, Epsom salt, water, food color, and essential oils. We are planning to use them as essential oil diffuser on our work table that they can smell and fiddle with while they study.
Nereus has started studying about equations. He’s a little intimidated by it at first but our reference book, Math Mammoth, has been helpful in breaking down the topic to simple steps. We’ve done worksheets on them and thankfully, he was able to finish most with passing grades.
Ian continued to do sums and differences using different techniques. He’s been brilliant! I’m just lucky that he loves Math naturally so I didn’t have to push him to study. He enjoyed doing his worksheets. Once in a while, we go to Youtube for lessons, the links were recommended by our homeschool provider. We’ve also used the Epic app for some of our lessons for Math.
Lately I have been training my son Nereus to write essays and longer paragraphs that summarize books he’s read. I’ve assigned scenarios as funny as aliens coming to Earth and asking him to tell them stories from this planet. I’ve seen him write stories and comics and they’re actually good. I know it’s something that I can help him improve. I’m confident that someday he’ll even be better at telling stories than me. We use “The Good and The Beautiful” books for lessons and different story books for reading. We also have book that’s specific for Phonics, as well as test books we purchased from The Big Bad Wolf for reading comprehension worksheets.
Some of the books he’s read for book studies include, The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry; How To Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell; and The Call of the Wild by Jack London. We also did art interpretations for two of these books which I will write about in a bit.
Ian also use The Good and The Beautiful textbooks. So far we’ve studied long and short vowels; the story of Daniels; digraph worksheets for “sh” sound; different homophones; and “ear” sounds and words. For book studies, he read and made an art interpretation of “The Little House” by Virginia Lee Burton; “The Very Hungry Caterpilla” by Eric Carle and “Five Little Sharks Swimming in the Sea” by Steve Metzger.
For Filipino, we prefer reading Filipino story books from local publishers and our Wikahon Boxes. Although Ian is also taking lessons through his older brother’s old book, I find that storytelling in Filipino work for us better. Some of the stories we’ve read include “Ang Kwento ng Buto” and “Si Dino Pundido” by Jomike Tejido. For this month, Ian also learned about “Kayarian ng mga Salita” and “Pangungusap na Pautos at Pasalaysay” and we assessed his learning the the book’s exercises.
Nereus has done plenty of Wikahon readings and exercises because we want to enrich his vocabulary as well as learn a bit about cultural arts and traditions that kids his age nowadays no long experience a lot. For these reasons, I do recommend Wikahon boxes and I’m just glad we got the two boxes during the sale last year. We then took up lessons sent by our homeschool provider on Pangngalan and Panghalip and answered a few worksheets, more fore review only.
HELE for Nereus
Since pandemic began, we have been doing a bit of indoor gardening for our vegetable supply via Kratky method. I also demonstrated and had involved my kids in light household chores. The most challenging part of homeschooling for us this year is the limitations brought on by the pandemic. Our original plan was to enroll our kids to different classes with hands-on training on baking, cooking, and art. But these had to be put on-hold due to quarantine restrictions. So we just focused our efforts in growing our vegetables and ornamental plants as part our eldest son’s HELE project. I’m happy to say we’ve harvested some lettuce, pechay, tomatoes, okra, and bell pepper leaves from our micro garden. We’ve also ventured now in assembling terrariums too!
Art and Music
Nereus and Ian have started practicing Christmas pieces with their long-time piano teacher, Cel Franco. Honestly, I missed having class inside Teacher Cel’s studio. It has been challenging to do piano lessons digitally for both the students and the teacher, more so when our connection in the country is not reliable and easily overwhelmed with volume of online users. Thankfully, despite everything, my kids are still learning new pieces and had even finished their first digital recital last month. We just hope that the pandemic is over soon so we could go back to playing the piano like in the old days.
Below are just some of the plants we’re currently taking care in our micro garden.