Saturday, October 31, 2009

Lots to Do

This week was a busy week. The older girls had art class on Monday, Tuesday was our field trip and Wednesday and Thursday were full days of school. I thought I'd share some of what we were doing yesterday...

For Science last week we were discussing exactly how a tree moves water from the roots to leaves. We learned that there are "tubes" inside the trunk and branches called phylem. We did an experiment with some celery stalks to see how important the phylem really is. I pulled the phylem out of one of our stalks of celery (not an easy task) and leaving the other stalk alone. We placed each stalk into a glass of water (I added some food coloring just for fun to see if it would show the food coloring traveling up the stalk) and we left them on the window sill for a few days. We pulled them down yesterday to take a look at them and discovered that yes, phylem is very important. The stalk that we left alone not only sucked all the water up and the leaves were still soft, but they changed color due to the food coloring, this showed the girls that the water was moved all the way through to the very tip of the leaves. The stalk that had been altered had dry leaves and did not drink all the water because the phylem had been removed and it was unable to carry the water through the stalk. Very cool.

We started studying Brazil this week (the rain forest for science) and here Sissy is reading a story to the younger girls. She loved "being the teacher" and being able to read aloud to them.
Peanut began doing problems in her math about dividing items into equal groups, but how do we handle it if the item being divided isn't even? The story was about candy bars being divided among 2 people. I told her to go to the board and give it her best shot. When I looked up I saw that she had not only drawn candy bars, but had a very specific idea of what the "people" would look like. I also have to let you know that she is doing much better with her math facts. She is currently memorizing her 5's but is doing much better!
I continue to be shocked at how well Sweet Baby is grasping reading. She is beginning to sound out simple words and put all the sounds together into words she knows. While I was working with Sissy she wanted to look at some of "her books". She was not content with just looking she wanted to read it. I loved seeing Peanut help her through. This is a joyful thing to see the girls working with one another to achieve a goal, being encouragers to each other and delighting with each other when one of them achieves their goal.
Finally, the girls got to play the Geography Game that comes with their My Father's World Curriculum. They are really enjoying it and it is AMAZING to see how many countries they already can locate when just 2 months ago they knew less than 3 of them!

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