Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Any reason for not blogging lately?

The answer? No. We're simply getting on with life here and I'm just not finding myself gravitate to the computer lately. I'm not like many who have discovered Facebook and prefer to use that. I did sign up but I haven't used it. I simply haven't felt the urgency/need/excitement that many have said they love about it. Nope, I'm happy Skyping when I'm online to catch up with friends and family.... so no, I've not neglected the blog because of Facebook.

A friend of mine asked how life was, followed up with, "or should I just read your blog?" I had to say that actually there'd be no point reading the blog because I haven't updated it for a few weeks. The only thing I have tried to do when I sit at the computer is to update the children's school calendar, but even that hasn't been updated daily like it should be!!!

Today marks the first day of spring, so I have decided this morning to brush off the cobwebs and attempt a posting about the children's schooling over the last few weeks. I will keep it short so that I don't get disgruntled that I haven't finished a posting!!!

As readers know, Math-U-See is our staple diet. If nothing else, the children will always do math at some stage of the day. As I type this, tama 1 is about to start Lesson 13. He's not requiring my assistance which indicates he's understanding it/finding it easy. I won't be skipping lessons though because (1) they aide as revision, (2) I find it rewarding for myself and for the children to let them complete what they find easy to build confidence; and (3) The main part of lessons for tama 1 are the sentence questions. They can throw the kids sometimes by misinterpreting them, so it's important to continually practice sentence questions. Quite often I'm left having to read and re-read the questions before knowing the answer myself!!!

Tamāhine 1 will do the test page of Lesson 20 today. We have slowed down in our workbook with her because although she's answering the equations correctly, she does seem to be finding them hard to get through (ie just a slow-going process as oppossed to non-understanding). The plan today is for her to do the entire Lesson 21, so we'll see how that goes.

Update ...

Typically I found I didn't sit on the computer for too long this morning, so now we've pretty much reached the evening and school has definitely ended for the day.

Math lessons went according to what I mentioned above and then the children worked on their typing skills. They are confidently applying themselves to using the keys correctly and I'm pleased. Of the skills I have learned in life, typing has certainly assisted me throughout my adult life, and I'd like to pass that on to the children.

We had a break after typing lessons and then had a short science lesson. Being the first day of spring the children had been talking about plants, so we spent [about] half an hour talking about seeds and plants. Here's a brief understanding of what we discussed:

"Plants make nectar for insects and then use flowers to show them where it is. An anther is part of the flower. The insects bring pollen from one flower to the another. The bees take the pollen to the top of the female part of a flower. Pollen grows a tube down into the flower. The pollen that the bees brought grows tubes down to the eggs and together they make seeds. Soil, water, light and time help make plants grow..."

Okay, so that's the simple version and I probably could've used Wikipedia's intellectual definition of say, a stamen:
The stamen (plural stamina or stamens, from Latin stamen meaning "thread of the warp") is the male organ of a flower. Each stamen generally has a stalk called the filament (from Latin filum, meaning "thread"), and, on top of the filament, an anther (from Ancient Greek anthera, feminine of antheros "flowery," from anthos "flower"), and pollen sacs, called microsporangia. The development of the microsporangia and the contained haploid gametophytes, (called pollen-grains) is closely comparable with that of the microsporangia in gymnosperms or heterosporous ferns. The pollen is set free by the opening (dehiscence) of the anther, generally by means of longitudinal slits, but sometimes by pores, as in the heath (Ericaceae), or by valves, as in the barberry family (Berberidaceae). It is then dropped, or carried by some external agent — wind, water or some member of the animal kingdom — onto the receptive surface of the carpel of the same or another flower, which is thus pollinated.
That's simply too detailed for me and [I think] beyond their years of understanding just yet!!! Sometimes simplicity is the best means of understanding, nē rā?

Well, that's pretty much how our day went today. I'll try to record a little something of tomorrow's events ... and try to include a photo or two.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

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