The girls are 7 years old now. They have grown so very much since the last time I posted a page. Lily has mastered speech as far as motor planning is concerned. She very well knows how to use her words to get her point across. We are working on articulation right now as she has a few areas she needs practice with when it comes to sound combinations. Rosetta Stone online has been a great program to practice with articulation and the girls enjoy using it. Another area Lily has differences in is handwriting. Both Maggie and Lily use the Handwriting without Tears program for handwriting skills. But Lily has had a difficult time with strength in her wrists and ‘alligator grip’ when it comes to holding the writing tool properly. She now has the grip down and adjusts it frequently. We recently purchased a weighted pencil and it has helped with her pressure and ability to bear down on the point to make a substantial mark you can easy easily. The weight has also given her more control and she is able to write her letters smaller. .
Maggie is having some differences with handwriting as well but more on the level of keeping letters to scale and on the line. Sometimes she forgets. I found some box paper that has helped her keep her sentences in a straight line and she is now writing with more precision when it comes to scaling her words.
Lily has been able to read well at a very early age. This is why the Dubard Method had a great deal to do with why her speech is so wonderful now. The same method used to teach Maggie worked wonders on her ability to identify same spelling sounds and learn the difference automatically. The same program has blossomed her into a lovely little reader. This coupled with many of the older programs and a few utilized in school systems has made a great combination. The old hooked on phonics series no longer in print has made the children enjoy reading. Lexia home software for school teaches reading in a systematic way that allows the child to learn at their full potential in the order easiest to learn language. Add old books like Dick and Jane and it gets better. The girls have loved learning how to read and I’ve enjoyed watching them surprise themselves.
Math is a subject that the girls excel in. Because we have so many visual Montessori based materials they have many ways to explore different math concepts sparking their interest when they do traditional math worksheets as they have a tool to use to solve their math problems.
Science is something we have discussing since very early on beginning with life cycles of creatures and working our way into the animal kingdom. We’ve studied everything from where butterflies come from to the shapes of the leaves on the trees in our backyard. The girls have a healthy interest in nature and an understanding of the basic elements of life.
Geography and Social Studies we learn about as questions pose interest and they always do when they girls flip through the encylopedias or look at a map or globe of the world. We have studied landforms and it gains their interest that they all fit together like a puzzle piece. The idea that continents drifted from one another is intriguing and magical to them. The girls are getting a good understand of the world around them, how it works and ways to make it better.
Practical life is just as important as everything I’ve listed above such is Art and Music. The girls spend their time on daily activities that will do them good for indiependce when they grow older. It is important to learn everything from how to wash clothes to counting money so they can learn independence at an early age.
Sensorial activities are always within reach and are used on a daily basis to make a point in reference to language and especially math concepts.
7 years old and they have grown where our immediate focus right now is writing, reading and math.