Monday, June 30, 2008

An Example of Narration

I thought I would post a couple of examples of narration from our language studies this morning. These are from Cameron, age 7, and Sophia, age 5. You can see the difference in maturity, detail memory, and re-telling of things.

This morning I read a short story to the kids entitled "The Little Girl Who Loved to Be Dirty". Narration method requires that the child retell the story to you in their own words. This can be done in nearly all subjects, and it is profitable for developing proper language patterns. Every few weeks, I go back through their recent narrations, and I read their own stories aloud back to them. It's really interesting to see their reaction to hearing their own words and word choices. Sometimes they are really proud of how it sounds, and other times, they understand just by listening that they could have told something better. I never correct them when they're narrating, but do give gentle prompts to keep their flow going at times. I write their words down exactly as they give them to me. If you see capitalization of words, it's because those are the words they emphasized in their storytelling!

So without further ado, here are just a couple of very simple exercises from this morning.

There once was a little girl who HATED to have baths. Whenever her mom told her that she had to take a bath, she WHINED and CRIED!
The little girl went to bed, and had a dream. She was in a pigpen in MUD! She thought it was very good. And when someone called "SUPPER", all she found there was slop. And there was old corncobs, and rotten potatoes and the ends of tomatoes.
The little girl thought it was TERRIBLE then. And the little girl went down the street to her own house. She snuck in the back door, and went upstairs and took a bath and put on purple flowered pajamas. She dug down deep in her clean bed. THE END
By Cameron

Once there was a little who loved to be dirty. And then her mom said, "You have to take a bath!" And the little girl said, "Aw, I don’t WANT to take a bath. I don’t like them! I want to be dirty!!!"
And then the little girl had a dream. And all the sudden her dream came true. She was in a pigpen. And it was with mud and 3 little pigs. And somebody called "SUPPER!" And there was old slop. And the pigs enjoyed the slop. But the little girl thought it was horrible. She cried and went on the road to her natural home.
And she came from the back door, went up stairs and took a bath. And her mom said, "You had quite a dream!"


The thing that interested me the most today out of these, is that nowhere in the story was the little girls house referred to as her "natural" home. But that was Sophie's word of choice! I found that particularly amusing! :)

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


I know, I's a long time in comin'. This is a very quick update as this is vacation week! YEAH! Turns out, we're not going as far or doing as much as we were hoping, but we're still looking forward to a whole week with Daddy home, and a few fun adventures along the way.

We've been taking more breaks from the schoolwork as summer has been approaching and life has turned so incredibly busy. However, we are planning to go ahead and start up again after vacation and I have decided to give the "four weeks on, one week off" schedule a try at least through the summer months.

I have two new resources that I'd like to mention that we're just getting into, and are very excited about. The first one is a book entitled, "How to Study Your Bible for kids" by Kay Arthur and Janna Arndt. This book is probably a bit more suited to children a little bit older....maybe ages 7 and up? This is a six week course on inductive Bible study written in kids' lingo by making them detectives with M&M Detective Agency. They embark on an adventure to learn the mystery of biblical observation, interpretation, and application. We are enjoying taking Bible study to a whole new level, particularly with Cameron and Lauren. On a side note, we've recently started doing sword drills with the kids. To tell you the truth, I had nearly forgotten about these! They were a regular part of my growing up years at HSCA that I really loved. Truthfully, it's not quite the same in a homeschool environment, but our kids are LOVING it anyway! One day the memory of doing sword drills popped in my head, and I suggested we try it. Now I have to turn the kids down or they would want to do them all the time!

Okay, on to our second new "goody". I found a CD entitled, "My Favorite Opera for Children; the world's favorite tenor introduces you to the joy of opera." There is a label in the upper left corner stamped Pavarotti's Opera Made Easy. This has been a truly fun resource, that I have been surprised by! The kids have really gotten into it, even though it's so much foreign language. I read them the basic story line of what's being portrayed by the music, and they enjoy identifying how it's coming across.

So that's my two cents for this week! I think for many schools and probably homeschool families this is the time of year where things begin to die down somewhat. For us it's sort of the opposite. I feel like after vacation we're going to be a bit more revved up and ready to learn more. And it's a good thing: if you have followed this blog from it's inception then you may remember that the first portion of this school year was rather rocky to say the least. We changed horses midstream, so I feel it's very important that we continue the education process through the summer.

Blessings to you and yours!