Monday, March 26, 2012

Tapestry of Grace Part Four: Grammar Students

These days, you just say the word, "Grammar Student" and I start grinning.  This is why. . . . . . .


The last of the bunch.  The tagalong.  4th daughter in a family of 5 children.  The family mascot.  Our unique, wonderful, funny, interesting. . . . . 

Oh.  Wait.  Y'all were wanting me to talk about TOG.  Sorry. . . . 

But what I just wrote actually IS pertinent.  See, right now, my grammar girl's position in the family has everything to do with her experience in Tapestry.  When you do a week-plan with a grammar student who is the last in a large family, it will look different than a week-plan with a grammar student who is your oldest.  And that's ok!  Remember - don't compare your family to mine.  I just want to offer you a glimpse into what a grammar student's week can look like.  As they say, "Your Mileage Might Vary".

Let's take this in two parts, shall we?

Part One -  What I "Used" to do with Grammar Students, and What I "Wish" I had time to do Right Now:

Day One:  Have a set-up meeting to look at the goals and books for the week.
Day Two:  Start Reading - together - History books.  Go over vocabulary words, and make a note of what words the student has never heard.  Assign vocabulary words for handwriting practice.  (I never have had them write out definitions.  Probably my bad.)
Day Three:  Continue reading history books, mostly the "Core" selections.  Day Three is usually Map Day, so we'll mark maps and talk about what has happened so far in history - informally, not using the Socratic method ;)  
Day Three is also the day I'd choose to read the Literature selection to a younger, Lower Grammar student who is not reading confidently.  (Although, it could be any day of the week, as it usually takes only one reading session)
Day Four:  Finish reading History books; add in an In-Depth selection if desired.  Start hands-on project if it will be an involved project.
Day Five:  Hands-on day!  Choose one or two projects, complete during History time.  Students also complete their Literature "Activity Page" (affectionately known as their "SAP") this day.  
A shot of a Lower Grammar SAP.  Focus:  summarizing information in her stories.

Part Two -  This Year's Reality:

Day One:  Have a set-up meeting to look at topic & books for the week.  Darling Grammar Girl picks out a hands-on activity from the list on the Student Pages, then sighs, "But we probably won't get to it, right Mom?"
Day Two:  Read History books together.  Snuggled.  On my favorite chair.  Under a blanket. 
Day Three:  Read more history books together.  Snuggled.  On my favorite chair.  Under a blanket.  Usually, we'll work on her Lapbook together, completing 1 or 2 books.
Day Four:  Supposed to be hands-on day.  But - like she said - we usually don't get to it.  I really want to improve this next year!!!
Day Five:  This is discussion day for her older siblings.  We try to finish our week's lapbooks.  She usually wanders in to our discussions (it's the hot cocoa, I swear!) and makes some utterly funny, insightful, and cute comment.  Love that.

So.  There you have it.  A not-so-glamorous look at my Grammar week!  But before I go, let me just leave you with two things:

Lapbooks.  I love 'em.  I used to love creating them, designing them - but now, I love even more the Lapbook Kits!!!  Here's a shot of one of them in action:

 She had a lapbook about MLK Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.  She was supposed to copy the phrases and glue them down, but I actually scrambled them for her and had her rearrange them in the correct order.  Worked better for us that way.

I'll have to add a picture of the finished product, but we really do enjoy these.  They're nice for showing grandparents, too!  (I should probably explain these more, but my post is already getting long!)

Tapestry Teacher Training Videos.  You know on Facebook, how you have those times when you wish there was a "Super Like" button?  That's how I feel about these videos.  I mean, they're amazing.  Encouraging, informative. . . . you really, REALLY need to watch these.  And look!  Yay, me - I figured out how to embed a couple!!!!

Tapestry of Grace | Grammar Level Overview from Tapestry of Grace on Vimeo.

 You think that one is good?  Listen to me people. Watch this next one.  Right. Now.  Then get your friends, and make them watch it.  Best. Homeschooling. Encouragement. Ever.

You won't regret it.  I promise.

Tapestry of Grace | Spiritual Encouragment for Homeschooling from Tapestry of Grace on Vimeo.

I just listened to it again.  It's that good.  Don't you think???

Thanks for listening.  Next in the series:  How I Organize Tapestry.  Sick of me yet??? :)



Mynyel said...

You posts are sooooo encouraging! Do you use the Writing Aids? I am trying to get a feel for it for those that use them.

Mynyel said...

I don't know if this is going to post twice or not :) Do you use the Writing Aids part of TOG? How is it? I need something that hold my hand for Writing.