Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Wrapping Up Kindergarten & Other Tidbits of Life

I have unofficially declared our school year "done." Sort of. We will continue to work through our phonics book as we feel like it and incorporate learning into daily life. Our summers are so short around here, that I really don't want to spend more time than necessary indoors on workbooks and things. It's pretty easy to incorporate learning into everyday life for the early years.

Elianna finished up her Singapore Kindergarten math last week. I really didn't think we'd be finished already, but she really likes math and flew through the last few chapters. I asked her how she liked math this year, and she told me she LOVED it, which means we will definitely be sticking with Singapore for next year. I am also extremely happy with it, which is a big bonus.

We are still slowly working through our phonics program (Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons). I'm not too concerned about finishing it this summer, though I'm guessing we likely will. I have not decided yet what we are going to do for phonics for Grade 1. I am leaning toward a year of just reading (making a list of the new words from each book on a white board, then reading the books.) I downloaded The Reading Lesson awhile ago (for free on a special offer), which is one of Heart of Dakota's recommended phonics programs, so I will likely use that for a little extra help. I think this method (reading "real" books) will suit her personality and help her discover a love for reading. I am thinking about maybe ordering something like the Pathway Readers or checking out some of the Heart of Dakota recommended books for emerging readers to work through.

I have been making an effort to get my health back on track. This past month, I started exercising again and trying to eat better (using the free Lose It app for tracking food). I finally saw some results this month, so that is encouraging me to keep on track. More importantly, though, I have rediscovered what a stress-reliever exercise is for me. It really does help me clear my head and improve my mental health. For some reason, I still struggle to get started with it (get into my workout clothes and put the dvd in or get on the treadmill or whatever) even though I love it once I'm into it. Over the weekend, I fell off the wagon a bit and ate pretty much whatever unhealthy thing I could cram in my mouth, but I am getting back on track now (umm...starting tomorrow! Ha!). I hope to start running again soon, but my knees hate me, unfortunately. I'm pretty disappointed with my knees these days. I was really enjoying my 30 minute jogs/walks on the treadmill, listening to music, going through the couch to 5K program. I found it very therapeutic, actually....it was wonderful "me time", if you will. I tried running yesterday after taking the past week off because I actually miss it, but I knew immediately that it was a very bad idea. Instead, I'm going to have to use some exercise dvd's and modify some of the exercises to be lower impact on my knees (jumping is out, for example). Right now, my two favourites are Pump, Jump, and Jab (by The Firm) and No More Trouble Zones (Jillian Michael's). Since running is out for now, I plan to focus more on strength/core training instead.

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