Monday, December 4, 2006

An Atypical Today

Today we had a hard time getting going.
First, it was very cold out this morning and I didn't crawl out from under the covers until 6:30.
I had to put on my long-johns, too!
Then, as I was getting ready to take the dogs for their walk (they are my personal trainers), my husband tripped a circuit breaker when he tried to use the micro-wave and we had to go outside and reset the breaker.

N. was also moving slowly today. It took him 45 minutes to eat breakfast, clean his place and get dressed. So I said: Time to study Torah! (He is preparing his Bar Mitzvah portion).
N.: "Aren't we going to read?"
Me: "I thought since we are running late..."
N.: "I can't study Torah until we read. Anyway, I want to snuggle on the couch in my blanket."

So we read. That is I read aloud while N. snuggled in his blanket. We are reading James Michner's The Source which goes along with our history concentration on ancient history.
(The book is actually about a fictional town in the Galilee that is being excavated by archaeologists. It spans time from about 10,000 years b.p. to 1964 C.E. We are planning to read just the ancient history part and return next year for the Medieval part).
Today we read the beginning of a chapter called "The Voice of Gomer." We then spent a few minutes predicting what Gomer's role is going to be in the story, which is set just prior to the Babylonian Galut. N. really likes the book and asks many questions about it. Sometimes he follows along in another copy. (The public library is a great resource!).

But then came logic and math. We are up to Mindbenders A3, and he did alright with the puzzle, but he was a little slow. However, math was the problem. N. never did learn his multiplication tables in 3rd grade. And we are working on 3 step multiplication and on replacing an unknown multiplier--a kind of elementary level algebra. Most of the time he is pretty good sport about using a multiplication chart, but today he was pulling his hair, pounding his forehead and showing me the angry face when we were checking his work. It took all the way until lunchtime to finish the damned math! However, I kept calm --if you know me, you know what a great feat that was! I don't know what to do about the resistance I was working with in math, so I just kept going as if it was not happening. We'll see if extinction of behavior by ignoring it actually works.

Now N. is doing independent reading, so we are back on track, but I just skipped history today.
Some days you just have to punt! He is reading Theras and his Town which is about a young Athenian boy who is kidnapped to Sparta. I guess that gives some history. I am probably going to have to revise my tentative plan and skip some of the ancient history in the book we are using.

For recess, he was practicing his casting (he is a fly fisherman) and it looked good. He came back in a better mood.

Happy Monday!

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