Friday, July 11, 2008

C's spelling

C did a huge number of pages of a dry-erase activity book (My Big Activity Work Book) this morning, enough to earn $4.10. Together with yesterday's earnings, that was enough for her to buy the $7 Cars Color Wonder book from my store. The dry-erase book had a variety of different activities: letter writing, word tracing, number writing, writing in missing letters, counting, adding up to ten, subtracting from up to ten, doubling, halving, crosswords, etc. I gave 20 or 25 cents per page, depending on difficulty and neatness.There were also some less academic activities in the book that I did not give credit for.

The math was toward the low end of her range (five butterflies minus three butterflies), but I welcome opportunities for C to practice her math facts. There was one page where the parent is supposed to write problems for the child, but instead C wrote problems for herself. That was not my initial plan, but I'm glad she did, since it gave me a good idea of her comfort zone. She wrote a lot of single digit addition and subtraction problems, as well as 20+20, 100+100, and 100-10. (I don't think C knows about carrying, but she can do "friendly" double-digit addition and subtraction in her head, for instance calculating that 43 is half of 86. Yesterday, she was counting by 20s all the way past 200. Her number sense seems to be good.)

I was also surprised during her work on the crosswords by how good her spelling is. She was writing in words like butterfly, spider, snail, bucket, starfish, shell, monkey, lion, panda, tiger, zebra, and elephant, although I think she hesitated over "beetle." I suspect that my spelling wasn't anywhere that good until at least second grade, and I think that the school's spelling-oriented phonics program is probably responsible.

She worked through her Cars prize very quickly, as expected. I'm very happy that I am not having to provide C with all the expensive little activity books that she would like, but that she has to spend time laboriously earning the ones she gets. The summer goes by a lot more happily and affordably this way.

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