Thursday, 17 March 2011

Consonant Blends and Part-Whole Circles

They say time flies when you're having fun.  This evening, we whizzed through almost two hours of homeschooling at the kitchen's breakfast counter and it really didn't seem like we were sitting there that long!

It was our first day attempting proper instruction in consonant blends and we covered one Letterland lesson's worth of blends this evening - "bl", "gl", "sl", "fl", "cl" and "pl".   We worked through the word suggestions in the Teacher's Guide and listened to our Blends and Digraphs CD.  Unfortunately, the songs for these blends aren't as memorable as the clever stories Letterland uses for "ch", "sh" and "th".  But thankfully, Emily still appears to have grasped the sounds involved and she was able to identify the blends when we tried out one of the exercises in the guide. 

Emily with her Golden Girl and Lucy Lamplight cards

A worksheet I made to test if Emily understood the blends covered and to see if she could read some of these words.  She did really well with it and only got confused with "plane" and "plate" (needing me to point out that one word had a "nnnn" sound, while the other one had a "ttttt" ending).
For Mathematics, I introduced a new concept - the part-whole circle set - to Emily this evening.  The basic idea is that you have the "whole" in a large circle and this value can be "partitioned" into two smaller component numbers, as written in two smaller circles below the large circle.

Emily really enjoyed doing the worksheets.  Each worksheet consisted of six sets of blank part-whole circles.  Emily was able to choose the numbers to place in each "whole" circle and the numbers to place in each "part" circle as long as these were Mathematically-correct. 

We finished one worksheet, involving six circles, and I was just about ready to call it a night, but Emily insisted on doing a second worksheet and finished it without fuss!  I was glad that she attempted the second worksheet because it gave her an opportunity to realise that if she wrote "0" in the whole circle, she had to fill in "0"s in both part circles. 

Besides teaching her the concept of how a certain value (like "5") is the sum of two smaller values (like "2" and "3", or "1" and "4"), the worksheets gave her some practice in writing numbers.  On this front, she's definitely improved since we started on RSM though further practice is definitely needed.

Emily's Part-Whole Circles #1

Emily's Part-Whole Circles #2

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