Friday, October 30, 2009

30 & 31 Oct 2009

For review & info on most of the books I mentioned here, please goes to (updated 30 Oct 2009) &

We finished week 32 yesterday! :)

I did not use the verse for week 32 because Den is still not too familiar with week 31 verse. So we continue to practice week 31 verse.

We started a new Science book in week 32 - Why Do Tigers Have Stripes? (under Science 2). It is an interesting book about how animal camouflage. We read 4 pages today that talk about how animals use their body color and pattern to hide from their enemies and prays. We will continue this book for the next few weeks.

I also taught her about adding large number without carrying, for example 22+54. It is a logical steps after our last lesson 2 weeks ago about learning the tens and ones (pls read detail here). She was a bit confused at the beginning, then I realized I need to give her some review on the tens and ones (since it was taught 2 weeks ago and even though she insisted she still remember the lesson). After that, she did a few exercises without problem.

Today she did another 5 questions on this. She only spend about 10 min on it, much faster than yesterday. I intend to continue to let her do exercises everyday until she can master it before I will teach her subtracting large number.

Last night we went to MPH and I found a Kumon's Word Problem math workbook for grade 1. I choose a few questions from different sections and tested her. I was pleasantly surprised that she had no problem with all the questions I asked her. From the way she came out with the answers, I can tell that she really understand the concept of adding, subtracting and number relationship.

Today, I need to prepared tomorrow Sunday School lesson so just let her did her math and writing exercises and asked ST to read 2 Bible stories with her. The rest of the time, she spent it playing card games, puzzles and swimming with ST.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

28 Oct 2009

For review & info on most of the books I mentioned here, please goes to (updated 28 Oct 2009) &

For the past one week and this week, we had been very hardworking. Even though Den was sick on Mon and I was sick today, we still continue our lessons. Why? Haha! because we got our new Sonlight K program!! After I wrote my last blog, I suddenly realized I only have 8 weeks of Sonlight PreK lessons left. We can finish 1 week of lesson in about 1-2 days. So we were almost out of lesson to use! So I ordered the K program and it reached us last Thurs (19 Oct) and we had been sooooooo excited about it. That motivated us to finish off the remaining lessons in order to start the K program!

Ordering Sonlight can be very easy and can be very complicated. The easy one is to go to their website and just order a newcomer set according to your kids age group. That will come with everything but cost a big bomb!

The complicated one is to order acc to your own need. In the process of doing that, you might missed something. Last year, I missed a book to go with the Art book. This year, I missed the Bible and the CD for verse!! Order again is out of question because of the shipping cost, so I need to be inventive! Last year, I found a similar book from Popular plus another 2 from garage sales to compensate for the one I missed. This year, I searched tru my bookcase and found a children Bible that come with narration & song CD, so that's the one I'm going to use! Hopefully it will work. If it doesn't, I'm sure I can think of something else.

We had finished week 29, 30 and 31. The verse for week 30 from Exodus 20:7 :
"Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God."

She learned a new word - Misuse and a new concept - What is misuse the name of God.

Verse for week 31 is from Matthew 6:20:
"Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy."

New concept - storing treasure in heaven! In today reading from The Lion Storyteller Bedtime Book (under Read aloud 2), we read about how a farmer burned all his crops in order to draw all the people from the village to his field and thus saved them from the tsunami. I used the story to explain to Den, that's storing treasure in heaven.

We have finally finished the two big story collections we started last year - The Lion Storyteller Bedtime Book and A Family Treasury of Little Golden Books (under Read Aloud).

We also finished two very interesting book about Science. We love Sonlight Pre K Science books and cant wait to see what is in store for us in the K program.

1. What's Smaller Than a Pygmy Shrew (under Science 2) by Robert E Wells, the author of Is a blue Whale the Biggest Thing There is? (under Science). This time round we learn about protozoa, atom, electron, neutron, quark! Not sure how much Den understand since Im still MCC my self. However, she enjoyed reading it and requested me to read it again and again and at least she understood, things are not just what meet the eyes. They are make up by smaller parts. She is also very much looking forward to have her own microscope.

2. How To Dig A Hole To The Other Side Of The World (under Science 2) is another wonderful book to read. It is about Geology!! I have never ever find geology interesting until I read this book. Read more about this two book in my book review blog at

Besides all the reading from Sonlight, I also started Den on Sonlight K Language Art. I brought that with the Pre K program but ended up did not use it because I find Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (Under Language) is much more effective. So I lend it to my friend MA and intend to use it as a review after I finished teaching Den with the 100 easy lessons.

Well, we still have not finished the 100 not so easy lessons!! But I think she is able to read all the books from Fun Tales (part of the K LA program) and it will help build her confident in reading. So I decided to start her on that and intend to finish the 36 weeks program in 2 months. So far we can finished 1 week program in 1 setting. I was hoping to resell the whole program by end of this year. Her new K program has cost RM2200!!!

Sonlight K LA program consist of a few parts:

1. Introduce the sound of each letter. Which I'm not using since Den already know most of the sound. However, I find the two games rather interesting for practicing sound -

(a) Go A to Z. It is a card game that goes like Go Fish! or Donkey! Basically you try to match the cards that you have. However instead of taking cards from your opponent's hand, you have to ask him or her for that particular sound.

(b) Alphabet Bingo. It come with 8 Bingo cards and basically, we draw out a mini alphabet cards and read the sound out loud, if you have the sound on your card, you cover it. Whoever get 5 in a row win!

2. My first Picture Dictionary (under Sonlight K Reader). It is used as part of the learning the sound. I used it as review for Den and also learning new vocab. We were very excited when we watched the movie UP today and saw something we just learned today - zeppelin.

3. Language and Thinking For Young Children (under Sonlight K Reader) For PreK to 1st Grader. It is a very good manual meant for parents to teach their kids at home. All unit in the manual are flexible to use either very simple learning or more advance learning and the unites are not sequential so they may be taught in any order.

4. Fun Tales (under Sonlight K Reader) - 27 small booklet that come with phonetically correct sentences. Great for kids who just are learning to read using phonic.

5. Activities: The IG (Instructor's Guide) offer some interesting idea for kids to learn to make up story or complete stories, etc.

6. Writing: The IG also come with instruction and activity on writing. Since I have been using Handwriting without Tears (under Workbook) with Den, I did not use this.

Talking about writing, I have started Den on Handwriting Without Tear K program. The pre K was too easy for her ( I will recommend for age 3-4), so when I got the K workbook along with the new Sonlight program, I decided to switch her to that. Still working on her mirror image!!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

3rd week of oct 2009

For review & info on most of the books I mentioned here, please goes to &

We intended to start homeschooling this week but I got sick. So we went a bit slower than what I have planned. This week, we did 2 phonic lessons. She is getting better and better in decoding the words now.

We also did Chinese flash card with 4 new words - 什,么,出,来。

We have not been using Qdees math for some time now. I stop at book 6 (lost book 7 when my friend SH past the system to me) about 2 months ago. For the past 2 months, I just drilled her with lots of worksheets - plus & minus (below 20). She is getting quite good with that, so I decided to continue the lesson this week. We did book 8 and almost finished the whole book in one lesson.

Book 8 introduced the larger number - to 100. She already knew her number til 100 but I think the book introduce the numbers in a very easy to understand way, so I decided to go tru with her.

Book 8 introduced counting quickly in tens. For example 40 is 4 tens. 42 is 4 tens and 2 ones. I think after the lesson, she understand the numbers better now. I think the next book will be adding double digits.

We also finished off Sonlight week 28 and started week 29. The bible verse this week is "Husbands, love your wives. ~Ephesians 5:25" I find it interesting that they actually included this verse in kids memory verse.

Besides all these, she did phonic, math & Chinese worksheets. I was very happy with the phonic worksheet she did today. She was given 9 pictures and she need to write down the spelling for each object - bat, tap, bag, hat, cat, fan, rat, van & hat. She only missed one-she wrote baC instead of baG.

Her phonic is getting better and so is her handwriting. Having said that, there are still lots of room to improved. I decided to go online to find alphabet guide. I found some good free guide from the handwriting without tears website I saved them and printed them out and put them in her homework helper lapbook. So that she can use that to write and complete her homework.

We have been using handwriting without tears (refer to my previous posting here) but I have never went to the website until today. Hm...should have done that earlier, can even download most of the the songs that it mentioned in the book! Ok, late is better than never.

When I was in SG two weeks ago, I met a pair of parents with a 2+ DD. They were amazed at what Den can draw. I kept telling them Den only able to draw like this recently but they don't seems to believe me. hahah! So I decided to put some of her previous drawing here, so that you can see the progress.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

10 Oct 2009 _1 month after surgery

For review & info on most of the books I mentioned here, please goes to (updated 10 Oct 2009)

My almost 5 years old DD, Den had a surgery to correct her squint one month ago. (For the detail about that, please refer to my previous post).

When I looked back at the past month, we had not been doing much. For the first two weeks, we took it easy because I did not want to add any stress to her body. I just read aloud a lot of stories for her whenever I can.

3rd week was Hari Raya and we went out almost everyday with families and friends. It almost felt like Chinese New Year just minus the Hong Pao.

28th Sept, we went back for eye check up and her ophthalmologist was satisfied with the result. Praise the Lord for that. After the initiate 3 weeks, Den did not complain about double visions or dizziness any more. Her eyes still tend to get red at the corner whenever she is tired though.

Most probably, we are going to bring her back to the orthoptist for detail check up to make sure she is really using both eyes now. She is also praying that God will take away her astig so that she does not need to wear glasses. ST & I have been trying to build up her self esteem - she think she is very ugly when she wear her glasses - but that is another story for another day.

30th Sept to 4th Oct we were in Singapore again. My DH, ST accepted a job there and we were down there scouting for good area to stay.

I brought along a few tiny books for her to practice reading - Scholastic Phonics Reader 2 & Brand New Readers Green Set (both under Review - Language),
and worksheet for her to do -Disney Princess Addition & Subtraction (under review- math)
& My Bible Activity Book (under review - Bible & christian stories 2).

To entertain her in the long car ride, I brought along the lacing toy that she enjoyed very much during our cuti-cuti MLY & SG trip (read more about it here) and I also found a wonderful series of CD book from MPH midvalley - Usborne Young Reading (under Review-CD Book). I bought one of the title before the trip - Stories of Prince & Princess. She loved it so much that I went back a few days ago to get another 3 titles -Pinocchio, The Princess & the Pea, The story of Castles. There are still many many more titles available at RM19.90 each (20% off if you go on Wed, member only til end of OCT 2009).I have not given the new books to her yet. May be I will wait til the next long car ride.

When we were in SG, we visited a kindergarten. It is run by a church and has a good review and according to the parents in SG parenting board, it is not so academic.

I was playing with the possibilities of sending Den to K1 kindergarten in SG for 2 reasons - 1st, when we move there she is going to miss all her friends in MLY, this is the fastest way for her to get to know new friends. 2nd, everyone bug me about how good is SG education system and think I shld not miss the opportunity for sending her to attend SG school. So we decided to check it out.

It was quite a disaster. It was a big school with hundreds of kids. We went there during the supposed to be "fun time" - exercises before the class. The teacher leading the exercise on stage had no expression on her face. In fact, none of the teachers there (except for the principle) smile!! There were a lot of class works and they even have Spelling homework for the K2 kids every week!! The principle explanation - so that kids would be able to get use to going to Primary!! Yes, I'm sure those kids whose start going to school since 3 years old will be very well adjust for Primary, so well adjust that they will be totally bored with school by P2!

The scary part is this is supposed to be the not so academic driven kindergarten!!!

Ok, at least that is an easy decision - I will continue to homeschool Den. Just have to find out ways for her to get to know more friends ... a bit difficult...looks like all SG kids are in school...shall pray about it.

We did not do much fun stuff this time round. We had a free day on 2nd Oct, so we decided to go to the Science Center near where we stayed. We worried it would be a bit difficult for Den and she might not enjoy it as much as zoo and bird park. Surprised! She loved it! We spend closed to 8 hours in there! She especially enjoy the optical illusions section since we talked about this before (I thought I wrote about this but I don't seems to be able to find it any where in my blog! ).

I loved the futuristic section, where you could control the screen without touching it, played harps without strings, had a fake pond that move when you "push" the water. If our environment continue to deteriorated, we might need that soon.

ST loved the F1 stimulation race. He was no 1 in the race!

We had to miss one of the fun sections- water work - playing with water!! because we did not prepare extra clothes to change! :(

Den think it is even better than zoo & bird park! haha!

After we returned from SG, Den beg me to start homeschooling her. I love homeschool because Den beg me to school her instead of the other way round!!

So this week, we did 2 lesson of Teacher Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lesson (under review-Language). She did not forget any of the sound, just forgot one or two sight words. In fact I think she is getting faster and faster in reading.

We also practiced Chinese flesh cards - only forget 3 words. Very good.

Besides that we also finished one week of Sonlight program and a new Bible verse - Pride goes before...a fall. Proverb 16:18.

She also did some math and Chinese worksheets. As a whole, I think she did not forget anything important even though we stopped school for closed to a month.