Friday, April 12, 2013

A good school week

I can honestly say that almost all of our school weeks are good. Still, I had been feeling off balance for a while. This week just felt better.

Raia finished exactly a week's worth of work--Year 1, Week 17--even though she took a day off on Wednesday. (She was just tired.) Today was one of those fun days where we went on a great rabbit trail, very related to what we were doing. I read one of Aesop's fables to Raia, and she said that she knew it already, so I looked it up in Russian. Her usual Russian reading book now is "Pages from Tolstoi's Alphabet," which includes many of the fables that he translated, but not this one. So, instead of her usual Russian reading, I printed out this one, and she read it. She's still in the beginning of her book, where it's just pictures and sentences, but she handled this reading quite well... and it's more like what is way further on!

Jaan will have finished a week's worth, too, if he comes home from music school in any shape for a little reading... and I think he will. We started Children of the New Forest last week, and he's in love with it already. This is one of the few AO books in the early years that I hadn't read before, and I think I'm going to enjoy it as much as he is.

By the way, I was quite proud of us, because Jaan and I did his music school homework without an internet connection and without any tears, and I even understood it! Memorizing all those intervals really did help with something.

And a note on why Raia already knew her fable: preschoolers in our family listen to audio books almost every day during quiet time. For a while, some of that was Krylov and Tolstoi, and apparently it stuck. I know that some organized AO mothers sort out and read the Aesop fables that aren't covered in Year 1 to their preschoolers. I didn't do that, but it's still working out beautifully. They get some in both English and Russian, and some in just one language. Although, both Jaan and Raia do refuse to accept The Ant and The Grasshopper. It's really The Ant and The Dragonfly, of course! (Fun link.)



amy in peru said...

it's fun to here the nitty gritty... ;)

amy in peru said...

um... that would be HEAR. oh my.

Baba Julie said...

You do such a wonderful job with the children! It's amazing to read about all they're learning! Love you all!

Mom said...

Amen to Baba Julie's comment!

Much love....

Heather Powell said...

Thanks for the links to the Grasshopper and the Ant. By the way, you suggest Chukovsky for my daughters last year. They are really fun and have helped my daughters with their Russian reading and their accent.

Jessica Curtis said...

Enjoyed looking through the links. Do you have any good sources for helping kids learn Russian? I would also LOVE to have the kids (and me) learn Russian sign language. Any book recommendations or websites that you know of?

Phyllis said...

Jessica, my children love audio books and stories. This site has a lot to start with:
My main advice, since you live here, would just be to keep it natural. Don't even let them know that they're learning. :-)

When we had to leave Russia, Jaan and Raia were 4 and 2. They weren't speaking English. We spent 2.5 months in the states, and I didn't see much improvement at all. Then we came here and spent 2.5 WEEKS with an American family. In that time, they both started speaking! I attribute it to no pressure and time with other children.

I don't know any Russian sign language, except the alphabet. I do know that RSL is pretty close to ASL, though. I just found this site, with a quick search:
It looks like they have a nice dictionary.