Last year we started what is most likely going to be a yearly tradition of celebrating Chinese New Year with our dear friends, the Reids. This year, unlike last year, I worked it into our home school schedule, and so last week we studied and read about the origins and traditions surrounding the Lunar New Year. I wanted to be ready with the kids knowing why and what we were celebrating, as well as learning a bit about China, when we came to our crafty fun part of this unit, dinner with our friends. That dinner was had on the eve of the new year, as is Chinese tradition, and was plentiful is absolutely delicious food, both traditional and not-so-traditional (after last year's attempts at traditional dessert items, we decided brownies would be a better choice this year, lol.). The kids did a good job picking up some new information, like the stories behind the beginning of the celebration (the Nian monster and the beginning of the farming season) as well as many of the traditions like the use of the color red, lanterns, time with family, cleaning and so on. We used several books from the library and did a few little booklets in a simple lapbook, but otherwise this was more of listening unit.
This week I also started using some of the printable books from Pony Gal's online reading program and we have been reading at least one together each day. She is making improvements, but struggles with focusing on what she's doing, which seems fairly normal for age. When she really focuses, she can fly through the 4-5 page books. When she doesn't, it takes an hour. Her math is coming along nicely, as well. I just got the next Singapore math book (Early Essentials Kindergarten B) and am excited that it covers so many things that I was wanting to see accomplished this school year, including telling "big" time like days, weeks, months, and so on. I had lined up some lapbooks to work on that, too, so we should have a nice selection of activities once we get there.
This week we are doing some work on basics using some cute owl sheets I printed off and reading together a lot, just as a bit of a change of pace from the lapbooks. We'll pick back up with them and the study of raptors (which owls are-nice segue) next week.