Tuesday, October 4, 2016

A Day in the Life of Challenge B

We just wrapped up our 7th week of Challenge B. We are working hard and having a blast. This past week the kids wrote a Persuasive Essay to read-out loud, presented info and an experiment on Michael Faraday and electromagnetism and had a mini-debate on Gun Control. Add in Latin, Logic, Math and pizza for lunch (thanks to our amazing Foundations families) and it was a full and fabulous day. 

I heard recently that CC is a "cheat"on "true" classical education. To that I say, "Posh!" I've done it alone and in community with CC and in the upper levels, it can't be beat. The kids learn so much by wrestling with difficult subject, talking about them, having an audience and  weekly accountability. We are being refined and honed as a group, learning an immense amount, sharing each other's burdens and laughing so hard we cry. It's rich and wonderful. I am blessed to be a part of it. 

Science – we are currently doing the History of Science. The kids present on a Scientist and their work every week. Because our Challenge A community has only 3 kids, B has 12, we often send some of our kids to their class. It’s win for everyone- “B” kids revel in the “good old days” and “A” kids get a chance to see what they’ll be doing in the future. This week, we shared with the Foundations kids, because it was electromagnetism and they have magnets coming up in Science, so win-win for everyone! 

Latin- We chant forms every week together. I often ask the kids to chant  forms individually, without looking. Assess to bless. The kids who know it love to show their prowess and it’s another way for the kids who don’t yet know the forms to to hear it and know that they can. We are doing daily diagramming and sentence patterns almost weekly. I usually assign sentences by table and then the tables present their sentences to the class. Not everyone in our class really understands diagramming and that’s o.k. We are learning together and gaining information as we go. We are using Chart A from Essentials and refer to it weekly. For me, diagramming has really been the key to translating Latin well. Without the diagramming, I often translate the meaning incorrectly, or get confused, even if I have the declensions translated correctly. Latin Scrabble and Latin bees often show up weekly.

Logic- I have the kids go to the board and create a Square of Opposition very quickly, at the same time they are creating a Square of Opposition individually on their white boards at their own tables. We drill vocab, we create syllogisms together. I love Logic- Can't wait for more formal debate in Challenge 1!

Debate- Current Events this year has been challenging to say the least. The kids are super loving how CE has turned into a simple debate. This has been one strand where every one shines! This is where the larger lap boards comes in very handy. 

In the Math strand I present a topic from Saxon and then 3 kids use  a 5 Common Topics sheet to lead a Math Discussion. More experience practicing presentation skills, and the kids are learning that even if they don't initially understand the Math problem, they can probably break it down to the point of knowing something about it. 5 Common Topics to the rescue once again! 

Expo and Comp- this week the kids read their Persuasive Essays on Little Britches. As a class we loved this book. We talked about it, quoted from it and several of the kids have already started on the sequels. Writing and Reading are my thing, so this strand is always one of my favorites. Love watching the kids gain so much confidence in how to write well and with style. Love knowing that they can be moved and changed by works of great literature. 

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