I’ve figured out a great way to keep Olivia occupied for a while one morning per week, which gives me time to really focus on working with Farrah and Callie.
We’re working out of a Vocabulary Book entitled “240 Vocabulary Words Kids Need to Know – Grade 3”, and each week we start a new lesson (10 words per lesson). At first I didn’t exactly like the format of this book because they introducing synonyms and antonyms, etc. to help the child learn what the words mean, instead of writing out the true definition for the child. But I’ve gotten it to work out well for us. At the beginning of a new lesson, I don’t even let Olivia see the workbook. I type up all 10 new words for her on my computer then print it out, and she has to take the list and her Children’s Dictionary and sit down and look up each of the 10 words and write the definition out in our Spelling/Grammar notebook. It doesn’t fly by in 10 minutes, trust me! At 6 years old she’s naturally still a bit slow when looking up words alphabetically. Then she has to write out each definition, and I always stress that she takes her time so she can put out her best handwriting. We use a Children’s Dictionary because they usually provide only the most common one or two definitions, and they give it in an easy-to-understand way, which is all we need for right now. Once she knows the true definition of the words, we move forward and talk about synonyms/antonyms associated with the word. Later in the week, she has to do assignments with her new Vocabulary words – like do the actual workbook pages, use alphabet pasta to spell out the words (this helps retain the spelling), and make her own flashcards for each of the words (with the word on one side and definition on the other side).
So far, we’ve only completed two lessons, and we’ve covered these words (many of which she was already familiar): foe, purchase, vast, drowsy, absent, prank, feeble, annual, reply, sturdy, shiver, voyage, slumber, meadow, banner, loyal, ill, vacant, stalk, wild. For lesson 3 (which we start today), I think the will be a bit more challenging: slosh, frayed, overcast, mammoth, furious, assist, task, lurk, orbit, bothersome. We’re up for the challenge!