February 5, 2021
Virtual School: Week 20

Amelia's EA is out for a second week for what sounds like will be an extended absence, so she's down to just the one teacher. Subsequently the activities didn't get shared with me until too late to do anything with them. One day they had to find an animal and draw or take a picture of the animal on a body part. Amelia is starting to be able to read pretty well, if she is in the right mood.


The class welcomed an author/illustrator to visit this week. Amelia very much enjoyed "meeting" him and learning about how he creates pictures for his books. She told us "I learned about an artist that does not draw with markers but he draws with paper." He rips paper to make collages and apparently sticks them in water for the colours (dye?).


After the artist visited, Amelia and Michael spent some time painting books. Amelia's is about a unicorn and a bicycle. Michael prefers to make rainbows by running his paint brush through all the available colours.


Matthew, Michael and Amelia spent a good chunk of the week inventing a pirate game. Matthew made a pirate map and they went around yohohoing and "sneaking" to find treasure. Matthew made me take a picture of the pirate showing off his map. He looks very cranky in the photo - this face was "part of the game".


Matthew's class had a geometry evaluation. Matthew started working on it right away and finished his first section within a couple of minutes. I went upstairs to do some work. Forty-five minutes later I came back and Matthew hadn't done anything more because the teacher had been constantly talking the entire time to "explain" how to do the quiz. She talked so much and so long and so many of his classmates seemed not to know what to do that he'd decided what he had been doing was probably not right and was waiting for her to stop in case it became easier to follow. I muted the teacher, gave him five minutes to finish and after that we quit for the day. It was a complete waste of his time and very symbolic of the frustration that is his math class right now. He knows this material extremely well so doing it is just


In french he's working on pronoms personelles. At the beginning of the week they did the big writing project promised last semester where they wrote about a "moment". It took two day and then they were done and now they are back to writing (but not checking) a sentence or two a day. I've been getting him to do some cursive work during the down time but it's pretty clear: it actually takes me more time to help him do virtual school than it did to do homeschool and 90% of his time at virtual school is spent doing assignments that aren't really a good fit. So long story short we are going to pull him out of school for the rest of this school year.


One thing he did enjoy doing this week was painting a "window cling" butterfly out of glue and paint. Apparently he was one of only two kids in his class that had the materials as instructed and did the work.


Elizabeth enjoyed watching the SpaceX launch with Daddy this week (Matthew was at forest school). Her art class was a lesson on using pen and ink. She's having a blast, judging by how messy her hands get and how big her smile is after class. I actually completely forgot about art class until it was half over, but she remembered and attended completely independently. She's apparently finished all the famous five stories now and is working on rereading the first few Harry Potters (we haven't let her read past #4) and the Hardy Boys series.

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