Weekly Report: Sukkot, Dragonflies, & Math

weekly report

I was sick (fever, chills, most of the day in bed) on the day Kathryn had her enrichment classes, but thankfully my husband and cousin both helped out to get her to and from classes. Kathryn is a very sweet and empathetic girl when someone isn’t feeling well, so she spent that afternoon quietly working on the computer, reading, and reviewing for her upcoming test in bat mitzvah class.

The rest of the week I felt mostly human, so we were able to get our regular schoolwork done. Teaching Textbooks math arrived early in the week and Kathryn was so excited about it that she begged to do the first lesson as soon as we installed in that evening. So far, she loves it. It’s mostly review at the moment, but that’s totally okay. Review is good, and doing away with her ill-will towards math is even better.

Wednesday evening began Sukkot (The Feast of Tabernacles), and although I was planning to take Kathryn to service at her dad’s messianic synagogue, I had to miss out because I still wasn’t feeling quite well enough, but she did attend with her dad. Last Sunday, she and the rest of the kids in bar/bat mitzvah classes helped build a sukkah (tent or tabernacle) for the celebration.

sukkah(class in front of the newly built bamboo sukkah; photo by one of her teachers)

This week also brought the arrival of Kathryn’s new baby brother. Her dad texted me updates from the hospital while Kathryn’s step-mom was in labor. He was born yesterday evening, and Kathryn and her step-siblings will meet him this afternoon. I’ll be doing newborn photos for them in a week or two. I am glad — truly thankful — that our relationship is as amicable as it is, but sometimes this blended family thing has some very surreal parts. (For instance, my daughter having a baby brother that isn’t related to me.)

Last Friday we did a little fall color walk nature study, as suggested by Barb: OHC: More Nature Study #5. We searched for colors on a fall color worksheet, and found at least half of them literally right here in our own yard.

fall colors - Oct 2011

We also looked for signs of leaf cutters (another nature study we meant to do a couple of weeks ago) as we searched for fall colors. We found both on this magnolia tree (below). Somehow, even growing up having magnolia pod wars with my cousins in my grandmother’s back yard, I never knew that the seeds were like this. Amazing what I keep on learning as I homeschool!

magnolia seeds

One late afternoon this week we had another nature study — this one unplanned — when we noticed something unusual in our back yard: dozens of iridescent blue dragonflies swarming all around the yard! They were circling up as high as the treetops, as low as a foot above the grass, and everywhere inbetween. The dragonflies were all in constant motion (thus, no good photos to share). They were on the hunt, and we were able to watch them catch small insects mid-air. There was no way to count them, but there must have been at least 30 or 40 that we could see. I tried to research why exactly they do this, but apparently there is little known about why exactly dragonflies swarm. It was really fascinating, and even kind of pretty to watch.

I’m linking up with Kris’s Weekly Wrap-Up; pop over there and see what other homeschooling families have been up to this week!