Friday, April 29, 2011

looking for rashi curriculum

so revii is so gigantic that we've just been doing perek 20 for a while now. turns out we finished it yesterday, and i peeked ahead and the first 6 pesukim of perek 21 (bringing us into chamishi--yay!) are pretty easy. so i told chana we are doing 6 new pesukim today. she's not thrilled, but they aren't that difficult. she's having some trouble doing so many pesukim, and we are in the middle of a 10 min break at pasuk 11. so now we have pesukim 11-18, and then six new pesukim.

and i am considering asking for help in rashi. this week, i've been reviewing old rashis, 3 a day, and i'm impressed with her memory. but i'm not being systematic and i'd really like some methodology or curriculum that would generate smooth rashi literacy and fluency.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

and back from pesach. i was lazy because i didn't make pesach this year, so theoretically the days leading up we could have done chumash. but i didn't.

chana's questions: why is it important that hashem spoke to avraham in a dream at NIGHT.

and how old was avimelech? because isn't sorah like 80 here??

Friday, April 8, 2011

did just revii today, no chazara. chana moaned and groaned. we still haven't done rashi yet. chana felt that avimelech should defend himself that he didn't know that sara was married. which indeed he does.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

chana asked today, didn't lot realize that avraham was a very good person and hashem wouldn't have killed him? (regarding the premise that the daughters thought they were the last people alive in the world).

we did revii in the car on the way to parkour. on the way home, we negotiated what chazara would be. chana felt she knows shlishi pretty well except for the last page. so i wanted her to do just the last page (she still cannot remember the word chessed!) and do 10 minutes of sheni. she wanted 6 minutes. i said 7. she said 6. i went back to 10. i didn't back down and she ended up doing 7. she got through most of avraham's questioning about sedom. as usual, she didn't remember a few things i wish she would, but overall she did well.

then when we got home i wanted to do the new pesukim. i figured she could easily do 3 new ones. she said 1 and wanted to compromise on 2. i remained inflexible, because i felt they'd be easy for her. they were. so easy, in fact, that she did one more pasuk because she wanted to know what happens next.

actually, i am kind of stumped on the pshat of that last pasuk. i'll have to look it up. but we still have rashi to do. there is a new rashi, too. chana asked why avraham moved, and rashi addresses that. but maybe the actual words are more complicated than is worth doing. chana will have a nice long break now, and hopefully we'll hit rashi tonight, review yesterday's rashis, and try out the new one. if it's too frustrating, we'll drop it. i already summarized it for her.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

lot's daughters

so we are doing the story of lot's daughters. it's always a question whether to skip this or not. the schools do. my approach tends to be to go through pshat from beginning to end. it did make chana uncomfortable. i explained it using the pshat that they thought they were the only ones left in the world (she asked if lot thought they were the only ones left, too). we haven't even had the sex talk yet, so maybe this story was a bit premature. but i agreed with her that it is an uncomfortable story. and she felt that the name "moav" was a weird thing to do.

i looked at the new pesukim for today, and felt that she could easily do 5 new pesukim. she flipped out (surprise, surprise). i got annoyed. i said only the first one will be difficult for her, the rest are easy. (which they were).

as usual, i wonder if this is her personality or if i'm doing something wrong educationally. when i think about it, i feel like she is making progress and not being traumatized in terms of attitude. but then i think fondly of alfie kohn, who somehow thinks there is a way to do this without screaming? or maybe he never says that--he just says don't reward her. which she's not doing it for the reward. she's doing it because i say she has to do it.

she requested a 20 min--no, 30 min--no, 50 min break until we do chazara. and we have to do rashis 2x today because i let her play with a friend last night instead of doing rashi.

Friday, April 1, 2011

one day she'll thank me

as usual, i'm thinking about pushing vs not pushing. about unschooling and the theory that one day they'll do it on their own with vigor and joy, vs the concern that i'm not willing to leave chumash skills up in the air with "maybe they'll pick it up one day."

am i really killing her joy in chumash by forcing her to work on skills? it seems like every day is at loggerheads. she started revii happily enough. she did 2 new pesukim. she asked a question on pshat. (it says hashem remembered avraham, so he sent lot out of the city when he destroyed the city lot was living in. what does remembering avraham have to do with lot? was lot in the city when he destroyed it? why does it make it sound like he was).

sigh. now chazara. i wanted to go back to lech lecha because i see she's not remembering it so much. oh, the kvetching and complaining and whining. i finally whined back at her that i simply cannot listen to her doing 12 pesukim in this tone of voice. she stomped off in a huff.

then she does chazara and says, 'see? i know it.' i'm very happy she remembers the content. she doesn't quite remember it attached to the words when the phrases are hard or some the vocab. it's a back and forth of arguing and whining.

and we still have rashi to do. and the rest of chazara.

i do think that she won't really remember how painful she is finding the skill work, and she'll be happy she has the skills. i don't think it will affect her love of learning, because she's not really learning now. she's pre-learning. she's acquiring the skills she will need to learn, really study, the torah in the future.