With Nelson Mandela’s birthday in July and our “recent Bible study re forgiveness and loving peace, I talked quite a bit about this wonderful man. Tammy was interested in history and chose it as a theme. “Safety” was once more put on ice.
All her spelling and vocabulary for the week sprang from this theme. She was very interested in the unfair laws of the apartheid era.
We also watched Invictus together. I stopped the D.V.D. every now and then to explain the why and where. Afterwards she practised sentences to tell her family and friends about the movie e.g. “Invictus is a movie about Nelson Mandela and how he encouraged the Springboks to win the world cup in 1995 – the year in which I was born! “
All grammar exercises also came from this theme: she had to rewrite theme sentences as questions and write questions as sentences.
Sentence: F.W. de Klerk released Nelson Mandela from prison in 1990. (When?) When did F.W. de Klerk release Nelson Mandela from prison?
Or Did Nelson Mandela ever want to take revenge?
Nelson Mandela never wanted to take revenge.
Tammy struggles with tense and concord. Strangely, she makes fewer mistakes with did, does and do, when she speaks than when she writes! We do all grammar orally first and often she has no problem with that, but when she writes, mistakes like “Did he wanted…” and even “Did he was…” often occur.
I believe that the grammar and vocabulary practices are helpful in enabling her to speak better and to remember the history facts better as well.
Apparently she did tell her mother and father about the movie. She gave me several hugs and thanked me for teaching her “this”. It just makes more sense to bombard her with the same facts, vocabulary and sentence construction over and over again. And comprehension is not just about what you read, but also about what you see and hear!
Someone warned me not to “bore” her. I don’t think there is much chance of that. I find that children are bored when the work is too difficult or when they have to chew off too much at the same time. This integrated approach makes the work easier, and therefore more fun, for her to digest.
Her spelling has improved dramatically – time will tell if this has a lasting effect or if it was just a short term co-incidence.