My Specials Learning, March 12

In Chinese I have learned a lot, especially involving tones. I can pronounce pinyin correctly and if I know the word I can usually say the right tones when reading characters. It is hard to remember characters, but I can usually figure the general meaning from the measures words preceding the word. I plan to focus more on characters as I have mostly mastered pinyin but am having a little trouble remembering characters.
I admit I am a below-average artist but I enjoy Art. I have learned how to use proportion in portraits, such as in our self-portrait and Great Ape Portraits, but I have trouble drawing noses using shading. I should concentrate on that and other parts of shading that I am having trouble with.
In Music a real success has been my sight reading. It used to be not very good; I fumbled with notes and the beat, but now I am very confident with my sight-reading ability. I really enjoy music and I really want to learn so I work very hard at it, and I have several ASA's involving music. I am having very little trouble with Music this year.
In PE this year I have certainly learned a lot. In particular the gymnastics and volleyball units I learned tons, such as how to do a really good cartwheel or backward roll, or how to set a volleyball correctly. The only problem I'm having is in arm strength, so I should practice push-ups and the like more often.
has gone just as smoothly as it's always done. The new thing we learned was about the different kinds of communication and how to communicate well. This I had no trouble with, nor with anything else.

My Story of Learning

I have completed my math goal, which was to memorize at least 10/12ths of the 12 times table. I am now able to recite the entire 12s times table, 12 and 7 included, at a very reasonable speed. In other parts of math I am also feeling at least a little satisfied, except for the speed in which it takes me to answer some "raw" questions such as '13 x 47'. Let's see, uh, 611. Anyway, I need to get faster. My next goal will be to get faster in these sorts of problems, though to measure it exactly I wouldn't know.
In reading I have also overshot my goal, which makes me think I may be setting goals that are too easy. My goal for reading is to experience 7 different genres in April, and here in March I have read 15. Also in reading I am content with my vocabulary and spelling, though not in my ability to recognize adverbs. My next goal will be to recognize the adverb in any sentence that contains an adverb in June.
My writing goal was to write a hooking beginning and satisfying endings to the pieces I will write. I think I need a bit more work on this, as my narrative's ending seems weak. So in June, I will look back again.
I think I need to be more organized in Grade 6, so I will focus on that, using binders and stuff like that.
In math, I think a real success has been me learning the algorithm lots of different algorithms that I'd never really understood or used before. I now alternate a lot. It takes up a lot less space. It used to be a real challenge but I concentrated on using it so it got easy. In reading a success was reading different genres. I used to read a lot of only fantasy and not much else, but now I read many different genres. But in reading it's been a really smooth year and I haven't had any big problems. My realistic fiction piece has been a success in writing: I made the reader inference and I used as much description I could that didn't make it tedious; but I had some trouble keeping dialogue out of the story. I was supposed to use as little dialogue as possible, (after all, it was a short story) but it always seemed to creep in. My strategy was to flip around conversation into narrative, such as instead of "'Ungh!'", I said: "He grunted". This seemed to work well enough.

December 8, 2010

1. What is one piece of important learning in reading or writing you have gained this week?

The index is a better place to look for certain information in a non-fiction book than a table of contents.

2. Explain how this has helped you in your reading or writing.

I can find information faster which has helped in both the non-fiction reading and science projects.

3. Explain what the difference is between a common noun and a proper noun.

A common noun is a non-specific, general term while a proper noun is the most specific title you can give something. 'Human' is a common noun, but 'Bob' is the name a specific human and thus is a proper noun. Most proper nouns' first letters are capitalized.

Time to Reflect - Unit 4, December 2

Time to Reflect – Unit 4

1. Tell why you think it is important to be able to divide numbers. For what kind of problems do you need to use division?

It's important because of the many times when you have a certain amount of things and a certain amount of people to give them to. When you have three people at dinner and you need to split the bill. Or you have three candy bars and 3,000 people to give to them. All are situations where division is absolutely necessary.

2. Tell what part of this unit was the most difficult for you and why. Describe what you did to overcome any difficulties you had.

I had particular trouble with partial quotients. I kept on forgetting when and where to put the numbers on the side. After a while however it got more or less in my brain without me doing anything.
I guess it just fit because I was doing so much.
Last week you read the story of the Sower and the Seed. (Matthew 13:1-23). Summarize the story including what the story is about, who are the people in the story, what lesson(s) did they learn, and how you can connect what you have learned to your life.

The story is about a farmer who his sowing his seed and many different fates befall it. Some seeds fell in rocky ground and though they grew quickly, they got scorched by the Sun and withered, without any root. This being a parable, it means that people like that seed believed the Word half-heartedly and ran when it got tough. Another seed got eaten by crows. This seed was the man who did not understand the Word at all and was snatched away by Satan. Yet another was choked by weeds. His hearing of the Word is choked by the world around him. But the last seed fell with good soil and grew. That was the man who understood the Word.

The people listening now understood that the only way to succeed, go to heaven, and have eternal life was to understand the Word and worship God to the full. There are basically two 'characters' in the story:
The Evil One (Satan, the Devil, Beelzebub, etc.)
The Sower (God, I guess)


Writing Reflection

What I notice about myself as a writer is that I like to put humor into it, and that I say "suddenly" and exclamation points too often. I sometimes need better transitions. I notice too that I am trying very hard in my writing to make it make sense. I notice that I am a writer who tries to make absolutely everything make sense and sound great at the same time. By the way, that is very hard.

I've changed as a writer so far in the fact that I couldn't make anything good. "Good" as in something easy to understand, something that makes the writer feel like he/she is in the story, and something with a hooking lead and a phenomenal ending. At least I can 1 or 2 of those now, sometimes even all four if I work really hard at it, at least at some parts of the story. I think the think I have improved most at out of all four would be the "lead" part. I feel like I have improved a lot with leads.

Three things I do well. I've already mentioned one of them, leads. I think I've got the hang of putting the worm on the hook, not just the hook or the worm. Also, I think most of the time my story flows. I can put the story in order pretty well, though my transitions sometimes get in a little trouble. And thirdly, I am quite content with my use of punctuation and spelling. I think it comes from reading so much!

I want to get stronger at endings. I really don't like a single ending I've ever written. All of them are too feeble, too dramatic, or don't sound like endings. You know, like when the audience sits there for five minutes after the stand-up comedian backs off the stage before they start clapping? I'm also not good at all at placing exclamation points sparingly, so I'll have to work on that too. Thirdly, I sometimes don't put enough detail becuase the picture is so embedded in my mind.

My favorite piece that I wrote is the short story Fang. It's about a dog, a rat and a girl and some supernatural occurrences involving a school and an angry water fountain. I liked it becuase of all the humor I put in it and my really strong ending.

Math Stuff

I didn't like Factor Captor because it was easy to get a prime number in which you could easily win against someone, so it seemed kind of cheating, even though it was it was allowed. That made me feel guilty when I used the highest prime number on the board. However, I liked the strategy behind it and it helped me learn a lot.

Using an array helps you find factors because any time you find an array that doesn't have 1, 2, or more left out you can just count the dots on the top and left and you have your two factors. Then you can use another array to find more. Also, it lays out factors in such a open way that you can't do anything but immediately start learning them by heart.

I liked the lesson 1*6, page 16 because I learned a lot of prime numbers, as well as the relationship between composite and prime. I think prime numbers are very cool. I also like lesson 1*5 page 14 because Divisibility Rules are just plain helpful.