Challenge B of Tucson - Rita Ranch

Week 4 Update

Seminar Updates

Latin - This week we focused on understanding modifiers and diagraming. We also previewed the 4th declension.

Logic - We previewed Lessons 11-16. These are some tough lessons and may need to be taken slowly!

Expo & Compo - The girls each read their paper and we began discussing Little Britches. I loved this book!

Math - We worked several problems together as a class. We covered Prime Factorization and Greatest Common Denominator.

Science - Each student presented her paragraphs and drawings on Kepler's Three Laws of Planetary Motion. It was fun to see how each girl included something a little different. Iliana introduced the class to Sir Isaac Newton! We also went over this week's notecard assignment. This is a different method than what they have been using, but it's an important skill to learn. We will be completing an activity in class on Thursday with these notecards, so it's important that they bring their 20 notecards to class :)

Current Events - The girls presented their articles on Whether the Federal Government should mandate educational standards. We had a discussion on the history of public education in America. I introduced the class to this week's issue: Whether the Federal Government should require citizens to purchase health insurance.


"All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,.." 2 Tim 3:16

"Institutionalized school has taught us to seek answers in order to get the lesson over with rather than to inspire more questions and extend the curiosity of the students." - Leigh Bortins, The Question

Announcements and Reminders

Scalability Suggestions

As parents we have the ability and responsibility to scale Challenge B assignments to best accomplish the goals we have set for our student. Below are my suggestions for scaling at-home work in a way that will have the least negative impact on your student's seminar day.

Math: This is a great subject to scale back on when you are having a busy week. Your student can use the weekend, fall break, the semester break, or the summer break to catch up on any missed assignments. Scaling on math should not affect your student's ability to participate in math seminar since each student works at her own pace at home.

If you have having a busy week consider the following: assign 3 math assignments instead of 4; or count a test or investigation as an assignment.

If you have time for more: Have your student create and work out four or five new math problems about each lesson's content.

Science: This is a seminar in which you will not want to deviate too far from the guide. It's vital to the quality of your student's seminar day and that of the other students that our children fully prepare for seminar.

If you are having a busy week: You might consider gathering sources several weeks in advance, so that your student can research in advance of busy weeks.

If you have time for more: Consider having your student research historical events of the time period.

Logic: This might be an acceptable subject to scale during a busy week.

If you are having a busy week: Consider allowing your student to skip a test or to not work the additional problems.

If you have time for more: Consider taking both tests or having your student work extra problems.

Current Events: Similar to the science strand, this is one seminar in which you will probably not want to scale. The quality of your student's seminar day and that of the other students is significantly impacted by the level of preparedness for seminar.

If you have a busy week: Considering scaling another subject.

If you have time for more: Consider researching the history of the topic. For example, research the history of American education.

Latin: At least for the first semester, Latin is probably a good choice for scaling work.

If you are having a busy week: Consider reducing the number of exercises or skip translation all together. Focus instead on chart memorization, vocabulary memorization, and grammar concept.

If you have extra time: Considering assigning additional English to Latin translation exercises.

Exposition and Composition: This is a tricky strand in which to scale, but it can be done. Work may be scheduled to adjust to the needs of your family's schedule so long as all requirements are met prior to the 3rd week in the cycle. It is vital to the quality of your student's seminar discussion and that of the other students that each child has finished reading the book by the due date. It is equally vital that each student's paper is completed and ready to be read aloud by the due date, and that ALL required elements of the paper have been met. This year, I am asking the students to listen for elements such as parallelism in their peers' papers. If these elements aren't in the paper, it's difficult for the other students to listen for them :)

If you have a busy week: Consider allowing additional time to complete the ANI chart. If you student has a FIRM grasp on the invention topic (e.g. definition or comparison), you might allow her to skip the worksheet and focus primarily on the ANI Chart. Listening to the novel and jotting down notes rather than reading it is a great way to scale during

a busy week.

If you have time for more: Require IEW style dress-ups and sentence openers in their sub-proofs, exordium, and amplification sentences. Another suggestion is to assign different sentence patterns for students to use for their parallel proofs.

I hope that these suggestions are helpful and do not cause any additional stress or confusion. My aim is not to confuse, but rather to help you and the girls have a successful year. If you have any questions regarding scalability, please don't hesitate to ask.

Praying for you all,