Wednesday, April 17, 2013

How to Properly Cram

About an hour before Kiliegh came home from her visit with her Dad, I got a text message saying that her science test that was originally scheduled for last Thursday had been rescheduled for this coming Thursday and that Kiliegh needed to study more because she wasn't ready for the test. Kiliegh comes home on Sunday's, so that gave us four extra days to cram err, study.

Kiliegh needed to study chapter three in her science book Electricity and Magnetism. I am a complete geeker of a person (which I am proud of) because I thought all of it was pretty interesting. Don't get me wrong, there are far better things that I would rather be learning about but I am not going to complain about it either. Plus, these last four nights Kiliegh and I cuddled up on the couch reading her science book and studying, it's been nice.

We read through four lessons and at the end of each lesson there was a suggested activity that went along with what was read. I told Kiliegh once we read through all four lessons we could do some of the activities  if we had time. The surprise, to both of us, was that Justin got involved! He's still working a crazy night shift that is on its last days of a run of three weeks! So when he asked for me to wake him up early so he could do some project early with Kiliegh I was pretty excited. He used to work as a master electrician, so this was right up his alley and I was all for stepping aside!

They talked about electric currents, like static electricity and how balloons can have different charges.

Jasmine was nice enough to be used for this experiment.

We talked about positive and negative charges.

And Vada, seeing the balloons, had to get involved. (Please ignore Vada's messy face, she had fig all over it, we just had snack and was on a time crunch.)

They moved on to discus how electric circuits and how they work.

They made a Series Circuit using a flashlight and other household items.

Then they talked about closed and open circuits as well as items that could and could not carry electricity and why.

They also made a Parallel Circuit from the same objects that they used to make the Series Circuit.

They discussed electromagnetism and generators, something that Kiliegh was having a hard time grasping and something that I was also struggling to explain in a way that she could easily understand.

Tomorrow is Kiliegh's science text. I am hoping that she does well and that she goes in feeling confident about it. She is only in fourth grade so this not a huge test but grades are important to Kiliegh and we do place an importance on them here in our home as well. We want our children to do the best that they can and whatever that may be, as long as it is their best, then we are proud of their achievements. Kiliegh often times likes to memorize things, so she "studies" in only one way. If she is questioned or quizzed in any other way than what she has studied, she can not remember the answer  We have discussed this recently and I have explained that this isn't actually the learning that I want from her. I want her to learn and understand, not just memorize for a short time. I do understand that a lot of what is taught in school is forgot and shortly after it is learned however, I also believe that if she isnt taught to study correctly or efficiently than she may struggle later on when things begin to get really hard. I dont know, maybe I am wrong or over thinking it all. What I do know is that I have had a great week with her and today was fun watching her and Justin doing all kinds mini experiments together. Heck, even I learned new things!

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