Memory Work Monday

One of the gals on the WTM forum suggested blogging on Mondays about memory work. What a great idea! So, I’ll share what’s going on as far as memory work around these parts.

Both EG & FB have memorized one level of IEW’s Linguistic Development Through Poetry Memorization this school year: level one for FB, and level two for EG (who memorized level one last year). Rather than continue onward immediately, we’ve spent the last two months or so cementing the poems via the every-other-one every-other-day method recommended. On Fridays, the kids listen to the entire CD for that level. It’s working very well. EG will probably start on level three’s poems after our spring break or in May, but FB will wait until August or so to start on level two.

Both of them also have a memory work notebook as well, for every other subject or piece of memory work. They have the dividers for daily, M-W-F & T-Th, each day of the week, and numbered dividers for each day of the month. This week, we’re not introducing any new pieces, but evaluating if any need to move to a new divider. This is mainly because FB’s birthday is in the middle of the week, and we don’t do formal schoolwork on birthdays. I don’t want to introduce a new piece only to skip the third day!

FB’s current daily memory work includes
• six regions of the United States
• speed of light
• the Olympians (plus Hestia/Vesta & Hades/Pluto)
• “Metrical Feet – A Lesson for a Boy,” Samuel Taylor Coleridge
• Psalm 100
• “The Star-Spangled Banner”

His M-W-F memory work includes “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,” the seven wonders of the ancient world, the Egyptian Ennead, and “Four Seasons of the Year.” The T-Th memory work includes the Greek Alphabet song, “The Cardinal Directions,” the Pledge of Allegiance, boiling and freezing points of water, the speed of sound, the months of the year, and the names of regular polygons.

He has a divider for each day of the week, and under those we have elected officials, periods of early history, telephone numbers, “America the Beautiful,” the visible spectrum, days of the week in order, states of matter, “Days of the Week” (the Mother Goose rhyme), the four oceans, the seven continents, “How Many Seconds?”, the seasons, “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow,” and parallel & perpendicular lines. He’s also memorized all the poetry from First Language Lessons Level 1 and four Christmas carols: “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “Adeste Fideles,” “Away in a Manager,” and “Silent Night.” We review the Christmas carols once a month (on the 25th, if possible!). I’m really pleased with how much he’s memorized this year!

I’ve required more of EG, as she’s older. I also planned the year based on how well she’d memorized poetry, forgetting that she had the audio for that. Memory work goes much more smoothly for her if she has audio to help her learn it, so next year, I’ll be scaling back so that the Spousal Unit or I can record the selections via computer for her. That said, she’s still accomplished a tremendous amount.

Her current daily memory work includes:
• tectonic plates
• “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot”
• Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
• Antony’s speech from Julius Caesar
• nutritional categories
• the water cycle
• properties of addition and multiplication
• the planets
• more telephone numbers
• Psalm 100
• “The Star-Spangled Banner”
• five kingdoms
• seven levels of taxonomy
• the Olympians (plus Hestia/Vesta & Hades/Pluto)
• the Greek winds
• current elected officials, including party affliations
• current justices of the Supreme Court

Her M-W-F memory work includes periods of early history, parts of animal and plant cells, the seven wonders of the ancient world, The Gettysburg Address, “The Charge of the Light Brigade,” and “Jonathan Bing.” (We’ve integrated the level one IEW poems into her memory work binder at this point.) Her T-Th memory work includes poetic verse lengths, “America the Beautiful,” “O Captain! My Captain!”, the five senses, four sentence purposes, “Metrical Feet – A Lesson for a Boy,” the Egyptian Ennead, “Godfrey Gordon Gustavus Gore,” and an excerpt from MLK, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, which she says with his cadences, having learned it from an audio of the actual speech.

Under her dividers for each day of the week, she has the continents, oceans, “In Flanders Fields,” four sentence structures, “The Ingenious Little Old Man,” “Persevere,” pronouns, prepositions, characteristics of living things, periods of Egyptian history, telephone numbers, “The Swan and the Goose,” the pledge of allegiance, “After the Party,” “My Gift,” “Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow,” the Greek Alphabet song, the Pythagorean theorem, “My Shadow,” “Who Has Seen the Wind?”, and “The Eagle.”

Under the dividers for days 1-31 of each month, we have the same Christmas carols as FB, plus the remainder of the poems from level one of IEW’s poetry.

Whew! And that’s our memory work so far this year. I really need to re-evaluate how much to expect from dd; I expected a lot, as I said, but I also did this partially because I felt like I should have done more memory work, and done it more systematically, when she was younger. At some point I do have to accept that she’s just not going to memorize as many things as a result, and figure out where to concentrate her time and energy.


Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Wow! You've inspired me to up the ante on my kids! Mine are young--6 and 5, and I haven't been terribly organized with what I want them to memorize. I shall remedy this, though!

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