I mentioned in a previous post that I was tackling A Beka’s language arts without a workbook this year; and while this particular lesson might not have actually shown up in their workbook, I thought it might still give a few ideas of how we loosely use the A Beka plans.
In my lesson planning for A Beka, I made notes at the bottom of our phonics work pages when a test or a language arts concept was scheduled. The other day, we encountered the first of my language arts notes. “LA ‘s vs. plural s” is what I had written at the bottom of the worksheet. So, I grabbed our $2 dry erase board and a marker.
First, I wrote “Dan’s dogs” on the board and talked him through the difference. “Both of these words end in s, but this word ends in what’s called an apostrophe.” (I had him repeat that to me.) “Now, is Dan’s telling me that he owns the dogs or that there are more than one Dans.” (He giggled and gave the right answer. I had him circle the apostrophe.) “An apostrophe tells us that he owns the dogs. Now, let’s look at dogs. Do the dogs own Dan or are there more than one.” (Again, he giggled and gave the right answer.)
I erased the board and wrote “Ann’s cats,” and we repeated the process. Next, I wrote “Bill’s bugs” and had him do the teaching, walking me through the same questions and steps. I praised and cheered him when he was finished. Then, I had him come up with his own combination. At first he chose “Tom’s fish.” I let him talk me through the apostrophe, pointed out that fish didn’t need the s to be plural, and suggested we change it to birds. He eagerly made the adjustment (thinking through his phonics sounds to spell the word, a lesson in itself) and then talked me through his concept.
The whole process took five minutes MAX, and it was so fun! I tell you, a dry erase board and a marker can totally make a kid’s day. It’s absolute magic.