This blog currently serves as a journal of what one particular community member, Uriel Fury, has been doing. The journal is updated infrequently. This journal is for friends, family, community members to know what we've been up to at a glance. It might also help us when it comes time for portfolio evaluations.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Proposed Educational Objectives 2017-2018

Proposed Educational Objectives by Subject Area
For Elijah Parham’s Home Education Program, 2017-2018
[The affidavit must include] “an outline of proposed education objectives by subject area...
The required outline of proposed educational objectives shall not be utilized by the superintendent in
determining if the home education program is out of compliance with this section and section 1327.”

-- PA Home Education Law
The primary educational objective for Elijah Parham’s home education program is to continue to use the resources available in our community to provide a well-rounded education based on Elijah’s interests and abilities. We will continue the approach that has worked well in the past, choosing specific topics as we go, based on interest and academic readiness. Because of the flexibility offered by home education, specific topics listed in these objectives are only examples, which can and will be changed based on Elijah’s evolving needs and interests; we will take advantage of whatever interests, opportunities and resources seem appropriate at the time.

  1. Elijah will read fiction and non-fiction copy for historical, informational, and personal pleasure purposes.
  2. Elijah will also read non-fiction media, especially as a part of his studies in game design and linguistics.
  3. Elijah will use writing as needed in pursuing his interests, using a variety of formats, such as journals, stories, letters, and e-mails.
  4. Elijah will use various resources to determine the correct spelling of words he wishes to use in his writing.
  1. Elijah will increase his mathematical skills and understanding, though both formal and informal methods. Topics may include addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of whole numbers, fractions, and decimals; percents; graphing; measurement; and geometry.
  2. Elijah will use mathematical concepts in free play, using materials such as LEGO, pattern blocks, tangrams, Kapla blocks, and games.
  3. Elijah will use measurement, geometry, and other mathematical concepts in practical situations such as cooking, game design, and handling money. 
  1. Elijah will study one or more topics in life science, earth science, and /or physical science.
  2. Elijah will learn specific scientific content related to the topic he is studying though reading, visits to nature centers and museums, observation, experimentation, and/or free play, using Snap Circuits, science kits, and etc.
  3. Elijah will continue to develop his general scientific skills, such as observation, measurement, making predictions, and drawing conclusions. Taking notes and collecting and analysing data will be highly encouraged. 
  1. Elijah will learn about various periods of US and Pennsylvania history through reading, research, and visits to historical sites and museums.
  2. Elijah’s geography studies will be integrated with his history studies. When studying a particular culture, he may use maps, learn about the physical features and resources of the area, and discuss how the physical environment and resources influence(d) aspects of the culture such as architecture, diet, and clothing.
  3. Elijah will be exposed to different cultures through avenues such as language, food, music, and dance; travel; and multi-cultural literature.
  4. Elijah’s civics education will be integrated with his history studies. When studying a particular culture, he may learn about its method of government, and how it compares to and in some cases influenced our own.
  5. In addition, current events will be discussed and explored as needed.
  1. Elijah will continue to learn about various aspects of safety, including the dangers and prevention of fires.
  2. Elijah will continue to learn about taking care of himself, including the dangers of tobacco, alcohol and drugs, and the advantages of good nutrition and other health practices.
  3. Elijah will have regular physical exercise, through active play, walks, swimming, dancing, and other activities. The emphasis will be on lifetime fitness.
  1. Elijah will be exposed to a variety of musical styles, through recorded music and by attending live performances.
  2. Elijah will use a variety of media and techniques to make creations of his own choosing.
  3. Elijah will continue to develop his drawing skills and use them in designing and creating comics, concept schematics, and story boards for his game designs.

Log of Books & Materials Used 2016-2017 & Attendance Statement

An assortment of board books & picture books Elijah has read to Hazel

Game Informer
NatGeo Kids
Lego Club
Tape Op

Web Series/YouTube Channels:
Good Mythical Morning (talkshow/pop culture)
Loading Ready Run (comedy skits & improv)
Friday Nights (Magic The Gathering)
Game Theory (gaming commentary)
Table Top (live game playing of table top games)
Artifexian (world building)
Xidnaf (linguistics)
Conlang Critic (constructed languages)
MinuteEarth (Earth's flora & fauna)
Tom Scott (educational travel)
Mumbo Jumbo (Minecraft redstone building tutorials)

Let's Examine Constructed Languages, by Rakehell Gardener

Conlangery (descriptive linguistics in constructed languages) 
No Such Thing As A Fish (interesting facts)
A1: Sir Harold Evans Gets Righteous About Writing 
TED Radio Hour: Spoken and Unspoken 
Lexicon Valley (linguistics podcast from Slate)
Speculative Grammarian (satirical linguistics)
The Five Minute Linguist (short talks on linguists)
The History of English (just what it sounds like)
The World in Words (languages of the world)

TV, Movies, Netflix, & DVDs:
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic 
Sword Art Online 
Arrival (in theatre) 
Danger Mouse
Mystery Science Theatre 3000: The Return
How to Get Away with Murder
Midsomer Murders
Death in Paradise 
Z Nation
Kiki's Delivery Service (in theatre)

MineCraft Forums (all about Minecraft) (index & info for every MTG card) (resources for the study of the languages)
Reddit r/conlangs (constructed languages)
     r/hearthstone (about the game Hearthstone)
     r/OutOfTheLoop (recent trends, news, & politics)
     r/Undertale (about the game Undertale) 
IPA Complete Chart & Extras (International Phonetic Alphabet) 
IPA Character Set (allows for the typing of IPA characters, especially helpful when constructing a language) (online encyclopedia of writing systems & languages)

Video Games & Table Top Games:
Words with Friends
Magic: The Gathering
Pyramid Arcade
Boss Monster
Time Line
Clue: Harry Potter
Forbidden Island
Forbidden Desert
Golf (card game)
Get Lucky
Kill Dr. Lucky

Other Resources:

NPR in the car
Khan Academy
Personal Notes, Plans, & Schematics
Minecraft Building Tutorials
USA Map, Local Maps (Pittsburgh, PA)

Attendance Statement:
In accordance with the Pennsylvania Home Education Law, I attest that "a minimum of one hundred eighty (180) days of instruction OR nine hundred (900) hours of instruction per year at the elementary level" have occurred this year for Elijah.

Portfolio Summary 2016-2017

This year Elijah's main focus was on Linguistics. He spent the vast majority of the year immersed in the world of languages, writing systems, and phonetics.

Language Arts:
Elijah reads on a regular basis for information and pleasure. He enjoys writing comics, emails, grocery lists, table top game instructions, and notes and plans for game designs. He is adept at finding information via online wikis, Internet and Google searches, encyclopedias, and the library catalogue. He knows how to use a dictionary and thesaurus. This year Elijah focused on linguistics, constructed languages, writing systems, and foreign languages. He was mentored by both armchair and professional linguists via online conversations on the web forum Reddit. Elijah also recently started using Duolingo to learn so German.
An excerpt from email Elijah sent discussing pragmatism in the Chinese languages

Elijah plays Scrabble & Words With Friends solo and with others.

Elijah continued to practice and gain skills in addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, and measurements by exploring calculator and number tricks, calculating area for building Minecraft creations, assisting with creating grocery lists and budgets, figuring maths problems in his head, working maths and logic puzzles, and following recipes. Elijah and his family play table top games involving maths and strategy and web series videos by Khan Academy and Vi Hart are utilised frequently.
Elijah playing Carcassonne (tile based strategy game)

Science and Technology:
Elijah enjoys Science Fridays on NPR, as well as other science related web series/podcasts. He also really enjoys hands on science projects with immediate results such as, Snap Circuits, working with magnets, and bases/acids forming reactions. Elijah is quite competent in computer literacy. He is able to navigate the Internet, social media, conduct online research, use a word processor, and navigate Apple iOS, Android OS, Ubuntu Linux, and Mac OS X enough to satisfy his computing needs.
Elijah playing Magic The Gathering at Elks #339 Game Night

Elijah and his family travelled to Boston, MA for the Northeast Unschooling Conference this school year. Elijah looked over maps to help plot our course. Elijah has also been familiarising himself with Google Maps and GPS on our cell phones, helping with directions around town and when travelling. Elijah has become more familiar with global geography in general while learning about which languages are spoken in which countries.
Different routes to Northeast Unschooling Conference and our hotel in Boston

Social Studies:
As a family we continue to have discussions about current events in politics such as, equal rights for the Queer community, feminism, and racial politics concerning institutional racism. We also discussed democracy, anarchism, and other forms of government, the Civil Rights movements, civil disobedience, and the importance of voting in local and national elections. We always listen to NPR in the car and discuss the current topics in science and politics while commuting. Elijah has been exposed to general world history while learning about the history and evolution of different languages and writing systems in various countries.
We visited the house where Gertrude Stein was born. It's just a 5 minute drive from our house!

Health and Safety:
We covered fire safety for our home, especially concerning the pilot lights on our older gas range. Elijah knows how to exit the house and use his cellphone to call 911, his parents, and his parents' friends in the event of a fire or other emergency. We also revisited safely navigating the Internet and social media. We continue to keep an open, healthy, and honest dialogue with Elijah concerning drugs, alcohol, general hygiene, personal care, sexuality, and sex. Elijah has also learned a fair amount about human development and childcare while helping to care for his toddler sibling.
These two are always up to shenanigans

Physical Education:
Elijah walks, dances, engages in unstructured play outdoors, and enjoys swimming whenever he can.
Elijah playing badminton with friends
Elijah getting a score while playing badminton
Fine Arts:
Elijah enjoys making and trading Artist Trading Cards. Elijah enjoys listening to a variety of music via YouTube, the radio, and our personal family collection, including the music that his father writes and produces. Elijah utilises computer software, iOS applications, and gaming software to create music for his video game designs and for pleasure.
Elijah drumming with Hazel