Gas station without pumps

2011 September 30

Home schooling week 4

Filed under: home school — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 19:11
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Following up on Home Schooling week 3, this post describes our fourth week of home schooling.  We had a meeting mid-week with the consultant teacher to touch bases and check on progress.

Nothing new here.  My son is still unhappy with the poor implementation of the WileyOnline  exercises, but has figured out a workaround for the crummy user interface. (He figured out that sometimes breaking things into syllables requires spaces around the hyphens and sometimes prohibits it—the problem of doing exact string matching when approximate string matching is needed.  He had his first test in class and reported that it was easy, but he likes the instructor, so the class is going well.
English reading
 He finished his short essay on Brave New World and has re-read Left Hand of Darkness. His consultant teacher has approved the length of his BNW essay as appropriate for 10th-grade English, but had some feedback on places it can be improved. It is not clear whether he will do an edit or not.
 He added a few more events to the timeline, but he had a misplaced bracket, and so the web page did not work when he tried to show it to his consultant teacher.  He’ll probably have to put the timeline on-line so that he can share it with the teacher (and with other home-school students).
He got the lead villain role in the play he is doing, which pleases him.  He doesn’t like the script or the character, but he is pleased to have a lot of lines and is going to have fun being the villain in a melodrama. He will have to put a lot of time into running lines, since there are so many this time.  Improv has been fun also.
 We had the first real lab meeting with both students present.  We spent the first half of the time getting the new student up to speed on Vpython (he’s never programmed before) and the second half of the time trying to calibrate the two ultrasonic rangefinders.  They are somewhat touchier to work with than I expected.  (I might do a separate post just on the physics class.)
 They made the top-of-tether box and got it mostly soldered.  We had some discussion of the waterproof connector design.  After a phone conversation with my Dad (a long-retired engineer), I decided that they should probably add strain-relief to the cables entering the box.  I’ll discuss that with them this week.
Machine Learning (Science Fair)
He got an input parser written for the data format, and found that part of the description he was given was incorrect (all the data was positive, not in the range [-5..5]).  He has started coding the first machine-learning algorithm, but not gotten very far yet.
Starts next Tuesday.
Physical Education
The usual 4 hours of bicycling (plus nightly sit-ups and leg lifts), but we had one extra this week.  He got a flat 7.5 miles from home, and couldn’t get the tire off, so rode home on a flat.  We spent some time the next day practicing flat fixing.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] up on Home Schooling week 4, this post describes our 2nd month of home schooling.  We had another meeting on Monday with the […]

    Pingback by Home schooling weeks 5–8 « Gas station without pumps — 2011 October 25 @ 17:59 | Reply

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