# 2023-24 School Year–Week Thirteen

Ladybug used the Law of Sines to find angles and sides of a non right triangle in pre-calculus. She read about the downfall of Licinius and the reuniting of the Roman Empire under Constantine in religion. She continued reading “The Purgatorio” in The Divine Comedy. In physics, she started a new chapter on uniform circular motion and gravity. She reviewed punctuation in grammar. In history, she read about the threat of Genghis Khan moving west.

Chickadee found the least common denominator between a pair of fractions and compared fractions in math. She started a chapter on the circulatory system in science. In history, she read about the English Code of Chivalry and knights, plus the Samurai in Japan. She learned some advanced pronouns, including possessive and indefinite, in grammar. We continued reading The Hobbit. In religion, she finished the section on the first three kings of Israel, ending with Solomon and the building of the Temple. In writing, she reviewed writing and outlining a scientific description.

We also started our traditional “Thanksgiving School” by reading some of our favorite Thanksgiving-themed books and visiting Cahokia Mounds. It was actually a fairly warm day to be there, which was a little disappointing, and we were worried that we weren’t going to see any deer, but we did finally run across some, so it was a good trip!

Next week, the plan is to wrap up a few things we didn’t finish this week, and to do a few more fun Thanksgiving activities before the real Thanksgiving fun begins!

We had a fun time visiting Cahokia Mounds this week…Chickadee was especially excited about the deer we saw!

# 2022-23 School Year–Week Fourteen

We started the week with another favorite field trip…we took a hike around Cahokia Mounds. The Interpretive Center is still closed, so we couldn’t go in there, but we did take a trail we’ve never been down before, and really enjoyed seeing some different things (and we also came across several deer!).

Ladybug worked on calculating percents in algebra 2. She learned about moles (the measurement, not the animal) in chemistry. In history, she read about the deaths of Justinian and Khosru of Persia. We started the last section of The Scarlet Letter. She worked on writing non-linear dialogue in creative writing. Although we took a break from reading The Fellowship of the Ring to focus on some of our favorite Thanksgiving stories, we did bake Bilbo’s Eleventy-First Birthday Cake (even though it’s also not currently his birthday!):

Chickadee reviewed time zones in math and worked on converting units of time. She started learning about rodents in science, by learning what makes a rodent a rodent. We continued to read about the ancient Greeks in history, including their alphabet and how it relates to ours, and some of the stories of Homer. She continued to identify prepositional phrases in grammar, focusing on ones that work as adjective phrases.

Next week will be a short week of mostly fun and catching up, and then Thanksgiving!

On Monday, we braved the unseasonably chilly weather to visit Cahokia Mounds. Not only did we climb to the top of Monks Mound, we took a different trail for our walk, where we really enjoyed exploring new scenery and looking for deer!

# A Brisk November Morning at Cahokia Mounds

Yesterday we made our every-November visit to Cahokia Mounds. We took a different trail this time, and in spite of the chilly weather, we were treated to some great views on our four-mile hike!

# 2021-22 School Year–Week Thirteen+

This time, I’m wrapping up a week, plus a couple of days of school!

Ladybug learned how to calculate the area of a circle and an ellipse in geometry. She learned about Roman Catholicism in her study of Christian denominations. In biology, she wrapped up her study of cellular energy by learning about cellular respiration and fermentation. She finished the second part of Beowulf. She finished reading Invincible Louisa, and is now working on Little Men.

Chickadee is starting to lay the foundation for long division in math…I’m a little scared! She finished the chapter on primeval reptiles in her science book by learning about pliosaurs and ichthyosaurs. We’re still trying to untangle Zeus’s family tree in her literature study of Dâ€™Aulairesâ€™ Book of Greek Myths! After Ladybug finished it, she started reading Invincible Louisa…it’s interesting to listen to her compare the lives of Louisa May Alcott and Laura Ingalls Wilder!

Over the last seven school days, we also read some of our favorite Thanksgiving books:

• Native Homes
• Tapenum’s Day
• On the Mayflower
• Sarah Morton’s Day
• Samuel Eaton’s Day
• If You Were At…The First Thanksgiving
• Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving
• Thanksgiving: A Harvest Celebration
• An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving
• Sarah Gives Thanks
• Milly and the Macy’s Parade
• Pardon That Turkey
• Over the River and Through the Woods
• Time for Cranberries
• A Turkey for Thanksgiving
• The Night Before Thanksgiving

This week, we wrapped up a few regular school things, and had some Thanksgiving fun! We visited Cahokia Mounds and had a lovely nature walk, where we saw lots of deer and even a few turkeys. We also made the 10-story climb up Monks Mound.

And we did a couple of fun turkey crafts, including my favorite, hand-and-footprint turkeys:

Next week, we get to start some of our Advent activities, not to mention the countdown to Christmas vacation!

# The Top Five–Photos of 2020

For my final “Top Five” list of 2020, I’m looking at photos that were taken the few times we actually went somewhere, starting with this wolf we saw at Brookfield Zoo back in January:

One of the last places Bunny and I went was to the Fabulous Fox Theatre to see Riverdance in February:

We took a lovely walk around Creve Coeur Lake in November:

Later that month, we attended Garden Glow at the Missouri Botanical Garden. Because the event started earlier than usual, we had the added bonus of not just seeing beautiful lights, but also a carpet of bright yellow gingko leaves!

When we visited Cahokia Mounds in November, I thought this tree stump was really cool:

It wasn’t hard to choose these pictures, because I just didn’t have many pictures taken away from home from which to choose. But in a way, that made these moments more special, and helped me appreciate the beauty around me in a way I might not have otherwise!

# A Chilly Morning at Cahokia Mounds

One annual tradition that we didn’t have to change too much due to COVID-19 was our Thanksgiving-adjacent trip to Cahokia Mounds. We decided to go on Wednesday morning, and it was the perfect clear, chilly weather to enjoy the climb up Monks Mound. I actually think we had the clearest view of St. Louis and the surrounding area that we’ve ever enjoyed!

After making our way back down from the top of Monks Mound in the midst of some biting wind gusts, we took what we call our “Turkey Walk” along one of the trails across the highway. We actually walked farther on the trail than we have in the past (we were never really sure where it went before; this year, we decided to find out!), and while we didn’t see any turkeys, we did see tons of deer and even a woodpecker!

The only real loss this year was not being able to visit the Interpretive Center, but we’ve done that so often in the past, we didn’t miss too much. The upside was that Moose got to come with us…his school schedule hasn’t always allowed him to, but this year, he has way more flexibility thanks to distance learning!

# 2020-21 School Year–Week Fourteen

Hymn of the Week–“Now Thank We All Our God” (Lutheran Service Book #895)

I always enjoy the week before Thanksgiving in school, because not only do we read all of our favorite Thanksgiving books, this is also usually the week we visit Cahokia Mounds, which we did on Wednesday. It was a beautiful, clear, chilly day, and we had most of the trail to ourselves, which made our masks pretty unnecessary. I’m extra thankful for the few traditions we can continue to do in this very strange year!

As for the rest of the week…Turkey and Bunny continued to work with derivatives in calculus…I guess that’s pretty much all they’ll be doing for the near future. They started reading A Tale of Two Cities…I think the themes of the book are going to very timely and appropriate. They read about Yankeedom and New Netherland in American Nations.

Ladybug multiplied binomials by trinomials in algebra. She finished the first section of Treasure Island. In science, she read about cohesion, adhesion, and surface tension. She and Chickadee learned about the Russo-Japanese War and the Treaty of Portsmouth in history.

Chickadee continued to practice division in math. She finished the chapter on birds’ nests in science. Instead of starting a new book right before Thanksgiving, we read some extra Thanksgiving stories together. She learned about conjunctions in grammar.

Next week will be a super short week of school because of Thanksgiving, so I’ll save my next wrap-up for two weeks from now…have a happy Thanksgiving!