2017-18 School Year–Weeks Twenty-Six through Twenty-Eight

The last three weeks of school just flew by! Between St. Patrick’s Day, two birthdays, Holy Week and Easter, I just haven’t had time to stop and think about what we’ve been doing until now…and I’m not sure I can even remember all of it, at that!

I do know that math has been going along just fine. Turkey and Bunny have gone through several units on different proofs, and we’re all surviving. Ladybug has been working on multiplying and dividing numbers with decimals, and that has also gone well. And Chickadee is still practicing her subtracting on a number line, and doing a good job of it!

We’ve spent a lot of time in China in our history lessons over the last few weeks. Turkey, Bunny, and Ladybug have all been learning about the Warring States, the Qin Dynasty, Shi Huangdi and his terra-cotta army, and the Great Wall of China. They haven’t all been learning about the same things at exactly the same time, though, so I’ve gotten a little confused, worrying that I’m repeating myself!

Even with all of our busyness, we found time for one of my favorite kindergarten crafts on the first day of spring…Chickadee had a great time making a picture using tissue paper that shows all four seasons:

We’re almost done with The Canterbury Tales already. We have enjoyed each of the tales we’ve read, and I continue to be impressed with how well those stories have stood up to the test of time. I had Turkey and Bunny each write their own tale, and I was very impressed with what they were able to come up with. And Ladybug didn’t want to be left out, so she wrote a tale, as well, and she also did a great job!

In science, Ladybug finished learning about dinosaurs, and Turkey and Bunny wrapped up the first of two chapters on invertebrates. Everyone gets to learn about arthropods next, and I’m already dreading all the spider pictures we’ll be looking at! We did have a chance to look at a hydra under the microscope this week, and that was really interesting:

Hopefully life will slow down a bit for the next few weeks, and I can get back to my regular wrap-up schedule before the school year is done!

2017-18 Curriculum

We’re getting dangerously close to the end of the school year, so I guess I should share the curriculum we’ve been using. My usual disclaimer applies…the beginning of the school year was so long ago, I can’t promise that I’ve remembered everything we’ve used all year!

Religion

For Turkey and Bunny

  • God’s Old Testament People

For Ladybug

  • One Hundred Bible Stories and workbook

For Chickadee

  • A Child’s Garden of Bible Stories and workbook

Math

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Math-U-See Geometry

For Ladybug

  • Horizons Math 5

For Chickadee

  • Horizons Math K

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Writing Strands Level Five
  • Wordly Wise 3000, Book Nine
  • Analytical Grammar

For Ladybug

  • Spelling Workout E
  • Handwriting Without Tears Cursive Success Grade Four
  • Wordly Wise 3000, Book Five
  • Writing with Ease Level Four

For Chickadee

  • Sonlight Language Arts K
  • Fun Tales
  • Explode the Code Primers
  • A Reason for Handwriting K

Literature (all with accompanying Memoria Press guides)

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
  • Beowolf
  • The Canterbury Tales
  • Henry V

For Ladybug

  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
  • Heidi
  • The Canterbury Tales

History

For Turkey and Bunny

  • The History of the Ancient World

For Ladybug

  • Story of the World volume 1 and supplemental materials

Science

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Apologia Exploring Creation with Biology

For Ladybug

  • Apologia Exploring Creation with Zoology: Land Animals of the Sixth Day

For Chickadee

  • The Berenstain Bears’ Big Book of Science and Nature

Electives

  • Duoligno (Italian, German, and Spanish)
  • The Art of Civilized Conversation
  • A Rulebook for Arguments
  • All About Korea (during the Winter Olympics)

Read-Alouds

  • The Ramona Series
  • The American Girl BeForever series from Kaya through Julie

 

2017-18 School Year–Weeks Twenty-Four and Twenty-Five

It’s been a busy two weeks!

Turkey and Bunny have finally reached the point in geometry that I have been dreading…proofs. I did not enjoy doing proofs when I was in high school. They, however, have taken to them very well so far, so maybe it won’t be as bad as I was expecting! Ladybug has been working with ratios, and determining if two different ratios are equivalent. Chickadee started subtracting this week!

In science, Ladybug has learned all about crocodilians. She started on amphibians, too, and charted the life cycle of a frog. Turkey and Bunny finished a chapter on ecology, where they learned about the water, carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen cycles, among other things.

My students have been all over the place in history. In the last two weeks, we’ve learned about the Corinthian, Pan-Hellenic, and Latin Leagues. We’ve read about Alexander the Great and Asoka. We’ve studied wars, stalemates, and treaties. And our travels have taken us to China, India, Macedonia, Northern Africa, and Italy, in addition to other locations. Of course, that’s including both Turkey’s and Bunny’s study of the History of the Ancient World and Ladybug’s of the Story of the World, but it’s interesting to see how their lessons keep overlapping!

We started the Canterbury Tales this week, and so far, we’re all enjoying it. I will admit to never having read this piece of literature before, and it’s nothing like I was expecting. It’s a true testament to Chaucer’s wit and wisdom that his stories are still so funny and relevant hundreds of years later!

Our schedule for the next few weeks will be a bit erratic with family birthdays and Holy Week coming up, so I’ll be back with another wrap-up in about two weeks!

2017-18 School Year–Week Twenty-Three

Now that the Olympics are over, we’re finally back to our normal school schedule. I really miss watching the Games, but I have to admit to being a bit relieved that we’re not trying to cram so much stuff into every day!

Our religion lessons are really starting to fly by. Chickadee has already been in the New Testament for a few weeks, and Ladybug is about to join her. Turkey and Bunny have made it to Samuel and David…it may sound like they’re significantly behind their siblings, but they’re doing an overview of just the Old Testament this year, so they’re actually quite far into the book they’re using!

Speaking of being far into different subjects, as crazy as it sounds, we’ve already finished some things for the year. Ladybug completed both her vocabulary and handwriting books. Turkey and Bunny also completed vocabulary for the year, and worked hard to also finish off their ninth grade writing course. And we finally finished the last book in the Ramona series!

Turkey and Bunny were introduced to theorems in geometry this week…they’re getting dangerously close to doing proofs! Ladybug worked more with adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers. Chickadee has become really comfortable with double-digit numbers, and is starting to be able to tell time!

Everybody has been learning about Rome in history…even Moose, who is learning about Ancient Rome at his school…he’s been eager to compare notes, and find out if Ladybug, in particular, has learned about the same things he has!  It has been kind of a relief to me to get away from some of the more complicated Greek and Egyptian names, and focus on some people who are little more well-known, pronunciation-wise!

Turkey and Bunny finished their chapter on macroevolution in science, and are excited to be getting closer to their dissection experiments. (Their teacher is still kind of on the fence on that one, which is weird, because I always enjoyed dissection when I was a student!) Ladybug finished learning about lizards, and will be starting on the rest of the reptiles and amphibians next.

Now that we’re in March, the end of the school year is on the horizon, which is kind of unbelievable to me. But we still have a lot of fun and interesting things to learn before we’re done!

2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics Wrap-Up

PyeongChang 2018 was another fun Olympiad, and we’re sad it’s over! Here’s a look back at all the fun we had learning about South Korea and the Olympics!

In addition to reading lots of cool stories, we did several crafts projects:

We tried a variety of foods, not just from South Korea, but all around Asia, as well, and we threw in a wintry tea party just for fun!

I even did a segment on KFUO’s “Coffee Hour” about homeschooling through the Olympics:

The Coffee Hour – Olympics Homeschool Style

And a final look at our medal chart…we tracked seven of the top ten countries!

It’s always sad to see the Olympics come and go so quickly, but I’m sure Tokyo 2020 will be here before we know it!

2017-18 School Year–Week Twenty-Two

Believe it or not, we have focused on things other than the Olympics over the last few weeks, so I’ll try to remember what some of those things were now.

Math has been fun. Turkey and Bunny have been working with special triangles (both 45-45-90 and 30-60-90), and they were both surprised by how easy they found the lessons to be! Ladybug has been adding and subtracting mixed numbers with different denominators, and I think she wishes her math was a little easier. Chickadee has pretty much mastered counting to 100, and now she’s working on skip counting, both with even and odd numbers.

History has been really interesting, too. Ladybug spent some time learning about the Americas in ancient days, and then moved on to learn about the beginnings of Rome. Turkey and Bunny learned about the Persian wars…that was a lot of information to cover! They’re starting on the Peloponnesian War next.

In science, Turkey and Bunny have been studying macroevolution. We’ve had a lot of interesting discussions. Ladybug learned about snakes, and then started a section on lizards. We especially enjoyed learning about the “Jesus lizard!”

We didn’t abandon our Olympic studies altogether…we also learned a bit more about Korean culture, and finished reading the last of our Korean folktales. Chickadee has really liked helping keep our medal chart up-to-date, and we’ve all enjoyed learning more about some of the sports in the Winter Olympics, as well as trying to learn something about the various countries we’ve been watching participate. I know we’ll all be sad when the Olympics are over!

Next week is going to be…well, kind of boring, I fear. With the Olympics wrapping up this weekend, it’s just going to be plain old February again, but at least March is right around the corner!

2017-18 School Year–Week Twenty-One

I think last week just might be one of the busiest school weeks we’ve ever had! Because it was so crazy, I’m just going to hit the highlights…and there were a lot of them!

On Monday, we had our 100th Day of School (Observed). We technically hit the milestone a few weeks ago, but as far as our “Doodlebug Countdown” was concerned, Monday was the day. I always try to make an extra big deal of the 100th Day when we have a kindergartener, so I assembled 100 of various objects from around the house…Lego bricks, safety pins, m&ms, cotton balls, popcorn kernels, crayons, pennies, and flashcards, all so Chickadee could see that 100 of different things can look (and feel) very different! She even counted to 100 all by herself…twice! To continue our 100th Day celebration, we also took a trip to the Missouri Botanical Garden, where we visited the Orchid Show, and took a walk around the Chinese Garden in anticipation of the Lunar New Year:

Wednesday was also a busy day, as it was both Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day. We were busy at church with acolyting and altar guild, but we found time for a Valentine’s Day craft, as well…”Valenswines!”

And on Friday, we continued our celebration of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics, and added in a Lunar New Celebration, as well. This gave us an opportunity to learn not only how the holiday is celebrated in South Korea, but several other Asian countries, as well. We had two more fun craft projects to add the shield kites we made last week…fans and lanterns:

An another fun dinner, where we tried foods from several Asian countries:

We’ve also kept up with our Olympics medal chart all week:

Don’t be fooled…we did all of our regular school work, too. But that’s not nearly as fun to write about when we’ve had such an exciting week!