2023-24 School Year–Fifteen

This week we wrapped up a bunch of stuff before Christmas, and also started our annual “Christmas School!” We’re studying hymns this year…I choose two Advent, six Christmas, and one Epiphany hymn to make sure we covered the entire time of Christmas. We’re paining a scene to represent each one on a wooden square, which we plan to assemble quilt-style when all nine are complete. Here’s a peek at some of what we’ve done so far:

On to the regular work…Ladybug learned how to convert from degrees to radians and also from radians to degrees in pre-calculus. She finished reading “The Purgatario” section of The Divine Comedy…she’ll finish the book in the new year. In American history, she read about the events and people leading up the Civil War, including the gold rush, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the Seneca Falls Convention, and Sojourner Truth.

Chickadee multiplied and divided with larger decimals in math. She learned about arteries, capillaries, and veins in science, and how the blood travels through the heart to the rest of the body and back again. We continued reading The Hobbit. She learned how to diagram demonstrative and interrogative pronouns in grammar. We read about Richard the Lionhearted, John Lackland, and Robin Hood in history.

We also went to this month’s “History Exploration Day” at the Missouri History Museum, which focused on Holiday Nostalgia and Family Traditions. It was a lot of fun, even if seeing what is counted as “nostalgia” these days made me feel old!

Next week is more Christmas School…we have five more hymns to study, plus some secular Christmas carols. We’re also planning on watching as many version of The Nutcracker as possible, and hopefully we’ll bake some Christmas cookies, too!

2023-24 School Year–Week Fourteen

Back to work after a light week for Thanksgiving!

Ladybug worked with the Law of Cosines in pre-calculus. In physics, she learned how to calculate frequency and period. She read about the fifth and sixth (unsuccessful) Crusades in history. In religion she read about the Arian controversy. She got to write a fun paper imagining she was interviewing the mice from “Three Blind Mice”…it was very clever! In health she read about digestion.

Chickadee learned how to borrow when subtracting mixed numbers in math. In religion, she read about some of Israel’s bad kings, as well as Elijah. She started the chapter on the cardiovascular system in science. In grammar, she learned the difference between transitive and intransitive verbs. We continued reading The Hobbit. In history, we read about El Cid and Saladin.

To welcome the month of December, today we took a walk around our town’s Christkindlmarkt and checked out all of the displays from the local gingerbread contest…our town does Christmas well!

Next week will be a mixture of regular subjects and the start of our annual “Christmas School”…this year, we’ll be focusing on Christmas carols!

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!

2023-24 School Year–Week Twelve

Last week was a long short week! We took Friday off, but the rest of the week seemed interminable! I guess that’s just what happens as the holidays approach.

Ladybug used double angle and half angle identities in pre-calculus. She did problems calculating torque in physics. She began reading The Divine Comedy‘s “Purgatario.” In religion, she read Eusebius’ account of the building of the church at Tyre. She read about Thomas Jefferson, the Louisiana Purchase, and the explorations of Lewis and Clark in US history. In health, she finished reading about the five senses, focusing on touch, smell, and taste. She read about the Magna Carta in history.

Chickadee learned how to calculate range, mean, mode, and median in math. She read about William the Conquerer and feudalism in history. We finished the chapter on the respiratory system in science. We started reading The Hobbit…I really think the first chapter, with all of the dwarves showing up at Bilbo’s door, is my favorite part of the whole book! She reviewed conjugating irregular verbs in grammar. We started reading Happy Birthday Felicity.

This year, we also made a craft for Martinmas for the first time. I found the directions for these lanterns last year, but the idea of Mod Podge was too intimidating for me at the time…this year, I decided I was ready. They were fun to make, and so pretty with the light shining through!

We’re hoping to make our annual trip to Cahokia Mounds sometime this week!

2023-24 School Year–Week Eleven

Ladybug worked with sum and difference identities in pre-calculus. After finishing the chapter in physics that introduced Newton’s Laws, she began a chapter applying the Second Law. She finished “The Inferno,” but she’s not done with The Divine Comedy, because we actually read the entire work! She reviewed capitalization rules in grammar. In health, she continued working through a chapter on the five senses focusing this week on the eyes and ears. In religion, she read about the Council of Nicea. She also read about the early days of the US government in US history. In world history she read about the struggle for Byzantine’s throne following the sacking of Constantinople, as well as the rise of the Cathers in western Francia.

Chickadee added and subtracted decimals with varying place values in math. In religion, she read about the end of the time of the Judges in Israel, as well as the first kings. She read about the first kings of England, beginning with Alfred the Great in history. She continued learning about the respiratory system in science, finally making her way to the lungs. In grammar, she learned how to diagram prepositional phrases acting as other parts of speech. We never did start The Hobbit this week, because she was a little under the weather and I let her take it a little easy.

We also put in a group effort to make Reformationsbr├Âtchen for Reformation Day. Chickadee helped make the rolls themselves, and Ladybug made and applied the glaze. They were really delicious, and we had a little fun with Little Luther, too!

It’s almost time for our annual studies of Thanksgiving!

2023-24 School Year–Week Ten

Ladybug verified trig expressions and identities in pre-calculus. She’s almost finished with readings from Eusebius in religion, and she’s very excited about that! In physics, she finished the chapter that introduced Newton’s Laws (not that she’s done with them!). She reviewed the use of possessives in grammar. In history she read about England’s John Softsword and the shogunate in Japan. She continued reading from The Divine Comedy.

Chickadee learned how to do scientific notation and base 2 in math. She started the chapter on the respiratory system in science…so far, she’s learned about the nose and sinuses. In religion, she began reading about the time of the judges. We finished reading both Anne of Green Gables and Felicity’s Surprise. She read about the reign of Charlemagne in history, and also about the Vikings and Erik the Red and Leif Erickson. She practiced diagramming predicate adjectives in grammar.

Here’s a look at the pumpkins they painted…Ladybug made a Stitch pumpkin, and Chickadee made a poison apple:

We also finally made it to Legends and Lanterns, and I think it was extra fun after our fairy tale-themed summer school!

Tasty Tuesday–The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook

Chickadee and I are finishing Anne of Green Gables this week, so while we haven’t tried every recipe in The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook, it’s time to take a look back at the recipes we have tried. We made a lot of desserts, and I think the apple dumplings were my favorite (they were also something I had never made before!). I really like the way we’ve been able to tie cooking and literature together for the last few years!

  • Diana Barry’s Favorite Raspberry Cordial
  • Miss Stacy’s Baked Macaroni
  • White Sands Scalloped Tomatoes
  • Anne’s Liniment Cake
  • Chocolate Caramels
  • Old-Fashioned (Pink) Lemonade
  • Cowcumber Boats
  • Chocolate Goblin’s Food Cake
  • Afternoon Ruby Tea Biscuits
  • Coconut Macaroons
  • Creamy Butterscotch Pudding
  • Thick and Creamy Vegetable Soup
  • Orange Angel Cake
  • Miss Ellen’s Pound Cake
  • Puffy Apple Dumplings
  • Rachel Lynde’s North Shore Fish Cakes
  • Fire and Dew Sweet Potatoes
  • Maritime Gingersnaps

We’ll be taking a break from this cookbook for the time being, but I’m looking forward to coming back to it in the future!

2023-24 School Year–Week Nine

This was a long week. I don’t even know why, but it was a struggle for me. Ladybug read about the persecutions of Decius and Diocletian in religion. In pre-calculus, she had to prove trigonometric identities, and she likes doing proofs about as much I did. In physics, she continued to read about Newton’s laws. She worked with semi-colons and colons in grammar. In world history, she read about the sack of Constantinople in 1204 and the rise and fall of the Mayan Empire. She’s halfway through The Divine Comedy: Hell. In health, she read about peer pressure. She covered some familiar territory with the end of the American Revolution in US history, as well as the beginning of the US as an independent nation.

Chickadee worked with factor trees and exponents in math. She finished the section of her religion book on Moses and Joshua. In grammar, she identified and diagrammed adverbs. We finished the chapter about nutrition in science, focusing on fats and vitamins and minerals. In history, she learned about Clovis and the unification of the Frankish tribes, as well as the Moors in Spain. We’re almost finished reading Anne of Green Gables, so we made one last dinner from The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook: Rachel Lynde’s North Shore Fish Cakes, Fire and Dew Sweet Potatoes, and Maritime Gingersnaps:

Today we took our annual trek around Creve Coeur Lake. It was a little earlier than we’ve gone in recent years, but the weather was perfect, and both Turkey and Moose were available to come with us, so we decided to go sooner rather than later. We didn’t see as much fall color as we’re accustomed to, but there was also more than we were expecting, so it was a win!

2023-24 School Year–Week Eight

This has been a crazy week! We took the day off on Monday, and we might have done it anyway because Moose also had the day off, but the real reason for our long weekend was the story I taped with Rene Knott for the morning news!

Ladybug worked on rewriting a trig function using the cofunction in pre-calculus. She started learning about Newton’s First Law of Motion in physics. In health, we discussed birth order and family dynamics (something I’ve always found fascinating!). She punctuated titles in grammar. In writing, she learned about creating unbiased surveys. She read about the persecution of the Christians under Diocletian and Galerius in religion. In world history, she read about the Third Crusade led by Philip II of France, Richard I of England and Frederick I, Holy Roman Emperor, against Saladin following the capture of Jerusalem. In US history, she read about the French and Indian War, and some famous names started showing up!

Chickadee worked with three-dimensional figures in math. In health, she started a chapter on nutrition, learning about the importance of water and carbohydrates. She read about Australia and New Zealand in the Middle Ages, and we also read a myth about Maui, which had us singing songs from Moana! In grammar, she reviewed the list of prepositions and how to find the object of a preposition in a prepositional phrase. We continued reading Anne of Green Gables…we really don’t have much of the book left! We also baked the perfect fall recipe from The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook…Puffy Apple Dumplings. They were as delicious as they sound!

Today we went to the Missouri History Museum for this month’s “History Exploration Day.” The theme was “Harvest History: St. Louis Agriculture,” and it was the best one of their themed days we’ve been to yet! We all learned a lot, got to do some fun hands-on activities (even I made a craft), and got to meet an adorable calf!

I’m not sure how I’m going to top this week!

2023-24 School Year–Week Seven

Ladybug learned how to find reference angles in pre-calculus. She started reading The Divine Comedy. In history, she read about the Byzantine Empire and the fall of the Comneni dynasty. She finished the chapter on solving two-dimensional motion problems in physics by using the range equation to solve for parabolic motion. She wrote an essay about the three main narrative point-of-view choices in writing. In health, she started a new chapter on interpersonal harmony.

Chickadee reviewed geometry terms in math. In grammar she reviewed coordinating conjunctions. She finished the chapter on the digestive system in science, ending with the renal system. We started reading Felicity’s Surprise. In history she read about the Sui dynasty in China and the Yamato dynasty in Japan. We continued reading Anne of Green Gables and baked Miss Ellen’s Pound Cake from The Anne of Green Gables Cookbook.

And finally, it cooled off just in time for us to go pumpkin picking today! There’s not much that ruins a field trip like trying to pick a pumpkin while it’s hot out, so I was very grateful for the literal change in the wind!