A Look Back at the First Year of College

As of last week, Turkey and Bunny have finished their first year of college! I’m not directly involved in their education anymore, but as their former teacher, I of course have to take a look back at how they did academically. They both had straight As both semesters, which also means they both made the Dean’s List. They each had at least one professor they really liked, and with whom they were able to take a class both semesters, and I’m super grateful for that, because I think those kinds of connections are really important. They were also both asked to join the honor society Phi Theta Kappa, which is fantastic, because that can open doors to scholarships when they transfer to their chosen four-year colleges after graduation next spring.

All that to say, I’m really, really proud of them, and I also guess it’s safe to say that I didn’t totally screw up their education in the 13 years they were students in my little homeschool!

2021-22 School Year–The Final Field Trip

The 2021-22 School Year officially ended a week ago, but yesterday, we took our final trip of the year…we visited the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station, something I promised Chickadee we would do after she finished her science course about swimming creatures. Since Bunny is done with finals, she was able to come along, too, so we had a full girls’ day out!

There were lots of hands-on opportunities…we even got nibbled by “Doctor Fish” and high-fived by sting rays!

It wasn’t too crowded when we arrived, so we had lots of good views and were able to take our time:

We walked around outside for a bit after we were done:

And we even went inside the Union Station hotel to take a look at their beautiful lobby:

This was a fun field trip, and a great way to wrap-up our school year!

Chickadee Thursday

We might have finished school last week, but today was our final field trip of the 2021-22 school year…we visited the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station to round out Chickadee’s study of swimming creatures!

2021-22 School Year–Week Thirty-Two

And just like that, the 2021-22 school year has come to an end! The week was mostly spending time outdoors (our daily walk is now at about four miles, even in the unpleasant heat we’ve been having!) and wrapping things up.

Ladybug took her final geometry exam (and got an “A”!). She finished the chapter on mammals in biology by reading about learned and innate behaviors, and various forms of conditioning. She also finished her astronomy course by learning about celestial navigation…she even used Google Earth to find the approximate coordinates of our house! We finished her study of religious writings by reading about the Book of Mormon. She read about Constantine in history. To conclude our study of Henry V, we watched The Hollow Crown, episode four.

Chickadee also finished up math by reviewing equations, fractions, and how to cross multiply and divide. We read about sponges in science (we do still have one field trip left related to her study of aquatic animals…stay tuned!). She reviewed all of the parts of speech she’s learned by diagramming some fairly long sentences. We wrapped up our study of US geography by learning about Alaska, Hawaii, and Washington D.C.

As always, we built a Lego set to celebrate the last day of school (and since Turkey and Bunny were home at an unusual time due to their finals schedule, they were able to lend a hand):

This was a different year for all of us, and it took some getting used to. I’m really glad we did some very different things this year instead of trying to force things to be “normal” (reading Little Women, especially outside under our tree when the weather was nice, and cooking together were my favorite moments of the school year), and even though things felt strange a lot of the time, as always, I’m sad to see the school year end!

2021-22 School Year–Week Thirty-One

I can’t believe we finished the penultimate week of the 2021-22 school year!

If I’m being honest, we really didn’t do a ton of school work this week. We did a lot of cooking/baking/prepping for Star Wars Day/Revenge of the Fifth. And we walked a lot…we’re up to about 3.5 miles a day. We’ve been really good about walking daily when the weather is nice since the schools here shut down in 2020, but we’ve really been trying to go the extra distance for the last month or so, to prepare for our trip, because we don’t want to run out of steam early in the day when we’re at the theme parks. But time outside in the fresh air and physical activity are important, too, so I’m not going to stress too much about how much we did in the classroom this late in the year!

Ladybug learned more trigonometric ratios in geometry…cosign, cosecant, and cotangent. That was her last lesson of the school year! In biology, she started reading about mammals. We talked about the Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita in her study of religious writings. She read about Caligula and Nero in history.

Chickadee reviewed ratios in math. She read about Saul’s conversion in her overview of the Bible. We learned about corals and coral reefs in science. We have almost finished our study of US geography…she learned about the states in the Pacific timezone this week. We continued to read about the White House.

Next week will be a short week because we’re taking a day off for Ladybug’s birthday, and then we’ll say hello to summer vacation!

2021-22 School Year–Week Thirty

We started this school week with a field trip to the St. Louis Zoo! This is basically a spring tradition (except in 2020, which we don’t talk about), and I really look forward to this particular zoo trip every year!

We were fortunate to get see a fairly young Somali Wild Ass with her mother while we were there…she’s so cute!

While we were in Forest Park, we also stopped to see the tulips on Art Hill, which is one of my favorite spring scenes in St. Louis!

Ladybug learned about trigonometric functions in geometry. She read about the different classes of arthropods in biology. After completing the play last week, we finished our discussion of Henry V…she just has to complete her final paper on the book. In history, she read about Julius Caesar, Caesar Augustus, and Tiberius. We discussed the Analects of Confucius in her study of religious texts. She learned about the asteroid belt and the different types of asteroids in astronomy.

Chickadee created line, bar, and pictographs in math. She learned how to diagram interjections in grammar. We read about jellyfish and sea anemones in science. She learned about Texas and Oklahoma in geography. We started reading a book about the White House…we probably won’t get to go on a tour on our trip this summer, but I figure we might see it from the outside, so she should know something about it!

Just nine days left in the 2021-22 School Year!

2021-22 School Year–Week Twenty-Nine

After a long weekend for Easter, we got back to work on Tuesday…it’s so difficult when Easter is late and we’re so close to the end!

Ladybug worked with translation, reflection, dilation, and rotation on graphs in geometry. In history, she read about Antioches IV Epiphanes and Judas Maccabeus. She started the first of two chapters on invertebrates in biology. We finished reading Henry V. In her study of religious texts, she learned about the Quran.

Chickadee started converting measurements within the metric system in math. We continued reading the White Stallion of Lipizza. She started learning about cnidarians in science. In grammar, she learned how to diagram adverbs that describe adjectives or other adverbs. We read about the resurrection story in her Bible overview, as well as the stories that take place immediately after the resurrection.

I also worked on a little project during school this week. No, it’s not a countdown to the last day of school…it’s a countdown to when we leave for our (postponed) family vacation!

Speaking of countdowns, there are only 14 days of school left!!!

2021-22 School Year–Weeks Twenty-Seven and Twenty-Eight(ish)

Since Holy Week is always a short week of school for us, I decided to wait and wrap up last week’s lessons with the few days we had this week.

Ladybug worked on proving triangles similar in geometry. In biology she learned about the structure of various types of worms, including roundworms ad flatworms. We moved on to a new study in religion about different religious texts, starting with the Old and New Testaments and then the Gospel of Thomas. She finished Act 4 of Henry V. In history, she read about Judas Maccabaeus and the Seleucids.

Chickadee skipped ahead in her Bible story book to read the Holy Week stories. Since she completed her final literature study of the year already, we began reading the White Stallion of Lipizza together, just for fun. In science, she learned about sea stars and sand dollars. In math, she practiced measuring with centimeters and millimeters. Her study of geography took her to the southeastern United States, where she learned about one of our vacation destinations, Florida.

We’ll get back to work next Tuesday, at which point, we’ll have less than a month of school left!

2021-22 School Year–Week Twenty-Six

April is here!

Ladybug proved right triangles in geometry. Her study of denominations is almost complete…this week, she learned about Pentecostalism/Assemblies of God churches. She finished the chapter on plant structure in biology…next week, we start reading about animals! Act III of Henry V is finally complete, and she wrote what might have been her best paper ever about Henry’s famous “Once more unto the breach” speech. In history, she had an introduction to Alexander the Great…next week, she’ll read more about him and his empire.

Chickadee practiced rounding decimals in math. We finished the stories from the Old Testament in her Bible overview. She read about octopuses in science. We continued to read fairy tales from The Blue Fairy Book. She started memorizing a new poem in grammar, practiced writing direct quotes, and began a big review of pretty much everything she’s learned so far.

Today Chickadee wanted to try a recipe form Much Ado About Anne, a book she’s reading from The Mother-Daughter Book Club series, so we made chocolate banana smoothies for lunch:

I can’t believe that the school year ends next month!

2021-22 School Year–Week Twenty-Five

After a much needed spring break, we got back to work last week…but first, last Monday, a field trip to Laumeier Sculpture Park!

Now on to the school work. Ladybug learned how to use AAS and ASA to prove triangles congruent in geometry. She learned how the ELCA is different, even though they are also Lutherans, in her study of denominations. In biology she started studying the structure of plants. We began Act III of Henry V. In history, she read about the Persian and Peloponnesian Wars.

Chickadee started adding decimals in math. We read the story of Queen Esther in religion. She reviewed sentence diagramming in grammar. We read some of the stories in The Blue Fairy Book that weren’t covered in the literature guide. In science, she started learning about cephalopods, beginning with cuttlefish and giant squid.

We’ll have another short break around Easter, but the end of the school year is already rapidly approaching!