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!

2020-21 School Year–Week Twelve

Hymn of the Week–“For All the Saints” (Lutheran Service Book #677)

I’m so happy it’s finally November (even if it has been unusually warm the last few days)!

On Monday, we took our annual walk around Creve Coeur Lake…it was the perfect day for it, and there was still plenty of fall color to see. And most importantly, we got out of the house!

After our very rare field trip day, we got back to our regular work. Turkey and Bunny learned the chain rule for derivatives in calculus. They started reading two new books for history: American Nations and Light in the Dark Belt. Now that they’ve learned about how muscles work in advanced biology, they’re learning about specific muscles/muscle groups.

Ladybug worked with adding, subtracting, and multiplying systems of equations in algebra. She learned how elements are grouped on the periodic table in science. She also learned how to write a scientific paper. We finished reading The Trojan War. In history, she and Chickadee read about the Oregon Trail.

Chickadee started carrying in multiplication in math. Her writing lessons focused on passages from 101 Dalmatians. She learned a bit more about migration in science. We read about the first theater performance of Mr. Popper’s Penguins.

Ladybug and Chickadee put the finishing touches on their election lapbooks this week. The biggest addition was the “Vocabinet,” which summarized all the terms they’ve learned over the last month:

Both Ladybug and Chickadee were very proud of their finished projects!

Next week will be a pretty normal week, and then we’ll add in our Thanksgiving studies!

2019-20 School Year–Week Nine

Let’s do something different this week, and recap all the special activities first!

We attended Legends and Lanterns in St. Charles, MO, last Saturday. If I was going to count a Halloween event as a field trip, this would be it. In addition to being a lot of fun, there’s also a lot to learn about characters from history and literature, and it’s become one of our family’s favorite annual events!

We took a four-mile walk around Creve Coeur Lake last Monday when Moose had the day off. This is another favorite annual event, but we missed out on it last year due to my broken ankle. We may actually repeat this activity later in the fall, when the fall foliage is at its peak!

And Thursday after school, we visited Braeutigum Orchards to pick a pumpkin (or two!):

Now on to the normal “stuff.” Turkey and Bunny worked on proving trigonometric identities in pre-calculus. In writing the practiced drafting questions without bias. They finally started “The Paradiso” in their study of The Divine Comedy. In physics, they learned about the parabolic motion of a projectile.

Ladybug worked with English and metric conversions in pre-algebra. She finished the chapter on simple machines in science. We started Anne of Green Gables, a book I really enjoy…I hope Ladybug will, too! She wrote a 600 word essay about horses using the brainstorming map she created last week.

Chickadee reviewed telling time in math. She also practiced counting by sevens. She continued to read about Venus in science. She started memorizing her fourth poem in First Language Lessons. She has also been doing a great job with her memory work in catechesis!

I don’t think I have anything particularly exciting on the schedule for this week, which is ok…we could use a couple of quiet days!

2017-18 School Year–Week Twelve+

Two weeks ago, I mentioned that we had a busy week ahead, and I wasn’t sure how much school we were going to get done. We did have school, but only for a few days, so I’m going to combine that with this week’s wrap-up.

In addition to a couple of days of regular school work last week, we did a few fun things, as well. We celebrated the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation, and three of the children even got to participate in a mass children’s choir at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. It was very exciting to be part of that historic event!

We started on one of my favorite November traditions last week…we’re assembling our yearly “Thankful Tree!” As far as I can remember, the first year we did this was 2009, and that tree had handprints for leaves. We’ve also done some other variations on it over the years, including a Thankful Wreath, and maybe a Thankful Turkey, as well. Since at least 2011, though, we’ve used the current format. Laminating all those leaves was a pain at the time, but they sure have served us well!

We also went to the St. Louis Public Library Central Library to see the “We Are Shakespeare” exhibit. I almost ran out of time on that one, because it closed last weekend. It was a really cool exhibit, and I’m glad we made it!

We also took advantage of the nice weather on one of Moose’s days off last week to take a nature walk around Creve Coeur Lake. We saw snakes and birds, lots of cool leaves and fruits/nuts, and tons of other people out on bikes and boats enjoying the beautiful day.

This week was a little more standard. We got back to our regular religion lessons, after taking a break for the Reformation. Turkey and Bunny wrapped up another unit in their books, but not before they learned about the Tabernacle, and the positions of all the different tribes when the set up camp around it. Ladybug read a story that was not too familiar to her…the tale of Gideon. Chickadee learned about Elijah and the prophets of Baal.

Ladybug is working on long division in math. She does not enjoy it. She is good at it, though, which is important. Turkey and Bunny worked with regular polygons. They found out how to find the measures of the interior and exterior angles of various shapes. Chickadee is still working on counting larger numbers, and she’s getting pretty good at it!

We had a lot of fun in science this week. Turkey and Bunny have been learning about diffusion and osmosis, and they got to do a few cool experiments to see how they work. Their favorite experiment involved an egg. First, they soaked it in vinegar to remove the shell (which they’ve done in the past). Then they soaked it in syrup, to see which way the liquid moved (out of the egg into the syrup). After that, they soaked it in water, again to see which way the liquid moved (from the water into the egg). They took measurements along the way, and were very impressed with the differences they recorded! Ladybug watched every step of their experiment and was fascinated by it, even as she was learning about Old World apes in her science class.

History has also been interesting. Even though they’re using different texts, Turkey and Bunny’s and Ladybug’s lessons have overlapped again. They’ve all been learning about Babylon and Assyria. We’ve talked about rulers such as Tiglath-Pileser III and Shalmaneser V. We’ve also made some connections to Bible history, even though our religion lessons haven’t gotten there yet.

The girls had a fun little activity this week. We’ve been anxiously awaiting the release of the Lego Ideas “Women of NASA” set, and we finally received our copy. I decided since there are exactly three vignettes in the set that the girls should be the ones to build it. Turkey still enjoyed reading about the women depicted in the set (I love that Lego included that information in the instruction book) even though he didn’t get to help build it. It’s a great little set, and looks right at home next to our Saturn V rocket!

Next week, we’ll be starting on our annual Thanksgiving study…I can’t believe how quickly that holiday is approaching!

Fall at Creve Coeur Lake

We took advantage of the beautiful weather and Moose’s day off on Thursday to visit Creve Coeur Park and walk the almost four mile loop around the lake. We saw some beautiful fall color (although not as much as I would have liked), a couple of different kinds of snakes, and some gorgeous herons. We also saw runners, bikers, a few people in kayaks, and even a sailboat…apparently we weren’t the only ones who wanted to take advantage of the lovely November day!

Chickadee Thursday

Just like we did last November, today we visited Creve Coeur Park, where we enjoyed time on the playground, had a picnic lunch, and walked the 3.7 mile trail around the lake. It was a beautiful November day, and Chickadee had a great time!

2016-17 School Year–Week Ten

I’m pretty sure the first week of November is always a little crazy, but I’m not really sure why!

We made it back to Lutheranism 101 this week, after our study of denominations in One Christ, Many Creeds. We also reviewed the events of the Reformation on Monday, which included watching The Reformation Polka.

Math was pretty easy this week. Turkey and Bunny have been working with solving inequalities, as well as graphing them. Ladybug has continued to work on finding the factors of numbers, and is also working on multiplying three digit numbers.

Ladybug finished the chapter on aquatic herps in science. She really enjoyed learning about aquatic toads and frogs! Turkey and Bunny also finished the chapter they were working on in science, about water. They still have to take the test before they move onto the next module.

In history¬†we have been learning about South America, Africa, and Australia in the late 1800s. I’m really enjoying learning about some of these events with the children. While I did learn a lot about history in junior high and high school, I didn’t learn as much about what was going on in some of the world’s more far-flung locations as we are learning about now.

We finally made it to Creve Coeur Park for a fall field trip. The weather wasn’t as nice as I was hoping, but we did get to see some good fall color and some interesting animals, and we enjoyed the 3.7 mile walk around the lake.

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We’re going to do things a little different next week, to try to spend as much time as we can with Moose, who only has two days of school (and a birthday!). We have plans for two different field trips…I can’t wait!