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 D’Aulaires’ 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!

2021-22 School Year–Week Seven

This was a pretty fun week!

Ladybug learned about transversals and alternate exterior and interior angles in geometry (interestingly, Moose learned about the exact same thing at his school this week!). In grammar, she learned how to diagram adverbs, including prepositional phrases that act like adverbs. She continued learning about ecology in biology with a discussion on biomes and habitats. In history, she read about the first monotheistic religion with the call of Abram, so that was pretty much review. We talked about Mormonism in her study of comparative religions. We read about Meg’s wedding and the birth of the twins in Little Women, and made two new recipes from The Little Women Cookbook…Beef stew with molasses and apple cider vinegar, and chicken salad with grapes and almonds:

Chickadee continued to practice rounding money in math. She learned about walruses, manatees, and dugongs in science. She reviewed everything she’s learned so far this year in grammar. Her dictation assignments in writing have gotten much longer! We took a break from our trip around the world in geography to review the countries we’ve learned about so far and read about how maps and globes developed…next week, we’re going to begin our second loop around the world by visiting a whole new set of countries!

We also had a fun celebration for the feast of St. Michael and All Angels. We prepared a special dinner and dessert (Mediterranean angel hair pasta, and angel food cake with homemade strawberry sauce), and made hand and footprint angels…there’s now glitter everywhere!

We went on our first indoor field trip since before the pandemic began, to pretty much the only place I feel comfortable taking the yet-to-be-vaccinated Chickadee…our church! It is one of the charter congregations of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, and we took a tour of the building, where we learned about not only the history of the structure, but also the congregation and the surrounding community. It was very informative, and even I learned a ton!

I’m not sure how we’ll top the fun we’ve had this week, but at least it’s October now, and we have all of our favorite fall activities to look forward to!

2019-20 School Year–Thanksgiving Week

Thanksgiving week is always a light school week for us…just two full days, plus some fun activities on Wednesday. We do manage to cram a lot into a short time, though! The main theme in our two regular school days last week (aside from our scheduled Thanksgiving reading about modern-day Thanksgiving celebrations, especially the Macy’s parade), was tests, tests, and more tests. It was nice to have so many of those out of the way before the holiday, though!

We always visit Cahokia Mounds around Thanksgiving (well, except for last year, when my ankle was broken), and this year, we went twice! The second time we went, later in November, was actually a more pleasant trip, weather-wise, than our first was…it was a beautiful day!

We also played a game based on one Native American children might have played. I made the pieces years ago, following the directions in More than Moccasins, and it’s still just as much fun to play!

In between helping me make pies on Wednesday, the children also found time to make their hand-and-footprint turkeys for the year. Well, except for Turkey, who discovered that the paper we use is now too small for his hands and feet, so he went with a Minecraft-style bird, instead…I love how creative he is!

Tomorrow we’re back to our regular schedule…I haven’t decided yet if we’re going to have two or three weeks of school before our Christmas break. I also haven’t figured out what ornament we’re going to make this year…I guess I should get started on that!

Christmas Crafts–General

In addition to making lots of cool ornamentsover the last few years, we’ve also had fun making other types of crafts. Not everything has worked the way I envisioned, (the wax paper/melted crayon “stars” are an example of that), and some things, even though meant for children, were so involved that I ended up doing most of the work, (the foam nativity, which is why we no longer do foam crafts!). Most of the crafts have been successful, though,  and all have been enjoyed by the children, (even the ones that didn’t turn out as planned), and a few were so popular that they’ve already been repeated, even though this is only (only?!?) our fourth year of homeschooling!

Christmas Wreaths

Handprint Wreath

Tissue Paper Wreath

Christmas Trees

Handprint Tree

“Stained Glass” Tree

Snowflakes

Pipe Cleaner Snowflake with Pom-Pom “Snow”

Q-Tip Snowflake

Another Q-Tip Snowflake

Basic Paper Snowflake

Stars

A variety of stars made with foil, glitter, and crayons

3-D Stars

Wax Paper/Melted Crayon Stars, appearing with limited success

Angels

Handprint Angel

Paper Plate Angel

Other

The ubiquitous paper chain

Stick puppets of different varieties, (wise men shown here)

The dreaded foam nativity scene

Gingerbread House

Mexican lantern from a “Christmas Around the World” lesson

3-D Poinsettia

Christmas Greetings from Around the World

Stamped & Laminated Cardstock Bookmarks 

Santa Lucia Crown and Star Boy Hat