Saturday, October 6, 2012

Homeschool Weeks 3-6

Here is a little home school update:

In our Rome to the Reformation curriculum we have covered the following topics:  what Roman cities and homes looked like; what life was like in Ancient Rome including art (mosaics and frescos), clothing, drama, social classes; literature, specifically, Virgil and the Aneid; and Roman architecture (arches and aqueducts).  From the historical timeline we covered the time when Antony and Octavian divided lands, Antony and Cleopatra's tragic love story, and Octavian becoming Caesar Augustus.  We also spent some time on Herod as governor of Palestine and the time when he rebuilt the temple.

The emperor with the laurel wreath

Lydia the wealthy lady.  Anna dressed as a slave and I realized I didn't get her picture:(

Very intimidating teaching an emperor

Working with the whole wedge-shaped stones, keystone concept to make our own arch

Our homemade aqueduct

For Roman projects we made a mosaic (from a kit Lydia received on her birthday from the Michigan Bleekers), and also clay pigs which were a typical toy for young children in Rome. 

We continue to learn a few Latin words/roots and have now learned the numbers (1-10 and 100).  We also learned how the months of the year and days of the week were named.

Nicolas has his own physical science curriculum that he does, but the girls are learning about the human body.  We started with the nervous system and most recently have been learning about the five senses and have covered just taste and smell so far.

In Bible we again do our BSF every morning (Genesis).  In our home school curriculum we have been memorizing the books of the the NT and now are learning three verses in Romans:  Romans 3:23, 5:8, 8:28.  Just this week we read through the OT prophecies of Jesus birth/life and the fulfillment in the NT. 

For fine arts we continue to work through art lessons in God and the History of Art.  This is the same book we used last year.  We are also studying composers again this year.  In God's providence we have been learning about Haydn and were assigned to listen to his oratorio, Creation, the same week we were studying the creation in BSF.  I love how God orchestrates all of that.

Our read aloud has been The Bronze Bow, a story about Daniel, a young Jewish man, who hates the Romans and lives during the time of Christ.   Nicolas read it last year for a reading unit so he isn't that excited about it, but the rest of us are thoroughly enjoying it.

Seth continues with his history of the United States.  The first week we read about John Smith and the Jamestown settlement.  The following week we studied the Native Americans reading the book North American Indians.  During this week Seth made his own wigwam and teepee and visited the Blandford Nature Center's wigwam (when Grandpa and Grandma were visiting).  Last week the topic was the Mayflower and the Pilgrims.  We learned all about the Plymouth settlement and did our own experiments with oiled paper for windows and planted corn with pieces of fish.  This week Seth read about the Dutch settling in New Netherland, or New York.  Because the story we read was about bringing cows to the new world and the blessing of having fresh milk, cream and butter we made our own butter.  We melted the butter later that day and put it on our homemade popcorn to eat at Caleb's soccer game!  Somewhere in all of this we watched a DVD from the animated hero series on William Bradford.   We finished our first read aloud,  Squanto, Friend of the Pilgrims and have started our second, The Courage of Sarah Noble.

Wigwam at the nature center

Seth's wigwam and canoe he made

Inside the wigwam

Teepee--painted so cute!

Homemade butter

In Bible Seth spent time learning that "Jesus is the Light of the World"  Once again in God's providence we were talking about this in school at the same time we were studying the creation of light in BSF.  Seth made a beautiful sun wall hanging from crayon pieces and waxed paper.  Just this last week he has begun to study "Jesus is the Bread of Life"  So far we have just done a few experiments with yeast.  I think we get to make bread this coming week!

Seth made me laugh during his language arts time last week.  I have been dictating phrases for him to spell and one of them was "get up".  He spelled it "git".  After we were done with the 10-12 phrases I told him that he did a great job, only got one wrong.  "Listen again, 'g-e-e-t', not 'g-i-i-t'."  His response: "That's because you're Dutch, Mom.  You say it 'get' but it really is 'git'."   The "what is he talking about" look from Nicolas just made it even better:)

One of the fun parts of home schooling is the cross-over of subject matter for the kids.  Seth is learning quite a bit about the Romans and the girls are enjoying learning about the Mayflower, etc.  For example, one day they dressed up as Romans and played "Roman school" in the morning, and then in the afternoon they were outside playing Mayflower and Plymouth.   I'm glad we have days like that because we also have times with lots of tears over school work and moments of nagging to finish our work, not to mention the pestering and bickering.    Some days I just want to pack them all off to school.  Most days, however, I am thankful for the privilege of teaching them and thoroughly enjoy having them around all day!

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