Thursday, February 12, 2015

Homeschool Weeks 14-22

Here are the events and people we learned about the last 9 weeks:

Ethiopia and Italy and Liberia--Pretended we were part of a new country and designed our own flag (like the Liberians). We also cooked an Ethiopian meal.  The meal was Doro Wat (chicken dish) served on Injera (flat bread) with Iab (yogurt/cottage cheese mixture to eat with the DoroWat).

Independence of Egypt

Sino-Japanese war in Korea

Boxer Rebellion in China-occured toward the end of Hudson Taylor's life.  We finished our read-aloud on his life as a missionary to China.

Last Emperor of China

Indochina (Vietnam)

Last couple czars of Russia

Persia (Iran)

Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria/Balkan Wars--made Martenitsi which are little bracelets or dolls made from red/white yarn and are given as gifts in Bulgaria on March 1st to symbolize the end of winter and the beginning of spring.

India and Ghandi

Japan and China after WW I, Rise of Chiang Kai-shek, and MaoTseTung and the Long March.

South America
Brazil becomes a Republic--made a "cootie-catcher" with animals from the Pantanal

Russian Revolution during WWI, Rise of Stalin

The Easter Uprising in Ireland

Italy and Mussolini--Made a Fasces

United States
Spanish-American War--Learned what "Yellow Journalism" was all about.

Westward Expansion

Factories, Stocks, and Andrew Carnegie:  Played an investing game

Mexican Revolution--had some fun with cryptography because the Germans sent cryptographed messages to Mexico to encourage them to start a war with the US to try to prevent the US from entering WW I.

WW I--Made a timeline of the Spanish Flu epidemic. The girls created mini-posters on the Lusitania and Trench Warfare while Seth completed lapbook booklets on the book Casey Over There (Yes, we listened to the song "Over There" and had it in our heads for days!). We baked Anzac cookies which were cookies that the mothers of the Australia/New Zealand Army Corp made for their sons during WWI and gave them to a Vietnam veteran in our church. 

End of WW I--made our own passports, read the poem "Flanders Fields", studied the Treaty of Versailles, and the Fourteen Points.  We tried to apply the Fourteen Points as house rules and found that they may have been a little idealistic. 

Roaring twenties--Baked Baby Ruth bars from our Cooking through the US cookbook.

Kids LOVE looking through this book to find pictures and articles about the people and events we are learning about.  I think we have had this book for about as long as we have been married.  Glad it is getting some use!

States:  Wyoming, Utah, Oklahoma, New Mexico (made Navajo Fry Bread), Arizona

Presidents:  Cleveland, McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Harding

Science:  Sounds, simple machines and levers, helpful machines--studied airplanes and the Wright brothers in more detail including making our own paper airplanes with modifications to understand some of the principles of flight, electrical energy and electrical circuits.
Made our own quiz board circuit with questions about the Roaring 20s that we could test Dad, Nicolas, and Caleb with.  

Books:  Just a few books the kids read that I am not sure made the list on the side of the blog:  Caddie Woodlawn, On the Banks of Plum Creek, Stone Fox (I failed to warn Seth about the ending--I was afraid he would never read a book I suggested again), In Grandma's Attic

Music:  Mostly the history of Jazz--the kids watched a DVD entitled Sousa to Satchmo, and are currently learning of the life and music of George Gershwin

Read Aloud:  Tales of Persia which is missionary stories in Iran from the early to mid 1900's and Sergeant York and the Great War about the most decorated WW I veteran, Alvin C. York.  We also watched the 1941 film version of his life, Sergeant York.

The girls went from filling out outlines in the Story of the World book, to writing paragraphs from an outline which has been great for their writing skills.  We do continue to plug away at our Institutes for Excellence in Writing program and are currently doing a unit on how to write an essay from more than one source.  

Anna is getting extra practice as she writes a research essay/paper on the differences between Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Dubois.

We had one field trip to the Boise River Watershed.  They have great interactive displays and the classes were very informative.  The girls learned about how pollution affects our water supply and Seth learned about the fish in the Boise River, specifically the life cycle of a salmon.  

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Projects Finished

After two years of hanging on to the yarn and moving it across the country, I finally finished Seth's afghan!  

Zoe thinks it is her blanket
The girls also put in their order for crocheted purses quite awhile ago, so I am glad to have those done also. 

I wasn't completely happy with Lydia's purse, so after this picture was taken I did make a larger red circle and moved that and the sock monkey button over to the left.

Caleb has also been busy with projects.  He always seems to have something to work on when he has a day off from school.  I think he finds it a relaxing  break from  calculus problems.

Built the shelves, painted them, hung, and decorated them...

Went to Hobby Lobby and bought the frames, designed the Family logo, arranged, and hung the pictures.

Built the "canvas" from left over wood and pallets, drew the continents free hand, painted, and hung.  What a great addition to our home school area!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Winter Carnival and Anna's Birthday

Since we moved to Boise, many people have talked about the beauty of McCall, ID.  It is about two hours north of Boise, up it the mountains.  In the summer it offers cooler temps for camping and swimming and in the winter it offers lots of snow for skiing, tubing, and snowmobiling.   Caleb has been up in the region for a school retreat and for a cross-country meet, but until Saturday, Anna's birthday, we had not made the trek as a family.  

Every winter they have a Winter Carnival which is kind of like the Orange City's Tulip Festival (only it doesn't celebrate a particular heritage).  Instead of walking around to look at windmills and tulips, you walk around town to view the awesome snow sculptures.  In the parade you have logger men instead of Dutchmen, Miss Idaho instead of the Tulip Queen, Smokey Bear and Boise State mascots instead of Dutch street vendors, and snowmobiles instead of tractors.   Food vendors seem to be the same no matter where you go...just no poffertjes.

We left fairly early in the morning (a little before eight, which is quite early for a Saturday morning here!).  The drive was absolutely beautiful and it was fun to see all the snow outside the valley.  We arrived before most of the crowd descended on the town and just walked around to see the sculptures.  We didn't see or get pictures of all of them.  You can see some more here. (Scroll down past the video to scan the photos).

Thought the birthday girl should stand by the birthday cake sculpture:)

The kids thought the baby bears around the camper were so cute, the mama bear was on the other side.

 The picture above and below go together--Celebrating 50 years of Winter Carnival; a little boy making a simple snowman and then 50 years later (time warp) chiseling a much more elaborate snow sculpture.

When Seth saw all the people walking on the lake he insisted on trying that too.  

Birthday Girl!

For lunch we enjoyed awesome chicken tortilla soup at a small cafe that offered homemade soups and sandwiches.  After warming up a little and using the bathroom (important commodity in this small town) we walked down main street and picked up some cups of free hot chocolate before watching the parade.  

When we left for home shortly after the parade was over (1:00) the line of cars to get into McCall stretched for at LEAST 5 miles.  Glad we went early!  

We were home in plenty of time for the boys to get some homework done and for Russ and I to take the poor neglected Zoe for a walk.   For the rest of Anna's birthday we enjoyed one of her favorite pasta meals and homemade chocolate cake and ice cream.   We watched Skylark as a family (the second in the Sarah, Plain and Tall DVD series) to finish out her special day!