The last five weeks provided lots of interesting subject matter in history. The topics included the events prior to World War II: Wall Street Crash, Great Depression, and rise of Hitler; events during World War II: Holocaust and atom bomb; and events after World War II: The Marshall Plan, Israel becoming a nation, and Communism in China.
The kids watched quite a few videos (educational, I'm sure!) during these weeks:
Kit: The Great Depression
Tora, Tora, Tora: The bombing of Pearl Harbor
The Sound of Music: World War II in Austria
Mrs. Miniver: World War II in Great Britain
(A black and white war-time drama produced in 1942. This was the kid's favorite!)
Our read aloud was Corrie Ten Boom: Keeper of the Angel's Den in the "Christians Then and Now" series. Anna had read The Hiding Place earlier this year so it was a bit of review for her. On the way to and from Salt Lake City we listened to the Focus on the Family audio drama of The Hiding Place. I love the truths taught in that book and find myself quoting lines to remind the kids of Casper Ten Boom's wisdom or Corrie and her sister Betsie's deep faith.
We also did a fair share of baking:
War cake: Cake made with very little oil and sugar. The girls made it one afternoon while I ran errands. I was skeptical, but it tasted great. I little bit like the brown bread my dad loves so much.
M & M cookies: Since M&Ms were developed in the 1940s.
Kolaches: When President Kennedy traveled to Berlin shortly after the East Germans built the Berlin Wall he made a famous speech in which he said the words "Ich bin ein Berliner". He meant to say "I am from Berlin", but because he added the article "ein" he said "I am a Berliner" which is a type of jelly donut. So in essence he said, "I am a jelly donut." Instead of making donuts the kids voted for kolaches.
Partitioning Palestine: We baked a cake with red and blue M&Ms and then frosted 1/2 the cake red and 1/2 blue. When eating the cake, if we had a piece with red frosting we were to take out the blue M&Ms and give them to someone eating a piece with blue frosting and vice versa. This was to show how difficult it was to partition Palestine and move Palestinians and Jewish people to their "appropriate" area. The whole "taking M&Ms out of the cake" worked better in theory than in reality...
Each of the kids were given the name of a Resistance Movement they had to research (who, what, where, etc) and just give a couple minute oral report of what they found. I think they researched The Swing Kids, The White Rose, and the Edelweiss Pirates.
War-time Posters: Each designed a war-time poster to encourage those on the home front to do their part during WW2.
Mao's Little Red Book: We made our own "Little Red Books" and filled them with inspirational quotes or Bible verses. Throughout that day they had to make sure they carried the book with them all the time because I could ask to see their red book at any moment. If they didn't have their book I was supposed to give them chores. Instead we just had fun trying to catch each other.
Presidents and other people we studied in more detail: Herbert Hoover, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, C.S. Lewis, and Dwight D. Eisenhower.
We also had two field trips. The first was to the Boise Aquarium and the second was another homeschool day at the World Center for Bird's of Prey.
|The favorite activity--petting the stingrays|
I was absolutely fascinated with the teaching time at the World Center for Bird's of Prey. We learned all sorts of neat facts about the California Condors, migration patterns, and differences between hawks and falcons. I totally could have been a wildlife biologist!
|Teaching on migration patterns|