It's our 17th week of Adventures in U.S. History! That means at the end of the week we'll officially be halfway done with our school year. Sometimes I get a bit jealous of other families who are taking the summer off (though my pocketbook is relieved we're not trying to participate in all the summer festivities that are available!); sometimes I get caught up in the fun of planning the next year which for many of you starts in the fall; and sometimes I get tired of hitting the books especially when everyone is all hot and crabby. But all in all I'm glad we're schooling over the summer and we are truly enjoying Adventures!
This week I set Little Guy the task of sorting out my catch-all basket of pens, pencils, and markers. Does anyone else ever despise the fact that writing utensils are round and tend to roll off of surfaces and onto the floor? I am constantly picking up colored pencils and markers and crayons from the kitchen floor! Confession: sometimes I just throw them away. Anyway, he really enjoyed this task!
Miss M is finally getting material in math that is a wee bit challenging for her. And she doesn't like it! She's so used to it all being super, duper easy and obvious to her that when she has to work at it, she tends to get a bit cranky. She does love the pages that have a puzzle to figure out once she solves the math problems. So far Singapore Math 2A does a good job keeping each day's lesson fresh and interesting even if it's basically the same kind of math as the day before.
There was only one state to learn about this week: Kentucky. We've found that the best way to "study" the states sheets is to hand Miss M a highlighter and let her read through the page, highlighting anything that is interesting to her. Frankly, she loves using the highlighter and typically ends up highlighting the entire page, but at least I know she's read it, right? Here she's using a "dry highlighter" like the kind used for Bibles. It doesn't bleed through to the other side, making it ideal for this sort of work!
The week ended with instructions to bake a cake for Immanuel. I'm assuming this week would fall very near Christmas if you started at a more traditional time. Since we didn't, it didn't. But that's okay, 'cause we had a blast making the cake together anyway!
Thanks to some baking experience Miss M has gotten when her nana visits, she really didn't need any supervision, which meant once I told her what to do next, I could actually turn my back and do another step on my own!!! This was revolutionary for me; I have never had so much fun baking with the kids!
Little Guy did well too! He didn't need any help cracking the eggs into a bowl and only had to fish out one big piece of shell. He even washed his own hands with soap and warm water afterwards. Some mamas might shed a tear or two over their babies growing up, but I'm just glad it means less work for me. Hehe!
Knowing my writing-with-frosting skills are hugely lacking, I opted to print out IMMANUEL in large block letters on a piece of cardstock. Miss M colored them (she chose to do a rainbow!) and cut them out and together we taped toothpicks to the back of them. I showed her how to figure out where the center of the word is so she could arrange them on the cake in a somewhat balanced fashion. She really enjoyed this part!
We made the Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake and Maple Icing from the Joy of Cooking. I'm not a huge fan of cake (and can't stand ones from a box mix), but this was very good! I will be making it again the next time we want chocolate cake, though probably without such a sickeningly sweet icing!
I'm looking forward to next week when we get to study Eli Whitney and his invention of the cotton gin. I ordered some cotton bolls from a seller on etsy for the kids to "explore." We may even plant the seeds! Until then...
Our adventures from previous weeks: