Sunday, March 24, 2013

Adventures in U.S. History Week 5

We started our week with a bit of disciplinary action.  Do your kids do incomprehensible things such as wiping boogers on the wall?  I think having had to scrub them off, Little Guy has learned his lesson and won't be doing it again.  I hope!

We continued with Level E in Spelling Power.  Miss M seems to grasp spelling concepts very quickly and constantly surprises me with the words she can spell.

In history we learned about the Pilgrims and how Squanto taught them to plant corn and fish without hooks.  We read about how the Pilgrims built their homes and covered their windows with oiled parchment in the absence of glass.

We made some oiled paper by rubbing olive oil into regular printer paper with a paper towel.  Little Guy enjoyed joining in on this activity.  We held up oiled paper and regular paper to the window to see which lets through more light.

Oiled paper on the left, Regular paper on the right.
We also tested the oil paper to see how well it holds up to water versus regular paper.

The water ran right off the oiled paper and did not damage it at all.
Although I like the gentle approach of Primary Language Lessons, I decided to add some "recitations" from McGuffey's Second Eclectic Reader to our English lessons.  A few days a week, I'm having Miss M study a lesson and then read it out to me presentation-style.  

Eventually, I'd like her to memorize and recite some passages and poems, but for now she will be focusing on reading with expression and speaking with clarity and feeling.  Since she reads and spells so well for her age, I felt it was important to push her a little.  Everything comes to her so easily that I sometimes worry she will not learn any fortitude.

We had a science lesson from last week to catch up on.  It was a brief lesson on gravity.  We did a quick experiment demonstrating that gravity acts upon objects of varying mass in the same way so that they fall at the same rate.

Little Guy especially loved dropping the plastic bowls (over and over and over!) and watching them fall.  The two bowls were exactly the same size, but one had a square of paper towel in it and the other had a heavy wooden block.  They really did hit the floor at the same time!

The rest of the week our science focused on astronomy.  We learned that the Sun is our nearest star, about constellations, the North Star, and the Big Dipper.  It is really difficult to comprehend vast sizes.  Still, in an attempt to grasp the concept that our Sun is a small star I cut out a one-inch circle from yellow construction paper.

Then we measured 16 2/3 yards (equivalent to 600 inches) to show how big the star Betelgeuse is in comparison.  Betelgeuse is a giant star in the constellation Orion.  It can easily be seen without a telescope by people in the Northern Hemisphere.

Miss M did an amazing job narrating our activity to Hubby when he came home from work that night!  How well she tells him about our day often indicates to me whether or not she truly grasped the material.

Although Miss M has been using Rosetta Stone to learn Tagalog, we needed to set it aside this week and learn Spanish for a while instead.  I'll be reviewing this program soon.  Miss M was ecstatic to start studying Spanish!

Miss M practicing spelling her Spanish vocabulary words.
We stopped by the post office late in the week and had five postcards from our 50 States Postcard Exchange.  We've mailed out about 1/3 of ours.

One day Little Guy got it into his head that he wanted to finger paint, so I let Miss M join him for her art lesson that day.

We ended the week a trip to the ER via ambulance, a dead parakeet, and an unusually late March snow storm.

I blacked out at home from what turned out to be a kidney stone.
Not quite what we had in mind, but everyone is well now and thankfully the storm waited until we had made it back home.

The snow is beautiful when it falls! Miss M said the flakes looked like "dancing feathers."

Our adventures from previous weeks:


  1. I've enjoyed browsing your Adventures posts. I had to giggle when I came across this one. We have 4 boys and so far the oldest 3 have all done "booger art" on the wall at some point or another. LOL!

    1. Sorry you've had to deal with it too, but I must admit I'm a bit relieved I'm not the only one. Ha! :-)