Saturday, December 1, 2012


Keeping up with blogging has not been a priority lately.  It's not that I don't enjoy it.  I do.  I've just been concentrating my efforts more on school itself rather than writing about it.  By the time the weeks come to a close, I'm too tired to think about writing.  And when I do think about it, time is too short.

Having said that, I miss it.  I miss reading other blogs, and I miss my readers.  And maybe, above all, I have a strong feeling that I will miss having a consistant chronicle of our Homeschool Days.  So, this weekend, I will try to write a post to review the last couple of months.  I also hope to read some posts from friends I've met in the blogging world over the years.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Just what I Needed

Grammar is a like a four letter word in our house.  It's just not Emily's favorite subject.  To her, it is borning and useless. 

Just when I thought she wasn't allowing herself to learn anything "grammer," Emily brought me a story she wrote on her own, in her free time.  It's excellent!  It had very few errors and she used very good penmenship, which is unusual for her.  I'm very proud of her and I praise God for blessing me with renewed hope!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Week 6: New York, Nine Pins, Tobacco, and Birds

I'll sum this week up quickly.  In history, we read about the Dutch people who settled New Amsterdam, which became New York when the English took over and named it after the Duke of York.  We also learned about the success that tobacco plantations brought to Virginia and that's when slaves were first used in North America. We found a few good, short videos on You Tube about tobacco and cotton plantations, and slavery.

We set up a game of Nine Pins, a popular game in Colonial times, and played a few rounds.

We made a bird feeder:

Katie couldn't resist hanging around the tree!

We will spend part of Monday back peddling in science to make sure all pages are in the science notebooks.  I just noticed we missed a couple things.  I haven't been feeling well, so it was hard to accomplish everything!  Well, let's be honest.  It's hard to accomplish it all on any given week!

On Saturday, we went to a Pumpkin Festival and the girls got to paint their own canvas.  Saturday Art Class!!!  They did a great job!

Linked with Weekly Wrap-Up

Week 5: Colonies and Witchcraft

During Week 5 (Sept. 24-28), we learned about the Massachusetts Bay and Rhode Island Colonies and a little about the Salem Witchcraft Trials. I vaguely remember learning these things in school, so the information was interesting to me and I read it all. I didn't feel it was necessary to cover every detail with the kids though. One thing I found particularly interesting is the speculation that the girls who first began practicing witchcraft may have eaten contaminated grain causing them to hallucinate. Whether that's true or not, many ended up confessing much later on that their stories were simply made up. Nevertheless, it's terribly sad that many innocent people died as a result of the false accusations against them for practicing witchcraft. I'm still extremely satisfied with our history books. Sometimes, we don't read all of the content from Building a City on a Hill together. I read it myself for background info and then pick out parts to share if I choose to not read the whole thing. There is a LOT of info in these books!

We watched the Animated Hero Classics video about William Bradford, which I highly recommend. We also borrowed the movie, Squanto (a Disney film) from the library and watched it.

Some reviews warned that the movie didn't portray exactly what really happened.  Others said it was pretty close.  After watching it, I'd say it was pretty close but there were parts that were questionable.  Prior to watching the movie, I explained to the kids that this movie is not unlike any other Disney movie that sprouted from a book.  Content may not always match up and many details are often lost.  Having done that, we all enjoyed the movie and I would recommend it.

Because books could not be given to each student in the 1600's, they used hornbooks.  Pages from the New England Primer were often torn out and glued to a paddle to be used by students.  The girls each made a Hornbook that taught the alphabet and the Lord's Prayer.

Now, as much as I appreciate old books, the New England Primer would be difficult to use in our day due differences in spelling and letter usage (sometimes an 'f' was used instead of 's').  I downloaded a copy of the New England Primer from Google Books for free, just to see what it looked like.

Science is usually a highlight.  Learning about animals has always been fun for my kids, so they usually don't mind the science readings and pages that go along with them.  The Complete Book of Animals is still a big hit with Katie.

Emily's Apologia General Science material just recently arrived so we haven't begun using it yet.  I still need to get materials off the supply list.

Katie's Elephant
Katie also has a small notebook that she's been writing things in on her own. Don't you love it? These must be the things she finds most interesting. The fact that she does this warms my heart and puts a smile on my face!

Heritage Village

September 23, 2012

The Heritage Village inside a local park had a Harvest Festival the weekend of Sept. 22-23.  We decided to go on Sunday and it turned out to be a beautiful day for it.  We had so much fun touring through the village and participating in some of the activities.  All of the buildings in this village are authentic buildings that were brought in from other locations to preserve them and allow visitors to tour through them.

Inside the tepee, we got to see and touch many different kinds of animal horns, antlers, shells, hide and fur, including skunk!

Outside the tepee, we learned how to start a primitive fire...

Making homemade applesauce...


Painting pumpkins...

The Print Shop...

The General Store...

.Can you imagine taking a bath in that tub?
The doctor's office...

This is the waiting room at the doctor's office...
This schoolhouse was recently brought in.  It isn't ready for tours yet...

The Church...

Village Home...

The kitchen was in another building...
This was a wooden gymnast toy that kids got to play with while touring through the village...

Coin hunt in the hay...

I don't know who this girl is, but she was good at twirling that hoop with the stick!

Weaving... Love the hands-on activities!
Train Station...

Indian Dance...

The village is in need of volunteers and we would love to help out.  I may get more information about it to see if it's doable.  They are having a Halloween Haunt and a Christmas Walk, both of which we want to go to.  Then, in the spring, they have a Civil War weekend that will probably fall right around the time we will be learning about the Civil War.  The village and museum also has various activities and displays throughout the year.  Since there is so much to offer, we got a family pass so we can come and go as we please!