It’s always funny when I sit down to look at what we did for the month. Each month I come into it convince there was no real homeschooling going on, and by the end of the post I’m thinking, “Wow we did a lot of stuff.”
Homeschool Reading and Writing
This year we’re working through Cover Story, as I mentioned last Monday in Finding Writing Inspiration at the Library. We started on the Poetry unit. We are averaging about 1 lesson a week, significantly slower than the planned 3 lessons a week, but the whole family is working together, and that’s the rate the parents can all arrange to watch the videos as a family.
The boys are hating the poetry unit, and whining like I’m killing them. By contrast Princess is loving it.
In other news, while on our trip to Colonial Williamsburg we listened to Howl’s Moving Castle*, and so of course we had to watch the movie*. The kids quite enjoyed it, even if it’s different from the movie.
They did not like Fantastic Mr. Fox*. Which is also quite different from the book*. There’s not much of a plot in the book, and the movie seemed to be confused who the movie is for, kids or adults. So I rather agree with the kids’ assessment.
While our reading lessons went along swimmingly, we didn’t do anything too exciting for our chemistry lessons this month. Superman is really enjoying our CKE Chemistry*, but so far we’ve done variations of all the projects before. Though the kids were quite happy to recreate their cookie atomic models, and eat the sugar laden mess.
I’m looking forward to getting past the basics, and into more in-depth material. I’m trying to find some fun chemistry sets to let the kids play with and muck about with, but most of them are a lot of money for stuff I probably already have at home.
Any suggestions for a good chemistry set?
It has been a month of wars and revolutions. We learned about the War of 1812, the Napoleonic Wars, the Mexican Revolution, the South American Revolutions (which my favorite history podcast is covering right now, so I got a lot more details on this than are in the textbook, it’s like my own mini-college class without the tests), the Texas Revolution, the Greek Revolutions, and just last week we read about the Chinese Boxer Rebellion, and the Australian Eureka Rebellion.
So, lots of war. Sadly we only did a Lego history lesson for Napoleon. I emphasized the War of 1812 was all about the United States trying to tell Great Britain to stop stealing their sailors, and that once the Napoleonic Wars were done the reason for the war pretty much went away.
We’re going down to the Alamo in December for a field trip, so I’m waiting for that to do too much with the Alamo.
What else we’ve been up to
The kids and I have been on lots of field trips in our pajamas. I’m reviewing a group called Field Trip Zoom, and because of it, we’ve “gone” to Alaska, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Virginia all from the comfort of our home. This week they’ve got a great series on the Civil War, I can’t wait to see all of them. I’ve got a coupon code for them if you’re interested (the review is pretty much going to be a glowing review, because I have loved every single field trip we’ve gone on. The Hermitage field trip on the Election of 1824 was fascinating).
We had a blast for Halloween. The kids all wore their outfits from Williamsburg because I threatened them with dire consequences if they didn’t wear them again. We also had a day of funschooling, and the kids quite enjoyed the Halloween themed activities I found. We actually didn’t get to finish all of them. Because I spent part of the morning visiting with a friend whose Dad had died.
In other random bits of life we made a fairy house for our front yard inspired by The Usual Mayhem’s pumpkin houses. The kids took the idea and ran wit it (as per usual). Princess seems to of picked up my tea habit, and I caught this picture of her happily drinking a cup of tea while reading her Nook. The middle picture is one of hte boys, I think Superman working on our Picasso art lessons. Art lessons are a bit of a fight in our house. The kids love making projects and mucking about with art supplies. They hate with a passion anything that resembles an assigned project. Listening to them scream about having to make something other than their perfect vision is sometimes amusing.
Other times it’s frustrating as all get out.
Next to that is Superman ambushing me as I came out of hte bathroom with his new musket. Then the boys playing hockey with Jeff’s golf clubs. That was quickly stopped.
And finally Princess sweeping with one crutch, and hobbling around on her cast. This is right before she got it off, and this picture greatly amuses me.
We celebrated Jeff’s birthday with lots of board games. In particular Shadows of Brimstone, all the boys’ in my family’s favorite game. Jeff and I are super excited because Flying Frog Productions has launched a Kickstarter for a brand new expansion. The two of us are regularly checking how the Kickstarter is doing, and what things have unlocked.
Games played this month (according to my Instagram feed): Lemming Mafia, Commissioned* (I back this one on Kickstarter), Transamerica, Fresco, Shadows of Brimstone, Fool’s Gold, Ocean Raiders, and Say Cheese* (review coming on Wednesday)
Oh, and one last amusing one. My Mom watched the kids for the weekend while Jeff and I went down to San Antonio for a wedding. They conned her into taking them to Barton Creek Mall, a rather long drive on the other side of town from us so they could all go build dragons at Build A Bear. Now they did all pay for their own dragons (actually Batman paid for most of it, that’s another story), but they still convinced her to drive almost two hours round trip for them to get dragons.