Picking Up Where I Left Off

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Did you ever start something, fall behind, and then resist picking it up again because you were so far behind that the thought of catching up overwhelmed you? So it is with the blog for me. I also had this ridiculous idea that I would blog after all of my other work was finished. You know, instead of sitting around twiddling my thumbs as I usually do.

One of the purposes of this blog is to log our homeschooling activities and accomplishments. In the six weeks since I last posted we've been working our way through the humanities curricula for third grade and kindergarten provided by the hybrid school we're using this year, while continuing with our own math and science programs. The boys, especially Bearclaw, have been challenged by the amount of work required for the humanities program.

Shortbread's kindergarten class at the hybrid program is focusing on early phonics and handwriting as they go through a set of "letterbooks". As you can imagine, there is one book for each letter. They are cute, but on the first day of use, Shortbread exclaimed, "That looks like a baby book!" He had a point. However, he's warmed to using them and loves going to class, taking part in "sharing time", and playing with his friends.

Bearclaw's class puts a heavy emphasis on grammar, using both Shurley English and some exercises from Easy Grammar. The best thing to come from this is their recent work in writing, which has helped Bearclaw learn to outline and write a 3-point expository paragraph. This is not something I expected him to be able to do this year, and I'm happy to have had the help of his teacher in working on it.

The third grade curriculum also includes spelling, vocabulary, and critical thinking, but history consumes the bulk of time not spent on grammar. Using Biblioplan and SOTW, we've been using Bearclaw's history work as our family history study. Currently we are studying the early colonial period of America, beginning with Jamestown and moving on to Plymouth Plantation. Our studies have included investigating the Native American populations that the colonists were in contact with, and the growth of the slave trade in North America. We've also looked at what was happening in Europe during this time, including the government of England and Scotland and the Thirty Years' War. Throughout it all, we've seen the overarching impact of the divide between Protestantism and Roman Catholocism.

Here are some of the highlights:

The first day of classes-

Making Native American pinchpots and colonial hand-dipped candles-

Making hasty pudding as the Indians taught the colonists-

And making homemade shortbread when we studied Scotland-

So now I think it's time I joined Kris's Weekly Wrap-Ups. Six weeks of review forces me to drag around too many photos!

Comment (1)

Yes! Join in the fun on Kris's wrap-up. I like reading about what you're doing.