Home School Life Journal

Home School Life Journal ........... Ceramics by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Snapshot Summary November 16-22 {week 11}

I was cleaning off the round table upstairs, preparing for the week's school projects, when Alex came into the room and sat down, his way of demanding school work. We worked on his language arts, he wrote about hieroglyphics and some on his history of science lapbook. I made a model of a Minoan bull-jumping scene from a book. Quentin immediately wanted to make little men that he could play with, moving around in the scene. Meanwhile Sam worked in his Greek workbook, vocabulary from Lord of the Rings and wrote about Pharaohs. Quentin came up while we were working on this, mostly to complain that James wasn't playing "the game" the way he wanted him to. Some sort of pretend-play game. They both like to write the scripts, so their is often conflict on who is actor and who is director-actor. Quentin saw that Sam and I were working at the table, and so demanded that he too wanted to do some table work. So while Sam worked at the table, Quentin and I worked on the bed, using a book to support the paper. He worked from his Kindergarten Skill workbook. He wanted to do some more from a math book we got from the library but then remembered we had already finished it. We worked on writing the letter "K" but he already knew how to write it and what it sounds like. He finished the page just the same. We checked out our rainbow crystals and they have indeed made purple and green bands. Steven retrieved the Iliad game from the garage and I set it up for them. They played with it off and on all day, making up their own games on the plains of Troy. Sam drew a map of Greece and environs freehand.  James and I sat together in a chair in the living room and he read me half of "Green Eggs and Ham" and did a very nice job with it.. Katie set up a project for Quentin. K is for Kabobs. Fruit Kabobs. Sam has been having a lot of fun researching and writing about Greece. He hasn't showed any of his notes to me. Often he never does. The joy is in the making of them...or perhaps he has his own purpose for them. Katie has made more dragons. One is playful and one is a Mud Dragon.

These days it is all things Iliad. I made a model of the Lion's gate in Mycenae for their play. And then The Horse enters the game, perhaps not exactly wooden or to scale, but the imagination fills in. We listened to flute music and added the flute to our lapbooks so we would know how the instrument looks. Quentin recognized the first piece, although not by name (Flight of the Bumblebee) and began an impromptu dance around the dining room. We added to our Dinosaur lapbooks, too, and looked at where Mycenae was and colored it in on a map. Katie made new figures -a pair of playful penguins this time. More play with instant snow. Katie helped Quentin with a K is for Kite craft. We watched (on Roku) and read (we have the book too) In Search of The Trojan War. We talked about the layers that are common in metamorphic rock called foliation. Then, with that in mind, we made an Impossible Cheeseburger Pie, which, like metamorphic rocks, the ingredients are all jumbled together, but when heat (and in the case of rocks, pressure) is applied, solidifies into layers. Suppose we could call it Metamorphic Cheeseburger Pie. After dinner, Sam and Katie rushed off to square dancing. Once night fell and the little ones were in bed, Katie and Sam played the Iliad game according to the official rules.

Sam worked in his Greek workbook, read about epic poetry, worked out math problems and wrote about Menes, the first Egyptian Pharaoh. Alex worked on his language arts, word math problems and wrote about hieroglyphics. James finished up Green Eggs and Ham and was very happy to have completed it. He worked on sorting ow-ou words and writing his address.  I asked Quentin what he wanted to accomplish today and he wanted to work in his math book from the library and he practiced writing random letters. He is starting to put together letter sounds and notice them in parts of words. He watercolored pictures of fall things that I had printed out and cut them out himself. He is really working on fine motor skills. He found sheets of stickers and passed them out to everyone. James went to work putting stickers on a page and then creating a scene around them. Katie helped Quentin with a K is for Kite project. We used Stephanie's of OLM directions but cut out little windows to put tissue paper. Louis the Cat had some thoughts about this project, but fortunately did not act on them. The day, of course, is as still as it can get, so we have hung it in the kitchen until the weather cooperates.

We finished our volcano pop-ups. We talked about Igneous rocks and how they are formed. We made paper models of the Trojan Horse with Greeks coming out of its belly. Quentin, of course, had to make troops of Trojan forces as well, but James was satisfied just to play the part of the Greeks bearing gifts. We opened a Pomegranate and before we ate it took note of how cool it looks. And while we were still in the kitchen, Quentin and I put on a set of those Pillsbury Turkey cookies. Not as fancy as homemade creations, but a nice few moments together and a sweet treat for after lunch. The boys are constantly fighting over who gets to read the history book, it passing hands as soon as one of them is done with it. James is now taking the time to try and read it instead of just looking at the pictures. Quentin seems to at least temporarily moved ahead of us to the Middle Ages. Quentin and James found some fuzzy posters of mine and asked to have them to color. I was surprised at how much patient attention to detail they gave them.
This morning the boys worked on their usual table work. Sam completed some Greek, spelling, writing about mummies and reading about epic poetry. Alex worked on his Language Arts. History of Science and math problems. James worked on writing his address, phonics and reading. Quentin worked on math mostly and some finish-the-drawing exercises. More quiet time coloring on the fuzzy posters. We made turkey treats. Lots of trampoline play in the nice weather. Then it was time to wrap the mummies! I bet you thought we would never get back to them! In our humid climate, it took them longer to dry out. We wrapped sequins in to represent the jewels and amulets the Egyptians wrapped in theirs. Finished being wrapped and ready to dry. After the mummies were done, the boys played with the left over sequins for a long while, making up all sorts of games. What kind of dinner would be appropiate for this day. Mummy dogs, of course!

Out my front window,

first sight of the early day;
vivid pastels taking their time
first orange, fading to pink
like shebert melting and swirling in a bowl.
Then the yellow overtakes moments before
a sun just barely crests
over the trees distant.
Upstairs small voices.
The first sounds of the morn
hold promise for this day.

We had  Turkey Pancakes  for breakfast -banana, cinnamon and maple syrup goodness.  Alex got hold of the camera and took some self portraits. We shelled Indian corn a surprisingly calming activity. Getting it ready for Thanksgiving activities  later on this coming week. Can you just imagine how it feels to run your hands through it?
After morning of spiritual re-stocking at church, we went shopping to restock craft supplies and food stuffs for the week. When we got home Quentin insisted that we not wait until tomorrow to make our Hittite (foam board) spears and shields. Fortunately we picked up inexpensive swords for James and Quentin so I did not have to make those as well. All ready for Bronze Age warfare.

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