Home School Life Journal From Preschool to High School

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

World Geography: Arctic; A Map in Three Ways

Put on your coats and your warmest boots, hats and mittens, next up is the Arctic.
Quentin, James and Alex each completed maps of the Arctic region, but they did them three different ways.
Quentin used an already labeled map and drew little pictures to represent to the things we have studied. He put onion domes in Russia, skiers to represent the Birkebeiners from the story we read from Norway, The Race of the Birkebeiners. He put a cabbage in Canada to represent the story, The Giant Cabbage, An Alaska Folktale,and sled dogs in Alaska. 
He had to add Santa's house at the North Pole.
James used a blank map and I wrote the places he should find on the bottom with boxes beside them. He found the places from a labeled map, colored them in and also colored in the boxes to match to make a key.
Alex also used a blank map, but he labeled and colored his with the places we have studied.
Three maps done three different ways.



We received some postcards from Alaska in the mail to add to our Postcard-Geography album.
Mt. Redoubt, Alaska
Spectacular view of Mt. Redoubt with fireweed as seen from the Kenai Peninsula.
 "Mt. Redoubt is an active volcano -visible from Seldovia where we first spent two weeks. You also see Augustine and Illeamna from there."
Alaskan Bull Moose grazing on aquatic pondweed.
 "We didn't see any moose this trip. They are magnificent creatures!"
Wildflowers of Alaska
Clockwise, beginning at bottom left: Forget-Me-Not, Fireweed, Iris, Lupine and the Sitka Rose.
 "Thought your studies might include different aspects of the states so I'm sending a few different cards."
Alaskan Brown Bear trying to catch a salmon.
"We didn't see a bear this trip but there has been a black bear hanging around my son's cabin. He is going to put him in the stew pot."
Scandinavia (Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Norway)


The Inuit.
Benny Benson, a thirteen year old from Alaska who designed the Alaskan flag.
Jon Pall Sigmarrson, the world’s strongest man from Iceland.
Sonja Henie, a Norwegian figure skater who won for skating in the Olympics three times.

Edward Munch, a Norwegian Painter, his most popular work, The Scream.
Abba, the Swedish pop group from Sweden, known for many hit songs including Dancing Queen.
Samuel Champlain, the founder of Canada, he was an explorer who used to be a soldier.
Henry Hudson, an Englishman who was hired by the Dutch to find a way to India that did not go around Africa. In his ship, the Half Moon, he and his crew explored the North Eastern coast of Canada.
Louis Joliet and Jacques Marquette, both men trained to be priests but became explorers and fur traders. 

Other Topics

St. Lucia Day in Sweden
and Scandinavian Woven Baskets

Iditarod Sled Dog Race
Auroras, lights in the sky in the polar regions

Whales, Polar Bears and Blubber
Bears, Deer, Killer Whales
Maple Syrup
Ice Hotels

maple syrup on pancakes


Because we have switch for this month, I am linking to Adventures in Mommydom.
related posts:

  • Watersky, Jean Craighead George; Lincoln must choose between his Ologok ancestry and his belief in saving the whale from extinction. Age 10 and up.
  • The Giant Cabbage, An Alaska Folktale, Cheiri Stihler.(PK-grade 2) A story of a giant cabbage and how Moose's friend help him get it to the contest. The story is based on a traditional Russian folktale about a turnip that is so big that he can't pull it out of the ground without a lot of help. (We have actually learned this tale before in Spanish with Powerglide Spanish.) At the Palmer Alaska State Fair there has been a Giant Cabbage Contest since 1941. The current record for the largest cabbage (set in 2000) is 105.6 pounds. There is a recipe for cabbage soup in the back of the book.
  • The Rough-Faced Girl, Rafe Martin, (Grades 3 and up) In an Algonquin village by the shores of Lake Ontario, many young women have tried to win the affections of the powerful Invisible Being who lives with his sister in a great wigwam near the forest. No one thinks that the Rough-Face girl, scarred from working by the fire who, will win his affections, except her. Is she right?
  • The Secret Language of Snow, Terry Williams and Ted Major, This book tells about different types of snow and how they happen through the vocabulary of the Inuit people of Alaska, who recognize over a dozen different type of snow or snowy conditions.
  • Very Last First Time by Jan Andrews; (K-grade 3) "Eva lives in an Inuit village in northern Canada. In the winter, people search along the bottom of the seabed beneath a thick shelf of ice for mussels to eat. Eva usually helps her mother, but for the first time, she’s going to go by herself. She soon gathers a pan full of mussels. But then, her candle goes out, and the tide threatens to return! When she is finally safe with her mother, Eva proclaims, “That was my very last first time walking alone on the bottom of the sea.”
  • The Race of the Birkebeiners, Lise Lunge-Larsen; (age 5 and up) "It is the year 1206, and deep in the snow-covered mountains and valleys of Norway the fiercest warriors of the land struggle to ski a baby to safety...They race as the only way to save a child prince and bring peace to their country."
  • The Troll with No Heart in His Body and Other Tales of Trolls, from Norway, Lise Lunge-Larson, grades 2-5, "As tall as trees and as ancient and rugged as the Norwegian landscape from which they come, trolls are some of lore's most fascinating and varied creatures."
  • Stories by Jan Brett, for Pre-K and up: Annie and the Wild Animals, The Hat, The Mitten, The Three Snow Bears, etc.

sources and inspiration:

Skätorsdag (Maundy Thursday) in Sweden, adorable little Easter Witches walk the neighborhoods in Sweden asking for treats and giving hand made Easter cards in return.


  1. I love those maps!! Great study.

  2. LOVE IT! What a great study. We have cousins from Alaska who recently stayed with us for a few weeks, and we are seriously hoping to make a long trip up there to stay with them and experience some Arcticness first-hand!

  3. I love the Idatirod race, that was cool.

  4. I love these maps, too, they look great!


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