Home School Life Journal

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

Our 21st Year of Homeschooling, March 2017

This late winter and early spring have been difficult on our schooling this year as in February we had severe colds and March we had Influenza A. For this reason, we didn't accomplish a whole lot this month, which will make our homeschooling go into the summer, but that is pretty okay with us. Here is what we did accomplish.


Aquatic Habitats

Pond Life 

We began our study of the ecosystem of a pond and collected and cultured specimens from a pond. We collected four jars of pond water and cultured them with hay, rice, egg yolk and soil, separately. 

Microscopic Pond Life, part 1

We identified and sketched organisms from the collected and cultured specimens using a microscope. 

Forest Habitats

Microscopic Pond Life, part 2

We looked at the same cultures a week later, noticing that the organisms differed from the week prior.

Kingdom Fungi

We observed fungi and learned how members of the class Basidiomycetes grow and reproduce. We also learn about the fungi of the Class Ascomycetes, in comparison and contrast to Class Basidiomycetes. We observed how yeast reproduce through budding, and compared this to how Class Zygimycetes grow and bud. Various molds and mildew, as well as Imperfect Fungi, was observed microscopically and microscopically.  

Integrated Physics and Chemistry

James completed lessons in learning chemical formulas and chemical shorthand.

Renaissance and Early American History

Quentin learned about 17th century art and architecture and about the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Reason. We worked on evaluating resources.
James has learned about the early colony of Maryland, life in Colonial America and how the colony grew.


Quentin worked on a simple report on the legend of Dracula and the historical Vlad III.
James is reading and learning about Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. He is also working on pronouns—antecedents, personal, compound, indefinite, interrogative, relative demonstrative, nominative case, possessive, objective, traps; adjectives— adding for interest, phrases, clauses with Paradigm Accelerated Curriculum. 


Quentin worked on money word problems and division. James is struggling with algebra, and I cannot figure out the cause. I had thought he was strong in pre-algebra skills so I thought he was ready for algebra. Perhaps it is the way the concepts are presented? 

Plans for April


from Osmosis and Diffusion...what is the difference?

The Chemistry of Life

We plan to review molecular biology concepts. They will also observe and learn about the processes of diffusion and osmosis. We will also learn the basics of organic chemistry and see how easily enzyme function can be destroyed.

The Cell

They will further their knowledge of internal structures of various cells by viewing cork and onion epidermis cells. Slides of cells are viewed microscopically and they will be challenged to determine whether they are viewing plant or animal cells. They will observe cytoplasmic streaming and the response of plant cells by the presence of salt. Banana cells are also viewed to see what the largest part of the cells contain.

Integrated Chemistry and Physics

James will learn about atomic weights, heat and measuring temperature.

Renaissance and Early American History

Quentin will complete reading and map work on the early American settlers, the landing of the Pilgrims and the Mayflower Compact.
James will learn about Maryland in the War of Independence and the War of 1812.


Quentin will complete his simple report on the legend of Dracula and the historical Vlad III, and James will continue to read and learn about Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson.


I have decided that we need to go back to pre-algebra concepts for James and make sure that these are strong before going on. Meanwhile, I will look into other ways of presenting algebraic concepts. Perhaps we will do a month of games and fun ways of presenting math for both of the boys?


  1. What you did accomplish is awesome. I always enjoy catching up with you.
    Blessings, Dawn

  2. 21 years. Amazing!! We are about 8 behind you, and I'm feeling kind of anxious about starting all over again with Miss C. But, God will help me through, right?

  3. My boys always vote for games.

    We recently listened to Treasure Island together and then watched the old 1960s Disney movie together. It was a big hit.

    21 years is AWESOME! Congratulations!


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