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, February 8-14 {week 21}

For our art study we looked at a picture of the amphora Ajax and Achilles Playing Draughts, and then we created some art of our own. Katie helped Quentin with an " X is for X-Ray" project. Then we took a grand tour of the four largest of Jupiter's moons. While I read to them about them, they watercolored pictures of them.  Then, for a simple St. Valentine's Day craft, we got out paper doilies and used the watercolors, for an open-ended activity. Because of the upcoming Chinese New Year, we opened our China Learning Kit. Inside there was a red envelope held real modern Chinese Money. Their dollar is worth about 15 American cents. There was also a red scarf worn by school children in China. There were also a lot of decorations including a small flag. It has many more items. It was a great start for our celebration of Chinese New Year next week.
Besides the usual reading, writing and arithmetic, we did a lot of creating today.  We made a clay flute, a wooden pirate ship and foam St. Valentine's Day door hangers. Quentin made X's and O's cookies.
By the time I woke up this morning this much snow had fallen. So we inside, we colored maps, made puppets of Qin Shi Huangdi and made pockets for our China unit. Katie read a book to Quentin and then had him practice making X's by playing Tic-Tac-Toe. I melted soap for the boys to put in angel molds, color and scent. They added the color after the soap was poured in the molds to make a marbled effect. These are to be St. Valentine's Day presents. We played many games. Sam and Katie made bread.
While I worked with each of them individually with reading, writing and arithmetic, Steven took the soaps from yesterday out of their molds. While I play a phonics game with James, Quentin made up a matching game with Sam's mythical creatures figures and cards. Quentin is proud that he is now writing words instead of just single letters. We made dragon pictures for Chinese New Year's.  Quentin helped me make brownies while Katie cleaned cabinets. James and Quentin enjoyed playing with the Geoboard. Katie helped Alex make Valentines for the birds- heart bird feeders. Katie read Quentin from his Curious George book and I helped him make a Santa out of an "x"X for X-mas, while Sam finished up his Greek and James played an Explode the Code game on the computer.  By this time the brownies were done,  and it was time to explore the snow.
Katie and Alex hung the heart bird feeders they made yesterday. James wanted to make bread today. Quentin wanted to make cookies. While the bread dough was rising and the cookie dough was getting firm in the refrigerator, they watched Veggie Tales on the computer. Right before lunch, the bread went into the oven. After lunch the bread came out, and the cookie dough was ready for rolling and cutting. While the cookies were baking they sat at the table and played an alphabet version of Go Fish! with Quentin who was happily the winner.  By the time the game was over, the cookies were cool enough to decorate.  After dinner of Chili and cornbread they wanted to build another snowman as the last one had been toppled by the winds. Then James asked to "play" Explode the Code Online. Then, the perfect end to this sweet day- is a brownie sundae.  Cook brownies in ramekins and top with a scoop of ice cream and chocolate syrup.
You can see tracks in the snow, and sometimes we see squirrels running and leaping and eating cereal we have left for them. Sometimes it is just the birds that come to nibble on the seeds at the base of the backyard maple tree. Sweet little grey and white birds that look like hopping balls of velvet. The pond is all covered over now. I imagine that the bullfrog is lying quietly at the bottom waiting for warmer times. Children make their familiar paths again. Watching the real  icicles,  Katie stores ideas of gingerbread houses that drip with icicles of sugar.
Happy Chinese New Year!
We made Chinese crafts, ate Chinese food for dinner, had Chinese tea, and
Felt Fortune Cookies with Chinese character fortunes to decode.

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