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

Postcard-Geography Album: Rhode Island, “Plantation State”

In 1985, the Rhode Island General Assembly proclaimed the Carousel as the "State Jewel of American Folk Art".
This carousel is at Rodger Williams Carousel Village, Providence, Rhode Island. 
We learned about Rhode Island this week. I had been worried that I would not be able to get a postcard from this state because it is so small.
I need not have worried for I received a whole box of goodies from Cricket in Rhode Island. As you can see, each item was marked with a note, telling it's significance.
"Sky Bars are a local favorite."
"The Clark bar factory was right around the corner from the house where I grew up. It smelled horrible Fortunately, the candy bars are pretty good."
(on the Necco wafers) "A staple for Catholic children growing up in New England and essential part of "play Mass," during which Communion is administered as often as possible. Just FYI, the purple ones are clove, not grape. Forewarned is fore-armed." We enjoyed these treats at teatime and the boys loved them all!
Also in the package were recipes for our Rhode Island dinner.
"I hope you enjoy these recipes. Honestly, most of these I make in a very 'wing-it' style, so feel free to vary to your liking. I copied these from various websites as a reasonable starting point,
"New York System" Wieners
"These have nothing to do with New York!"
Dynamites 
"Imho, all of these should be somewhat spicy. Dynamites are especially good with added banana pepper rings. Yummy. As an beverage, the appropriate drink would be coffee milk, made with Autocrat syrup. Frozen Lemonade also works. Make fresh lemonade, being sure to leave in some small pieces of peel and freeze 'til slushy or use a slush making kit."
The frozen lemonade was the biggest hit of the meal!
"You can also use Autocrat syrup to make a "cabinet," so called because the old fashioned blenders were once built int a cabinet. Milk, vanilla ice cream and syrup to taste, in the blender. Yum."
We enjoyed these milkshakes for an after-dinner treat and I was surprised to find that it tasted different that milkshakes made with coffee ice cream, although I am not sure I can say how. The boys loved them, of course.
For our album page, both Alex and Quentin colored maps with the state tree (Red Maple) and flower (Violet). One will go in our album and the other will go in that student's geography folder. We also located the state on our US map, and noted that it is the smallest state. I am getting them to take note of what states and geographic features are around the states we are studying, in this case Massachusetts, Connecticut and the Atlantic Ocean.With the postcard as our jumping off point, we also learned about carousel horses. In 1886, the amusement park, Crescent Park, was established in Riverside, Rhode Island, overlooking the Providence River. Crescent Park soon became known as "the Coney Island of the East." In 1895, Charles I. D. Looff built another, larger and more elaborate carousel with an adjoining workshop. He used this as a showpiece for prospective buyers to choose the types of carved horses for their carousels.
"It may be our smallest state but its presence is unmistakable - rich in history, breathtaking beauty, and famous for its neighborhoods filled with character. With every turned page readers will be treated to Rhode Island's incredible scenery and have their many questions answered about our thirteenth state. Rhode Island has how many miles of coastline? The breathtaking beauty of Block Island is one of the state's how many islands? Readers will also learn how Rhode Island native Samuel Slater started the American Industrial Revolution, and what the quahog is."


We have "visited" 30 states with our postcard-geography album.
We still need postcards for these states:
Mississippi, New Jersey, Vermont and Wyoming.
If you live in any of these states and would like to help us with this project, please leave a comment on how I can get in touch with you. Thank you!
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4 comments:

  1. What a great package! I love the way the notes were wrapped around each item. It looks like Rhode Island turned out to be a fun study.

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  2. I love carousels, it looks like your tea time meal was a big hit! I'm horrid at remembering to add in snacks related to the state.

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  3. Anonymous26.11.11

    Your Postcard-Geography Album is a wonderful idea, I´m living in Italy, so if you want to know something about Europe, or if you have some other ideas how I could help you as some kind of "ambassador", feel free to contact me. Sara
    my e-mail: saramsalbi@libero.it

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