school week 3 & 4, recap(s)

Posted by in homeschooling, menu planning

i hope to recap each or at least every other week of school this year so i have a better record of things we’ve done. pictures at the end of the post!  want to read more weekly wrap-ups of other homeschooling families?  check out Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers every Friday!

Two weeks in one re-cap post! I’ll post this today (Wednesday), and will link it at the above Mr. Linky post on Friday.

We had a busier than normal week last week, but I’m pleased to say we stayed on track and finished all the “planned” lessons at the same time we were able to enjoy the beginning of the fall weather.

We introduced Solar System Science into our week – two days a week we have begun to learn about the Solar System. Thanks to a Leap Frog learning system we inherited from friends, the two older boys already know a lot of the introductory “language” of learning about our solar system. they are totally into asteroids and comets and i couldn’t believe that they knew the definitions by heart already!

If you have any suggestions for making or buying a solar system to hang in their room, i’m all ears…as long as it doesn’t involve papier mache. 🙂

Last week was the “opening” of our homeschool group’s school year. We kicked it off with a picnic at a local park shelter where the kids did their presidential fitness program while the grown ups supervised and chatted about the summer, the coming school year, etc.

This past weekend, my grandfather was visiting, which was great!  The boys had such a great time pulling him this way and that – showing him their “animals” and stomp rockets and teaching him how to fight with light sabers. My Grammy is in a home 24/7 now, and it was hard to get the boys to understand why she wasn’t with him. At one point, Adam looked up at Grampy and asked, “Great Grampy? Are you thinking about Great Grammy?” and earlier in the weekend, he asked me “When is the girl Great Grampy coming?” It was a good time for all of us to be with him! But we all missed his “girl”…Grammy!

This week, we had our first field trip at a local living history center called Providence Plantation.  We are studying the early colonial times of America, so this field trip was a good fit for us. In our homeschool co-op this fall, we’ll be focusing on children in colonial America, so it’s nice to get a field trip around what we’re learning in our home, as well as our co-op. At this field trip, the only thing the boys took away was how girls and boys bowed and said “hello” (“good morrow”) 200 years ago. We also noticed the Washington’s Trail signs all along the roads on our way to the Plantation. I wonder how much of “George Washington slept here” concept made it through their heads…these roads are where he traveled so many years ago. I also wonder just how accurate “these roads” are!

We’ve been watching the School House Rock DVD for a few years now and it’s so funny when they boys make a connection from the songs they learned from that DVD. This morning, sawyer asked why george washington was called “General Washington” in the “The British are coming! The British are coming!” song. I see why classical education is so key in pumping fun facts through chant, song, poetry in these early years. Eventually, all these puzzle pieces make sense and the student sees the value of all pieces that at one time seemed disjointed.

One other addition to our school day is having classical music on in the background. My friend April mentioned in her first week of school that she plays Bach in the background during her day. She suggested, when I asked her for Bach recommendations, that I create a Bach Pandora station, which I did. So we either have Pandora or our local classical station playing softly in the background through the day. Perhaps it’s coincidence….perhaps not, but the effect has been a calmer, more focused lesson time in all of us. The only time it’s off is during piano practice. I highly recommend doing this!

In our history curriculum this week, I wrapped up the Lief Erikson book we were going through (I got bored!) and introduced the boys to Christopher Columbus today. Columbus has such a bad reputation and our history curriculum touches on that, but also highlights some good. For this year, we’ll highlight the earth being round belief (the boys already think it’s funny that the earth was once thought to be flat…”didn’t they see the pictures of the earth from outer space? it’s ROUND!”  he he), his involvement with the Spanish, and we’ll introduce globes and compasses to our study. Fortunatley, the love all things globes and compasses and it will take away from Columbus’ not-so-finer personality traits.

Menu planning…

Monday we had friends over for dinner and we ate Red Lentil Coconut Curry with Brown Rice and Nutty Pumpkin Bread from the Simply in Season cookbook.

Tuesday was leftovers (from the weekend) with soccer practice in the evening.

Wednesday is Barley Mushroom Soup with Oatmeal Molasses Bread. Kenny has a bad cold, so homemade soup is in order! He loves mushrooms (i do NOT), so this soup is ALL FOR HIM.  Sawyer actually like mushrooms too so perhaps he’ll share.

Thursday Hoisin BBQ Chicken Breasts over brown rice.

Friday Baked Pasta with Sausage, Tomatoes and Cheese with green salad

Saturday is Chicken with Green Olives, salad.