Story of the World, Vol. 1, Chapter 13

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Chapter 13 deals with The New Kingdom of Egypt. The kids colored the map and the mask of Tut while I read the first two stories. I asked if they could handle two more stories and they said yes. So I finished the chapter in that one sitting. The following day, my son brought his coloring pages to Daddy and told him about the Valley of the Kings and how it is full of tombs etc. I praised him for his narration, which I had not even requested.

That’s one thing I learned: when the chapter is long and we do it in one sitting, they do not want to answer review questions or to do a narration. They are ready to get away from the table and play! So I will have to work on reviewing this lesson later this week.

I asked if they wanted to make a monument and read the paragraph which explains it could be about somebody who died, a toy, an activity they enjoy or whatever. My son said he wanted to make a monument to Papaw – my husband’s father, who passed away one year ago. My children both were affected greatly by his passing and the concept of death became real to them then.

Bread and Glue

Bread and Glue

So we took bread and glue and proceeded to mix them together as indicated. It required white bread, which we never buy – we like whole wheat bread. My daughter, who is almost five, saw how messy and sticky this exercise was, and told me she did not want to build a monument.

Ball of glue and white bread

Ball of glue and white bread

Instead, she wanted to try the white bread. She ate a slice and loved it so much, she grabbed a second slice. Then, she asked for a third and a fourth, in a PBJ. I am always happy to see her eat, so I obliged, after we finished our monument and we washed our hands very well.  Continue reading »

Flattened ball of bread and glue

Flattened ball of bread and glue

My son gave up on his monument at this point. His hands were super sticky and covered with patches of sticky bread. He did not know how to flatten the ball of glue and bread. So he went to wash his hands. I was determined to make a monument. If somebody had told me 10 years ago that I would write a sentence like “I was determined to make a monument” in order to describe a homeschooling moment at our house, I would have told them that they were crazy.

Rectangle cut out of clay

I cut a rectangle out of that irregular shape, with the blunt edge of a knife.

So a monument I made, based on my son’s original plan. My son came back and declared himself happy with it. He wants it to dry first and then he will paint it gold – he loves that gold paint!

UT Monument to Papaw

UT Monument to Papaw

Since Papaw was a UT Vols fan, I used a plastic plate as a base for this monument. I could not bend it any more without breaking it, but it had just enough curvature to stand on its own. I did use the extra pieces (which I had cut out to obtain the rectangle) as reinforcements in the front and in the back.

It actually looks a bit like marble. But if you removed the crust of the bread slices, you would not get as much dark brown spots. The instructions did not say to remove the crust, so I had not.

Gold Paint Monument

Gold Paint Monument Craft

A few days later, my son painted it gold and it looked even better. What do you think?


Story of the World, Vol. 1, Chapter 12

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Chapter 12 deals with the Middle Kingdom of Egypt. I read to them while they colored the brooch pictures. To my surprise, it really worked. I thought maybe it was just a fluke last time. But it really works. Coloring keeps them focused and they listen while I read.

We worked through the review questions and tried our best to narrate. Let’s just say, it’s a work in progress. But we shall not give up…

For our craft, we made gold color bracelets. Big mess, but worth it. My son enjoyed it so much, he decided to paint his hand and do a hand print in gold paint.

Painting a gold bracelet

Painting a gold bracelet

 

Gold Hand Print

Gold Hand Print

I discovered that the tube of tissue paper is impossible to cut the way they recommended in the book (first in half, then lengthwise). At least, for me, it was impossible. I found it easier to cut it first lengthwise and then in half.  Continue reading »

The only trouble was, once we painted our bracelets, they lost their curve. They got too straight. Once the paint dried up, only one out of three could still be used as a bracelet and I could not tell you why and how that happened. Oh well. It’s not like we were going to put them on every day…

For our activity project, we burned incense. It was interesting and brought back childhood memories of Easter services in the Romanian Orthodox Church. The only difference was that this incense really smelled like fragrance more than regular incense. I got this set from Amazon and it had different colors and different smells. By the time we were done, our home smelled like a cacophony of fragrances and we had to open the windows despite the cold outside.

Burning Incense

Burning Incense

Colorful Incense

Colorful Incense

If you need incense, by the way, I will hook you up. This set included a few too many and I don’t see us using it for anything else in the future.

The mapwork was a bit confusing, just like the general line of the stories. But we got through it all and are now ready for the next chapter.


Story of the World, Volume 1, Chapter 2

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Chapter 2 of Story of the World Volume 1 is called “Egyptians Lived on the Nile River.” It would be really easy to spend three months on this chapter. We spent almost three weeks.

I read the first section to them, “Two Kingdoms Become One,” and we looked at our wall world map to locate Egypt and the Nile river. We did the map work recommended, Student Page 6. With that fresh in mind, we built a model of the Nile according to the directions given in the Activity Book. My Egyptians got very sow-happy with the grass seed, as you can see from the picture.

Nile River Model

Our Nile River Model, Day 1. I should probably take pictures in three weeks, too.

We read “The Longest River” as a substitute book for “The Nile River,” but it seemed extremely dry and boring. I’m all for nonfiction books. Yet, my children just could not get excited about this one. Not all nonfiction books are created equal, obviously.  Continue reading »

What I learned through this switch is that, if my library does not have a particular title, I may have to buy it. The library’s “equivalent” may be free, but we may not get anything out of it, either.

The Nile River Map

Map Work

It helps that during our Bible class/devotional we are working through Old Testament stories. Egypt gets mentioned again and again. The idolatry, the abundance of water and crops, etc.

So I made the connection for them with the Nile. I think it gives the kids a better understanding of our history lessons. I really like linking our subjects through the backbone of history.

One other craft I found cute and easy to make, relatively speaking, is a pharaoh’s headdress inspired by this blog.

Pharaoh's Headdress

My daughter wearing the headdress we put together.

I read the second section to them a few days later – “Gods of Ancient Egypt.” My son said he enjoyed the story. A few days passed before I asked him to color the Osiris and Set coloring page. He remembered the story and told me the plot in one sentence. I did not even have to ask him.

These narration exercises are interesting to me because sometimes I have to ask him questions to get him to talk about the story, while other times I don’t need to do anything. He just starts talking about it and gives me the story in a nutshell.

We also read Egyptian Gods and Goddesses and found it rather creepy. The kids were almost afraid of some of the pictures in there. We did not read it again. Usually, we read books several times. Not this one.

Osiris and Set

My son chose to color only the coffin. I thought it was a great way to summarize the story and emphasize the main idea.

As you can tell, I am still getting used to the whole teaching process. There are so many things to prepare and so many manipulatives to bring out. Then, the lesson itself happens super fast. My children move on to other things and I am left to clean up the mess. We went outside on the patio to prepare the Nile river model. The sandbox is on the patio, too. As soon as we flooded the Nile and watered the grass seed, the kids moved on to the sand box. I was happy, because my other goal was for them to play outside after we finished history. So it worked out.

I am explaining this lest my readers think I have it all figured out and brim with self-confidence. I don’t. It’s OK to tackle this homeschooling thing with butterflies in your stomach. It really is.

As you can tell from his map work and coloring page, I don’t require perfection. He is only six and I accept his best effort and praise him for it. Just because we study ancient history in the first grade and lean towards classical education does not mean we are perfectionists.