Story of the World, Vol. 3, Chapter 24

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Chapter 24 deals with Captain Cook’s voyages and the beginnings of Australia as a British colony. Since we just finished “Mr. Popper’s Penguins,” the kids were already somewhat familiar with the name “Captain Cook” and the whole idea of explorations. It was a happy coincidence that our literature selection and our history lesson overlapped in a way.

Boy looking through telescope

My son looking for Venus after sundown

I am more interested in the reading comprehension questions now, as the nationally standardized test is coming up in six weeks. There will be lots of reading comprehension items on that test and I want the kids to learn how to approach their texts.  Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 1, Chapter 27

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The Rise of Rome, or Chapter 27, finally brought us to my favorite ancient kingdom. I have always loved Rome, its culture, language, art, and influence on the modern world.

Homemade fasces

Fasces

I brought them into the school room with the words, “Let’s do history! We finally get to learn about the babies on the cover of this book!”

My kids are interested in babies right now. They want stories of their baby years and they zoom in on anything about babies. So I took advantage and used it as an entering wedge into our history lesson today.  Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 1, Chapter 26

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Chapter 26 finally introduced us to the ancient civilizations of the Americas. I showed them on a world map how we moved from the Fertile Crescent and the Mediterranean Sea across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas. My daughter misunderstood. She thought we were done with Ancient History and we were going to now study more recent events. She was excited!

First off, I had no idea she had any feelings or opinions about what kind of historical period we were learning. I love these moments in our homeschool when I discover how my children feel about what we do.

Rabbit Shoots the Moon comic strip

Rabbit Shoots the Moon comic strip

I don’t necessarily change our routine or curriculum based on their likes or dislikes, but it’s good to keep my ear to the ground and be in touch with their true selves, their inner lives.

The Americas Coloring Page

Coloring page by my son

That is a major reason to homeschool. So many parents who send their children to school have no idea who their children really are, by virtue of the schedule which keeps them apart for most of the day.

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Chinese New Year Books

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In the past, the kids and I have marked the Chinese New Year with a paper craft. This year, I came across a series of books about Chinese history and thought we might just change the pace a bit. One in particular interested me because it talked about how the Great Wall of China came to be. “The Emperor Who Built The Great Wall” tells the story of the first emperor of China, who not only built the Great Wall, but is also famous for the terracotta warriors in his tomb, and for unifying China when it previously consisted of seven states.

To celebrate Chinese New Year, the author, Jillian Lin, has made this book available for free on Amazon, on February 19-20, 2015. Here’s the link. I hope you use it and download it, especially if you are studying ancient history this year. We found the book informative and easy to read and understand. The illustrations are Chinese-style, so it will be a total immersion in all things China.

The Emperor Who Built The Great Wall

For Chinese New Year, we read some books on ancient Chinese history

The kids actually asked me to read it again. At the end of the story, there is a very informative section called “Did You Know?” which contains even more historical facts presented in a short and sweet way. Then, you get to test their knowledge with a series of multiple-choice questions based on the book. You only have three choices: a, b, and c, which I think is better for younger children.  Continue reading »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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Story of The World, Volume 1, Introduction

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Story Sunday is a new series on Homeschool Ways – a series about how we learn from Story of the World, Volume 1 in our homeschool.

I will link up regularly to SOTW Blog Roll 2014, which, by the way, offers a number of inspirational blog posts from many other families using this history curriculum.  Continue reading »

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