Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 31

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“Western Bullies and American Money” is the title of this chapter. To be more precise, the first story covers the Suez Crisis while the second describes the Marshall Plan.

Gatlinburg
Gatlinburg from the 12th floor of the Park Vista Hotel

Last year, I watched “The Crown” and they have an episode about the Suez Crisis and how the Queen had no idea of what the British Prime Minister plotted. So I felt like I knew something about this story as I read it to the children.  Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 30

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 30 talks about partitioned countries: Palestine and India. We worked on this chapter the week of Thanksgiving, so the recommended cooking project fit. I decided to make a gluten free cake about partitioning Palestine.

Two sides of cake with peanut butter M&Ms

Two cake layers with peanut butter M&Ms

For the first time in my life, I bought candied cherries. I did not even know they existed. My husband warned me they did not taste good, but I was determined to try them. After all, the recommendations discussed using M&Ms instead and how that would be an inferior option. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 29

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 29 covers the end of World War II with two stories: the war that stretched across the world and the atom bomb. Sobering events to be sure, albeit fascinating.

Boy carrying luggage

My son acting out “leaving London” like English children during WWII.

I made sure to point out that we live one hour away from Oak Ridge National Laboratories, where THE bomb was manufactured. My husband has cousins who work there. His uncle worked there all his life. We have yet to visit the place. We plan to do that in the near future. Maybe next spring, when we can afford a field trip day without wondering about book work. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 28

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 28 deals with the three-war war and the Holocaust. So hard, telling these stories! I teared up as I read to the kids. The suffering that generation had to go through with the two world wars makes me heartbroken.

American Girl Series Molly

American Girl book showing how a girl would experience World War II.

Growing up under communism, they censored a lot of modern movies – a good thing, actually, because it forced us to read books instead. If they did show us a movie on our limited TV broadcasts, it would be about World War II, the Holocaust, or a musical featuring Fred Astaire. I feel like I have studied World War II forever or, at least, since age eight.  Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 27

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 27 deals with the civil war in Spain and Hitler’s invasions. No wonder Ms. Bauer wanted to make sure the children reading this fourth volume are mature. Much sadness and violence abound in this book.

Rebuilding the Fatherland

Rebuilding the Fatherland

We had to work with the kitten again this week because he loves to hang out in the school room and walk all over the table, sniffing our papers. I will be honest, the crafts and activities suggested did not excite us too much. So, again, I have to remind myself that we are older and do not need to spend 30 minutes playing a board game that we will never play again afterward, or build yet another structure that will end up in the trash. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 26

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 26 covers the Great Depression and Hitler’s rise to power. The two may seem unrelated, but Susan Wise Bauer makes the case for how America’s woes kept Americans too focused on themselves to really care about European politics.

Boy and girl studying history homeschooling

Map work for history

FDR and the New Deal also feature in the first story about the Great Crash and came of it. It was an eye-opening experience for the kids, who do not know the meaning of lack, of course. I told them I had a friend whose grandmother lived through the Great Depression. To this day, that grandma still buys two of everything she gets at the store.  Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 25

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 25 covers armies in China. The first story talks about Japan, China, and a pretend emperor. The second story talks about the long march. It also introduces Chairman Mao to the children.

The Chrysanthemum throne paper craft

The Chrysanthemum throne paper craft

Having grown up under communism, this information is painful and very difficult to process. I cannot begin to tell you how badly I feel for Chinese people who still have to live under communism. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 24

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Chapter 24 has an intriguing title: The King and Il Duce. First, I had to explain the title to the kids. We will study about the first king of Egypt and then we will travel to Italy to learn about Mussolini, whose nickname was The Leader or Il Duce in Italian.

Fasces craft

Fasces craft – no dowels or straws in my house, so we used pencils.

Then, we proceeded with the reading as well as we could while the new kitten, Smoky, was running around the classroom. He is a big distraction these days, but I try to be accommodating. The children love him and they have never had a small pet like this before. Our previous pet was an old cat named Izzy. He was 15 by the time we lost him. There was not much action with Izzy, but Smoky runs and plays all day. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 23

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 23 covers the Peace of Versailles and the rise of Joseph Stalin. The kids did not enjoy the injustice that occurred in the aftermath of World War I or the atrocities of Stalin. I emphasized that communism or socialism do not help the working class, although the chapter made that plain.

Kitten in Book Box

Our kitten likes the Story of the World, too.

It did not help that we adopted a kitten this week, either. It is two months old and has come to us from another homeschooling family. Our children have named him Smoky because we live in the Smoky Mountains. He is mostly black with white paws like socks and a bit of white around the chest and face. Saying that he is adorable would be an understatement. Continue reading »

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 22

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Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 22 deals with Ireland’s Easter Uprising and India’s Nationalism. Michael Collins and Mohandas Gandhi feature prominently in their respective stories. We learn the beginnings of the IRA or the Irish Republican Army. For me, as a child of the 80s, when the IRA was very active in their terrorist attacks, this chapter was very interesting.

The Salt March

The Salt March

Another important lesson in this chapter was about the Sikh religion. Also, the comparison between Sikhs and Muslims. We are Christian and we believe in teaching our children what other people believe in order to respect their beliefs and practices. Of course, we believe in freedom of religion. Also, we believe in being respectful of other people’s convictions according to their own consciences. Continue reading »

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