Story of the World, Vol. 4, Chapter 39 talked about my childhood. Our history book has finally caught up with me. It feels strange to read about one’s lifetime in a history book. We called it “contemporary history” when I was growing up but I see they only call it “modern” here.
First step in a langar meal: roast potatoes and cauliflower, chop tomatoes
The 1980s in the East and the Mideast took us to India after partition and Iran and Iraq. In all honesty, I did not know much about those places. I mean, I knew Indira Gandhi got assassinated by her own body guards but why I did not comprehend. Now I know. And I had never heard of the Bhopal disaster. So this was very educational for me. Continue reading »
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.
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 »
Chapter 36 in Story of the World volume 3 covers the end of the slave trade. We were very happy the abolitionists succeeded in their worthy endeavor. We discussed greed and how the desire for more money makes people do horrible things.
For our craft, we made an abolitionist poster – a very basic one. Large construction paper instead of poster board. Where would I put a poster board? We already have too little wall space because we have so many windows. Besides, I could not even fit a poster board in their craft bins (which are rather large, mind you). Continue reading »
Chapter 34 took us to South America in order to meet a certain Simon Bolivar. The craft was edible and easy to make: arroz con leche. We used to make a lot of “rice with milk” when I was growing up in Romania, so it was a familiar dish to me.
Arroz con leche
The difference was the orange juice and the cinnamon. I have to say, I did not expect the orange juice to give it a nice flavor. It just did not seem right. Continue reading »
Chapter 26 in Volume 3 took us to Russia. Catherine the Great made a big impression on my daughter. Of course, the paper dolls were a hit. She decorated every single one and made sure she could stick and remove them with Velcro dots.
Cutting out the paper dolls representing Catherine the Great
My son was disgusted with Peter Ulrich’s behavior. It’s good for them to see good monarchs and bad monarchs. We talk about legacy sometimes. What do we want people to think of when they remember us, after we are gone? Continue reading »
Chapter 22 is titled “Revolution!” and it presents two stories about the American Revolution. The first, Discontent in the British Colonies, shows the reasons why Americans became more and more dissatisfied with England. The second, The American Revolution, presents the beginning of the War of Independence, highlights of it, and its outcome.
American flag craft made by my daughter
This is a rich chapter and we dwelt on the Review Questions to make sure most facts stuck. I read to them Longfellow’s poem, “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere,” but decided against memorizing it. Not only is it too long, it is historically inaccurate. Longfellow took a lot of poetic licenses (artistic liberties) and only mentioned Revere, completely leaving out his worthy fellow rider, William Dawes. Also, he makes Revere into the recipient of the message by lanterns instead of being the one who actually gave the signal. And so on. Continue reading »
Chapter 9 deals with the Western War or the Thirty Years’ War. This was a fascinating lesson to me. I had forgotten the details of this war. After all, it has been decades since I studied it in school. Now that I know more about the difference between Catholics and Protestants, I looked at the story in a different light anyway.
Shredded apples for the Swedish apple cake
First of all, religious wars are sad. We talked about the fact that war may be a necessary evil at times, but it should never start simply because you persecute somebody for their faith. Continue reading »
Chapter 3 came with two stories, but they both focused on King James. I know it’s a bit much to read two stories in one sitting, and work through questions and narration, but we do it because, frankly, I find it hard to split history in two days during the week. Plus we have been doing this through the summer and the kids could take it.
The Susan Constant coloring page
My son’s original
When I finish one story, I ask them the comprehension questions. Then, I ask my eight-year-old to narrate the story back to me. As soon as he stops, they say, “Next story! Next story!” So it’s not like I am stressing them out or making them suffer. They love history. Continue reading »
I read Chapter 14 to the kids in the car, while my husband was driving us to the piano recital. It was my way of distracting everybody – especially myself – from nervousness. I think it worked. My kids did well on their recital, considering their age. It was my daughter’s first piano recital and she played two songs. My son played three songs. It was his second piano recital.
Crusty, gritty and oh so yummy viking bread
Lots of nervousness going on and lots of dynamics among all of us, so I decided we needed to distract ourselves completely with history. Continue reading »
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
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.
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.