Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Its a new term , its a new day

India country study
Yesterday was the first day back to school for T+L. The whole day seemed to go really well! I started the day myself with some solitary peace and quiet. I got up at 5.45 ,dressed and came down to the living room. I read some of  book about Thomas Merton written by an Anglican Franciscan friar.
pergoda project contd
I made porridge for the boys and woke them at 6.15. Then I decided to have some myself with a cup of earl grey tea. The boys were seated by 6.30 and we started reading Emmy and the Home for Troubled Girls by Lynne Jonell and illustrated by Jonathan Bean. Last year we read Emmy and the Shrinking Rat. So far it seems  good readaloud, combining humor with a fairly fast paced plot. Its written in an engaging style.
T revised our nature table
Some of the sentences in the book make good examples for Lachlan's english work(gotta love those teachable moments!):
"The afternoon sun slanted through the dusty air of the attic room. The window was dirty, but the rays stamped the wooden floor with gold, and a long trapezoid of light stretched out to touch a small girl with her back to the wall"
Plus the book contains interesting vocabulary study:
" Just because you have no style," he muttered,"no sartorial instinct...."
 After breakfast violin practice started. I was grateful that even after  a month without practice(shhh don't tell the suzuki police!) L remembered his pieces mostly quite well. T will be doing 2 practices as he will have work to do for the youth orchestra,  as well as for his lessons. Both boys also have pieces to practice for boys club too, so quite a busy time musically speaking!
Our history is a continuation from last year but I want to move at a faster pace. I would like T to have some study of modern history before he finishes his homeschooling. Our first reading in Genevieve Foster's book: The World of Columbus and Sons began with Columbus'  discovery of the coast of South America.The boys wrote in their notebooks that Trinidad was named for the trinity by Columbus and Venezuela was named after Venice as it was reported "the natives had houses built on stilts over water".
We next read some poetry from the Harp and the Laurel Wreath. We read "The Falconer of God". Here is a quote from it on beauty:
          A strange white heron rising with silver on its wings
          Rising and crying
          Wordless,wondrous thing
          The secret of the stars, of the world's heart-strings
          The answer to their woe
sea glass and other beach found treasures!
As an introduction to our study of Culture and Society we discussed the basic needs of humans. This lead to a discussion about what it means to be human, what differentiates us from animals. T suggested that thinking and language was the key, so we thought a bit more about what context language existed in. Continuing they decided that language existed in culture which brought us back to "what is culture". I deliberately left these at the question stage and then threw them two other questions;"what is every person on earth entitled to and how can this be achieved?""When we study  a particular country what are we wanting to learn from our study?" I don't intend to give them answers! This is really meant  to set them on the road to thinking about these concepts.
sea treasures
The boys then worked on english and maths assignments. T is studying "The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner" and "Robinson Crusoe for literature this term.

more treasures from sea + shore
And then it was time for science. T will study Chemistry and Biology this year. These are his choices of topics. We will use a mix of literature and text books and online resources.
With L I outlined some science projects he can achieve this term towards his cub badges. He is trying very hard to get his grey wolf award before he moves up to scouts in April. As he has been at cubs for not quite a year this will mean quite an endeavor!

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