As I ponder how to wrap up this week, I am a bit overwhelmed. Our Hodgepodge site is back! Yet, how to wrap up the whole month of January plus the starts of February? I have a backlog of posts and photos rolling ’round my head I hope to share in the days to come. Learning, nature walks, cooking fun.
Though we weren’t posting, we enjoyed our January. It was a nice time to refocus, reevaluate, renew. That’s what a new year is all about, right?
So, I will, in no particular order, attempt an update of things we have learned of late:
Bible: Eldest girl and I started the year out with the plan to read the Bible through. There’s a neat online version I can pull up with an app. Plus the Daily Audio Bible roughly follows this plan too. Middle girl is reading 365 Daily Devotions for Kids. Eldest boy is following suggested reading in his Plants Grown Up and is currently in Kay Arthur’s How to Study Your Bible For Kids.
Youngest girl is learning to read along with her Bible study. She’s the fourth one around to sit with me or an older sibling each morning with her Early Reader’s Bible.
And, I won’t leave out Lil’ Buddy. He recently rediscovered the Bible our church gave him when he was born. “My blue Bible!” He ‘read’ to us the other day the story of Zaccheus who climbed down the tree to see Jesus – then went to the big construction job
Math: the phenomenon of the week! This week we seemed to hit an area all around where everyone was doing well, feeling confident. Third grader, who has been plugging along in her Saxon Math, asked if she could work on a few sample lessons online in Teaching Textbooks. In addition to her regular assignments! She really enjoyed being like her older, middle school siblings. Sixth and seventh graders are multiplying and dividing fractions.
Nature Study + Preschool: Youngest girl is taking the lead on tracking the weather this month. That’s because we found a weather calendar activity in her Answers for Preschoolers curriculum. The calendar goes right along with our winter nature studies. This preschool curriculum always offers fun practice in all preschool areas. Of course, her favorite is cutting and pasting! About once a week we also use Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready, with age-appropriate activities from birth to age 5.
With it being so cold, wet, rainy (and did I mention cold?) we’ve stayed as close as we can to the fireplace and kept a one room schoolhouse. We’ve watched birds from the window, looking to see if we can catch a glimpse of a new one. We took lots of photos of birds in the snow a few weeks ago, in anticipation of our winter bird study.
We did read and talk about evergreens and a few have used the notebook pages from the Winter Wednesday Nature ebook from The Handbook of Nature Study. We hope to dry out some pine cones and study them soon.
I saw a mockingbird this morning and quickly grabbed the camera. Our mockingbirds don’t stay around very long, so I focused in and quickly got those pretty tail feathers. But I didn’t even see our bonus bluebird in the background at the time!
Writing: Plus, we’ve had a pretty little hermit thrush frequent our back patio. Eldest boy wrote about it in My Backyard. Plus, Middle girl did a short review of the American Girl book, Cutest Nature Book Ever!
Science: We finished up our Answers in Genesis God’s Design for Heaven and Earth unit study of Our Universe and are currently learning about the NASA space program. This led Hodgepodgedad to pull up Neptune All Night YouTube videos. Several of us watched excerpts one night this week.
History/Tapestry of Grace: Our science studies are running parallel to our history studies now. It’s so nice to be learning history and science together! This week we read about the Dust Bowl and Great Depression from our Weather and Water text. Plus rocket study and the space program all started in the 1900s, which is the Tapestry of Grace Year 4 we are studying.
Eldest boy has been reading a biography of Stalin. He says, “I don’t like that man.”
Literature/Tapestry of Grace: The 20th Century Children’s Book Treasury has been a fun spine to delve into. Many of our favorites are compiled in there. Madeline, Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel, Arthur, Curious George, Winnie the Pooh, plus my personal favorite, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. One snow day we reenacted Katy and the Big Snow all over the family room floor.
In addition, eldest girl is reading Mary Poppins while Middle Girl is loving Pippi Longstocking. One night Middle girl tried to sleep like Pippi – with her feet on the pillow and her head under the covers. That didn’t work out so well. But mixing up some gingerbread like Pippi did turn out well for our dessert one night.
Cooking Fun/Living Math: That Pippy gingerbread was part of our cooking fun this week. Well, I always knew baking and cooking were good skill practice in lots of areas. Math measuring, following directions. But, as part of my continuing education this week, I purchased Cindy West’s Loving Living Math. She sets aside two days of the week for living math.
Cooking and baking are one of the many examples of living math! Plus, playing games like our very favorite, Blokus. (I have the privilege of hostessing Cindy in Heart of the Matter’s Online Conference. Have you signed up yet?)
Arts: The two oldest girls have been memorizing their drama troupe lines for Alice in Wonderland. They both must be off script by next week. Eldest girl is playing a talking flower and Middle girl the white rabbit.
We worked on sketches for this week’s Sketch Tuesday assignment. Nana is supposed to come over the weekend sometime for a pastel lesson. There has been a request for a macaroni and cheese pastel tutorial! The youngest two had some fun with paint with water. That is so easy to say yes to! Plus, we entered the Art for Homeschool Show! Click over and vote for your favorite.
Hymn Study: Middle girl prompted us in hymn study this week. Her piano practice called for Wonderful Words of Life. Plus, in church choir she is learning I Love to Tell the Story. I often click over to Net Hymnal to find the name of a hymn to accompany the tune that pops in my head. Or one that I hear on Sacred Favorites Radio via Sky Angel TV.
Field Trip! Middle girl also made a trip to the state capitol with Nana. She went to help Nana get all set up in her new office under the Georgia gold dome. She drew pictures of all the things she saw there. She also sent me an email describing her adventures:
“I have seen the two-headed cow!!! And all sorts of stuffed animals, snakes and turtles, birds and a black bear! There is a statue of a scary Indian and we went to the private bathroom with Nana’s key. I drew pictures to color when I get home.”
Bonus: this little button helped things move along. Piano practice finished – that was easy! Math? that was easy! room picked up? that was easy
Pj Party! Tonight the youngest three are wearing their pjs to church for the annual night at church: Pj party for the preschoolers and Movie Night for the third grader. Nana will only have the eldest two tonight while Hodgepodgedad and I go on our weekly date night!
Whew! How’d I do? Promise I won’t be so wordy in the future. Lots to catch up on.