Friday, November 12, 2010

Week 10: Getting to Know South America

This week we spent time learning about South America a variety of ways, particularly Harry. Ron, Harry and I have all become much more adept at identifying all the South American countries, and Harry has additionally learned about people groups such as the Yanomami Indians, for whom he has been praying this week, thanks to the wonderful book Window on the World. We're reading the biography of Nate Saint together now as well, although I'm feeling a need to read ahead to see how they handle the tragic end of his life (and whether they cover the amazing story of the reconciliation between Nate's son Steve and the tribesman who ended his father's life.) Feels pretty intense for the ears of little children, so we'll see how the book goes!

The boys also had fun playing soccer together--or, I should say, futbol!--a sport they had rarely enjoyed before, but that they tried given how much soccer is loved in S. America. And they fell in love with it! Now I'm wondering if I should have encouraged them to play soccer all these years. Harry even has a Brazilian soccer shirt given to him by his uncle years ago, and has put it to good use this week!

Harry also continued his study of the tropical rainforest this week, which we started last week and experienced up close in our zoo field trip. This week, Harry created a "Layers of the Rainforest" poster, which gave him a chance to use some of those technology-related skills I mentioned last week. He drew trees, labeled the layers, then researched examples of animals that reside in each layer, and used Google to find images of those animals which he printed out and affixed to his poster. I was surprised by how excited he was to do this project--I thought he would not get into it as much as he did! It makes me think that he is at an age where he can do more multi-step projects on his own, and how I should keep looking for ways to encourage this in his school experience.

The final poster!

Little brothers Ron and Dobby keep busy with their own projects; in addition to his usual activities in handwriting, reading, and math, Ron has focused on the topic of the "nest" this week in his kindergarten curriculum, which reminds him that God takes good care of him. Dobby mainly dabbles in play and likes to pretend to work alongside Sean, which seems pretty fitting for the age!

Currriculum-wise, we have finally settled down into our choices; I decided to continue with the First Language Lessons series for Harry's grammar, since we had invested so much time already in the first book and are used to the style and content. We did switch to Latin for Children but I am stubbornly keeping with the ecclesiastical pronunciation and wondering if that will ultimately feel like a misstep! But it sounds so much nicer to my ear and we still want to keep learning prayers in Latin, so hopefully if my kids do continue long-term with Latin, they will be able to make the switch to the classical pronunciation easily someday. Ron is wading into Latin slowly by using Song School Latin, the CD to which even Dobby enjoys! (I myself have learned many helpful Latin phrases through the cute and singable songs!)

We have one more week before we take a week off for Thanksgiving! How fast the holidays are approaching. Thanks for visiting!


  1. You can select ecclesiastical pronunciation on the LfC dvds, but they mess up a lot. We are sticking with it as well. We just make note when Dr. Perrin or the kids mess up!

  2. I like the SSL songs ... they are cute! ;)

    Looks like nice weather for some soccer/PE time!

  3. Oh no, they'll be sucked in by the soccer monster, LOL.. Mine are playing outside in the drizzle right now.

  4. Faith, I hadn't even noticed the errors myself as I haven't really been following along in the videos! Uh oh! I'd better be more careful! Thanks for visiting, Carrie and Lisa--the soccer has been a great source of exercise and we have been blessed by unusual weather this month here. Sadly, that ends next week but maybe the soccer bug will remain, we'll see!

  5. Great poster from your budding computer guy!

  6. Thanks, Mandy! I love using the Internet myself so I do love seeing my kids learn how to use it (for good purposes of course!)

  7. Love the rainforest layers -- that is really a great visual!

  8. Great encouragement for us "veteran" homeschoolers, who can tend to let the enthusiasm and creativity lapse! Thanks!

  9. Thanks, Lee and Kathryn, for visiting and for your comments. It's always encouraging hearing from other homeschooling moms--veteran or novice like me!--that they find anything here useful! =)