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Friday, August 5, 2011

America-Land of the Pilgrims Pride


Monday we began our new unit study. America.


This is a two year study from Christian Novel Studies. The first unit is from 1492-1789. This unit will last 11 weeks.

Today was so easy. Everything is laid out. All I had to do is gather the books, and materials needed and read from the script. Homeschooling has never seemed so easy!

Here is a rough list of things we covered this week.

This is one of our quotes to memorize this week.:

I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure that it will cost us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the gloom I can see rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is worth more than all the means.

John Adams to Abigail Adams on the passing of the Declaration of Independence.


From our unit study:

History/Reading -read the first 4 journal entries from Pedro's Journal (Pam Conrad),


Read the introduction and about the authors of The Light and the Glory for Children.


Poetry, Song -We are learning the song "America" Today we read through and sang the 1st Stanza. I just love that this curriculum includes hymns, poems and songs that celebrate our nation's heritage.

Science: Oceans - 70% is water, 30% is land activity. The title should read the Earth's Surface. Someone was in a hurry.


Spelling each one had 5 words from the unit study. Peyton pretested on his other weekly list from Funtastic Spelling. He aced the test, so he has no additional words. Lexi pretested and we added in the ones she missed. She wrote each spelling word on a 2X3 card, and will keep them in her spelling pocket (tab) to review daily. There are a couple games printed off in the pocket as well.


Vocabulary words-ingenious, faith.

Outside the unit study.

Math-Peyton worked on prime numbers, and made a magic number square.

         Lexi worked on place value to the millions. Working with the dice to make groups of 10. These are the books we are using right now. (We will be using other materials as well.) I love that they have fun, puzzle type review pages. Not boring text book type pages.


Piano-Lexi Book B, (Left and right hand scales)  Peyton book C-(base clef notes,)  Me book D. (Yes I am working on it too.)  b flat and e flat. Bass and Treble Clefs. 

They also work on their own Explorer Bible study daily and Peyton adds in Latin. In addition to this they each have assigned reading and a desired reading at bedtime.


These are their binders they will be using to organize their work this year.

I told them to design a cover that would be about America.

Peyton designed a flag.


Lexi drew the Statue of Liberty.


The binders have tabs with pockets. There is a section for history/maps, science, grammar rules and definitions, bible memory verses, and spelling. We will be adding others for poetry and writing as well. Each 11 week unit is kept in the binder and then those pages are transferred to longer term storage. Then we will reuse it again next semester. Our timeline will be something we continue all year long.


Math Peyton worked on multiplication, addition, subtraction and division. Learning to begin by multiplying and dividing from left to right and then add and subtract. Example 6x4-3+5X6+5=___.

Lexi worked on multiplication-single number facts. She also did grouping with the dice.

Reading/History and Literature-We read 4 more diary entries from Pedro's Journal. We found and labeled Portugal, Spain, England, and San Salvador.

Grammar-We studied simple and complete subjects. We wrote some sentences from The Light and the Glory reading today, and put diagrammed them by placing a slash between the subject and predicate.

Vocabulary-We added 3 new words to our list. ambassador, rill, pride.

Spelling- Peyton went over his spelling words-and can spell all of his from the unit study. Lexi did a scrambling exercise with her words.

We also read over the 2nd Stanza of "America".

We worked on memorizing John Adams quote.


Today we read through the third stanza of America. We read through 4 more journal entries in Pedro's Journal.

For writing-the kids each wrote a journal entry of their own about their day.

Spelling-Lexi spelled all her words from Funtastic Spelling correctly today. Tomorrow I will quiz her on the unit study words.

Math-We did a number sense dvd and some addition games with the dice/box. This method teaches mental math from left to right instead of right to left.

Grammar-We learned about and labeled predicates in sentences.

Vocabulary-We added in a few words to our vocabulary lists today.

Cursive- They both began their cursive practice again today.

Latin-Peyton is doing very well with Latin 1. And is reviewing his flash cards daily.

We even finished up a little early today.

Piano-We are all on track with our piano lessons as well.

So far so good for the first few days.


Grammar-We began our Grammar Rules and Definitions booklet today. This is a tabbed area in the kids notebooks where they will add grammar rules and definitions. Today we added the terms, grammar, sentence, and parts of a sentence: subject and predicate.


Reading/History-Pedro's Journal -read 4 more journal entries the kids each took one to read out loud as well. We wrote 2 things we learned from Columbus. This went under a heading called "Lesson's Learned from Historical People."
We wrote what the person did, and what we learned from it. We learned that Columbus had a vision from God and sought to serve God. We also need to seek to serve God. We also learned that his pride and greed for gold and position became more important to him than pleasing God and sharing the Gospel. (We must remain humble and content.)

Vocabulary-fathom -(6 feet), league- (3 nautical miles), docile-(obedient.)

Applied Math- we figured out how many fathoms and leagues in different figures.

Math Dice, we did lesson 1 and 2 from the number sense dvd. Adding 2 and 3 digit numbers. (Working reverse, working on mental math.) We also worked on grouping 10's and fast counting of dice.


Fridays are primarily days to wrap up the previous 4 days. Another thing I really love about this study! The truth is there is nothing I have seen so far that I don't like about the study. Being a person that has used unit studies for years, and has also written and contributed to many unit studies, I can say that this study is great! It is such a blessing. There were so many things I saw this week that I really had not tied together. It is the first time in years I haven't felt the need to add more to a study. (As far as core subjects go.)

Math-They each did a math page in their books. Peyton worked on decimals. Lexi did an addition coloring page.

Vocabulary-history-the story of a person or country's past

Science- I used today for our second science lesson. We learned about coral reefs. And since we will be studying oceans for much of this year, I gave in to the idea of getting fish. Not just one, but two fish, this way each child could have their own.


This is not my breakfast bar centerpiece. How do you like my fancy gold fish bowl? It is actually a cake plate/punch bowl. I found these fizz tabs-you change the water once a week and add a fizz tab. It is supposed to help the water and fish, it also lowers the ammonia which the fish put off. I also usually take 1 cup of water out each day and add a fresh cup of spring water. We will see how clean we can keep it.


History- We began our timeline and placed the people we learned about in week 1 on the timeline. I chose to use index cards to do this. I put taped them in an accordion fashion.


I really wanted something small-not on a wall, something easy to place in our folder. So I decided to try this.



Geography-We labeled the reefs on a world map. 

The unit study actually had a craft activity today with our Bible Memory verse. But I made up my own art activity -seen  below.

Art-We colored a coral reef page with water color pencils and then painted over the areas with water. After it dried we glued the page to a background page. 

Coloring with water color pencils.



Adding water with brushes.



The finished product.



Handwriting and Bible-  I put the Bible Verse for the week into a cursive handwriting generator and let that be cursive copy work today. So we added those pages to our Bible Memory Verse section of our notebooks.