Saturday, February 9, 2013

Civil War Battle Projects, Friction, & Levers

Doing a two week in one post this week... just couldn't get it done last week!! 
Our last two weeks with 24 Ways has been exactly what we've needed... exactly... almost hard for me to lead since I know I struggle with these "ways" too often. It was humbling to lead our study each morning stating to the kids that I HAVE to WORK on this TOO. The main points were to choose to be joyful and a peacemaker regardless of our circumstances or rights!! OUCH! Anyway... these aren't applied and checked off in just a week, our prayer remains that we would be steadfast in applying these truths daily as we strive to be Christ-like and God-honoring.

Language Arts
IMG_0542Spelling... check!

Grammar... check... pronouns, letter writing, adverbs, adjectives, story narrations!

Writing... getting there:) We're not consistent with our "formal" writing program. We did a few "lessons", wrote TY letters and letters to pen pals, started journaling and then our history project (see below).

Reading:) The kids are really starting to read but I was needing some record of what they were reading and some accountability for one (or two) of them:)  So we pulled back out a Reading Log from Homeschool Creations. I like the log because they have to find the author, publisher, copyright date and list their beginning and ending dates of reading the books.

That being said Anna finished the Abraham Lincoln book and started on a biography on Harriet Tubman... I am thinking of saving Little Women as a "family read" since it seems like it's overwhelming her right now. Lydia is reading American Girls and really whatever she can get her hands on:) Chris and I worked on a book about the Monitor and Merrimac battle and a Mr Putter book by Cynthia Rylant... it's a great early chapter book series! He's the 3rd kiddo to like these books!

Last week we studied the Generals of each army. We spent most the week learning about Generals Grant and Robert E Lee reading a simple biography of each and the kids colored a picture of each. After the reading the kids wrote (or dictated) at least two sentences about Grant and Lee.

We also touched on the African American experience and the underground railroad.

This week we looked at some the battles in the West and using the Navy. As well as some mentioning some of the "unsung heroes" of the Civil War like Frederick Douglas, Clara Barton and others. We read short kid-friendly articles about some of the people.

We challenged the kids to put together a project about one of the battles we read about this week and plan to "present" their project to grandparents visiting this weekend. The kids got to work:) First they did some research and this graphic organizer.
Anna and her sidekick "kindle" :)

Lydia did a project as well. She made a newspaper with a few statements and a picture of the firing on Fort Sumter:)

Anyway, I'm super proud of these guys;) I loved that they did a lot of their research with me just pointing them where and what to read. I did read an article to Chris about the Battle of Hampton Roads and he dictated to me what he wanted on his poster while I typed it for him. It took a lot of our "book time" on Friday to complete them, but then I think of the cool skills of researching, writing, painting, planning and carrying out a project, turning articles into main, concise facts to include on their posters....

and looking forward to what they share with the grandparents over the weekend... good stuff;)


Somehow I missed posted that we finished the last two laws of motion. One great resource was this article of how to teach them using MatchBox cars:)

We used our wooden train set... but it worked:) You can see the closest one with pennies taped to the top:)

We started the week finishing Friction. We had defined it the previous week, but we added a "real-life" picture to the definition.

We rubbed a coin quickly for almost a minute onto a small section of paper to investigate what happens when two things are rubbed together. We found that friction can make heat over time. Those who did the investigation half-heartedly didn't have the same heat:/

We played a game called Talk a Walk! This was game with an "unexpected" outcome. A good "virtual" experiment.

Our final activity was to see how friction affects our "everyday". We followed the instructions and even wrote out our own report! I think we most benefited from reading the other students' submissions and then spending the time to think of our own examples.

IMG_0477We ended the week with conversations about simple machines and levers. We read most of the pages of a Science book on levers. The kids and I talked about each of the classes of levers and drew the "basic" picture for each that the kids copied into their notebooks.

And then we went on a lever "hunt". Each child I had to bring or draw a lever from the house. Once they brought their finds, we tried to figure out which class the lever belonged by finding the fulcrum, load and where the effort is applied. We had fun with this... especially when Lydia originally brought back a picture of a man lifting the couch as a lever (pic on the bottom)... LOL!!

Last week we began reading about Leonardo da Vinci. This week we finished the main reading of the book and then the kids painted a black and white sketch of the Mona Lisa:) 

We talked a little about how each older kiddo tried to copy some of the colors and style of da Vinci and how each one looks so very different from the orginial. I was very pleased with this activity... and I know they enjoyed painting it more than starting from a blank sheet of paper!

Last week we attended a Valentine Card making "party". The point was to make cards for children in hospitals over Valentines Day that a semi-local radio station would deliver. I love having activities for the kids that includes them thinking of others. The kids had a great time and lots of cards were made;)

Add in a field trip to a fort that I haven't posted, the visit to the farm, Nate potty training himself, painting a "play house" at a friend's house, Leave It to Beaver and Mighty Machine reruns on Netflix...

and we're wrapped up:)

Linking up to Weekly Wrap-Up and Homeschool Link-Up.


Phyllis said...

I love their Civil War projects...and their notebook pages...well, all of their work!

Bunch of Barrons said...

Sounds like things are going really well!