Monday, October 1

A World of Adventure!

We headed in a new direction this year, with a boxed curriculumTo get the kids excited about the new curriculum, I unrolled six feet of butcher paper and had them make a large mural to show what we will be learning.
First up this year?  Six weeks on Ancient Egypt!  Leaving Egypt with Cleopatra, we will travel to Ancient Rome....home of the Spartans, Caesar, and some pretty neat Lego sets that the kids already have their eye on.  Naturally.  They're doing a good job of 'selling it' under the guise of "but it's educational!  it's what we're studying!"
After Rome, we will hop over to Ancient Greece and study Greek mythology and Aesop's Fables.  Our second semester will be begin in the Dark Ages, the Medieval Times.  I foresee a trip to the Dallas area to visit the Medieval Times arena...  Following the Dark Ages comes the Age of Enlightenment....the Renaissance & Reformation.  If we're able to find a Renaissance Faire during our spring travels, it will be a great addition to this unit!  Finally, we will wrap up our general study of world history with six weeks on the Age of Explorers.  This will take us from the 15th century through the early 19th century!   
Having never used a boxed curriculum before, I'm excited to have less 'planning' responsibility this year.  Sure, we're supplementing with art projects, short unit studies, and some additional workbooks.  I felt that the grammar section was weak, so each child has a language arts workbook.  Also, math & typing are not included in this unit, so they each have their Saxon books and spend ten minutes each day typing and playing computer games.  Finally, they have Latin workbooks, as we continue our foreign language studies.  It will be interesting to see how this year compares to the previous ones, on both learning & ease of the school day!

Here's a breakdown of the curriculum we used for the first year of AWOA:
Home School Mascots??
One of the (many) perks of homeschooling is the ability to be flexible and to change the rules mid-stream.  While home schools don't actually need a mascot, we've always chosen one.  Unlike most schools, however, we didn't just pick a mascot and stick with it.  Where's the fun in that?

So each year, based on whatever we will be learning in our year-long unit study, we select a different mascot.
  • One year, when we were studying ancient history, we became the Spartans.  
  • Another year, they named themselves the Bumblebees in honor of their aunt.  
  • Still another, they selected the Patriots, since we were studying early American history and the Revolutionary War.  
Last year, as we head into the Westward Expansion and Civil War, they decided to choose an animal - something that exemplified the Old West.  Well...that was the intention at the beginning...

I'd like to thank the good people of Deadwood, South Dakota for their winning enthusiasm and infectious sense of humor.  Thanks to them, for the next year, we are going to be the Ghost Chickens.

To be honest, it's somewhat fitting, since our house also seems to be where good poultry comes to be eaten by coyotes and hawks.  But that's beside the point.  How does one keep a straight face when announcing that they are a Ghost Chicken at school functions?  I love it.  

I look forward a deliciously silly year!  Bock, bock, bock, boooooooooooooooooock!

Ghost Chickens in the Sky 

v.1 A chicken farmer took a walk out on his farm one day
He paused by the coop as he went along his way
When all at once a rotten egg hit him in the eye
It was the sight he dreaded, ghost chickens in the sky
(Squawk and Cluck)

v.2 He'd been a chicken farmer since he was twenty four
Working for the Colonel for thirty years or more
Killing all them chickens and sending them to fry
And now they want revenge, ghost chickens in the sky
(Squawk and Cluck)

v.3 Their beaks were black and shining, their eyes were burning red

They had no meat or feathers, these chickens were dead
They picked the farmer up and he died by the claw
They cooked him extra crispy (pause) and ate him with coleslaw
Ghost chickens in the sky (Cluck)

Looking for a different grade?  Check out our other curricula reveals!

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