Our Classical Conversations group took a field trip this week to the Dyer Observatory. If you live in or around Nashville, I would HIGHLY recommend it. It was an exceptionally good field trip and dovetailed BEAUTIFULLY with our recent CC Cycle 2 Science Grammar and Science Projects. The astronomer in charge re-visited the relative size of the planets and stars, took us on a planet walk to show us the relative position of the planets, educated us about the different planets as we walked, then did an activity to illustrate the phases of the moon and showed us the telescope they use at the observatory and how the roof moves to allow it access. It was very cool!
Our field trip yesterday is one of the reasons I’m a day later than usual getting this post up! We were gone half the day for that and then we also had to deal with a neighborhood dog attacking one of our chickens! We thought she was a goner when we left for our field trip, but my husband (now known as the “Chicken Whisperer”) did not give up on her and, while she is terribly beaten up, she’s definitely hanging in there. We’re now referring to her as “Timex” since she can “take a licking and keep on ticking!” What a crazy day!
For this week’s math, I love to do hand motions. The hand motions have helped ME to remember the conversion of teaspoons, tablespoons, and fluid ounces, so hopefully they’re helpful to the kids, as well! I’ve done these same hand motions for a couple of years, so I don’t know if I saw someone else suggest these, or if I stumbled upon doing them myself!
For 3 teaspoons = 1 tablespoon, we make a teacup with our hands using our thumb and first three fingers. We stick out our pinky to drink our tea “fancy-schmancy-style” and as a result when you tilt up your 3-fingered TEA cup, you end up with 1 pinky sticking up in the air to remind you that 3 teaspoons=1 tablespoon.
Then, we pretend to be holding a glass using our thumb and first two fingers and we set it down on the table to remember that 2 tablespoons=1 fluid (the liquid we pretend is in the cup) ounce.
I got some feedback that the Skip Counting 14’s booklet was helpful for some children to review, and I think some of you who tutor used it in class. I’m OVER THE MOON (seriously, you have no idea!) to hear that something I created was actually HELPFUL! So, I went ahead and made booklets for the 15’s, the Squares and the Cubes. You can click on the images to the right, or you can find them on the printables page.
I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the person that put together these geography review games out at Purpose Driven Games! My children love them, and I plan to use them OFTEN over the break to review! You can click on the image below to go to all three of their Cycle 2 review games, or you can click on the individual links below the image.
The video at the link below does not specifically talk about the Battle of Waterloo, but it’s well done and a good biography of Napoleon. You’ll need to be around to read the captioning for any non-readers. There are a handful of other videos on this website about Napoleon and the French Revolution, so it’s just an all around handy place to visit to expand on Week 11 and Week 12’s history sentences!
Once you’ve watched the little overview, above, this 5 minute video concentrates on the Battle of Waterloo itself.
I’m not in love with the game at the following link because I think it’s probably not the right combination of education and fun for my two kiddos, but hey, just finding a video game about Waterloo is pretty cool, so I wanted to pass it along!
Again this week, some of the best books are no longer in print. Bummer! So, check your library, or pick them up used from Amazon. For example, we have this great Usborne book on our bookshelf to read this week:
This one is still in print, and the Kindle version is only $0.99:
For the tweens and up (this one is actually still in print!):
One thing that I would LOVE to do with my kids during this break period is put together a paper mache solar system model like this CC mom is working on! I think the kids would love for us to do a project like that and I’ll bet we’d learn a lot!
The Right Stuff is a full-length movie and rated PG, so I wouldn’t normally recommend it here (Common Sense Media recommends is for 10 and up). BUT, I really enjoyed this movie several years ago, and this week’s science just makes me want to watch it again! It’s about the 7 astronauts of the Mercury space program, the early days of NASA and the Space Race and it’s a very well made movie! So, for you parents, or children for whom you think it appropriate, settle back and enjoy a great movie about a really cool period in our country’s history! It reminds you of how incredibly brave and adventurous astronauts really are!
Sigh . . . and now that I’ve started recommending regular movies (this makes me feel very guilty for some reason!), I’ll go ahead and throw in a plug for Apollo 13 (recommended for 12 and up by Common Sense Media). Another great movie about the Space program that really makes you think about all that goes into successfully getting into space . . . and getting back home again.
I’m going to try not to feel too guilty about recommending those movies! It’s time to take a break, after all, so so take a break and curl up with something that will make you appreciate that CC Science sentence even more!
There is also a documentary series by BBC Earth available on Amazon (free streaming for Amazon Prime Members! We love our Amazon Prime, and I think you can try it free for 30 days if you want to stream this video for free.) called “The Planets.” I’ve just discovered it, so I can’t say whether it’s a winner or not, but the fourth episode is about the Moon and the process of getting there. Some of the other episodes also look like they’d be good fits for the last few weeks of CC Science Grammar.
One last (REALLY!) video recommendation . . . and it’s one I mentioned in an earlier post, but it fits even better with this week’s Science grammar: A Tour of the International Space Station on YouTube. If you read the CC Science Snippets (available on CC Connected), this week’s talks about how the Shuttle program was responsible for building the International Space Station, so it’s a good time to take a tour and see what living in space is all about!
There are SO many great books on Space and the Space program available, that I won’t recommend a ton. You can hit your local library and walk out with a stack, I feel sure. Here are just a couple to whet your appetite:
This one is available on Kindle for only $2.99:
We read this one a few years ago, and will read it again in the next week. It’s really neat to read a children’s book written by Buzz Aldrin himself.
And with that, we head off into the sunset for a break for a few weeks! On one hand, I’m ready for a break and on the other hand I’ve got lots and lots of ideas related to this upcoming 12 weeks that I’m ready to get going on! I’ll be back on the blog during the break with some thoughts and plans that just can’t stay in a holding pattern until January! See you then!