Learning Notes Week of October 30– Halloween Week

Dizzying beautiful sky.

Monday October 30

When I got up Bella was almost done with her school work. She’d done her math and her copywork and her Latin. As I made breakfast she read a couple poems out loud. She wanted to make the day go fast so that Halloween would get here sooner.

Sophie did her math, copywork, and read to me. No French.

Ben did math and Explode the Code.

Anthony did math, read from Child’s History, and did copywork.

The kids all made cutout jack o’lanterns to hang in the window and Bella hung her construction paper witches and spiders that she is very proud of.

Afternoon stories: Francie on the Run, King of Ireland’s Son, St Francis Xavier, North with the Spring.

Bedtime story: One Beetle Too Many, a library book about Charles Darwin.

Tuesday October 31

We declared it a no school day, though Bella did do Khan Academy math so as not to break her streak.

The kids did make birthday cards for Daddy, who has a Halloween birthday, so at least they did some writing.

They also made paper decorations, mostly Jack o’lanterns, to hang in the front windows. And then we carved two pumpkins. I put on The Legend of Sleepy Hollow while we carved the pumpkins and everyone agreed it is very spooky. Bella was excited because the story features in the Dear America diary book she’s been reading, where one character has it read to her in class while another character dresses as the headless horseman for Halloween.

We did have stories: Francie on the Run, King of Ireland’s Son, Augustus Caesar’s World, and St Francis of the Seven Seas.

The kids all put together their own costumes, with maybe a wee bit of help from me. Bella was a winter fairy, Sophie was Kylo Ren, Ben was St Michael thanks to some awesome wings and breastplate from a local homeschooling friend, Anthony was Luke Skywalker, and Lucy was a Revolutionary War drummer boy. They all went trick-or-treating with Daddy. They came back earlier than I expected. Poor Lucy was wheezing and looked really bad. I gave her a nebulizer treatment and she bounced back. I think it was something in the Chinese takeout we had for dinner plus probably the chilly air didn’t help. It’s been a very long time since we needed the nebulizer. In fact, it took me forever to find the mouthpiece and mask because I forgot where I’d stashed them the last time we took it out.

Bedtime story was Roxaboxen.

Making Halloween decorations.

Anthony with our ghost decoration.

Lucy makes a birthday card.

Making Halloween themed birthday cards for Daddy.

Halloween birthday dinner.

Anthony as drummer boy.

Ben as St Michael.

Lucy as colonial drummer boy.

Lucy colors a picture.

Lucy as colonial drummer boy.

All ready to head out for trick-or-treating.

Bella the white fairy.

Wednesday November 1

Since we took a school holiday on Halloween, I decided to try to get a bit of table work done. I shamelessly leveraged the previous night’s festivities and bribed the kids with candy from their own buckets: one piece of candy for each school task completed. This worked brilliantly. All the math and copywork was completed.

Anthony also read from hist history.

Sophie from her Geography.

Ben read a Bob book and did a page in Eplode the Code.

Bella did her Khan academy math and read Exploding Suns.

Then we went to the noon Mass at the pastoral center and had a treat. Cadinal Sean said Mass and we had beautiful music. After Mass we came home, at lunch, and then headed out to the grocery store.

No afternoon stories.

Bedtime story: Amanda Pig.

Lucy at All Saints Day Mass

With Cardinal Sean on All Saints

The Good Shepherd.

Thursday November 2

Field trip day. A guided natue study with the Wildlands Trust, the same guides who did our pond study. The theme today was fall. We talked about the seasons (with a globe and a kids to be the sun.) Then why leaves change color. Then we gathered leaves from the woods, sorted them.

Then what happens to leaves after they fall? Discussion about decomposition. Fungi, Bacteria, and Invertebrates and their role in making soil from dead things.

Back to the woods to look under logs and find fungi and invertebrates (lots of woodlice!) And then we learned about mushrooms, their life cycle and the parts of a mushroom.

After the class the kids played for a bit. Then everyone else left and we had a picnic lunch, sadly interrupted by wasps, one of which stung poor Ben on the hand. After that we decamped to the van to finish our food. And then we left for home. Sadly, Sophie’s new jacket was left behind in the craziness.

A rare classroom situation for the homeschool gang.

Scrambling up a hill at the fall field trip.

Mushroom with slug, two members of the FBI decomposition team (fungus, bacteria, invertebrates).

Moss on a tree.

Friday November 3

Ben: math, Explode the Code, copywork, Bob book.

Anthony: math, Child’s history, copywork.

Sophie; math, copywork, Child’s Geography, French, dictation.

Bella: math. Copywork?

Went to the library.

Bella is sunk deep into The Cat of Bubastes. Can hardly put it down.

Afternoon stories: Francie on the Run, King of Ireland’s Son, St Francis of the Seven Seas, a bunch of library books including one about salt marshes.

Lucy practices her writing. Sophie later sang this in a funny chant.

Serious Bella reads about the Great Pyramid in Egypt.

Ben asked me to photocopy a page out of David Mcauley’s City so that he could color it. Brilliant.

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