Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Books and Movies for Explorers


I like reading good adult books on topics that the kids are learning about, to refresh my mind and give more details that I can throw in to the kids when we're discussing things.  There are a few books I have read recently that are about the age of Exploration, that I really enjoyed.

Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War

America's Hidden History - Kenneth C. Davis

A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World

The author of A Voyage Long and Strange, Tony Horwitz also has another book called Blue Latitudes: Boldly Going Where Captain Cook Has Gone Before, that looks really good.  I'm going to check that out of the library this weekend.  A Voyage Long and Strange was my favorite book out of those - it was amazing.  It fills in the gap that occurs in our traditional American history education between Columbus and the Mayflower.  He actually goes back and starts with the Vikings discovering America, and then goes through Columbus and all the other explorers before the Mayflower lands.  It is fascinating, and very well done.

I don't know if these links will work; they go to netflix. 

Magnificent Voyage of Christopher Columbus  This is a 2 hour 2007 documentary, where they re-enact Columbus' voyage.  It was a tad boring for the kids, but they watched a fair amount of it; I thought it was interesting.

Columbus: The Lost Voyage - this is in our queue; I'll put a review up after we watch it.

Discovery Atlas: Italy Revealed - this is in our queue; I'll put a review up after we watch it.

Empires: The Medici, Godfathers of the Renaissance - this is in our queue; I'll put a review up after we watch it.

Rick Steves: Spain & Portugal - I watched this the other night on PBS and it was really good. I want to get some of his Italian ones, too.

The Agony and the Ecstasy - I've heard this is a good movie; we'll see if the kids agree!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Here is a list of what copywork I have so far for the Explorers/Renaissance time periods. There are also copywork sentences given in Time Traveler's as well, that we're using.  They are basically one sentence biographies for the various explorers.  Since I am trying to have dd write one sentence a day, I went looking for more copywork sentences.  Some of these I've borrowed from other people's lists - Trivium Academy comes to mind.


“I believe that this is a very great continent which until today has been unknown.”
Christoper Columbus

Central America

"We are on a crusade.  We are marching as Christians into a land of infidels.  We seek not only to subdue boundless territory in the name of our Emperor Don Carlos, but to win millions of unsalvaged souls to the True Faith." – Hernando Cortes


“All who call on God in true faith, earnestly from the heart, will certainly be heard, and will receive what they have asked and desired.”
Martin Luther


“It is a press, certainly, but a press from which shall flow in inexhaustible streams...Through it, God will spread His Word. A spring of truth shall flow from it: like a new star it shall scatter the darkness of ignorance, and cause a light heretofore unknown to shine amongst men. - Johann Gutenberg

The depth and strength of a human character are defined by its moral reserves. People reveal themselves completely only when they are thrown out of the customary conditions of their life, for only then do they have to fall back on their reserves. - Leonardo Da Vinci

The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding. - Leonardo Da Vinci

Where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art. - Leonardo Da Vinci

In questions of science the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual. - Galileo Galilei

I've loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night. - Galileo Galilei

Elizabethan Age

“I know I have the body of a weak and feeble woman, but I have the heart and stomach of a king, and of a king of England too.”
Queen Elizabeth I



Sunday, January 11, 2009

First week with Time Traveler's

Well I think I can count this week as basically a success, considering we still had sick kids and a tired momma!  I was able to get up early 2 days this week; eventually I'd like it to be every day.  It's hard getting up so early with the baby still waking up during the night. 

And we accomplished almost everything on our school schedule; very unusual!   Usually we have several items that keep getting bumped back. 

This week started our Time Traveler's New World Explorers unit.  We are not doing every single lesson.  We are also using Trail Guide to World Geography and I've lined up some of those lessons to coincide with our history.

We do history 3 days a week.  So, this week we did lesson 1,3, and 4, covering the why's of exploration and about the ships.   We also did ch. 28 of Story of the World volume 2.  We have been using SOTW as our history, and will keep using it alongside TT.  For geography, we did week 1, world geography. 

About Time Traveler's:   So far, I love it.  The one thing I would recommend, and I did it because I found it recommended elsewhere, is to do all the copying ahead of time.  There is a lot of printing/copying that needs to be done.  I actually did it in 2 big batches.  When I first got the cd, I was so excited that I went and printed out all of the text pages and a lot of the masters and put it all in a nice binder.    Last week when I sat down to do my detailed planning, I printed out the rest of the masters and the things that needed to be put on cardstock.  It is quite a lengthy ordeal.  But it looks great, and once that is done, it won't need to be done again and is easy to use.

The projects in TT are great.  They seem to be varied for ages, so I think when we go back through this again in a few years, there will still be stuff for the olders and the youngers to do.

I went to the library and got some books to go along with what we're learning:
Ships - Philip Wilkinson 387.2
DK Eyewitness Boat 623.8
A 16th centry Galleon - Richard Humble, Peter Bedrick 623.822
Exploring the World - Fiona Macdonald 910.9
In 1492 - Jean Marzollo E M
Around the World in a Hundred Years - Jean Fritz 910.922

Here are some pictures of some projects from New World Explorers that we did this week:

5 reasons for exploration, and anatomy of the ship.  There are fold up boxes that show the answer to what part of the ship it is.

We weren't going to do the 'build a ship' project because of time and space, so on her own - before we even started the unit, actually, my dd drew up blueprints of her ship, and then proceeded to color it, make the flag, and get her dad to help her build it.  I was very impressed.

Friday, January 2, 2009


I'm getting excited about getting back into the swing of things full time on Monday.  We are going to be on Week 15.  I don't even know how far behind that would be from everyone else, LOL.  I know we're a little behind on some things from where I'd like to be, but oh well.  Onward we march!  Weeks 15-27 are roughly planned out, with weeks 15-21 detailed and everything is printed and copied and in a binder so I can just pick up and go each week.  Week 27 ends on April 3rd and I'm tentatively planning on Spring Break the following week.  That ends with us finishing up Paddle to the Sea, but I think I might push Spring Break back another week and extend Paddle into a 2 week unit.  And then after spring break we will do the New World and Pilgirms.  Week 26 is pirates and the finishing up of the Time Traveler's New World Explorers.  So that will be a 12 week unit that we are about to begin.  The next few entries will hopefully be schedules and links of what I want to do.

Where We're At

Just a list of how far we're at, for no particular reason.

History - we started Story of the World Volume 2 in September - we are on chapter 28.

Science - we are doing Apologia Exploring Creation with Astronomy - We are only on Venus

Geography - we are using Trail Guide to World Geography, and have gone way out of order, but have done quite a few weeks of geography.

Grammar - we started First Language Lessons, intending on doing both 1st and 2nd grade in one year; we are almost done with 1st grade.

Reading - We completed Teach Your Child to read in 100 easy lessons.  Aiden is reading very, very, well.  Alysa has worked through some BOB books, and has also completed ETC book 3, and is almost done with book 4. The goal is to also finish book 5.

Math - Aiden is in Singapore 1 A, and things aren't quite working out like I thought, so I'm going to have to spend some time on that.  Alysa is using Math-U-See and is on Beta and has been pretty consistent at working through it and understanding it all; she is on lesson 17, out of 30.

Memorization - They both learned Luke 2:11-12; Aiden learned Isaiah 9:6, Alysa learned Micah 5:2 and 4; they both know the President's song, and Alysa memorized Rain by R.L. Stevenson, and the Tomorrow speech from Macbeth, and they both learned some of the Classical Conversations history sentences.

It feels like we haven't accomplished nearly what I wanted to by now, but looking at it, we've done more than I thought.  Now I'm even more motivated to really get going this year and be more diligent about our schedule.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Getting ready

I am so hit and miss with this blog.  And I keep having kids and keep having to redo things.....I'll have to change the header picture again since we have  5 now, and the baby is already 8 months old and just cut his first teeth!   I want to try, or 'resolve' as the case may be, to blog a lot more regularly on here.  We'll see how that goes!    I am getting ready to start the Time Traveler's Explorers and it looks amazing!   I'm going to intersperse it with SOTW 2, and even Paddle to the Sea, so it's going to be a 3-4 month long thing, assuming I can even stay on schedule.  But we are working on that.  So, hopefully, I'll be able to chronicle what we're doing and how well the TT is working out.  I always see a lot of people asking about it, and I was too, before I bought it, so maybe this will help someone, getting to see it used. 

New World Explorers

New design

There we go.  A new design.  I need to make a couple more entries to bump off my McCain/Palin rally entry....for some reason the text and pictures don't fit now.
Copyright 2011
Classical Chaos

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