I figured it was time for another edition of “Monthly Memories” since the last time I posted about our schooling was in Feb. I’ve missed sharing because it helps me look back and realize all that we’ve done and learned together.
This has been the year of theater for our family. J. goes to the local junior high and was able to participate in the “Aladdin” school play in March. She was in the ensemble and played a villager. It was a lot of work, staying after school for weeks to practice, but she had so much fun performing with her friends and being more involved at the school.
W. and E. took a triple threat class (singing, acting, and dancing) at the Scera every Tuesday. They recently performed “The Jungle Book.” W. was a monkey and snake dancer and E. was Shere Khan the tiger. I was never allowed at the rehearsals, so I had no idea what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised that they both seemed to love the stage and performing in their roles. E. as the tiger did a great job “scaring” the jungle animals and W. had 1 line where she threw a banana at Baloo the bear. My favorite scenes were when all the kids popped out of the curtain to sing “That’s What Friends Are For” and at the end when Mowgli and Shere Khan have a brawl and the tiger is carried off stage. The way they attacked each other back and forth in slow motion had us all laughing. It was fun to have other homeschool friends in the play with us as well. Everyone did a great job! I’ll miss visiting with the moms after their weekly practices, but not having to drive to and from rehearsals.
LITERATURE and MOVIES
Because the kids were in the play, we decided to read “The Jungle Book” by Rudyard Kipling aloud. We’re reading the first 3 stories about Mowgli and Rikki Tikki Tavi. We’ve enjoyed it so far–with the characters being so familiar, it has been quite interesting to read because the stories are a little different than the Disney and play version that we’re used to.
I took my girls to see the new Cinderella movie. I loved the message that Cinderella’s mother gives her–have courage and be kind. I’ve taken it as my new favorite motto, framed it, and placed it on my piano, so we can all remember.
As a family, we recently went to the tulip festival at Thanksgiving point. Such a beautiful place to visit! We just got our garden in and flowers in the front yard. I love this time of year!
In February, I organized a field trip to see “Pinkalicious”–a musical play based after the popular Pinkalicious books. (I’m not sure why D. wanted to stick out his tongue, maybe to lick the pink cupcake. Ha!)
In March, my friend and neighbor Jessie planned a field trip to the post office. We took a tour and the kids got to mail their own letters off to pen pals in Idaho, which she arranged for us ahead of time. It was such a great idea!
photo credit: Arianne Cope (thank you!)
Then in April, we took a field trip to the Springville art museum. The tour was very child friendly and hands-on. Our favorite exhibit was Beyond Memory: The Daydreams of Corinne Geertsen. The artist took old photographs and re-created them in a whimsical, fun way. The kids were able to play a game matching the old photographs with the new art. Here’s one of the artist’s creations to get an idea:
We learned about the artist Monet and Impressionism using Home Art Studio. The kids made two projects–Monet Bridge based off of Monet’s lily garden paintings:
and Impressionist Landscape, using short, spotty brushstrokes, like he would have done:
We read Monet by Mike Venezia and enjoyed putting together a magnet puzzle of Monet’s art from World’s Greatest Artists.
D. did a few fun activities for kindergarten.
B for Butterfly–drew his own butterfly
E for Elephant–made an elephant mask and ate peanuts
R for rock–made stone soup
X for foX–made a fox hat and tail
D. made his own calendar and decorated each month’s page. We had it bound to hang on his wall by his bed.
We took a detour of our Family school history and did a unit on ancient India from Story of the World, since we’ve loved eating Indian food lately and J. did a Indian wedding project in her geography class at school. These were are favorite books on the topic:
One Grain of Rice
Once a Mouse
The Brave Little Parrot
I Once Was a Monkey
The Monkey and the Crocodile
Nine Animals and the Well
We have really enjoyed using Institute for Excellence in Writing this year. E. and W. chose their own non-fiction topics to write reports on and they turned out great. W. chose pigs and E. chose guns. I’m amazed at their ability to sit down and write paragraphs easily using the outlines and tips from this program. I highly recommend it if you want something more structured for writing. The videos with Andrew Pudewa keep the kids interested and even laughing at times!
Well, that’s a wrap-up of the last few months. We only have 3 weeks left and we’re done with this school year. I can’t believe it! Trying to make the most of it and at the same time some days I’m barely making it through. One day at a time. Summer here we come!