Heart of Dakota BHFHG -Week 27 in Review

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Welcome to another Monarch Room week in review :) This week we enjoyed learning about the naturalist John Muir and about the Chisholm Trail We also learned what it was like to immigrate to America and a little about the Spanish-American War. That's a lot right? One great thing about learning at these young ages a small about is that someday when we cover these topics again they will have already heard of them when they're older. The extension readers have been really great in giving Aedan a greater understanding of the topics we've been studying.

While we are still enjoying our studies, I am really looking forward to spring break next week. I don't think we've had a break since Christmas, and my head is starting to feel a little mushy. I was hoping that waiting until the end of March would give us some warmer weather, but apparently yet another snow storm is on its way. Seriously....! We are going to take a full week off. I look forward to a few lazy days, and catching up around here.

We read about John Muir's great love for nature, and his 1000 mile nature walk. Now that's nature study! I'm thankful for his work with Roosevelt to establish a way to protect nature. I love visiting our country's national parks. We enjoy visiting Rocky Mountain National Park. I can't imagine how terrible it would be to see that land developed.

Our art project was to choose one of the states that John Muir walked through. The boys drew pictures of the animals that Muir saw along the way, and made a pop-up picture.

 It is sad to think of all the animals that have become extinct since the time Muir made his journey on foot. I would love to have lived in a time to see droves of passenger pigeons passing over. I have such a love of nature, and it saddens me to see us not taking care of our environment and natural resources. I think Muir was very fore-thinking to see the need to protect what we have.

We read about the Chisholm Trail, and how cowboys herded many many cattle from Texas to Wyoming Territory. Our history activity was to pretend to herd cattle.

We read in A Pioneer's Sampler about how letters were sent, and how costly it was to receive a letter.

We learned how pioneers folded one piece of paper, and sealed it with a wax seal.

We read how pioneers made their own ink. Unfortunately this experiment didn't work. I may not have followed the recipe exactly. The soot of the candle was supposed to mix with egg white and honey to make ink. Ah well.

This is the experiment page for the ink and wax seal.

We learned about pioneer stores and what you could purchase in those days. Our science notebooking activity was to compare a pioneer store, and a modern store. We no longer have to buy huge barrels of salt because we can get in our car to get only what we need. I'm always impressed with what it took to live day to day in that period of time.

Elemental Science at The Monarch Room

Silas is continuing his study of the planets. We added Uranus to our sky map.

We learned how a planet's color affects its temperature.

 This was Aedan's last week in his balance unit in ES Physics. We tried to find different objects around the house to balance. Some were easy, and some not so much. We look forward to our next unit where we get to build a newspaper stool. I'm wondering how that will go! Well, I'm off for some well needed rest for now :)


  1. Hi! I couldn't find an email address on here for you, so I thought I'd comment here.

    It looks like your school year has gone really well. I'm impressed with how you've combined your boys with one HOD guide. Did it work well for you? Will you do it again next year?

    My oldest 2 are 24m apart, and their youngest sibling will be a little less than 3 years younger than my middle child. I'm hoping to maybe combine the oldest 2 at some point (but they are only 2 and 4 right now, so I am getting waaaaaaaay ahead of myself).

  2. Hi Kacie :)

    I'm sorry I don't have an email link up yet. I keep meaning to figure out how to make a monarch room email address!

    Combining worked really well this year, but I'm separating them next year. I want my oldest to be on target to hit the high school guides on time (if we continue with HOD long term.) HOD is really skill based, so combining age ranges doesn't work for people most of the time. It seems that people often see their youngest hit a wall or their oldest not being challenged enough. I don't think you're thinking too far ahead. It's a big decision :) I'm thinking of high school already, and my oldest is in 4th grade! It all comes so quickly though :(

    My oldest was in public school until 3rd grade. If I had him home from the beginning I wouldn't have had the option to combine him with his brother HOD anyway because he would have started school a full 3 years ahead of his brother.

    So, no I'm not combining next year. Aedan will move ahead to HOD Creation to Christ. I am putting together a Charlotte Mason schedule for 2 years for Silas. I hate to take a break from HOD, but he won't be ready for Preparing next year as I had thought. I think Preparing will be great when he hits 4th.

    Let me know if I can help in any other way :)


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