Week in Review - HOD Rev to Rev - Unit 30

Thursday, March 31, 2016

We made it through another week in HOD Revival to Revolution! On the HOD boards they were discussing which guides are everyone's favorites. It would be really hard to choose, but we are especially loving this guide. Another Rev to Rev mom mentioned that she isn't in a hurry to get through the year because this guide has been so good. I would have to agree. I've found everything we have studied extremely fascinating though I may be cheating in feeling like I could keep going because we started it so late in the year. Everything still feels really new. I do think the topics covered have been more interesting to me because I've been trying to read alongside Aedan, so I'm seeing how it is all tying together.

This week was an especially intriguing week. We studied the the countries of China and Japan through our spines and through our storytime books. We learned about Hudson Taylor and how he opened the hearts of China through being able to adjust to the culture. We learned about opening up trade to the East in Japan and China and how that wasn't accomplished easily.

Since we were studying Japan our history project was to make a Japanese fan.

Aedan painted these shades of blue and purple over watercolor paper.

Then he used wads of paper towels to dab on white paint for cherry blossoms.

I even painted one! I've been trying to slow down with the kids and multi-task less. Sometimes it's so nice to sit and learn with them rather than getting work done. I'm trying to take more deep breaths...leave more time to chat. There will be plenty of days leftover for cleaning and work after they are gone - God willing. I'm trying to enjoy them a little more as the days seem to be running shorter.

I told Aedan to paint his in a fan shape because I was going to have us do a more elaborate fan with sticks that folded. That didn't happen! If you plan to do it how we did it below painting across the paper will work out better. I'm pretty sure the way we did it wasn't the way we were directed to in the guide. My inability to understand verbal instruction often has me searching elsewhere for ways to make something similar. My son is no better. We are truly the blind leading the blind in this house. So, for all you visual learners in the house...here ya go!

Next we folded the paper length-wise back and forth accordion style.

Then fold it up like this and join the two middle sections.

We stapled the center folds like this. If you make two of these and staple them together they make a pinwheel.

Lastly, we took a ribbon and tied the bottom together. I thought his turned out beautifully!

Someone visited my blog the other day and asked if I had replaced the spines scheduled in Rev to Rev with Mystery of History. I haven't done that. I just failed to take pictures. These are the two main spines for the rest of the year. George Washington's World made up a huge portion of the first half of Rev to Rev. We read that one in Beautiful Feet and loved it! We only add in a reading or two a week of Mystery of History to get a different voice.

I actually have always really loved the older spines that HOD uses. I have found these to be very readable, though it sounds like some kids may struggle with them. I think since we have done HOD for years my kids are both used to the language of these kinds of books. The vocabulary might be higher and the language a little older, but I think this will prepare them for some of the classics that are yet to come in our upper year studies.

Japan Opens Ports to Trade - Is Unified Under Emperor - 1854

We have absolutely loved learning more about Japan and China! I had no idea that Japanese ports were closed as late as the 1850's. I have to wonder how the history that was to come 100 years later would have happened had this not happened. So interesting how one decision has a domino effect. I love that this year of HOD is more of an Early American and World study. We get to see how it all played out together across the world. It has been really neat talking to Aedan about this period and how all of these events lead to the events we will be studying next year.

Aedan's written narration was about how China didn't want to trade with Europe, and Europe really had developed a taste for tea. Europe had nothing they wanted until they offered them Opium. I tried not to laugh at his illustration (well, I didn't try very hard), but it is sort of what happened - according to Aedan anyway. That is a very pink European wouldn't you say? Hehe!

Our Worthy Words this week was a letter from President Millard Fillmore to the Emperor of Japan. He sent Commodore Perry and a fleet of ships to open communication with the Emperor. 

I have appreciated even more this year how everything is so beautifully woven together. Truly, it had to take a LOT of time to make things go together this well. Our story time book Shipwrecked was true story about a fisherman named Manjiro who was shipwrecked and rescued by an American whaling ship. At that time no one in Japan was allowed to have contact with the outside world. This fisheman was the first man to live in the United States from Japan, and played a key part in being a liason between the U.S. and Japan. SO fascinating! There is so much more that could be said about all this, but if you are in this guide you will know what I mean when you come to it. 

 Eventually the centuries' long feudal system in Japan ended and they opened their ports to the rest of the world. They modernized their country in 2 short generations.

Pacific Transcontinental Railroad is Built - 1863-1869 

We learned about the building of the Pacific Railroad and how it joined the east and the west.

The final spike in the railroad was driven in at Promontory Summit, Utah in 1869.

We read about the Boxer Rebellion - Not these kinds of boxers! You gotta give him an A for humor though!

 I think he meant these kinds of Boxers (wink.) The Boxers were rebels how rioted against foreigners and their religion and policies.

Our poem was an Emily Dickinson poem about electricity and creativity. I have just loved the poetry so much this year!

I still need to write a post about why we love Lightning Lit SO much! We just finished Tom Sawyer which Aedan now has added to his list of very favorite books. We just started Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. So far he is loving that too!

 We also had a few more box days! I shared my box day last month. I ordered HOD Missions to Modern Marvels in two shipments. Yes, I realize I need to sweep. Shhhh....

The first package I got last month was the HOD MtMM Economy History Set. This second box included everything else. YAY! It's always like Christmas when these boxes arrive. I've been so antsy to get all my planning done for the year. I was waiting on the rest of the science to see how to set it all up.

I mean...have you ever? How fun is all this!? Next year is going to be amazing. I have already started reading through some of these books. I absolutely can.not.wait.

We also got a Rainbow Resource box too! Holla!

As I said we are thoroughly enjoying Lightning Lit 7. Next year we will use LL8. SO excited!

 Next year much of our studies will count for high school credit. Adding the Chemistry 101 DVDs and tests to our MtMM Chemistry will make it a full Intro to Chemistry credit. We will also add in Vocabulary from Classical Roots as is suggested in Lightening Lit. We still have a few odds and ends left to pick up, but our plans are coming together beautifully. Last week I got a bulk of the organization done for CtC and MtMM. I will share how I set it up in the weeks to come.

Thank you for visiting. I sure love to hear from you! What has been your favorite memory of the week?


  1. Box days are SO fun! Being on the Crew, I have them all the time! Plus I'm ordering next year's stuff now, since we start the new year in June! I love those fans - beautiful!! I had a lot of trouble with the verbal instructions in HOD. I need pictures! Or a YouTube video!!

  2. Hi! I have been reading your blog for over a year now, I guess. Love it!!! :) I just want to say how much I appreciate you taking the time to do this. It has been so encouraging to me. We have kind of been in the same situation as you. We had been long time HOD users. We had been through Little Hands, Little Hearts, Beyond, Bigger, and Preparing. I decided it was time go out on my own for several reasons. I was starting to tweak a few things that weren't working for us, and that is not in my nature to do so. I am definitely a rule follower. Ha! I was also about to start CTC and Bigger with both of my kiddos. I was not looking forward to teaching 2 of every subject to them, and wanted to combine. And, lastly most of my homeschool friends were putting their own things together and I felt like the oddball who was doing this whole homeschool thing wrong. :)

    Well, we had 2 pretty good school years, but I was exhausted from planning everything out myself. I felt like I was on the computer all the time. Just felt like I was missing my kids. It was also difficult keeping one challenged enough without over-challenging the other. Well, we have gone back to using HOD this past year for history only and are looking forward to starting next year using pretty much the whole guides (CTC and Rev to Rev). We will be using a part of the Bible study (adding in what we want), a different math (Teaching Textbooks) and a different writing (Essentials in Writing), but that's probably all that I will change. But, I am not nervous to tweak now. Ha!

    I am thankful for the time away, as it taught me to appreciate HOD more. Anyway, just wanted to say thanks! Blessings to you and your family! :)

  3. Megan - I bet it's really fun being at your house with all those fun boxes coming in! The fans were fun to make :) I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who is challenged in the verbal instruction department. That's why I share so many pictures here. Surely there are more out there like us! I'll be curious to see what your final plans are after reviewing all those wonderful things!

    My anonymous friend <3

    Thank you so much for visiting and for your kind words. I loved having the opportunity to plan this year, but all it did was exhaust me honestly. I went into the year fatigued and missing HOD after about half the year was over. I learned though to let go of the things I didn't want and to add the things I did. I've found a few things that I will change about HOD next year, but for the most part we will leave a lot of it as written. We will be subbing in a few things like you are doing as well. Like you said it took stepping away from it to appreciate it. I think you will really love Rev to Rev. It is a fabulous guide! We are learning so much. I am looking forward to going through CtC again as well! Blessings right back at you <3

  4. Those fans are just beautiful! I remember Daughter M using Rev to Rev and she had a wonderful year also. It's hard to believe she is graduating this year.


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