Week in Review - HOD MtMM - Unit 1

Monday, August 22, 2016

Welcome to 8th grade here at Monarch Room! We had a great start to our school year this week. We were definitely feeling the summer fatigue weighing heavily on us the first few days, but we quickly got up to speed. Aedan will be using Heart of Dakota Missions to Modern Marvels for the bulk of his studies this year. I'm especially excited to study this period with him as we have never had the chance to take a whole year to do it yet. I love how we will study missionaries alongside all of the historical events that happened in the modern world. I am looking forward to seeing a lot of growth in Aedan spiritually and educationally.

This first week we studied the Irish Famine, the Alexander II of the Russian Empire, Abdullhamid the Red in the Ottoman Empire, Dom Pedro II in Brazil and how Ethiopia won its freedom from Italy. I love how there are so many aspects of history we will cover and in different ways. We will read historical fiction, biographies, study the geography of the period as well as read first hand accounts of those who experienced these events first hand.

Aedan worked on his Map Trek World Empires map.

We made the mistake of doing the whole map instead of just the empires we studied this week. Woops!

Aedan's written narration was about how Europe was trying to take over Africa and how Ethiopia fought Italy to win their freedom. He also copied part of the Worthy Words assignment.

We read the heartbreaking account of the Irish Potato Famine and why there was a huge influx of Irish immigrants to America during this period.

Our storytime book is Under the Hawthorne Tree. This is a tear jerker about how a family of children must make their way to find food and shelter after their parents don't return home. We will finish it next week. Aedan is also reading the extensions this year. Esty's Gold is about another Irish girl who must find a way to take care of herself during the famine as well. She ends up going to Australia in search of gold rather than to America. It's interesting to see how disaster opens many doors. I have always loved how we get to read historical fiction in HOD. A history spine can't share the heartache of war and loss quite like a good book.

Dom Pedro II Rules in Brazil

This week Aedan's history project was to experience what life would be like under a dictator's leadership. Silas told him how to dress, how to comb his hair, what books to read, what kind of music to listen to and what job he would have (that was doing a few chores for Silas which Aedan felt was very unfair.) This was life under the dictatorship of Abdullhamid II in the Ottoman Empire. Out of respect for my teenager I won't share pictures of how Silas dressed Aedan or fixed his hair. Needless to say, Aedan is looking forward to doing this assignment when Silas gets to it in a few years.

Alexander II Assassinated - Alexander III Becomes Czar

This year we chose to do the President Study. Each week Aedan will learn about one or two presidents through a weekly reading and DVD session. He will fill out information about those presidents on his President notebook pages. This week we learned about George Washington and John Adams.

This year's art is Nature Drawing and Journaling by Barry Stebbing. I ended up getting a different journal than I originally got so he can decorate the cover. I also splurged and got a box of 72 Prismacolor pencils. These are worth every single penny in my opinion. The boys have been really careful with our set of 24 that we have used for almost 3 years now. It was time to get more. They were down to nubs.

His first assignment was to personalize his journal by adding a small self portrait. He didn't want to draw a realistic picture, but I thought he did a nice job. This year's art will be a nice change of pace for him.

Once a week we will do an economics study by reading varying resources. This week we learned about coins and paper money.

Aedan had so much fun in science this week. He loved that he got to mix chemicals. I got goggles for both kids because wherever there is a science experiment, Silas is there.

Our science kit comes with chemicals, but we will also use common everyday kitchen supplies as well.

Aedan, my mad scientist! I ended up getting a test tube stand because it's harder to see the test tube in the stand that came with the kit. We will use that next week.

Of course I had to take a slow-mo video of our first experiment! It was fun seeing the smile at the end.

Our science lab sheet for the week

Aedan will be doing Hewitt Homeschool's I Dare You! Bible study instead of MtMM's Bible study. This is a deep study, and I think Aedan's eyes will be opened in new ways. On the final day of school he was gone a really long time pondering the answers to some of the questions. I'm trying not to rush him. I'm hoping he won't take as long next week, but lingering on Bible study is something I definitely want to let him do if he wants.

We are also using Hewitt Homeschool's Lightning Lit. I'm a huge fan of this program. The first short story in level 8 is not for the faint of heart though. I definitely needed strong coffee to digest this one. We read G.K. Chesterton's A Crazy Tale. I keep saying I will write a review on this program! There's so much to love. 

Have you started school already? How are things going for you?

On to next week! See you then!


  1. Looks like a fun week for yall, as always! The bible study looks interesting! And I always love his drawings and artwork.

    1. Thank you! It was a great start! I need to come check in and see how things are going with you!


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