Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Looking forward to the end of Term IV

Nau mai, hoki mai and welcome back!

You will recall from my last post, tamāhine 1's Spanish-speaking country research assignment was on México. Well, we wrapped it up yesterday with our own extra study. On the weekend we watched The Perfect Game.  It is based on a true story about a baseball team that made it to the Little League championships.  Our family enjoyed it very much.

This next link will take you to an article that gives detailed accounts of events. Interestingly, Monterrey won the Little League Championship in 1957, 1958 and 1997.  Ka mau te wehi!!!

We did a little research on the city of Monterrey. Here's just a few of the details we learned:
  • It was founded in 1579. 
  • The city's wealthier suburbs have houses built of stucco in a style derived from Spanish colonial and called Monterrey
  • It's the capital and largest city of the northeastern state of Nuevo Léon.  
  • We knew from the movie it is an industrial city.  Looking a little deeper, it is apparently one of the most important production and trade centres in México!!
  • The population in the '50s was around 375,000 compared to today of over a million.  No wonder it's a powerhouse business city.
One of the other things we took a look at was the cuisine of Monterrey. We thought we'd try and make something, so searched kai from the area.

One dish we discovered is called cabrito which is based on a Jewish cuisine from the founders of the city. (We can't really access kid goat, so we looked for something else.)

Two further dishes we learned are from Monterrey are machaca con huevo and carne asada. They both look easy enough to make, with the exception of having to come up with alternatives to any ingredient unavailable in Aotearoa. Apparently carne asada is still a weekend traditional kai in Monterrey, so we reckon we'll try making that next weekend.

As part of our SOTW studies, we read about Emperor Constantine. Perhaps you know the story of when Constantine was in a battle, he and his soldiers look into the sky and see a golden light that appeared to be in the shape of a cross?  Yes?  Okay, so then you may also know that the Chi-Rho is not only a Christian symbol but a military standard also.

One of the activities the children did in relation to this part of history, was making a cheesecake in the shape of a shield and make the Chi-Rho using strawberries.  Well, they did make a cheesecake but not surprisingly the kids didn't like it, lol.  So, I suggested we make a pavlova.  Yummos.  So, anyway, I chose to use the photo of the pavlova rather than the cheesecake. :)

I shared the following video with the class also.  It's excellent ...

The boys' room

The girls' room
Although we continue with mahi kura, we have been painting as well.  We have two bedrooms finished so far.

Decisions for flooring are just about made, and we are all praying we can be back upstairs before Christmas.

As always, there is plenty to talk about, but I'll just have to catch up another day.  I haven't recorded anything about French, Spanish, Latin in such a long time. I haven't put any other science experiments either.  I'm a bit tired after mowing the lawns this afternoon.  I sat down to take a breather and decided to write a post, but now I've run out of oomph. 

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

Thursday, 12 November 2015

I am grateful to be at home with my kids

Nau mai, hoki mai and welcome back!

Too often I ask myself, "Am I doing right by the kids doing this homeschooling gig" or I make comments like, "we're just not doing enough," and other negative thoughts.  Then I look at some photos and scans of work and it gives me that boost to tell myself, "Yes, Maree!  You are doing the right thing, and the kids are doing fine.  They are learning! ...."

So here are some photos of what tama 2 and tama 3 made for SOTW.  (I thought I better photograph them before they are destroyed by little hands - or make their way to the recycling sooner rather than later.)  They are from Chapter 39 if I remember correctly.

Tama 3

Tama 2
Another activity that the little kids did with tamāhine 1 was making a lyre.

Lyre by little ones and tamāhine 1
Oh!  I just remembered something else ....

Going back to Chapter 38, when we discussed the Destruction of Jerusalem, I found this great video:

Here's tama 1's creation:  I guess the red depicts the plumes atop the Roman soldiers galea (helmet) as they march towards the Temple.

Hmmm ... did I ever add this video we used when we read about Caesar Crossing the Rubicon back in Chapter 35?  Oh well, nothing like working backwards ....

This week tamāhine 1 has been working on her La Asignacion de Investigar for her High School Spanish class.  This time around she has the country México.  I won't be adding it here, but I will at least include her drawing of the flag:

I couldn't draw an eagle as well as that!
(just sayin')
The story behind the coat of arms is very interesting.  Its origins stem from an Aztec legend.  In short, a leader of a nomadic tribe was told to settle in an area where they would come across an eagle that would be perched on a cactus eating a snake.  They did so, even though it was a swampy area.  It became known as Tenochtitlan - which of course is México City today!

We have enjoyed the research assignments over the years, learning a great deal more than we ever knew about Spanish speaking countries.

Tama 1 and tamāhine 1 did really well with their speeches last week.  Here is a photo of tamāhine 1:

For our makeshift lectern we used an old school desk with the lid open, covered with a sheet and my mum's typing stand (does anybody remember those things? or am I showing my age? LOL).  Pretty fancy lectern if you ask me!

Maths continues well.  Tama 2 will definitely finish Zeta this month.  He will complete the test for Lesson 29 today and I do not expect any difficulties there.  (Done!)  He certainly has shown mastery.

Tama 3 is working on "area" this week.  After a few lessons he became more comfortable with it.  As always, we try to use real life examples to explain it.  The floor tiles have certainly come in handy for that.  He doesn't need me to draw the boxes inside the square or rectangle anymore, so that's good.

Tama 1 is doing well with Algebra 1.  I had no hesitation in moving him from MUS to Saxon.  That is not to say he wasn't doing fine already in MUS.  But establishing the co-op has meant he now has a study buddy and a live tutor to work with, so we were happy to move across.

Tamāhine 1 is slowly working through Pre-Algebra.  She will continue with this for a good part of 2016 by the looks of things.  Nobody has to rush with their maths; progress will be at their pace.  I would try her with co-op but can't afford another Saxon just right now, so we will continue with MUS.

Tamāhine 2 continues on her snail pace with IXL.  Speaking of her, I had better wrap up this post soon so that I can work with her.

Spring has finally made a decent appearance.  We are all working hard, but it's nice to stay outdoors until the sun goes down.  This photo was taken by tama 4.  Not a bad job!

Photo by tama 4
Here's a couple of photos of our strawberries.  This year we're growing them in PVC pipes:

It's lovely to see them through my kitchen window to help brighten my day.  Especially today.  I needed some brightness.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Sunday morning learning with tama 4

Nau mai, hoki mai and welcome back!

As we sat outside eating breakfast this morning, tama 4 started talking about one of his favourite subjects - dinosaurs.

So, tama 1 grabbed the whiteboard and hung it on the fence so he could draw.  My regular followers (I have no idea if I do have regular followers, but it sounds impressive!) will know that we school outside a lot, and hang our smaller whiteboard on the fence which gives us space at the table, and is just easier to view and have the kids go up to the board to do exercises - or draw, of course!  While he did that I grabbed the computer and decided to record his "lecture" and pop it on the blog as an example of how we enjoy using Google Hangouts in our homeschool journey.

I find using HoAs way easier for these types of things.  Our online co-op is another usage. For any projects (like Spanish assignments) that require editing, then, sure we use the video camera etc.

That's all for now.  This weekend has been an emotional one.  We are finally painting upstairs.  We won't have it completed this weekend, but the important message here is WE'RE STARTING TO PAINT!!!!  The kids have been talking excitedly about colours for their rooms.  Me?  I just cannot wait to get back upstairs and have our lounge back to being a lounge!  I may add photos later ... maybe.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano