Thursday, November 29, 2012


Miriam had to practice estimation today. Her math book had interesting questions like "How many drops of water fit into a quarter cup?". She first had to guess how many and then she had to figure it out. Here she is counting diligently each drop that goes into a measuring cup. She is still working on her map of our village. While doing so, I read to her the Finnish epic Kalevala. She is also our bird caretaker right now. She has made suet and always takes care that the bird feeder is full.

Miriam mußte heute Schätzen üben.  Ihr Mathebuch hatte die interessante Frage: Wie viele Tropfen passen in eine Viertel Tasse?  Erst mußte sie die Anzahl schätzen und sie dann messen.  Hier sieht man sie tapfer die Tropfen zählen.  Sie malt immer noch an der Karte unseres Dorfes.  Während des Malens lese ich ihr das finnische Epos Kalevala vor.  Sie ist auch unsere Vogelpflegerin.  Sie hat Vogelfutter gemacht und sorgt dafür, daß die Vögel immer Futter haben.  

Veronika is doing form drawing. Today we had a very complicated form that reminded us of a house: a window followed by a door. We read the story "How the  Home Was Built" and then she first drew over the form on the board before trying it on her own. Her trials on the board didn't work so well, but later on paper she did a good job. She still has to enter the form into her form drawing book.

Veronika macht weiter Formenzeichnen.  Sie hatte heute eine sehr schwierige Form, die uns an ein Haus erinnert hat: ein Fenster, eine Tür, ein Fenster, eine Tür.  Deshalb haben wir eine Geschichte über den Bau eines Hauses gelesen.  Sie hat die Form an der Tafel dann übermalt und auch einige Versuche selbst dort gestartet, doch ging das nicht so gut.  Auf einem Übungsblock ging es später dann viel besser.  Sie muß die Form morgen in ihr Heft malen.  

Flora was very busy with her cat Wasi today. Wasi needed to get dressed and then she needed a good breakfast.

Flora war heute sehr mit ihrer Katze Wasi, die ihre liebe Großtante Erika ihr geschenkt hat, beschäftigt.  Wasi mußte angezogen werden und brauchte natürlich ein gutes Frühstück.  

Charlotte and I are doing creative writing right now. We are combining this with a history of English literature for children. There is this wonderful book English Literature for Boys and Girls (Click on the link, you can download the entire book).   Our starting point for the stories/excerpts/poems we are reading is the Live Ed booklet Wish, Wonder, and Surprise. So far we have read two excerpts from Moby Dick, "Ozymandias" (great opportunity to discuss a sonnet), "Kubla Khan," and "The Golden Touch of Midas."  We found some picture books to go with those selections (Kubla Khan and King Midas and the Golden Touch).  After each selection, we read about the author, if possible, in English Literature for Boys and Girls.  Charlotte then enters a passage or, in case of a poem, the complete poem into her main lesson book.  Afterwards there is a creative writing assignment.  I haven't taken any pictures of her work so far, but I hope I will get to that soon.

Charlotte und ich machen im Moment kreatives Schreiben.  Das verbinden wir mit einer englischen Literaturgeschichte für Kinder.  Wir suchen uns eine Passage oder ein Gedicht aus dem Live Education Heft Wish, Wonder, and Surprise.  Bisher haben wir zwei Passagen von Moby Dick, die Gedichte Ozymandias, an welchem wir den Aufbau eines Sonettes besprochen haben, und Kublai Khan und die Sage über König Midas gelesen.  Einige Bilderbücher dazu ergänzen diese Texte.  Nach der Lektüre lesen wir über den Autoren in der englischen Literaturgeschichte für Kinder nach (falls möglich).  Dann schreibt Charlotte einen Ausschnitt der Texte oder die Gedichte in ihr Heft und anschließend hat sie einen kreativen Aufsatz dazu zu schreiben.  Ich habe bisher noch nichts von ihrer Arbeit dazu fotografiert.  Hoffentlich komme ich bald dazu. 

This is an interesting vocal version of "Ozymandias."  Hier noch eine interessante Vertonung von "Ozymandias".  

And Jonathan?  My big boy leaves every morning around 7:30 a.m. to go onto campus with his daddy.  There he studies English (right now it's grammar on pronouns), Math (algebra), history (a combination of world and church history, he is learning about the early Middle Ages this week), vocabulary (Latin and Greek root verbs with Vocabulary from Classical Roots and 100 Words Every High School Freshman Should Know), Biblical Greek, handwriting, German, Science (he has moved on to water and chemical formulas), and religion (he just wrote an essay on five synoptic parables).  He stays in a reading room close to Peter's office that is also used by college students.  I write down his assignments in a little notebook each night.  Whenever he has problems, he can call me from Peter's office.  He stays until he is finished with those assignments, sometimes until 11 a.m. and sometimes until lunch time.  That leaves Latin, French, art, music, handwork, literature, logic, typing, and geography for later in the day.  We started doing this because Jonathan was getting too distracted by every bird flying by and every main lesson the others were doing.  So far it's a wonderful solution and teaching Jonathan that it is possible to do an assignment without getting out binoculars to look at birds or chatting with his sisters.

Und Jonathan?  Der geht jeden Morgen mit seinem Papa um 7.30 Uhr zum College, wo er in einem Lesezimmer mit anderen Studenten still arbeitet.  Seine Fächer dort sind Englisch (zur Zeit die verschiedenen Pronomen), Mathe (Algebra), Geschichte (eine Kombination von Kirchen- und Weltgeschichte, im Moment geht es um das frühe Mittelalter), Vokabular, Bibelgriechisch, Schönschreiben, Deutsch, Naturkunde (er beschäftigt sich gerade mit Wasser und chemischen Formeln), und Religion (heute hat er einen Aufsatz über fünf synoptische Gleichnisse geschrieben).  Jeden Abend schreibe ich in sein Aufgabenheft, was er tun muß.  Wenn er Fragen hat, kann er mich immer per Telefon von Peters Büro aus erreichen, was ganz in der Nähe des Lesezimmers ist.  Er bleibt dort, bis er mit diesen Fächern fertig ist, manchmal bis 11 Uhr, manchmal bis zum Mittagessen.  Dann bleiben Latein, Französisch, Kunst, Musik, Handarbeiten, Literatur, Logik, Tippen und Erdkunde für zu Hause.  Wir haben mit dieser Lösung angefangen, weil Jonathan keinen Vogel unbeobachtet lassen kann.  Er läßt sich nicht nur durch Vögel, sondern auch durch die Unterrichtsinhalte seiner Schwestern ablenken.  Unsere neue Methode klappt wunderbar und Jonathan lernt, daß es möglich ist, auch ohne Fernglas und ein Schwätzchen mit seinen Schwestern einige Zeit zu arbeiten.  

I had a duel with a spaghetti squash today.  It wouldn't let go of my knife!  But I finally managed to cut it in half in order to bake it for a casserole I wanted to make.

Ich hatte heute ein Duell mit einem Spaghettikürbis.  Er wollte einfach mein Messer nicht rausrücken.  Schließlich habe ich ihn aber doch halbiert und so im Backofen backen können, um später einen Auflauf daraus zu machen.  

Maybe I should close with our current read-aloud: The Little Lame Prince, a book published in 1875.  It's quite an interesting story.

Vielleicht sollte ich jetzt noch unser Vorlesebuch erwähnen: The Little Lame Prince, ein Buch, das 1875 veröffentlicht worden ist!  Es gefällt uns allen sehr gut.    



  1. Ich musste jetzt richtig lachen beim Lesen, wegen Jonathan und die Ablenkung durch die Vögel. Finde ich super, dass ihr diese Möglichkeit jetzt ausprobieren könnt mit dem Homeschooling-außer-Haus.

    1. Ja, Jonathan hat schon als Kleinkind immer zum Himmel geguckt, damals war es der Mond :).

  2. Fantastic work Eva and your Jonathan reminds me so much of Benedict!!! Wonder if it's a boy thing?!!!

    Our Live Ed books arrived yesterday but i'll hold off starting until the New Year. Right now we are working on our reconciliation and hopefully B should receive that sacrament within the week, with First Holy Communion finished by the close of Advent.

    We've been attending daily mass over the other side of town. Mass starts at 9am and the graces we receive help us each day to do our very best! Thanks be to God!

    I'm hoping to put up a post of some our activities quite soon.

    Love to you all

    San and co xxxx

    1. I do think that this is typical boy, but there are also different kinds of boys. Not all get distracted easily. Jonathan can be very focused when something really interests him (like birds).

      So pleased to hear about the Live Ed books. Now you can read through them before you start teaching. How exciting about the sacraments coming up. When is the date for the First Holy Communion? I would love to send a card!

      How great you can go to daily Mass! Is this your own parish or a different one?

      Greetings from New York!

    2. Not sure about date and mass is not in our parish, will let you know date when it is fixed.

      San x

  3. I love Miriam's answer: "I don't care!" Please tell her we don't eat marshmallows either. :)

    It is so easy for the older ones to get distracted. This is a problem we're having, too. I think they have such fond memories of the earlier main lessons that they want to relive them a bit. It's sweet, but there is not always enough time in the day for it.

    1. We have corn allergies, comes in quite handy when it comes to junk food :)!

      I think you are right about the memories. The older ones want to share what they learned when they were that young. It's sweet, but if you follow that urge too much you never move on.

  4. I just added the vocabulary book to my wishlist. Thanks!

    Jeremy has been doing school in our bedroom because it is extra quiet and "boring". I've got a minimalist thing going in our bedroom which is conducive to studying, apparently. So this past week, I cleaned out my son's room to minimalism too, so he can spend more time out of our room! I was able to hang all his clothes in his closet and get rid of his huge chest of drawers - much more room now.

    How nice that your son gets to go to work with your husband! I think my son would love this.

    1. You are welcome, but do you mean the "100 Words" or the "Vocabulary Roots"?

      Maybe boys need zero distraction. My husband used to study in a carrel in the library at ND. It was basically a room not bigger than a desk. Most of those carrels didn't even have windows! I think in his last year he got one with a window, though. Jonathan doesn't really have his own room. He has a room where he sleeps in and he does have his own desk, but there are also toys in there for the rest of his siblings. Also, birds still fly by, even in a room with no distractions. Campus is the better solution for us and gives Jonathan a grown-up feeling. Does your son ever get distracted?

    2. 100 words.

      Yes, Jeremy gets distracted by his loud sister. We have an air cleaner in his room which makes white noise and helps him study. Sometimes he says he just zones out, and that's when he moves into our bedroom for better concentration. I think it is partly due to hormones! I'm sure they cloud the mind and create distraction all by themselves.

      I was a bit like your husband in college. I went into the catacomb-like stacks at the library and found a desk against a wall to concentrate. It was very private, a little spooky, but great for my concentration.

    3. There is also one called 100 Words Every High School Graduate Should Know.

      It's probably true about the hormones, although so far here it's more birds than anything else.

      Interesting about your study habits. I need light -- otherwise I get very restless.

    4. Yes, I'd probably have made a good monk. ;) Just give me a plain cell with little slits for windows. lol, I guess that is why I always liked those medievel castles in Germany, France, and the U.K that have those tiny slits for windows...probably for shooting arrows out and avoiding the scaling of the walls during an attack. If I had a window, I'd be staring out it! I have always been easily distracted. I love those Shaker homes as well - indirect light and peaceful.

    5. Oh, and thanks for the other book recommendation...I will check that one out.


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