Thursday, September 26, 2013

Me on the Map

  Thursday is geography and history day.  I really wasn't sure what I wanted to teach them today.  They are very interested in geography and I wanted to teach them about different countries but I'm waiting for some books to come in from the library.  I could have just pulled out the Scrambled States of America game or had them play Stack the States on my Kindle but I wanted a project for us to work on.  I went to Pinterest and did a generic "geography" search and found this idea.  I love the idea of showing the boys that their room and our corner of the world is just one tiny speck in the grand scheme of things.  We started with the world map and worked our way backward through North America, The United States, New England, etc. and we'll end up with their road, house and room.  I  have been wanting do to this project for a while but knew the boys would complain because it's a lot of  work-- there are 10 pages to complete.  They started complaining before they even knew what the project was!  They saw piles of paper and they whined.  I ignored them but did feel a twinge of guilt that I was teaching them something they weren't interested in learning. 
     I found printable maps for almost everything at Eduplace.  I only wish I had been able to scale the maps down a bit.  I don't like that the United States ended up being larger than the world, but I think they still get the idea.  I was impressed with Ian though, when we sat down and he started coloring the world map he told me he was coloring the oceans near the poles a dark blue since the water was colder there and he'd use a light blue when he got near the middle since the water gets warmer there.  I asked them if they knew what that line in the middle was called and Alec yelled "the equator!"  I had them point out the United States on the world map, we talked about the other countries that we share North America with, I had them find New England on the United States map and asked them to point out our state countless time.  We talked about how even the states are divided into different regions called Counties.  I told them the name of ours and had them find it on the map.  I then had them find our town and showed them how small it is in relation to our state, how small our state is in relation to our country, etc.  It was great and they all did an amazing job!  Evan decided to do things his own way and instead of starting from biggest to smallest he went from smallest to biggest.  He drew the blue walls and his two beds in his room, he drew our green house and blue door for our house and he drew a very big, very gray road for our street.  It was cute. 
Ian shading his oceans for temperature

What the finished product will look like--
it's just missing the picture of "my room"

Drawing our house


Hard at work

Evan finished the first 1/2 of his packet

Alec and Ian worked on the 2nd half of their packets

     
















































         We finished up schoolwork by mid morning and I packed up our lunches and bikes to head to a homeschool group play date at the lake.  We hadn't seen our group in almost a month so we were all anxious to meet up with everybody.   Along the way we stopped at the library again.  Many of our requested books had come in and Alec was all out of library books.  He picked out the largest stack of books last time we went to the library (to the point where I was ready to tell him he needed to put some back) and has since read them ALL!  We walked out with another huge stack this time... thinking perhaps we need multiple library book bags to carry them all home.  We went in to get some books for Alec and both Evan and Ian walked out with quite a stack too.   We listened to a bit more of the Key to the Indian and the boys were making predictions. 
Alec's pile of books 

Ian's pile of books 
    We stayed at the park for 3 hours and the boys ran, jumped, yelled, rode bikes and scooters and basically just had fun playing with lots of other kids their own age.  Ian and his friend were panning in the water, the kids made up many of their own games and spent a gloriously fun day in the sun and fresh air.  We saw all sorts of water fowl, a sailboat, "fished" for muscles and Alec found many new rocks to add to his collection.   I always enjoy these get- togethers too.  There are lots of other moms around and it's great for us to swap stories, swap ideas and help one another out.  We have parents just starting out with toddlers and babies that know they want to homeschool when the time comes and we have parents that have been homeschooling for years and years.  One mom in our group has 6 kids-- 1 in college, 2 in high school and two younger so there isn't anything we're going through that she hasn't encountered yet.  We all have our own method of homeschooling but it's always great to listen to the way someone else approaches their day and their lessons.  Over the past year these ladies have become my friends as my kids have made friends with their kids.  We also have the added bonus of continually meeting new people. 






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