Friday, August 31, 2012

Week 5 ~ Mostly On the Banks of Plum Creek

On My Mind ~ I am glad that we finally came to a decision about dance this fall.  We are going to put the kids into dance and prepare for the Nutcracker.  Hopefully, Timothy's surgery will not interfere with the performance season, but if it does, we are ready to relocate and be his support team.  It is a relief that our little dance studio understands that we cannot make a definite commitment this year.  Goldilocks also will be in the homeschool choir, and Little Red Riding Hood and Tom Sawyer will be in homeschool chess class.

The World of Charlotte Mason ~ In years past I have had difficulty getting Shakespeare into the kids lives (as Charlotte Mason so strongly suggests).  This year I wanted to make sure that we were getting exposure to Shakespeare, which I happen to love.  Our local city does Shakespeare plays in the park each summer for the nominal fee of a donation.  This year we decided to go even though it was King Richard II (not anyone's favorite in our family).  The stage was very impressive and the kids were excited to be out at night.  I told the kids the synopsis and told them to try to hear as many delicious words or phases as they could.  That is one of the joys of Shakespeare, is it not?  Little Red Riding Hood was still not impressed, but the others found some enjoyment in the storyline. 

Some of the lines the kids caught (at least parts of) ~

  • Through the false passage of thy throat, thou liest
  • Desolate, desolate, will I hence and die; The last leave of thee, take my weeping eye.
  • So be thy fortune in this royal fight
  • Too far in years to be pupil now!

I am pleased with their first Shakespeare experience and look forward to taking them next summer.  Next time, I'll find out what the play is in advance and spend some time learning the play with them in more detail.

After the play we went to slide down the really tall slide in the dark at the park around the corner.  Sliding at night adds a whole new level of excitement.

Our Unit Study ~  We finished our study of On the Banks of Plum Creek .  Below are the projects we did to accompany the book.
  • Made dry fruit
  • Did individual book reports
  • Played cat's cradle and other string games
  • Drew the food chain of a grasshopper
  • Watched YouTube videos on water purification
  • Studied a willow tree
  • Learned geography terms
  • Studied lichen
  • Talked about water safety in a river and a pool
  • Made instant snow with polymers
  • Ate plums and turnips
  • Made a button string
  • Used Draw Write Now to learn how to draw horses and barns
  • Played in a stream
  • Had a mini-Christmas celebration
  • Made a food bag and donated it to the hungry

What Is Working ~ I love my new to me "to go" bag.  We spend lots of time on the road, and with "out of the home" classes starting in a few days, it will be nothing but busier.  This great bag has so many pockets.  I can fit all of the kids' stuff, snacks and my own reading/to do work. 

Counting Blessings ~ I am so thankful that we built our lives around a small radius of our home.  I do drive in a lot of circles, but I am able to get everyone where they need to be, and we are doing much better than expected with one car.  I am glad to be getting such good mileage with our little car now that gas prices are going up.  Little Red Riding Hood was discharged (for now) from physical therapy.  She has lots of exercises to do at home.  I had the opportunity to go out to dinner with seven women in our adoption support group this week. 

Blessings, Dawn


  1. I hope everything works out perfectly for them to be in the performance and for Tim's surgery. All good things.

    Such wonderful, fun acitivities to go along with Plum Creek!

    Love the "go" bag! Packed and organized with lots of things.

  2. Wow, so many good things to comment on, Dawn. I am envious of your Shakespeare experience. It looked fantastic! Your Little House activities look great and I love your to-go bag. Wonderful stuff!

  3. Oh, love the bag! Where did you get it?! I love to find something STURDY with lots of pockets!

    Shakespeare looks interesting! LOL We have Shakespeare Tales and I always say I'll read the adaptations to the kids, but I never seem to get around to them.

  4. Hello, Dawn. I don't know how you do it getting in all those things in one week. You have so much energy! :)
    I enjoy Shakespeare as well but my children weren't very fond of the language. I found that when we first read Charles and Mary Lamb's Tales from Shakespeare it really helped them understand the plots. You can get the ebook free through Google Books ( you can see various versions here and get them on MP3 audios from LibriVox ( you can download the MP3s and listen to them on the go. After using these versions it made it simpler for the kids to understand the old English of the real plays.

    Love your "to go" bag.
    As always, it is inspiring visiting your blog. Thanks so much.

  5. Love your Shakespeare experience. The set looks awesome. And love that bag! I use a tool bag for my 'purse' because I LOVE all the little pockets. I also love your "Plum Creek" study! Great things that you did.

  6. I am so glad that I am pretty much back and blogging. I can blog a little bit before we leave for a couple of weeks to see family and friends. You are doing such neat things as always. I love your idea of on the go bag. I didn't have time to back read your posts but do I understand that you all are a one car family now? I know that story well. We have been a one car family for always.

    I have to admit being a CM homeschool mom I haven't really done much with Shakespeare and I will pull out my Lamb's Book of Shakespeare b/c you have inspired me.

    Will be back soon.
    Blessings and ((HUGS))

  7. I love reading your posts and am going to do a little catch up tonight. I've been out of it for awhile it seems and trying to get back into the swing of things. I enjoy hearing about what you are doing and what is working. you encourage and inspire me often! Hugs to you!