Thursday, May 2, 2013

Week 33 ~ Andrew Johnson, Walt Whitman and Science Fun

We had a great week! We got lots done and had fun along the way. The most exciting thing this week was a field trip to Andrew Johnson's home. He was the 17th president and saw our country through the Reconstruction Period after Lincoln was assassinated. I didn't learn anything about Andrew Johnson when I was in school (or about practically any other president either). I was fascinated to learn about Johnson and his family. He appears to have been a decent man. While in his home town of Tennessee, we were able to visit Andrew Johnson's birth home, adult home, burial site (at a National Park Service graveyard), and a great visitors center. We also visited a jail from his time period. We were pleased to see so many things to do in such a small town (Greeneville, Tennessee).

"When I die, I want no more winding sheet than that of the brave old flag...and no softer pillow than the Constitution of my country." ~ Andrew Jackson

Poetry Tea ~ Our poetry tea this quarter was Walt Whitman. We really enjoyed learning about him this week. He was a wonderful poet. The kids especially liked "Oh Captain, My Captain" and the prose poem, "Did you read in the sea-books of the old fashioned frigate fight?". We had coconut bread pudding, gummies, and fresh fruit for breakfast while listening to several of his poems. Our favorite reading was this version of Oh captain, My Captain.

Science Fun ~  We didn't do much the first two quarters this year. However, we are doing a good job catching up now. This week we conducted an experiment with colored water and celery to show how plants get nutrients and water from the soil.

The snap circuits that Tom Sawyer got for his birthday are very popular. Tom Sawyer has spent many hours this week working with them. The girls have explored them a bit this week too.

All The Rest ~ The other big thing we did this week was finish our Presidents Timeline. I used flash cards and copied the distributions from the back to explain about each president. We plan on going back and writing down the key things going on in history below each president. We also did lots of language arts, Teaching Textbooks and paragraph writing. Goldilocks logged 8 hours on the computer with Time4Learning this week.

I even took a bit of time for myself this week and read a novel! I read The Help. It was fantastic!

Blessings, Dawn


  1. All about the american history this week dawn - LOVE IT! We have yet to start it but working on my curriculum for it now! Loving the timeline! Fun field trips! Enjoy the weekend and be blessed!

  2. We have been to the AJ home, too. It really is too bad that we did not get to see each other while we were so close. Poetry teas are great, aren't they? I love your blue star pitcher. James loves snap circuits. What a great week.

  3. I loved "The Help"! I also think the movie is nearly as good as the book. I'm so glad you took some time for yourself. :-)

    I love your poetry tea time. I'm stealing that idea!

  4. Loved "The Help". Such a great book. I would love to go to Andrew Jackson's house. I bet that is so fun. I'm with Mary, I LOVE the poetry tea time. I need to work that into our daily/weekly routine. I'm glad he is like Snap Circuits. Keilee loves hers. I love your blue star pitcher too! Enjoy your weekend Dawn.

  5. Field trip looks awesome!

    Can you share more about what you do with a poet study? How often and how long? I don't do this at all and always wonder about adding things like this in.

    The Help is a good book. And a good movie too!


  6. My kids have really enjoyed Snap Circuits the past couple months as well. We just have the smallest kit, but I definitely think we'll "upgrade" in the future.

  7. Hi Dawn, Thanks so much for stopping by mommy the teacher. I love your idea of poetry tea. I would like to do that with my girls. Its an easy and fun way to fit poetry in. Thanks for that idea. My girls will love it.

  8. Sounds like a pretty perfect week to girls love all things presidential and anything related to science experiments. Snap circuits...we've got to get those! We have something similar and the girls really enjoy it. I love that you read Walt Whitman together and even had time to read a book just for you:)

  9. We're learning the presidents, too. It is so fun to hear my 3 yr old try to say them in order, though she hasn't got it down like her older siblings.

    Whitman is one of my favorites. I think I will incorporate your poetry teas next year. Great idea.

    Ah! We have a set of snap circuits that my oldest loved. He spent many hours with that set. 2nd son could care less about them, but I think the third would love them. I am going to dig them out today and and have the oldest get his little brother started on that. Thank you for reminding me about them.

  10. I loved the Help too, it's a great book. The movie's good too (I saw it after), though I found it more upsetting (wrong word) than the book. My children love snap circuits too. A great way to see how electricity works without fiddling around too much connecting wires. I can't believe we still haven't done celery or flowers in coloured water! Yours looks cool.