Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Year 2: Weeks 1 through 4

These 4 “weeks” were actually stretched over 6 weeks. 
In literature, we’ve read chapters 1 through 4 of Understood Betsy, 8 pages of Pilgrim’s Progress, finished Lamb’s King Lear and started The Taming of the Shrew, and chapters 1 & 2 of Tales of Troy and Greece.

We’re also reading poems from Christina Rossetti’s “Sing-Song.” Gemma chose “A diamond or a coal...” for recitation.
In history, we’ve read Synge’s The Discovery of New Worlds chapters 1-8, Our Island Story from Boadicea to Saint Alban, Viking Tales chapters 1-4, and Trial and Triumph’s chapters about Polycarp and Blandina.
In natural history, we finished The Burgess Seashore Book. 

At the end of 1st grade, we had 4 chapters of Burgess left. Option 1: We could have stopped on chapter 36, and read the last 4 chapters as “free reading.” As this was unlikely to get done, I chose Option 2: Keep right on going.
In Bible, we’re reading Genesis and Luke. So far we’ve read Genesis 1-4 and 6, and Luke 1-3.

For recitation, the passages I’ve chosen for revisiting each week are:
Genesis 1:1-5
Psalm 15
Luke 8:1-15 (The Parable of the Sower)
For composer study, Gemma chose Bach, and has been learning to play Minuet in G Major. For artist study, she chose Leonardo da Vinci, and we’ve looked at The Virgin of the Rocks and Ginevra de Benci.
In geography, we’ve continued to read The World by the Fireside, about South America, specifically the llanos (the grasslands in northern South America), and in Charlotte Mason’s Elementary Geography we’ve read chapters 19 (a poem) and 20.
In math, we’re halfway through Life of Fred: Fractions. Gemma is also working through Making Friends With Numbers.
For handicrafts, Gemma completed cutting out a dress pattern. The pattern has 4 pieces (and no zippers or buttonholes). The next step will be to shop for fabric, and learn to pin her pattern pieces to her fabric.

We did two weeks of Vacation Bible School, one here, and one in Central California.

The first was Rolling River Rampage...

The last day of VBS, there was a bird show (nature study ✅). And yes, Gemma is wearing pajamas.

The second was Game On!, a sports-themed VBS, which is why Gemma and the other kids have on eye black. 🏈

While we were in Central California, we went with my dad to Fresno’s two most famous homes.

The first is the Underground Gardens.

If you’re ever in Fresno, you must make it a point to see this site. It’s awe-inspiring. It was built over one hundred years ago by a man who had immigrated to the U.S. from Sicily to be a subway tunnel digger on the East Coast. He decided he wanted to be a citrus farmer, and purchased 80 acres of Fresno farmland for $80. One dollar per acre. It was quite the deal, until he realized that he was standing on four feet of hardpan. Because farming was an impossibility, he took a job as an irrigation ditch digger, working 10 hour days, some months in hundred-degree heat. Knowing it was cooler underground, he decided to dig himself a bedroom and a kitchen. Two rooms became a subterranean labyrinth...

The second famous Fresno home we visited was the Meux Home.

The house was built in 1898 by Dr. T.R. Meux. Dr. Meux and his family were from Tennessee. They moved to Fresno because Mrs. Meux had tuberculosis, and Fresno, at the time, was advertising excellent air quality.

My dad had never been to the Meux Home, and neither had Gemma. I, on the other hand, was a docent there when I was in middle school, so I enjoyed seeing the home again, and seeing the love that has been poured into maintaining the house.

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