Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Andes Unit: The Ugly One

Image result for the ugly one book

This is such a good book!  I think it is a level up from my girls in interest, not in reading ability, but I loved reading it.  And, it has an awesome resources page in the back.  Wish I would have looked there first instead of scrounging around for stuff about the Andes.

Friday, April 7, 2017

The Circus...

Our town's library had a deal going where if each kid read five books, they could get a free ticket to the circus.  The girls wanted to do it, and I said yes.  I knew this circus was shutting down (I didn't realize how soon- this May!) so I thought it would be good for us to go.  The girls knocked out their books super fast, and Miss M even had Tales of Beetle the Bard as one of her books.  Neither B nor I had ever been to a circus, so we were kind of excited.  Even with only paying for the two adult tickets it was SUPER expensive!  No wonder they have to go out of business...  There's no way we would have gone if we would have had to pay $150 for the girls on top of ours.

The night we went was super stormy, in fact as we got in the car a tornado warning came on.  So it was a tense drive across the water to the arena.  Fortunately for us, and so sad for the people in Chesapeake and Virginia Beach, the tornado headed that way.  We had fun at the pre-circus show down on the arena floor.  The girls got teased by a clown, and we saw bike riders and a lady twirling from long purple fabric.  I thought in general the circus was good.  I personally would have liked it more with less glitz and glamour.  I mean, they had an actual sword swallower.  But he was on the floor with a billion other people with tons of other stuff going on.  I wish they would have one person come out, and say "This is _____.  He is from _____ and he has been swallowing swords since he was three."  Or whatever.  And then have the next person come out.  The whole thing was too... overwhelming.

For the description of the circus itself, I will use illustrations from a book Miss M made for our teenage neighbor, who is deathly allergic to tigers, so can't ever go to a circus.  Isn't that kind of an awesome allergy to have?  
There was a gorgeous black friesian who carried a girl around for the national anthem.  It was kind of weird- the girl wasn't carrying the flag.  That was up on the side.  But the spotlight was on this pretty horse.
The aerialists were awesome.  There were glow in the dark ones and mermaid ones and ones in balls.  No flying trapeze, but lots of other pretty girls spinning around up there.
The tigers were cool.  This is a view from above.
This guy was unbelievable.  His metal spinning ring of death thing.  
Trampoline guys.

The tightrope guys were incredible.  They of course didn't just balance on the wire, they made pyramids and all sorts of other tricks.
The silver sparkly lady getting shot out of a cannon was a big hit with the girls.

And we thought the camels were very cute.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

A Modesty Rant...

I'm feeling frustrated with society in general, and zulily in particular.  I just sent them an annoyed message.

I just wanted to tell you something I am unhappy with. I was on your site looking for clothes for my ten-year-old daughter. I was excited to find a whole tween category. The clothes shown, however, were so immodest and skanky looking! String halter tops, for pre-teens, really? Yes, let's teach our young girls that they are only worth anything if they are sexy. I was pretty disgusted. I would love to see cute, age-appropriate clothes that have good messages on them. My girls (I have three) are smart, clever, strong, and cute. They don't need the world to look at them as if they are only good for men to have sex with.

Neon Orange Lace Halter Top - GirlsBlack Lace Fringe Tank - GirlsWhite & Black Lace Halter Top - Girls

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Switzerland Unit: Mountains...

I'm so bad about having us do science...  But since geology has always been one of my things, we get a fair bit of it in at least...  In fact, the other day we were discussing grade level.  One of Miss A's friends is a boy who shares her exact birthday.  He is in fifth grade.  She is in fourth.  (We, B and I, decided that since it is a late August birthday, and since she has had some disruptive moves and less than ideal teachers, we would hold her back a year.  Besides, what's the rush?)  This boy really lords it over her, and tells her she must be stupid or something.  So we talked about it.  I said that since we are in homeschool, grade level doesn't matter as much.  I said yes, she's in fourth grade, and that is where she is in math and stuff.  But in other areas, like earth science, she is probably in about ninth grade level, because we learn so much about volcanoes, plate tectonics, rocks, etc.  That made her feel better.  I said that her friend is in fifth grade, but in some areas, like ornithology, he might be in college level (he's very passionate about birds).  But in other areas he may be lower than her.  Mostly I want her to learn to not care about what other people say or think about her, but that's a hard lesson for everyone to learn...

Here are the mountain books we read:

Image result for mountains the tops of the world book
This one is a good intro, not too much on each page.  Just enough for Miss A and Miss M to read as their last thing at the end of the school day before they got released to the great outdoors.  Any more text and they would have self-destructed.

Image result for what are mountains book trumbauer
Also good, early reader level.  A small child would be able to sit through.

Image result for true book mountains larry Dane Brimner
These two also, good background info.
Image result for my world of geography book mountains

This one we did not like.  Well, I didn't.  It has some basic factual errors.  ("Plants grow at the bottom of mountains."  Really?  What about all the alpine plants?)
Image result for valerie bodden book mountains
It did lead to a good discussion of two good words, alpine, and timberline.  So that was nice.  We went back through all the photos in all the books and looked at treelines and alpine flowers.

Also, we talked about mountains in the Gospel.  I asked them where Moses went to talk to Jehovah?  Also Abraham and his vision, Nephi and his vision,  Brother of Jared took his stones to the top of a mount to ask Jesus to touch them.  Isaiah calls the temple the mountain of the Lord, etc.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Miss A Book Report

I read Who Is Malala Yousafzai by Dinah Brown.  The book is about a girl who was trying to stand for her right to go to school.  When she was 15, there was a war going on, and these people thought women couldn't do the same things as men.  So they said girls couldn't' go to school.  Her father owned a girls' and boys' school.  The people who were fighting Malala's country said that her father should shut down his school and re-open it only for boys.  But he said "No, I will keep my school open."  The bad guys were really angry at him.  So one day when Malala was going to school in a little bus about 15 feet long, the bus stopped, and two men hopped on the bus and said "Who's Malala in here?"  Everyone just took a glance at her and the bad guys knew who Malala was that instant because they had looked at her.  They shot Malala in the head.  After that she didn't remember anything.  Like being taken to the hospital, then she had to go to a greater hospital in England, which was 4000 miles away from her home.  But she survived the shot by real big surgeries done on her head.  Her hearing wasn't well and they had to do surgeries on her hearing as well.  Meanwhile her family was packing up to go visit her in England.  Once she was feeling better a little, she had to take a little walk in the morning, a longer walk after lunch, and an even bigger walk after that.  She was lucky she was in England because they had a really big university that Malala could go to.  She wanted to stay in England because the war was still going on.  But she could still do skype to her friends that she really missed.  She was still fighting to let girls go to school and she won the Nobel Peace Prize.  Also, she is the youngest person yet to have won the Nobel Peace Prize.
Image result for who is malala yousafzai

Friday, March 3, 2017

Egypt Unit: Mummifying an Apple...

This was a lot of fun.  Hard to wait for a week to see the results, but the girls had fun pouring the cups out to discover what was inside.  Here are the results, and then I'll put in the girls' reports on their findings at the end.

 Here they are with the apples in the cups.
 These three, one above and two below, show the one in salt.  The salt had solidified, and they had to chip the apple out.

These three show the apple that was put in cornmeal.

The girls wanted to replicate a mummy with wrappings, so they wrapped an apple slice in paper towels and put it in sand.

 These next three show the one put in sugar.

 The apple put in sugar was wet and moldy gross.

 This one was a surprise to me.  I had read that you could replicate natron, the mummifying agent the Egyptians used, by adding baking soda to salt.  As you can see in the above and below photos, the results were pretty nasty.  I thought it would work better.

 These two, above and below, show the apple slice left in salt and lime juice.

 The rest show the slice left in sand.

 It looked so good that I washed it off.
Sliced it up, and made them eat it.  Not me though.

They liked it, and said it tasted just like a normal apple.  They had fun eating a "mummified" apple.

Here are their results.  Both sides of Miss M's, then both sides of Miss A's.