Review of Soldering Through History, Revolutionary War

Soldiers

I picked up a copy of Soldiering Through History, Revolutionary War last year at a homeschool convention. Just this week we finally arrived at that time period in history.

After watching the DVD it felt like we had just been on a field trip to a battlefield and spent the morning talking with a soldier.

Sgt. Sam and his brothers demonstrated different marching techniques and battle formations.  My boys loved watching all the different moves and the explanations of why the moves were needed.

I love that Sgt. Sam part way through the DVD talked about gun safety, and even through the guns were not shooting real bullets, it is still important to practice gun safety when reenacting with them.

The DVD ends with Sgt. Sam and his brothers reenacting the Battle of Trenton.  I have to say my boys “cheered” when the DVD announced the battle.

After the DVD my boys were highly motivated to reenact what they had just seen.  My daughter did like the information given in the DVD but has chosen not to reenact with her brothers.

The study guide that was included with the DVD gave a nice overview of the time period. My boys’ favorite was the uniform quiz; they enjoyed learning the names of the items carried by the soldiers.

This is a great supplement to any study on American History, the only down side is the price, $34.99. I generally like to spend $20 or less on a DVD. Here is there website if you would like a copy of your own, onthefieldofbattle.com

Or other copies of the series,Soldering Through History: Lexington and Concord or Soldering Through History: WWII Marines

Learning the Lobes of the Brain

Learning the Lobes of the Brain

My kids and friends gathered together for a day on learning about the nervous system and how the brain works. I wanted to have some hands-on ways to remember the lobes of the brain. This lesson goes well with Christian Kids Explore Biology learning about the human body.

Learning the Lobes by Playing “Brain Says”

The “Brain Says” game, much like “Simon Says” each student takes a turn playing the brain. The Brain can have the other students touch the different lobes of the brain, but if the Brain doesn’t say to touch it the student is out. For an extra challenge the Brain can describe what happens in the lobe and the students can touch the lobe for an answer. See the photo above for where hands go to identify the different lobes of the brain.

Learning the Lobes with Brain Cupcakes

First bake a batch of cupcakes. Then using some homemade buttercream icing and round tip #7, do two big lines down the middle and then random swirl lines on each side.

Using address labels and toothpicks, each student can label the parts of the brain. We chose to label the right and left hemispheres. Then we labeled the 4 different lobes of the brain.

If you are looking for some great ideas on the nervous system check out Spelloutloud Blog.

Try some of these other learning tools for learning the lobes of the brain.

 

Revolutionary War Battles with Green Army Men

Green Army Men
We are gearing up for quarter 3 in All American History Jr. on the Revolutionary War. My youngest son loves to set up battles with green army men. On our last field trip to a battle field my son discovered in the gift store themed army men. He does not forget these kind of finds.

I knew I was going to need to come up with game plan to change the look of the green army men. A quick trip to the Dollar Store landed me a pack of light green army men and a pack of dark green army men.

A quick decision was made for the pack of dark green army men to become the minutemen.

Now the pack of the light green army men really needed to be red to represent the red coats. Hmm how to make this work….

Changing Green Army Men Into Red Coats:

  • First we covered the table with paper.
  • Using a bottle of red finger nail polish we painted the coats of each soldier.

I allowed him to paint each one. He was happy to have both sides of the armies ready to reenact battles from the Revolutionary War. I can’t wait to see my son use these soldiers to display the battle tactics of each army.

Next week we are going to look at a new DVD series, Soldiering Through History: Revolutionary War.

A great collection of army men.

Design Your Own Colony

Design Your Own Colony

A creative writing wrap-up to our colonial studies using All American History Jr  vol. 1

Design Your Own Colony Supplies:

  • Map of 13 colonies
  • Notebook paper for answering questions
  • Blank white paper for designing a flag
  • Crayons or markers for designing the flag

We talked about what we learned or remembered about Jamestown, Plymouth, and Massachusetts Bay Colonies. I gave the boys a list of questions for them to answer about their colony.

Questions to Answer to Design Your Own Colony:

1. What will you name your colony?

2. Will your colony be founded for money or religious freedom?

3. Where will you build your colony?

4. How will you handle relations with the local Native Americans?

5. What type of government will you have? A democracy? A monarchy?

6. How will you get people to settle in your colony?

7. Write 10 laws that colonist should follow in living in your colony.

My boys were excited to share their choices with everyone. Now picking names required a little extra brainstorming, but soon we had names and locations decided.

The real laughs came from the laws written for their colonies.

Here are the ones that made us laugh:

1. All stores will close at 6pm.  Why? Well Ben Franklin said, “Early to bed and early to rise, makes a men healthy, wealthy and wise.” So stores need to close so people can go to bed.

2. There will be no adultery. Do you know what that word means? “No, but it says in the bible not to do it.”

3. There will be no guns in town limits. Why? I don’t want my brother to shoot me.

After answering questions the boys went on to design a flag for their colonies.  Now we are ready to move onto the Revolutionary War, I am sure the boys will love my next hands-on idea. It will include army men and red fingernail polish.

 

Sea Glass U.S.A. Map

 

Sea Glass

Years and years have gone into the making of this project. Of course most of the years the glass was rolling around in the ocean. About a few times a year I take my kids to our special beach where you can hear the waves “clink” from the glass rolling in them. After looking on Pinterest and seeing a few mosaics done in sea glass we got excited to do one on the United States.

Sea Glass Map Materials:

  • Bags of different color sea glass (mad-made sea glass can be purchased at craft stores)
  • Super glue
  • Map of the U.S.A
  • Floating picture frame 16 x 12

Sea Glass Directions:

  • Place picture frame on top of the map, this allows the map to be a guide for glass placement.
  • Select pieces of sea glass to fill the size of each state. Some states need more then one piece.
  • Once the pieces have been placed begin gluing them.

I have a small window over my kitchen sink that receives the afternoon light; I placed the completed sea glass map leaning up against the window.

Sea glass mosaic

Now what to make with the rest of our sea glass…..I bet I can find some more ideas on Pinterest!

Decorating with WonderMaps

 

Map Photos

Todays’ project: Decorating with Wonder Maps.

Our family is currently supporting different missionaries in far off lands. I wanted to be able to provide a visual of where they are serving for my kids. I did not want to just hang paper maps on the wall but have them blend in nicely with my decor. While picking up supplies at the craft store I decided to add an extra board for pray requests from our missionaries.

Materials Needed for Wonder Maps Wall Art:

  • WonderMaps I printed out maps of China, Turkey, India and Delaware. Some might argue that Delaware is not a far off land, but I think our first mission field is our home.
  • I purchased some 5X7 pieces of wood and an 8X10 piece of wood from the craft section.
  • Silver craft paint
  • Various Stickers
  • Mod Podge CS11302 Original 16-Ounce Glue, Matte Finish

I painted the the 5X7 boards silver. Red and silver are the main colors in my kitchen.

Then I cropped the maps and mod podged them to the 5X7 wood frames.

I added some stickers for more visual appeal and then another layer of Mod Podge.

I painted the 8X10 wood frame with chalk board paint. This is the one I will use to write down current prayer requests. Then I hung on 4 boards on my kitchen wall.

What about you? How will you use maps this year?

Decorative Maps

 

Breakfast Board

Breakfast Board

Every once in awhile I stumble on a new idea that really gets me excited! Have you heard about Breakfast Boards? After observing that in the morning my children will read anything laying on the kitchen table (including the cereal box multiple times) the idea behind the breakfast board really took off for me.The Breakfast Board concept is simple: it is a way of presenting information in a visually appealing manner. Pull it out daily for the kids to look at over breakfast and then store it away.My middle son knows that in the morning- as part of his breakfast chores – he is to set up the board on the table. As my kids eat, they read the board. Then after breakfast it is folded up and put away for another day.

They read anyway at breakfast – now they are reading and memorizing information that I choose in advance. So far this has been a fabulous and simple addition to our morning routine.

Here is how I made mine.

Breakfast Board Materials needed:

I would suggest choosing a theme for your breakfast board.  I chose “American History” and “Things my Kids Need to Remember.”

On my “American History” panel I put:

  • Map of the U.S.A
  • Map of the world
  • Explorers info and challenge cards
  • List of states and capitals.
  • U. S Presidents and their terms

On my “Things my Kids Need to Remember” panel I put:

  • Current weeks spelling words
  • List of Prepositions
  • Math facts (usually one addition and one multiplication)
  • Calendar with this day in history facts

Now I used red and blue card stock to back some of my different lists.  I used page protectors to slide in things that will change like the calendar and maps.  I cut up a page protector into 4 pieces and taped them closed except one end.  Then it is just about the right size to slide in an index card.  On the index cards I wrote the math facts I wanted them to work on.

My goal is to update it once a month with new information.