Catholic Schoolhouse Tour 3: Week 4
So it’s week 4. I bet a little of the novelty of homeschooling is starting to wear off for either you or your kids. But stay strong! Homeschooling is such a big sacrifice, but an even bigger gift for your students. It may not seem like it at times, but you are doing a better job than anyone else in the world! No one can love your children as much as you do and want the best for them as much as you do (except God of course!). So stay strong momma or poppa! And keep reading for some fun ideas for Week 4!
Don’t forget about all those Memory work games and ideas! Check out this big list (and print for future use) for ideas on getting those memory lines to ‘stick.’
Saint Francis Xavier is the new saint to learn about for the next three weeks. Read about him on Catholic Schoolhouse History Card #20 and in the new Saint Fun Pack below! Go ahead and get started working on your Saint Fun Pack to keep reviewing Language Arts and Math while learning about the saint!
- Living the 10 Commandments for Children by Rosemarie Gortier fits in perfectly with Religion for these first 11 weeks.
- Add another triangle ‘flag’ to your 10 commandments banner this week with the Third Commandment printable:
- Skip counting by 8s and 9s is where it gets tricky.
- Did you know batteries come in packs of 8, and so do crayons? Skip count those next time you’re at the store 😉
- Things that come in 9s are baseball team players, tic-tac-toe grids… can you think of anything else? When in doubt, I turn to food! Make lunch in sets of 9 and make your students skip count them. (9 crackers, 9 little slices of cheese, 9 carrot sticks, and 9 goldfish crackers could be an easy lunch with skip counting potential!)
- In the Tour 2 Week 4 post I recommended going for a pronoun hunt in a newspaper or magazine. You could repeat that activity this year, or find just a few sentences and rewrite them to include pronouns instead of proper nouns.
- Bar graphs are a fun way to analyze data, and one that could use for virtually anything. Give each student one article/book/story and have them tally each time they see each pronoun (he, she, they, we, it, her, him). At the end have them create a bar graph showing the usage of each pronoun in the story. If you have students at all levels of reading, see if you can come to a conclusion about pronoun usage in little kids books vs. books geared towards older students.
- If you can handle it, I’ve found 2 hours of the best of George Fredick Handel on Youtube.
- Check out this website called Classics for Kids! They have short (6min) ‘audio shows’ on famous composers. Click here to listen to this one about Handel. And, they have activity sheets for composers too!
- This week we learn about a new artist: Albrecht Durer. He has many famous paintings, and he was also famous for a sketchbook where he drew his ideas for art and practiced difficult things to draw. Make a mini-sketch book this week for each of your students (just cut some copy paper in half, fold in half again and staple- ta-da simple sketch book!) Then, see if your students can make some sketches for you in it of animals, people, or anything that interests them. Remind them that sketchbooks are like rough drafts- they aren’t meant to be perfect or finished pieces of art. It’s about having fun drawing and practicing.
- Here’s a short (2min) video about Albrect Durer and his sketchbook. My only issue is this video focus is on Albrecht Durer but it shows some sketches from da Vinci! See if your students catch it!
- Print this week’s Classical Roots flashcards! (Print these 2 sided, flip along the long side)
- How do you use your flash cards? You can use them in the traditional way of showing one side and quizzing students as to what’s on the other side. You could also post them around the room next to objects that represent what the root word is. Try playing a game where you mix up all the cards you have so far, and let students draw one at random. Have them think of an english word that uses that root. Another game idea is to display a root word card and have everyone write down as many words as they can think of that use that root within (10 seconds, or 30 seconds depending on your age group). Score it like boggle- words that more than one person has gets crossed off, and you get points for words that no one else thought of.
- Get Saint Ignatius of Loyola said that all should be done “for the greater glory of God,” which you may see abbreviated AMDG. Have your students practice this idea by declaring their actions for the glory of God. Also, many people sign their letters or emails AMDG. Your students could write each other letters or notes and sign it AMDG. Make sure they read their note carefully and ensure it only brings glory to God.
- Here’s an easy AMDG craft.
- Fold a piece of paper (or construction paper) in half, then in half again, then in half the long way to divide it into eighths. Then cut down four of the seams like this:
- Fold the flaps down and write AMDG on them, one letter per flap like this:
- Open them up and write in each section the Latin and the translation, like this:
- Then decorate it if you like! Fold it back up and then xylophone fold it to fit it in your pocket.
- Cortez burned all the ships in his fleet to keep his soldiers loyal. They had no way to run away, so they had to fight! If you aren’t totally tired of me suggesting paper boats, make a few more of them this week. But do it at night and light them on fire! If making a real fire is too dangerous for your family, you could just cut out some construction paper flames and attach them to your paper boats.
- Jacques Cartier thought he found gold and diamonds in Canada, and was disappointed to discover much later it was just pyrite and quartz. Pull out some of your own gold and diamonds to examine this week. Then compare them to some of your less expensive jewelry that might have a gold-looking finish and quartz or cubic zirconia stones.
- Can your students tell the difference? How do they think Jacques Cartier felt when he found out they weren’t real gold and diamonds? Have a writing exercise “I thought I found ______ but really it was just ________” to tell a story of a time they were similarly disappointed. If that stumps them, change up the prompt to be something else related to Cartier’s experience.
- This week we look at Saint Francis Xavier both in Religion and History! It’s a great week to watch the CCC of America video Saint Francis Xavier and the Samurai’s Lost Treasure. We love all the CCC of America videos!
- Pull out any of your saint stories this week about Saint Ignatius and Saint Francis Xavier. Read one or two stories about each saint, and then create a Venn Diagram for them. List the ways they were different in their own circles and the things they have in common in the overlapping section.
- Saint Ignatius believed that a reform of the church started with a reform of each individual’s heart. To do this he suggested spiritual retreats (maybe that’s why he’s the patron saint of spiritual retreats). Have a mini-retreat at home this week. Make a comfortable, quiet, and distraction-free space in your home (it might just be your closet). Allow your students to each go there for a spiritual retreat whenever they need to. Have a candle (maybe one of the battery operated candles), a Bible and a prayer book in there, along with whatever makes them comfy, like pillows and blankets. For your littlest students, put some coloring pages of saints in there with a few crayons. (Coloring is a quiet activity!) Make a sign to remind them that a key part of the spiritual retreat is silence!
- This week we start learning about Australia and Oceania! You can get started on your Oceania Lapbook this week! Download Oceania Lapbook.
- Have some fun learning about Australia this week. Although they speak English, they certainly have their own slang words, which students sometimes love to imitate. Here’s a link to a cute booklet of kid-friendly Aussie slang for them to have fun with this week.
- Try some ‘down-under’ dishes this week. Some I think your students might enjoy are Australian Damper and Fairy Bread. Maybe the Fairy bread could be a treat for a whole week of good schooling. It’s a lot of sugar… but hey, it’s Australian culture… and that’s school right?
- Do you have some of those plastic animal toys roaming around your house? Maybe you have plastic dinosaurs? No matter which you have, pull them out and sort them this week by what they eat. Animals might be easy; you may need to pull out a dinosaur book to remember which are herbivores and carnivores. (Often the carnivores will have very visible sharp teeth- a good clue!) If you don’t have plastic animals or plastic dinosaurs, I know you must have some stuffed animals, so sort them!
- Have themed lunches this week. Have an herbivore lunch of only veggies and fruits. The next day have a carnivore lunch of only meats (grilled chicken, bacon, hot dogs, chicken nuggets?). Then have an omnivore lunch and incorporate both meat and plants. Which one was their favorite? Have a discussion about how God created us to be omnivores- we need nutrients and fiber from vegetables and protein from animals, a balanced diet makes us healthy!
- Here is a free worksheet where your students have to identify whether an animal is a carnivore or herbivore.