Friday, August 29, 2014

Cycle 3 Weeks 7-12 Resources

Please remember that it is not necessary to supplement Classical Conversations with crafts, worksheets, and on-line resources. Simply drilling the grammar (knowledge) and reading literature together will give your child an incredible grounding for the logic (understanding and application) and rhetoric (wisdom and communication) levels of classical learning. In fact, you need not even match up your reading selections with what we are learning in Classical Conversations! The memory pegs will come up in whatever you are reading whenever you are reading it - whether it's now or 2 years down the road! 
Before deciding to do any of this, please read the article Finding Freedom in the Grammar Stage. Just because this list of resources is available does not mean you need to use it. This is not a lesson plan; it is only a reference list. 

The following is an example of what I hope to post for each quarter of Cycle 3. All of these resources (and more) can be found by subject on our Cycle 3 Resources Page.  There are several resources on our Cycle 3 Subject Resources Pages that span multiple weeks. Don't forget to check them out (especially math, science, and history!).  

For a simple plan on how to use these resources, download our Cycle 3 Second Quarter Sample Activity Plan.
Do we use this stuff?  Some of it (like multiplication drills sheets and on-line geography games).  But most of this we do not use. Our family spends more time reading and working on core skills during the grade-school years and keeps our schedule open for playing board games together, or researching something that our children are interested in, or doing a random science investigation. We use our resource lists as resource lists - that is, when we wish to quickly find a resource I've come across in the past, we reference this list. I call it the "Link Buffet."

Click to go directly to specific week:
Week 7
Week 8
Week 9
Week 10
Week 11
Week 12

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Memory Work Chart {Free Printable}

On our first day of CC, a dear friend of mine put together a memory work chart for us which has proven to be a motivating tool for our children to practice their memory work. What's more, she has decided to share it with the whole wide world!

But before we share, meet Katrina.

At past practicums, Katrina has been my partner in crime. (I hate to admit this, but at a past training, the trainer almost had to separate us. But now that I have been a tutor trainer myself, I am a little better behaved in class.) This year due to scheduling conflicts, Katrina ended up going to a different practicum than I did but decided to make a "friend" shirt to wear the third day. I could not believe she made and wore this shirt! She even went around taking photos with people. But... she is so hilarious, it really is not surprising. {Is this not the silliest thing in the world?!?}

Katrina made a printable and then followed these instructions to put the chart together, modifying it as a memory work chart with Velcro closure.

She further explains, "I used colored file folders because that's what I had. One folder made two charts. I just cut it in half and folded in half and trimmed to make it look like the chore chart on this website. Each tab, I believe, is 4.2 cm wide."

>>>Download the Memory Work Chart printable here.<<<

The clipart she used is from Philip Martin Clipart and is free for non-commercial use.

Thank you, Katrina! You are such a wonder woman!

Other memory work ideas:
Memory Work Sticker Book
Practicing Memory Work
Memory Work Review Games
Memory Work Fun with LEGOs
John 1 Latin Flashcards & Games
Memory Master Tips & Tricks

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Snippets from our first week

This week (or should I say last week?) marked our first week of Classical Conversations. (Having our CC Community Day mid-week redefines what I consider the start and end to our week!)  So... here I am, simply trying to capture the memories before my sleep-deprived mind fails to recall a single thing.

Geography & Memory Work
Stephen's been learning how to draw the U.S. free-hand. At the beginning of the week, he was drawing the western half of the country from memory. After drawing it in black without referencing a map, he went back to correct his work with a red marker while referencing a map.

It turns out he didn't need to draw a whole lot of red corrections on that map. Today he started adding the southeastern states. Mahalo's U.S. Map Video Tutorial is our favorite U.S. geography mapping resource this year!

Because I get derailed quite often throughout our school day, David has taken to playing the "Geography Quiz Game" by himself.

I'm thrilled to see that one of my creations is actually useful in our own home! {Could this mean that many of my creations are not useful in our own home? ahem.} He really liked using our U.S. Geography States & Capitals File Folder Game to test his retention of the states we learned during Week 1. The plan is to continue adding the cards to our practice deck as we add more states to our memory work each week.

The boys have also enjoyed the Star-Spangled State Book as they read about the states we're memorizing. 

And that sums up geography for us: locating, tracing, drawing, and reading about the states.

After a wonderful friend of ours made this memory work chart for us, David started to show some initiative in making sure he's recited his memory work to me each day. 

It's funny what motivates a child.  (Thank you, Katrina! You rock!)

Language Arts
I was shocked. It really did happen. Stephen actually said, "Let me start with my IEW paper," and "Can I do my Essentials work first?"  This is the child who desperately did not like Essentials three years ago. He has finally burst forth as a butterfly (though he would probably not like this metaphor a whole lot).  But... take heart, Moms of Boys Who Do Not Like Holding a Pencil!  He's really and truly enjoying all things Essentials now as a sixth grader! This is cause for much rejoicing!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Cycle 3 Week 4 Weekly Link-Up

The Classical Conversations Cycle 3 Weekly Link-up is a place for bloggers to share their ideas and activities with other CC parents and tutors for each week during Cycle 3 (2014-2015 school year). Unlike most weekly link-ups, this link-up will not be organized according to date but will be organized according to the week of CC. As such, these weekly link-ups will remain open for several months to accommodate for all the different schedules implemented by various CC Communities.  

This Link-Up is for Cycle 3:  Week 4

If you are looking for a different week, click here.

If you are looking for the Cycle 2 Weekly Link-Up, click here.
If you are looking for the Cycle 1 Weekly Link-Up, click here.

For bloggers who'd like a button, just copy and
paste the following html code into your webpage.

Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood

<a href="" target="_self"><img src="" alt="Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood" width="225" height="225" /></a>

Would you like to participate? 
For bloggers:  Feel free to share either 1) your plans for the week listed above or 2) what you did for this particular week of CC. When submitting your entry, please include the name of your blog or blog post and link directly to your post for the week noted in the post heading (so we can find it!) rather than to your entire blog. Also please link back to this page in your blog post so that your readers can check others' websites who are participating as well.  My hope is that this link-up encourages a feeling of community and friendship in the CC blogging world.

For non-bloggers:  Bookmark or pin this page and remember to visit the fabulous Cycle 3 blog entries that will be posted in the near future - all kinds of ideas for supplementing Classical Conversations. Check back often to see if others have submitted their ideas!

Bloggers:  By participating in this link-up, you agree that you will not post the words (in text, audio, or video format) of the history, science, timeline, or other specific wording found within the Foundations Guide in your blog post. You also agree to not post links to youtube videos, on-line Quizlet flashcards, or other material containing memory work sentences from the Foundations Guide.  Please do not post any material you have downloaded from CC Connected if it is not your own creation. You may include a reference to a specific file you have found useful by stating the name of the file so that it may be searched on CC Connected. This website strives to maintain the highest degree of integrity in honoring copyrights owned by Classical Conversations (or any other person or company, for that matter). Thank you for being honorable and trustworthy in your participation in this link-up!

This link-up is intended to be used with the Foundations Guide 4th Edition.  

For those receiving this in your email inbox, just click on the heading of this post to access the "Add Your Link" button or to access links that have been submitted. (But be patient, as it will take some time for bloggers to get their posts written and their links up!)

This will help all of us to easily find the ideas others have shared for each week of Classical Conversations! Thank you for participating!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Knowledge Quest Giveaway: American History & Geography Resources

"Did you know that the Battle of New Orleans took place after the War [of 1812] was over?  Due to poor means of communication, the commanders on both sides didn't receive news of the war's end until after the battle was fought!" - from A Presidential Scrapbook
Knowledge Quest is my favorite geography curriculum company (but they have some great history resources, too!). We used Knowledge Quest maps and other products for years before finally purchasing full versions of their resources. That's because they offer some of the greatest freebie sampler packets out there!

So... because Knowledge Quest is one of my favorite curriculum companies, I thought I'd take you all on a quick trip through their resources for American History and Geography (although we own just about everything they offer for world history, too)...

A Presidential Scrapbook

A Presidential Scrapbook is an attractive 96-page full color book packed with loads of great information.  

Each President from Washington to Obama is featured on a two-page spread which includes:
  • Memorable deeds, speeches, quotes, triumphs, disasters, and/or interesting facts pertaining to each presidency
  • A list of the states that joined the union during that presidency
  • A timeline of the President's life at the bottom of the page
  • An interactive turn-the-page quiz
After completing the book, the reader takes another trip through the pages via a "Presidential Quiz."  The quiz is built into the pages so you can determine if you recognize a picture of (or remember trivia related to) each President simply by flipping to the pages indicated. Our children have never enjoyed a "test" so much! 

The Star-Spangled State Book
The Star-Spangled State Book is an 80-page full color book with an additional 264-page workbook on CD-ROM to transform it into a full 36-week curriculum study.

With this book, our boys (ages 5-11) actually get excited as they learn about the states! Each page includes:
  • Interesting stories and fun, quick trivia about the state
  • The capital
  • The date the state entered the Union
  • The state's population and ranking
  • The state's land area and ranking
  • The three most populated cities
  • The state's shape
  • The state flag
  • GEOQUIZ!!!!
The Geoquiz is our family's favorite part of the book, as it is an interactive self-check quiz on state shapes, capitals, borders, and trivia. It is definitely an enjoyable (yet challenging) way to quiz the information. 

Also included in this book are historical maps (e.g., the Civil War). The goal for the optional, 36-week ebook course is to identify all the states and capitals, locate them on a map, recall which states border each other, and recite some trivia about each state.

I've referenced both the Star-Spangled State Book and A Presidential Scrapbook in our Cycle 3 Reading Plans. (Click here to download a copy of just the reading plans.)

Map Trek: U.S. Edition
Available as a 242-page ebook or CD-ROM, Map Trek U.S. Edition provides historical outline maps that allow you to teach your child geography within a historical context.

This CD-ROM/ebook contains 53 historical maps, 50 state maps, 3 U.S. maps in different sizes, and 106 student maps, along with lesson plans for all 50+ outline maps, broken down into three levels - Level A (grades 1-4), Level B (grades 5-8) and Level C (grades 9-12). Because the maps are sequenced chronologically, it is simple to incorporate them into a chronological study of American history. 

These maps are truly some of the best I have ever seen. Not only that, there is a map for almost every historical event we are studying in the coming year. 

You can download some of these maps for free by downloading the free Map Trek sampler on Knowledge Quest's website. (Note that the U.S. Edition is free with the purchase of the entire Map Trek Collection.)

What Really Happened in Colonial Times
Recommended for students age 8 and up (or as a family read-aloud), this 240-page book is a collection of inspiring historical biographies about ordinary people who accomplished great things during the Colonial period. The book features Pocahontas, Lady Alicia Lisle, James Cook, Rachel Walker Revere, Lord Admiral Nelson, Catherine Ferguson, Lucretia Mott and Narcissa Whitman and includes maps and illustrations related to each historical figure. You can read one of the biographies for free by visiting Knowledge Quest's website.

Sacagawea (Brave Explorers Every Child Should Know)
Sacagawea is a historical account of the events surrounding Sacagawea and the Lewis & Clark expedition. Written in an engaging format, this interactive historical novel was originally released as four separate books but is now available as one complete saga in ebook/Kindle format. The first chapter is available for pre-reading by clicking here.

Recommended for ages 10 and up (due to the historical context involving kidnapping, slavery, and abuse), this book contains links embedded within the text so that readers can easily research topics such as prairie dogs, Corps of Discovery, Cottonwood trees, the Shoshone Indians, and Fort Mandan (to name a few). The narrative, written from the perspective of Sacagawea, is quite riveting. I'm looking forward to reading it aloud to our boys in the coming weeks!

Knowledge Quest Freebies
Knowledge Quest offers fabulous freebies of almost all of their products! In addition to the products listed above that are part of the giveaway, there's also a free version of Map Studio, for which Terri has made this video tutorial on how to make your own maps to practice Classical Conversations Memory Work...

...and Globalmania, which provides a plan for mastering world geography in less than 7 months.

There are many more freebies available - be sure to browse the Knowledge Quest website to download all of them! If you have questions about any of them, feel free to contact me!

The person behind Knowledge Quest:  Terri's a real person!
I had the privilege of meeting Terri at the Teach Them Diligently conference in Nashville this year!  She was such a gracious person, and I enjoyed chatting with her about Classical Conversations... because her family is in a community on the other side of the USA!   

Terri and her husband, Todd, have been teaching their six children at home for 16 years (this is their second year participating in Classical Conversations). They've graduated two of their children and have four to go. Together they operate a publishing company - Knowledge Quest, Inc. - publisher of history and geography materials primarily for the homeschool marketplace. Knowledge Quest is perhaps best known for publishing the popular Map Trek and A Child's Geography series. Their books, resources, online classes and mobile apps all have one goal in common... to equip homeschool parents to teach history and geography consistently, enthusiastically and successfully.

A Giveaway!!

I'm excited to announce that Terri and her husband are offering a bundle of U.S. History & Geography books to a reader of Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood!  

This bundle includes paperback copies** of the following books:

and ebook copies of the following items:
**Winner can opt to receive ebook copies instead of paperback copies. If winner is outside the U.S., the books will only be delivered in ebook format.  

Enter via the Rafflecopter form below (options include leave a blog post comment, share this post on social media, like our Facebook page, and subscribe to Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood by email):

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you, Terri, for offering this great collection of resources!

And many thanks to all of you who read, share, and comment to enter this giveaway!

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