I did not have high hopes for
today yesterday, but God is obviously a God of Surprises. Thank heavens I’m open to new things!
- Prayer: A lot of catching up with 1 Samuel. As you will recall, the first readings at daily Mass are following the course of 1 Samuel (either “one Samuel” or “first Samuel” will do, thanx). Our last day of school was Friday, but we heard Saturday’s reading of 1 Samuel 9 (the selection of Saul) because M and his brother served daily Mass at the convent on that day.
- Something that is not always easy or fun to rouse oneself to do on a Saturday, but is very good, because the celebrants are, of course, the retreat masters for that weekend, so you (they) are guaranteed to hear good preaching.
- But still – Tuesday’s reading skipped all the way to 1 Samuel 16 – the selection of David from Jesse’s sons, so we did just a bit of catch up before reading that.
- Read the Gospel, prayed the Morning Prayer petitions, Lord’s prayer. Talked about the saint who’s in this book for the day – St. Bassian- the allusion to being depicted with fawns picqued our interest, so I found this story about St. Bassian and the fawn. Which led to another interesting discovery that I’ll talk about in another post.
- We are doing this seated next to the sliding glass door which affords us a view of the bird feeder, so commentary on that activity punctuates everything, including prayer. As did a question about exactly what a partridge is. Not that we have one. For some reason, it just came up.
- Then to copywork. Tuesday is poetry day. Last week I discovered this great site – of a UK nationwide poetry recitation competition, Poetry by Heart. It’s wonderful to watch the videos and explore the poems that have been selected. I randomly clicked on “Hyena” by Edwin Morgan, and decided that would be poetry study/copywork today. So we listened to the poet read it, read it ourselves, then ran through an analysis I found here – another excellent site. It’s a BBC site and seems to be exam prep.
- We talked more about the poem, then he chose a stanza for copywork – he chose the last.
I am waiting for the foot to slide, for the heart to seize, for the leaping sinews to go slack, for the fight to the death to be fought to the death, for a glazing eye and the rumour of blood. I am crouching in my dry shadows till you are ready for me. My place is to pick you clean and leave your bones to the wind.
- Happy Tuesday!
- A bit of cursive.
- Math review – I am tired of trying to pull review printables from all over the web, but I hate paying full price for review workbooks, so the other day we were at Second and Charles, and I saw used but never written in Spectrum 7th grade math review book, and grabbed it. I think he can do most of it, so that will be the go-to for review material for the rest of the year.
- Then Beast Academy – dividing positive and negative integers. Read the comic, did two pages. Easy. I think things get real tomorrow.
- A big video break then – most of the 3rd episode of Liberty! SO GOOD. Covered the fall and winter of 1776 – we watched through Valley Forge. Tomorrow he’ll do the reading in the texts that catches him up to that point. Bonus: Philip Seymour Hoffman is in it, playing a Colonial soldier. I did a double take, and yes it’s him.
- Writing and Rhetoric – finished up the first chapter, which didn’t involve writing, but an introduction to proofreading symbols. He had to then, predictably, read a paragraph and proofread it.
- And then…time to go to boxing.
- Normally we don’t do anything much after boxing – partly because he’s wiped out, and partly because the time crunch, but today, since his sister was home, I left him with her after boxing and lunch while I went to fetch brother, and during that time, he read the next chapter of Johnny Tremain. When we returned it was…..
- Worm Time.
- Last “semester” we focused on botany, and for the next couple of months it’s going to be biology. We’ve done cells and systems before, so we’ll jump right into organisms. Over the next few days: build a worm habitat, observe live worms, then dissect a preserved specimen.
- First the habitat: Some of you have big pickle jars and such hanging around your house. I don’t. So while he was at boxing, I popped into a thrift store and found this for a couple of bucks:
- He & brother (home from school, and who always enjoys this kind of stuff, so we can easily save it for “after school”) layered dirt with sand around a central core. The core is to force the worms to do their digging and tunneling closer to the glass, and not get clustered in the middle. The sand layer functions as a way of being able to see more easily how the worms’ activity mixes the soil.
- Layers, spritz with water, some carrots, coffee grounds. Worms.
- (Worms were purchased nightcrawlers – they are bigger than the worms we could dig up, plus I wanted a lot, both for this and for behavior observation)
- You could at this point wrap the jar in black paper that would be slid off for periodic observation, but we have a good cabinet (used for the mold observation a few months back), so we just shut them up in there.
- And they were at home by this morning.
- We’ll keep them in the habitat for a week or two, observe their impact on the soil, and then set them gloriously free.
- For more information on setting this up, go here and here and I’m sure many other places.