As you know we started Paths of Exploration by Trail Guide to Learning for our summer all-inclusive curriculum experiment. This post relates to POE Columbus Lesson 1 Parts 4 and 5. If you missed the other posts, jump over to the search box and type in Paths of Exploration, there are many posts on this topic now. So, I have been determined to stick to the curriculum as written (just augmenting by adding the hands-on aspects), but I have made some decisions. So much of this curriculum (in my opinion) is lower elementary level and my boys are just not loving the level of review that it is requiring for us to do all facets of the curriculum. We will be skipping the parts that are review and just focusing on the new aspects (all of the history and geography pieces). And we will be adding in the Middle School Supplement. So there will still be a ton to talk about, but we will not be doing the lower elementary aspects, except I will still add hands-on activities. If you have questions or want an activity to augment a concept and I have not listed it, please leave a comment or email me, I will gladly help you identify one!
Since we covered the last two parts of Lesson 1 today, I’ll discuss both in this post. This section will be about Part 4.
Section A. Copywork/Dictation. It is continuing the dictation of the original poem “A Journey of Adventure” written by the authors. We will not be doing this piece of the curriculum. I think it is a very valuable piece of the curriculum and if your children have not had experience here, it is something I would do. And, if we were not doing this as our summer / early fall curriculum, we would be doing this section.
Section B: Reader. Focuses on “Language Skills”. Obviously, we are still doing the readers, but since we are planning to do a lesson a week, we’ll probably go ahead and read the entire scheduled reading for the entire lesson instead of three – six pages at a time. I have my boys take turns reading aloud from Meet Christopher Columbus and I read Christopher Columbus.
Meet Christopher Columbus
Section C: Read-Aloud and Discussion. Focuses on “Language Skills”.
Section D: Word Study. Part 4 focuses on rereading the sections read in the read aloud and identifying syllables. We will not be doing this section until it catches up with the boys’ skills.
Section E: Geography. Focusing on “History and Thinking Skills”. In Part 4, this section seemed like we were repeating what we had already covered. Maybe because I had added so much to the curriculum to augment it in earlier lessons of Part 1. So we did not do this section since we already had covered this material.
We did a fabulous activity creating an orange globe. We discussed the various projections of the globe, identified the equator and the Prime Meridian and reviewed longitude and latitude, plus much more. I’ll post a link here once I finish the post. I just haven’t had a chance to finish writing it.
Section F: Writing. With a focus on Thinking Skills, Art, and Language Skills. Again, this focused on mapping and writing about a trip…. which we just did in the previous part, so we did not do this section. It really felt very much like review.
Section G: Independent Reading. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, we modified this reading section a bit so the boys will focus their reading on anything about Christopher Columbus for 30 minutes a day. I wrote a post to share what our library resources we have, you can find it here. I have since added a fabulous book that has not been added to our library list yet. The World of Columbus and Sons by Genevieve Foster. This author has written many books (I purchased several used in a lot on ebay). I stumbled upon these when reading somebody’s discussion of the Beautiful Feet History curriculum. These readers are a core part of BF History. We just love them. The summary of the book from Amazon reads:
This is the story of a wonderful, changing, reawakening world the world of the Renaissance and Reformation. Measured by the lifetime of Columbus and his sons, this book spans the years from 1451-1539. With Columbus as the central figure of this narrative, readers will also learn the fascinating stories of Prince Henry the Navigator, Ivan III of Russia, Gutenberg, Queen Isabella, Leonardo da Vinci, Mohammed II, the African ruler Nomi Mansa, Martin Luther, Erasmus, Albrecht Dürer, Copernicus, Michaelangelo and many others. Told in Foster’s engaging and winsome style enhanced by her helpful chronologies and timelines, readers will learn of the religious, cultural and scientific changes that ushered in a new frontier of exploration and discovery.
I have started calling books like this Historiction. Historical but within a fictional story. Think about all the great Henty Books that are exactly this same formula. My boys seem to love them so that is another book that is part of their 30 minute reading options.
Part 5 was the catch-up section for Lesson 1. We did pull out our globe and trace where Marco Polo had traveled. We did not review the spelling words because we had already changed them 🙂 My boys LOVED doing the Word Search! Here is an interactive one online (not the one from the curriculum) We even did some of the artwork… although my boys took Art 1 this past year and they actually drew a still life of a fruit bowl! So, drawing bugs and flowers with smiley faces was WAY below their capability too! LOL! But we did draw them and giggled our way through it. These are not the drawings from the curriculum, but I love these. I love teaching the boys how to draw an object, broken down in steps. I think I love it so much because then I can draw too 🙂
In Part 5 of Lesson 1 we find where the Enrichment Activities are located. NOW we are getting to some meat!
1. Study the country of Spain. My two oldest sons decided to each write a five paragraph IEW essay on this subject. As a mom that loves to write, I LOVED hearing that! We studied IEW this past year and I can not say enough good things about this curriculum! It is money well spent!! They have a 100% money back guarantee so if you don’t like it (even after teaching the entire course) return it for a full refund. You just can’t beat that guarantee. And just as an FYI, I am not affiliated with IEW in anyway nor do I receive compensation from them or free curriculum (Although I would LOVE to change that)! 🙂 I just love their curriculum! You can see my review I wrote about our IEW experience here.
2. Learn about Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand. My youngest son is writing a five paragraph IEW essay on this topic.
3. Eat Your Way Around the World is focusing on Spain! We will always be doing these! We will blog about them as we cook them.
4. This was yet another “plan a trip” discussion. I can see doing these for a very visual person, creating a travel brochure or something like that might be a lot of fun. Although, none of my boys chose to do this activity.
I hope I have not confused you too much! We will continue to augment the lessons and we are excited about moving at a faster pace! That is one of the many luxuries of homeschooling, we can adjust to fit the needs of our children!
Until next time…