Time for Pioneers on the Plains! We loved our book basket readings and the selection of stories from American Pioneers and Patriots. After we finished all our reading, we gathered round the table and talked about the remarkable timeline of pioneer life we have taken in this year. We made a list of all the greatest virtues and attributes these pioneers possessed and we made a lovely poster to hang in our class.
The boys have been melancholy this week, knowing that Adventures is drawing to a close. They are quiet and working slowly through their last assignments. They asked to revisit some of our favorite Pioneer projects from earlier in the year and I agreed that they could each pick a few activities.
We made homemade bread and butter. We packed a “pioneer picnic” and ate it outside under the trees. We played “Pioneers” in the backyard for at least an hour each day. With no girls around its tough to play Little House on the Prairie, but they have managed to create their own story line about the Ingalls prairie cousins the “Ingsons” <–see what they did there? “Luke”, “Mark” and “Carson” played on the prairie this week and had a ball. Necessity is the mother of invention.
“In Grandma’s Attic” is a perfect way to end the year. We gathered some of our buttons in a jar and the boys have been playing with them as we read aloud. They make button animals or use the buttons to decorate play doh trees. They sort them by size and shape or by color. They ask questions about their own grandmothers and great grandmothers and I have spent many hours this week reading and retelling our own family stories. I found a fun looking basket at a thrift store a few months ago and I have decided to make it our button basket. I’ll be asking our relatives to send any fun buttons they don’t mind parting with for our basket. Its been such fun to play with and enjoy something small and simple while we tell and enjoy stories.
Birds are suddenly back in full force! I loved comparing their bird drawings this week to the ones they produced earlier in the year. The Blue Jay and House Sparrow drawings were especially sweet this week.
I always have the boys copy out a bit of the information from our Birds, Nests and Eggs book to accompany their drawing. We use spiral bound nature journals from Classical Conversations and they have held up nicely throughout the year. I love the little nature quote interspersed throughout.
The boys have grown in remarkable ways this year. Their individual tastes are becoming more refined and specific. Their passions are starting to take shape. I am already starting to plan how I will help cultivate these interests in the coming year.