Sunday, February 7, 2016

Geology/Mineralogy - Week 1

Since one of the biggest Gem Show is happening right now in Tucson, I moved this block ahead a bit, so we could take advantage of this great event to deepen our learning.

Here are the resources I used for this block (I also found most of the drawing ideas on Pinterest):


Monday: We read Chap. 1 and 2 in Kovacs' book and drew a cover for the Main Lesson Book (MLB). I got the box of rocks out and we spent quite a bit of time looking at them and reading about them.

Tuesday: We read Chap. 3 in Kovacs' book and more in our French rock book about granite. We talked about the elements that form granite and found them in our rock box. The girls wrote and draw this in their MLB.

Wednesday: We read Chap. 4-5 in Kovacs' book about volcanoes and volcanic rocks. The girls wrote and draw this in their MLB.

Thursday: We read Chap. 6 to 8 in Kovacs' book. The girls wrote and draw this in their MLB.

Friday: We read Chap. 9 in Kovacs' book. The girls wrote and draw this in their MLB.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

European Geography - Week 3

For our last week of this block, I asked the girls to each pick a European country and do a research on it to be presented on Friday. I showed them how to use Vikidia to do a research, how to weed out the information that was not relevant or too detailed, what to include (with a focus on geography, not history). They LOVED it and created great presentations. They want to do it again for other blocks.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

European Geography - Week 2

Monday and Tuesday:  We compared the mountain regions of the Swiss Alps to the plains of France. We talked a lot about these 2 countries and how their geography shaped the people and the culture.

Wednesday:  We watched a documentary on Stonehenge and talked about this fascinating place in Great Britain.

Thursday:  We drew a map of the United Kingdom, talked about the four regions and their capitals and about Ireland.

Friday:  We drew the flag of the United Kingdom and I explained the girls that it was the combination of 3 flags from 3 of the 4 regions.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

European Geography - Week 1

Once again, I got a lot of the inspiration for this block from this mama's website.

Monday: We looked at a map of Europe I printed and filled it together. Then, we made flashcards for each of the capitals (that we will use every day for the next 3 weeks to memorize them) and draw this cover page.

Tuesday: We filled a map of Europe with the capitals this time, then the girls draw the map of Europe (in French)

Wednesday: The girls draw the map of Europe with the seas, rivers and mountains.

Thursday and Friday: We talked about the North Sea and the Mediterranean Sea and how different they are. How the North Sea is rough, grey and cold, stormy and unpredictable, and how the Mediterranean sea is warmer, blue-green and mild. We talked about the climate, what grows in those areas and the cultural differences.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Grade 6 - Physics - Week 3

Monday: We explored body temperature and talked about the different sources of heat. We did the experiment of the water bowls: Take 3 containers big enough to fit a hand. In one, put hot water, in one ice cold water and the last one, tepid water. Stand with one hand in the hot and cold bowls for about a minute, then move the hot hand to the tepid water... how does it feel? Now, try the cold hand in the tepid water. Then, we drew a parralel to outdoor temperature. In the Spring, 15 degree Celcius feels warm after a long winter... but in the fall, it feels pretty chilly! We also tried some of these experiments (the girls loved the steel wool and battery one!) and draw this in our Main Lesson Book (MLB):

Tuesday: We talked about the effects of heat on solids liquid and gases. We melted an ice cube in a saucepan until it became liquid and then gas (and until it had completely evaporated). We talked about the condensation process (the droplets that had formed on the saucepan). We draw this in our MLB:

Wednesday: We talked about the transmission of heat. We talked about radiation (heat from a light bulb, sun in a window), conduction (pan on the stove and the experiment below) and convection (hot water rising to the top in a cold fish tank). We also talked about microwave heat and how it worked. Then we did this experiment: 

Thursday: We did another heat conduction experiment. Here's the complete procedure.

Friday: We explored the effect of hot and cold air with this experiment.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Good quality youth litterature

As Isabelle and I laid down on the dry lake bed where we camped in Joshua Tree, looking at the meteor shower in our sleeping bags, we talked about our teenage years and how much we used to write... It got me thinking... I used to write lots of poetry, lots of intimate stories... I had even written a book by age 12!

From as early as I can remember, I had access to great books and high quality litterature, since both my parents were both avid readers. My dad offered me poetry books when I was 10 and I took off from there, inspired by a few great teachers in high school and then in College.

I struggle a lot with that since we live on the road. I had kept most of my books before we sold our house (and I mean, I had lots of books... I studied in litterature!) for my girls to have access to, just like I had at my parent's. But now, getting books from librairies is nearly impossible and when we can, the French book collection is very limited... and honestly, the youth litterature is a genre that still hasn't taken off much in French. As far as e-books go, it's pretty much the same: very limited and mostly poor quality.

A week ago, I googled some of my favorite authors from when I was a teen/young adult, and found myself spending hours in front of the computer, hanging onto their beautiful words, just like I did 20 years ago... Words have that power. And I just wish I can offer that to my girls even with our lifestyle...

Please let me know if you have great recommandations for high-quality stories for kids 10-12 in French. Something different than the mean-girl-from school-story or the-cute-guy-in-the-football-team please.. Something nourrishing for their growing souls, but still enticing enough that they want to keep reading...

And if you read French, here are some great lines from some favorite authors of mine when I was younger. My Christmas gift to you. 

I remember reading all the Romain Gary in 4 months! And most of Christian Bobin's poetry too... And so many more. Oh! I was such a romantic! Tell me, who were your favorite authors when you grew up? Who inspired you to write or to simply read more?

Il souffrait de mélancolie. Tu sais ce que c'est la mélancolie ? Tu as déjà vu une éclipse ? Et bien c'est ça, la lune qui se glisse devant le cœur, et le cœur qui ne donne plus sa lumière. La nuit en plein jour. La mélancolie c'est doux et noir. Il en a guéri à moitié, le noir est parti, le doux est resté.

La Folle allure
[ Christian Bobin ]

C’est un amour qui vient de loin. Il vient du fond d’une solitude sans fond, et de plus loin encore, du savoir d’une jouissance sans déclin. Il n’y a pas d’autre amour que cet amour de loin. Il n’y a qu’un seul amour, comme on dit : une seule loi, la même pour tous, la même absence au cœur de toute présence, la même absence dans souffrance comme dans la joie.

La part manquante
[ Christian Bobin ]

Légère, limpide : l'amour n'assombrit pas ce qu'il aime.
Il ne l'assombrit pas parce qu'il ne cherche pas à le prendre.
Il le touche sans le prendre. Il le laisse aller et venir.
Il le regarde s'éloigner, d'un pas si fin qu'on ne l'entend pas mourir : éloge du peu, louange du faible.
L'amour s'en vient, l'amour s'en va.
Toujours à son heure, jamais à la vôtre.

[ Christian Bobin ]

Je n'ai jamais imaginé qu'on pût être a ce point hanté par une voix, par un cou, par des épaules, par des mains, ce que je veux dire c'est qu'elle avait des yeux où il faisait si bon vivre que je n'ai jamais su où aller depuis.

La Promesse de l'aube de Romain Gary

-Est-ce que je suis envahissante?
-Terriblement, lorsque tu n'es pas là.

Clair de femme de Romain Gary

Je commençais à comprendre qu'il faut savoir laisser, même à sa raison de vivre, le droit de vous quitter de temps en temps, et même celui de vous tromper un peu avec la solitude.

Les cerfs-volants de Romain Gary

Mais dans les bras de Laura, il n'y avait pas d'illusion possible. Jamais je n'avais aimé avec un don si total de moi-même. Je ne me souvenais même plus de mes autres amours, peut-être parce que le bonheur est toujours un crime passionnel : il supprime tous les précédents. Chaque fois que nous étions unis ensemble dans le silence des grandes profondeurs qui laisse les mots à leurs travaux de surface et que, très loin, là haut, les milles hameçons du quotidien flottent en vain avec leurs appâts de menus plaisirs, de devoirs et responsabilités, il se produisait une naissance du monde bien connue de tous ceux qui savent encore cette vérité que le plaisir réussit parfois si bien à nous faire oublier : vivre est une prière que seul l'amour d'une femme peut exaucer.

Au-delà de cette limite votre ticket n'est plus valable de Romain Gary

Et le grand classique, si touchant et drôle de Romain Gary: La vie devant soi:

Monsieur Hamil m'avait souvent dit que le temps vient lentement du désert avec ses caravanes de chameaux et qu'il n'était pas pressé car il transportait l'éternité. Mais c'est toujours plus joli quand on le raconte que lorsqu'on le regarde sur le visage d'une vieille personne qui se fait voler chaque jour un peu plus et si vous voulez mon avis, le temps, c'est du côté des voleurs qu'il faut le chercher.

Les psychiatriques sont des gens à qui on explique tout le temps qu'ils n'ont pas ce qu'ils ont et qu'ils ne voient pas ce qu'ils voient, alors ça finit par les rendre dingues.

Et plein d'autres citations délicieuses de ce livre ici.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Grade 6 - Geometry - Week 4

You can read more on Geometry in the Waldorf education program on my first post of this serie.

I made sure we had finished reading and doing the workbooks this week since I wanted the girls to have plenty of time to work on the more complicated drawings.

Day 1: We reviewed the 12 division of the circle (p. 36 # 2 in Making Math Meaningful) and practice the 24 division of the circle (P. 36 # 3) and we did an equiangular spiral (p. 37 top of page). Then, we reviewed the contruction of an hexagon (p. 35 top of page) and did nested hexagons in our MLB.

Day 2: We worked on turning squares today (inspiration at the bottom of p.128 in Making Math Meaningful) and reproduced some in our MLB.

Day 3: We played with rotation of circles (explanations on top of p. 39 in Making Math Meaningful and exemples on p. 129) and reproduced some in our MLB. The first one is a 24 epicycle with larger circumference and the second one is a 24 epicycle with equal circumference.

Day 4: We played with limaçon and cardioid (explanation on p. 39 of Making Math Meaningful and exemples on p. 130) and reproduced some in our MLB.

Day 5: We did 24 epicycles with 2 focal points in our MLB. This is the exact same drawing, simply colored differently.