The Macedonian Pike – my son and I are now studying Alexander the Great, who spent his short life (for thousands upon thousands of people, a life not short enough) as a most capable warmonger. Home base was Macedonia (perched right atop Greece) (found it on the globe), where his Macedonian soldiers were totally whipped into shape and marched with 15-foot tall pikes. YIKES (there is a sharp metal knife at the end of each pole). LOADS of warmonger vocabulary words: phalanx, chariot, catapult, mercenary, infantry, cavalry.
Shakespeare this past week – we finished up the comedy, “Much Ado about Nothing” and we have just started the history, “Julius Caesar”.
Reading for fun – to balance the war and intrigue study, we need novels that make us laugh. We LOVED “A Long Way from Chicago” by Richard Peck. LOVED IT. Every single chapter had an hilarious twist that had us marveling. This book WILL be re-read. We are following “A Long Way from Chicago” with its sequel, “A Year Down Yonder”. So far, it is a lot of fun (and it is a Newbery Award Winner), but for us, probably isn’t in line for a re-read. But maybe it will be! Hope springs eternal.
We write – My daughter directed us toward “The Pencil Grip Writing Claw”, and I found a pack of six on Amazon – can’t remember the price, but very cheap. My son has been practicing writing with this for the past week, and is getting comfortable using this little rubbery appliance on his fingertips. It truly makes one grasp a writing utensil correctly.
Our Farmer Brown Story Problem of the week – Farmer Brown has 15 field hands who needed new summer hats to keep the blazing sun off their faces. He purchased a dozen straw cowboy hats for $360 and a dozen canvas “outback” style hats for $300. Ten of the field hands wanted cowboy hats and the others chose outback hats. Farmer Brown donated the remaining hats to a local farming extension office because they are always so short on funds. How much was his donation worth?
One of the music themes from last week: “Melodies from Exotic Lands” –
- “Scheherazade” by Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov, movement I, composed in 1888. Based upon “The Arabian Nights”, SO elegant.
- Overture from “Abduction from the Seraglio” by Mozart, composed in 1782. Two words: Turkish harem! What’s not to like, and in this short overture we CANNOT get enough of the smashing symbols.
- “Arrival of the Queen of Sheba” by Handel, composed in 1748, as part of his oratorio, “Solomon”. We sort of chuckle every time we hear it, because the music seems more evocative of an arrival at Kensington Palace in the 18th century than the Queen of Sheba’s arrival in Jerusalem during Old Testament times.
Welcome to the best part of my day!
– Jane BH