Grade 6, Round 1

We are starting to think about wrapping up our school year.  Although we got pretty far behind many times this year I can feel that we have just about had enough of this school thing.  Some things will just have to wait until next year and some things (like hands on science) are going to become part of our summer plans.

Wrapping up my first go at Grade 6, I am going to spend the next few weeks posting about what we have done.  Since Grade 4, lessons with my eldest can seem incredibly scattered as I try to pull resources and ideas together as we go.  It seems that no matter what amount of planning I have done in advance I am always scrambling.

To start I am going to share our Main Lesson Blocks and resources.  I like to plan my blocks monthly, spending on average four weeks per block.  Obviously there are lessons that spill over and then those that don’t end up taking the full four weeks.  In addition to the resources listed below I have used as reference the Christopherus Rough Guide for Grade 6, A Journey Through Waldorf Homeschooling Grade 6 and Bearth Schooling.  Anyways, here goes…

September: Geometry – String, Straightedge and Shadow by Julia E. Diggins, Making Math Meaningful Middle Grades by Jamie York and Geometry Lessons in the Waldorf School Vol. 2 by Ernst Schuberth

October: Roman History/Language Arts – Ancient Rome by Charles Kovacs

November: Physics – Path of Discovery by Eric Fairman

December: Ancient Rome/Language Arts – Ancient Rome by Charles Kovacs

January: Math, review and revisit and Ancient China – Tales from the Silk Road Barefoot Books

February: Roman History/Language Arts – Ancient Rome by Charles Kovacs

March: Astronomy – Geology and Astronomy by Charles Kovacs

April: Business Math – Mathematics Lessons for the Sixth Grade by Ernst Schuberth

May: Physics – Path of Discovery bye Eric Fairman and Teaching Physics and Chemistry by Roy Wilkinson

June: Arthurian Legend, Medieval England and Geography through Biomes

All good plans… In reality Rome really dragged on due to too much time off to play throughout the year and Business Math and the second Physics block haven’t really happened.  Mr. D is working on a business project with friends which is turning into his Business Math with the help of another homeschooling mama (thank-you!) and physics and geography will continue in August.

I’ve already posted our Astronomy block in more detail and will continue on with the other blocks in the weeks to come.

Astronomy

For the past month Mr. D and I have been studying Astronomy.  Our main resources have been Charles Kovac’s Geology and Astronomy and the Astronomy block from Bearthschooling.  I divided our block into three weeks.  The first week was focused on the sky and the sun.  I told Mr. D some myths about the sky from different civilizations and then he wrote his own myth.  We then discussed the path the sun takes at the Equator and the North Pole.

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Mr. D then made a sundial and spent a day charting the path of the sun in our backyard.

Week 2 was all about the stars and the moon.

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These are some of the books we used.

We did some reading about different constellations and Mr. D drew his favorites in his main lesson book.

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We drew images of the star paths and the cycles of the moon.

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Week three’s focus was the planets in the solar system and ancient astronomers. Mr. D was also given the task of assembling and figuring out how to use our telescope, a gift from one of our cousins a few years ago. Unfortunately with all the rain the last couple of weeks we haven’t really got a chance to use it.

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I told Mr. D some of the stories of astronomers Ptolemy, Copernicus, Brahe, Kepler and Galileo. We then plotted them on a timeline and will add them to his larger timeline that includes all of the ancient civilizations.

We had a lot of fun with this lesson block and I think Mr. D’s interest has been peaked. To round everything off we are reading George’s Secret Key To The Universe by Lucy Hawking and the two follow up books.