This week as part of our MFW Ohio studies we read and rowed the book “Lentil” by Robert McCloskey. It felt so good to be rowing again!!
I got this book from the library and thought “Oh boy…” but what they say is true, you really shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover. This story was adorable!! I loved it, and so did the kids.
The story is about a young boy named Lentil who lives in a small, patriotic town in Ohio. He has a happy life, except for one thing, he can’t sing – or whistle. Because of his love for music, he goes and buys a harmonica and learns to play it. In the end, he ends up “saving the day” with his quick thinking and harmonica skills.
Science: Taste Buds
In the story, Old Mr. Sneep prevents the band from playing their instruments by sucking on a lemon. We learned that our tongue has four main taste buds: bitter, sweet, salty and sour (yes, I left out the MSG :)). I had Treyton brainstorm different types of foods for each category. We then did a blind taste testing to see if Treyton could identify which type of food he was tasting – I had lemon juice, sugar, dark chocolate and salt. Treyton loves these type of activities!
The girls participated as well. Though I didn’t make them blind fold.
Audrey went ahead and covered her eyes, herself.
Science: Sound (Vibrations)
I wanted the kids to see the actual sound vibrations, so I took a bowl and covered it with cling wrap and sprinkled a little sugar on top of our very thin “drum”. Next we took our play drum and the kids took turns beating it, the louder we beat the real drum the more we could see the sugar “vibrating” on our thin sound drum.
Social Studies: Flag & Pledge
We completed a flag book for our lap journal pages this week. Treyton had to learn what each of the colors, the stars and the stripes meant. We read the book Red, White and Blue as well as visited usflag.org to learn more about the colors of the flag – we learned an interesting fact – when our flag was first designed the colors were not chosen for any specific meaning, but rather because they liked the colors, and they were the same colors of the British flag. Audrey had fun participatinf this week by waving and playing with our flag, thankfully no one’s eyes were poked out in the process :) We practiced the pledge of Allegiance every day this week. The kids both know it, but we used to do it a lot more often. So it was nice to review not only the words, but how we are supposed to stand and place our right hand on our hearts.
Language Arts: Story Climax
I thought it would be a great idea (of course after reading it on another blog), to teach Treyton what a story climax is.
I drew a picture of a mountain and explained to him how traditionally stories are written to captivate their audience, authors do this by building up the story into it reaches a “high point” (called the climax), and then slowly letting the reader “back down”.
We talked about how Robert McCloskey did that in this story. I had Treyton guess what he thought the climax was. He said he thought it was when the Colonel came out of the train and the people couldn’t play music for him.
Since this activity, I’ve pointed out in several other books we are reading where the climax is, or I’ve had Treyton think about where he thought it might be.
I’m so glad I read this somewhere, it was a great idea and really added a dimension to our row that I don’t do a great job at implementing.
The reason we rowed this book, was it’s geographical location, which was in Ohio. We are learning about Pioneers traveling west on the Ohio River on flatboats, while this story is based during a different time period, it fit right.
Treyton has known the state of Ohio for a while now, but he often gets it confused with Indiana and Kentucky. I think, after this week, he has a much stronger mastery of this state’s location.
I printed off the Ohio lapbook piece from Homeschool Share and had Treyton color in both Wisconsin and Ohio. He then had to tell me (and write) which direction he would need to go to get to Ohio. I loved this activity. As it made Treyton really think about where the state was in relation to him and he had to remember his directions.
Music: Types of Musical Instruments
I printed off a set of musical cards from Counting Coconuts which I then had the kids sort into three basic groups (wind, percussion and string). I wanted to do brass, but I’ll be honest, I cannot figure out the difference between brass and wind… did I ever mention that music and art are not my strong suit?
Art: Charcoal Drawings
We discussed the art in the books and how the author chose to use charcoal drawings to illustrate his story. We used Mark Kistler’s drawing tutorials to draw a picture of a shark with charcoal pencils. This is the first time we’ve used charcoal pencils before, we (both) did well. :)
Art: Whittling Soap
A few weeks ago, when Treyton read the book “Daniel’s Duck” he asked when he would be able to carve wood. This week in our story Old Sneep was whittling away on some wood.
Alexa wanted to make water, for Treyton’s fish. ;)
Fun: Make Lemonade
The kids tasted the lemon juice before we mixed it in…. good times. At supper, I had the kids recall the three ingredients that we used: sugar, lemon juice and water. Alexa was so excited to have lemonade, she could hardly remember what we put in it…. it took probably three times before she could even figure out what we were asking :)
Fun: She’ll Be Coming Around the Mountain
Treyton could care less about the song, but Alexa LOVED it. She and I sang it nearly all week. She learned the first two verses in the first day and would sing it over and over. I printed off the words in a minibook (from Homeschool Share), not that she can read them, but I wanted to include them in our lapbook.
Fun: Learn How to Whistle
Treyton has practiced trying to whistle before. We worked on it again, sadly, I’m not that great of a whistler myself, and I don’t really know how to teach it…. so it hasn’t really happened for him yet.
Science: Cleaning Pennies
We used lemon juice to shine off some pennies.
Lentil @ Homeschool Share
Rowing Lentil @ Delightful Learning
Rowing Lentil @ The Attached Mama
Lentil @ All of a Kind Family
Rowing Lentil @ Tinderbox
American Flag @ Joyful School