READY TO ROW:
After looking at a world map of deciduous forests, we decided that our characters would live in a European forest. So Parker placed the story disk near the UK.
Parker drew the love letter over a large moon as his front cover for this unit.
Though lopsided, I made heart-shaped pancakes in honor of this sweet story. What they lack in “visual appeal”, they make up for in love…LOL.
As the kids get older, their core subjects leave little time for the “fun stuff”. We have to carve moments from our busy schedule, but it’s well worth the effort. This is one more reason why we take our time rowing each book. Why hurry through the pages of a wonderful book as long as we’re “gleaning the fields” of education.
I created a Bible verse printable for this mini row. This printable is actually two packs combined in one. My resident artist for hire, was busy with high school studies so I had to create it
You can purchase your copy here at our TPT Store.
Parker wrote his Bible verse and we added them in our Bible notebook.
Love Letters From God:
After each lesson, Parker added an icon to represent the Bible story along with a reference for each key verse.
Feeling Loved Changes Our Outlook
We read The Jelly Donut Difference, a fantastic book about kindness in your community.
Afterwards, Parker completed the feeling loved worksheet from our Story Review.
I created a Story Review for this mini unit.
You can purchase your copy here at our TPT Store.
Literature Genre – Mystery:
We’ve read MANY mystery chapter books, but our favorites are from The Boxcar Children series. As the kids are older and working separately, we try to read through at least one Boxcar Children book during the summer.
Parker thoroughly enjoy the recommended Mystery at the Club Sandwich. He loved it so much, he was hoping for a sequel.
Write a Letter:
We reviewed the anatomy of an envelope using the poster-board I made when the kids were in preschool.
This week, we used our creative writing activity to include a mystery letter. This was actually fun to write and guess. Parker did a fantastic job.
Parker helped me update our calendar for February.
Then we read the February poem from A Child’s Calendar.
Afterwards, Parker completed his February calendar worksheet.
First, we read On Beyond a Million together. Honestly, this was not an easy read. Parker enjoys math concepts, so if was well received.
Afterwards, Parker worked on the exponent math worksheets from our Story Review.
We read Life in a Forest and decided that the animals, featured in our story, probably lived in a forest in Europe.
Seasons & Winter Preparation:
Animals in Winter:
We actually started our “Animals in Winter” science unit while rowing Hanna’s First Winter.
We continued reading about woodland creatures and focused on whether they migrate, hibernate or adapt to the winter conditions.
Parker’s Language Arts program assigned a comparison report. I thought it would be nice to tie that into this row.
I checked out a bunch of books from the library and used our Epic app to research squirrels, hedgehogs and rabbits. As I read aloud, Parker took notes for his report.
Though the books provided plenty of useful information, Parker’s personal favorite was The Secret Life of Squirrels.
After plenty of research, we created an outline on his computer. Afterwards, Parker turned his notes into paragraphs to fill in the body of his report.
I opened this page and found beautiful illustrations of vegetables and herbs and even, parsnips! Grandmother’s soup in Almost a Full Moon is something I want to try to create.
Although, tonight we’re just chopping beautiful vegetables, including our parsnip, to roast and eat with our chicken. Mmm….
While I peeled and chopped up our parsnip, Parker and I talked about the various parts of this root vegetable. We taste-tested it and noticed it was sweeter than a carrot and slightly spicy like ginger. Afterwards, Parker color-coded the Parts of a Parsnip worksheet from our Story Review.
I roasted our veggies in the oven with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and seasonings. We noticed the increased sweetness after it was roasted in the oven.
Painting a Dark Sky with the Moon:
I wanted to read a winter moon-themed book for this activity, but the books I found on Epic were odd and not exactly what I wanted. Then I ordered Almost a Full Moon. It was not my favorite story, but the illustrations were beautiful.
The book featured a winter moon and included parsnips (an added bonus). The storyline was about a young boy and his grandma cooking a pot of soup to serve at a community table. This book could have been so much better, but it fell short, in my opinion.
I love incorporating mixed-media art projects. The layers are fun to add. I really wanted Parker to try taped birch trees, even if this was a dark sky painting project. His brother and sister made them years ago, when they were little.
First, we used painters tape to create the birch tree trunks.
Next, Parker added some deciduous trees and our beautiful moon.
Next, he painted large water color strokes in various shades of gray.
We set it aside to dry. I think we’ll add silhouettes another layer of gray sky and tree markings on the birch trees.
The following week, using oil pastels, we added details to the birch trees.
Lastly, we brushed a final darker layer of watercolor to give it the appearance of an evening sky.
It looked so beautiful. This project spanned several days, but it was so much fun to create.
Since we celebrated Valentines Day while rowing this book, we absolutely had to fit in a few loved-themed books. We even found a hedgehog valentines day book at the library.
You can find most of the activities, ideas, and printables from this post on our The Love Letter Pinterest Board.
As with our other rows, we created The Love Letter Playlist with read-alouds, music, science, and other clips.