Class Notes, November 8, 2012

 What a wonderfully interesting, engaging, inclusive, funny, educational and joyful afternoon we spent with Jorge and his hundreds of different percussion instruments and sound-makers. His drumming skills, his technique explanations and his teaching rapport kept us all rapt with attention, and the diverse and full afternoon passed too swiftly. Thank you Jorge.
  On Monday with the simplest little frames cut out of cardboard, with a 3/4 inch by 1 1/2  inch aperture, or 1 inch by 2 inch aperture, we wandered over the foundation of light building and the chidren taped their clear vision windows to parts of light switches, floor knots, fabric patterns, light and shadow patterns, outside views, abstract floor shapes, etc., and drew what they saw in their little windows in their sketchbooks. The focus and enthusiasm and creativity in locating their little frames was remarkable. I could see worlds of seeing opening up before their eyes. Sometimes teaching gives more than you expected.
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Class Notes, October 2012

Perhaps your child has already regailed you with “Pinnately-lobed,
Pinnately-compound”, our song about leaf shapes in our study of
trees. We’ve learned tree shapes, leaf shapes, alternate, opposite ,
whorled, parts of a leaf, and began to explore inside and out on the
grounds, the more prevalent tree families in our area. Next we’ll look
into each family for their familiar and non-familiar members. They’ve
all done beautiful, careful botanical drawings in their Botany books.
We’ve been working with pastels, first in free-form
drawings/paintings and then “au plein air”, outside, using the trees
in our hedgerows as models. In this way we’ve added a heart and warmth
element to our study of trees.
In geometric movement in the big room, we overlapped two pentagons
and pentagrams to make decagons and decagrams which we drew up in our
books with rulers. How difficult that is; and how they’ll welcome
using Pythagorus’ proof for creating a pentagon with a compass. Later
we went back to the big room using overlapping equilateral triangles,
three children in each to create a twelve sided polygon
which the children slowly began to realize was the numbers on the face
of a clock.
It was interesting that we ended our last bloc on Hindu Mythology
with the visit of a Hindu-based group who were doing a four day silent
meditation at the FOL building.. The woman preparing their wonderful
meals shared some Indian food and dessert with any children in our
class who wanted to try it. She also corrected our pronuncition of
Pandu, Draupadi and Durodhana, all characters in the stories we were
reading at the time. They loved her pronunciation. We had full use of
our classroom but were asked to be quiet in the hall; the children
were remarkably considerate.
The class asked to try three-part rounds on the recorder, and did a
wonderful job; now they’re including three-part singing as well as
recorder. They’re becoming very adept at picking  up many of the songs
we sing and use on the recorder, and becoming more relaxed and
comfortable with them as a means of expression and focus.
In Physics we’ve been continuing experiments in Air Pressure and
Air Streams and writing them up, with diagrams, in our Experiment
books.
In Recitation we’ve been expanding our repertoire and adding
seasonal verse, but also memorizing some pieces for performance at a
winter festival perhaps.
In music we’ve worked on set pieces as a group, on whichever
intruments, melodic or percussive, each child enjoyed. “Shady Grove”,
“Wraggle-Taggle Gypsies” and other folk tunes have been a solid and
pleasant place to begin.
We’ve played the game Borderline, which sharpens the students’
sense of which states border which, and which bodies of water border
which states. Sock Pickle, (which they love), Snake in the Grass, Pruie and Devils
and Frogs are just a few of the games we’ve been playing.
On Wednesdays we worked on concrete and abstract nouns, compound
and collective nouns, and experimented with Probability exercises. We
played a kind of hybrid tennis volleyball game in the big room and
their skills sharpened rapidly. We enjoyed our afternoon trips to the
Cornell Plantations and the Lab of Ornithology.

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Class Notes, September 27, 2012

In Hindu Mythology, the story of the king Baghira who gave up all
worldy goods and became a holy hermit in the woods, gave us an
opportunity to study some Zoology. Baghira, in the wilderness, was in
the presence of so many fierce and dangerous animals and yet remained
unscathed. So in our drawing we’re including and studying the Indian
Elephant, the Indian Rhinocerous, the Bengal Tiger, the King Cobra,
the Mongoose, the Boa Constrictor, the Sloth Bear and
others. On the mythical, artistic side of that story, we’ve been
looking at some ancient Hindu tapestries, paintings and sculptures to
find an authentic representation of Brahma for our drawing. We’ve also
heard Indra and the Giants, (which made for a great scene in the play
we did at Stone Circle years ago) and Indra Slays the Dragon.
The Drawings the children are doing in their Main Lesson Books are
careful, beautiful and dynamic; and when I ask them to add a little
more here or there not one of them whines or winges, but calmly gets
back to work.
In Science we began to write up our experiments in a more concise,
summarizing format, and draw diagrams. We wrote these up in our
practice notebooks and then transferred them to our Science Experiment
books. Having done this practice method once, we will hereafter write
up experiments in our Experiment book as we go.
We did experiments involving Lift, Blowing out Candles with air
streams and vacuum, and the Candle Seesaw.
In Creative Writing we played the Parts of Speech sentence game
which the children loved. In another class,  I gave them the thought,
” I’m lost; I can’t find the path…” for a writing exercise. Forty
minutes later all the students were quietly and thoughtfully writing.
( I thought I had died and gone to teacher heaven! ). Then they
volunteered, on their own, to read their stories to the class if they
wished to. They were all so individual. We didn’t worry about spelling
which freed them to right, rite, write. But next week I’ll start a
vocabulary page so we can work on that most arbitrary and
ideosyncratic of language skills.
In Poetry and Recitation we continued to work with “Windy Nights”
and “To see a world” but added Emily Dickinson’s ” I’m Nobody “,
“Smart,” and  ” Pie Problem ” by Shel Silverstein. We also practiced
stepping out iambic pentameter and other meters using parts of Byron
and Longfellow.
In Reading during snack and lunch, we’ve been reading from Zlateh
the Goat, by Isaac Bashevis Singer, “the Mixed-up Feet”, “Chelm
Snow”, and finished “The Ransom of Red Chief ” by O Henry.
In Math we worked on some number square conundrums and clock-face
teasers. Next week we’ll do more pure number study and number
relationships. We tried working with compasses on an optics project,
with mixed results; next week we’ll work artistically first and then
geometrically, to get everybody comfortable and enjoying the skills.
In Drama we played “The Chelm Goat Mystery ” with great enthusiasm
in the big room, rotating parts and performing it a number of times.
In Music the children’s recorder playing is steadily improving and
becoming ensemble-ready which is remarkable for the short time we’ve
had together. We’ve started playing “Morning Has Come” in round form
already, but only because they feel comfortable trying it. In Musical
jamming we’ve had fun improvising or playing along with student’s
rhythms, melodies and songs on various percussion instruments, violins, viola, banjo and recorders.
Some of the games we’ve added to our repertoire these last weeks
are: Punchinello, Pruie, Stations, and Mushpot. If you’re curious, ask
your children to explain.
We’ll see you all on the Finnstitute Trail…

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Class Notes, September 14, 2012

 Carl Sandburg said  , ” It pays to have a good forgettery. ” But in this case I’ll try to have a good remembery:
   Our study of Hindu Mythology began with the story of Atlantis and its inhabitants abusing the special powers some had. The good man Manu and some followers survived the deluge that sank Atlantis under the Atlantic  with the help of a little fish Manu saved, a fish which grew enormous. The fish towed them in their wooden boat ( the children mentioned Noah ) all the way to India. We studied the three seasons there, the Hot, the Rainy and the Cool seasons and how growing crops ( now with ordinary powers ) had to be planned around them. We learned about Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, the Hindu gods and their roles in the cosmos. The powerful King Sangara had many, many sons. He sought to sacrifice his beautiful white stallion, which displeased the gods. His sons defiled the pained earth with shovels in search of the hidden stallion, so Vishnu came down as a human to dissuade them. They attacked him with their shovels, not knowing he was a god. He instantly turned them all to ashes, and their souls were forbidden from rising to heaven. It falls on the grandson of the remorseful Sangara to try to redeem those hundreds of  trapped souls, with the Eagle’s help and Baghira at the Ganges, which we will learn about next week. The students have begun or finished beautiful drawings in their Main Lesson books of Manu and the great fish on the stormy sea. They’ve written a short summary or excerpt from the story on their pages.
   We began our days with recitations:” Windy Nights ” by Robert Louis Stevenson, ” Smart ” by Shel Silverstein,” Too Many Daves “, by Dr. Suess, and ” Auguries of Innocence ” ( To See a World ) by William Blake, with Eurythmic movements. In the big room we played the 16 direction game, or Compass Rose,i.e. N,S, E, W, NW, NE, SW, SE, NNE, NNW, SSE,SSW, ENE, ESE, WNW, WSW. We also played Three Man Deep, Anni Vanni, and walked number concentration exercises.
   On Recorder we worked on fingering, breathing, and started practicing ” Morning Has Come “, a round we play to begin the day. We’ll also work on the round ” Where Is John? ” and a Chilean pan-pipe song.
   In Science we did two startling experiments elucidating air pressure, which I encourage you to try with your children. When I wrote on the board, in very simple scientific method, Purpose, Materials, Procedure, Observations, Diagrams, Conclusions, I realized this was too much writing for some, and appropriate for others. So I will modify the method of recording these experiments ( I gave them all Science Experiments books ) according to individual capabilities; though, as I did successfully with their Mythology drawings, I will always ask for them to do a little more work than they’re satisfied with.
   We played Geography Charades using a big cloth map of the U.S. states and capitols. The students were very enthusiastic and participatory, each at a pace in keeping with their gregariousness or quietness; we’ll definitely do it again, perhaps with a big Animal Atlas we have. We  also did some Math Teasers.
   Our outside play included lunch outside and the playing of Kick the Can, Mr. Bear, Gardener and Bad Petrushka. During snack we read  “The Night the Ghost Got In ” and ” The Night the Bed Fell ” both by the brilliant American humorist James Thurber; the children loved them.
   On Wednesday, a liitle different program with fewer children, the students played Bioviva, a wonderfully interesting environmental board game. They were so into the game and all the nature facts that they didn’t stop until 15 minutes past snack, and only because I requested they do so. In Creative Writing, we worked on a group writing game involving many of the Parts of Speech, which we’ll continue with rest of the class. They fixed up the Fire Circle out in the woods to better accommodate the entire class. In a drama workshop the students acted out a whimsical, strange Thurber fable, which they asked to do twice. Future Wednesdays will see us at the Sciencenter, the Lab of Ornithology, the Johnson Art Museum and the Plantations.
  Let me say  what a privilege and joy it is to explore these many subjects with your children. The class is cohesive, polite, enthusiastic and caring. I trust that some or all of these qualities will carry on in the weeks to follow.
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January/February 2012

Academically we’ve worked on the profoundly rich center of world cultural transformation, the Renaissance, which had such a dramatic and continuing effect on the arts, architecture, science, literature, philosophy, religion and economics. We studied perspective and copied Raphael’s famous masterpiece “ School of Athens “, using rulers and compasses.
We studied the works of the other Italians Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Titian, Caravaggio, Boticelli, Masaccio, Brunellesci, Donatello, and the Flemish masters Van Dyke, Van Eyck, Frans Hals, Holbein, Albrecht Durer and the inimitable Breughel.
The works of the Humanists shaped Renaissance thought; Petrarch, Erasmus, Thomas More and even Machiavelli’s The Prince influenced thinkers of the period. Shakespeare profoundly explored human personality.
In science we marveled at the incredible innovations that changed the world views and form the foundation of our scientific understanding to this day. Koepler, Copernicus’ Heliocentric Theory, Galileo’s Dialogue on the Two Great Systems of the World in Astronomy, Vesalius on Anatomy, Harvey on the Circulatory System, Descartes and Bacon advanced Scientific Reasonong and Scientific Method, Newton”s Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy contained his laws of Motion and Universal Gravitation.
Leeuwenhoek used the new tool the microscope to discover bacteria, Hooke used the microscope to develop Cell Theory, Boyle founded modern Chemistry, Priestly discovered oxygen, and Lavoisier developed the law of the Conservation of Matter; truly a Scientific Revolution.
Tetzel’s Indulgences, pardons for sins that could be bought from the Church ( to pay for the building of St. Peter’s Basilica, and Pope Leo’s lavish parties) infuriated Luther . He felt compelled to write his 96 Theses and so begin the powerful tide of change known as the Protestant Reformation that swept across Europe. The Calvinists and Predestination, the Counter- Reformation by the popes, the Council of Trent, and all this religious upheaval inspired the development of education and the founding of many universities.
The Printing Press began to bring new ideas to more and more people.
The standardization of money, joint stock companies, mercantilism, wealthy banking families and the balance of trade, coupled with advances in mapmaking, the compass and the astrolabe, and political rivalries, all led to the age of Exploration,; that will be our next educational exploration.
We’ve been diligently working our way through a list of 500 commonly misspelled words; the children seem to derive satisfaction from working on their spelling.
We’ve been doing in situ Perspective drawing of the architecture at Cornell, and complicated geometric drawing in class. We’ve visited the Lab of Ornithology, Newman and Trumansburg Golf Courses, and we are working with the Sciencenter to hook up the two windmills we built there.
In honor of Dicken’s 200th birthday we’ve been very enthusiastically reading “ Great Expectations”.
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Class Notes, December 2011

Eurythmic movement contracting and simultaneously expanding the two alternate squares and crosses of the octagon, the two alternate pentagons and pentagrams of the decagon, moving in big space, with each other; after the initial teenage distaste, they move beautifully, accurately, gracefully, these geometric and organic patterns across the floor. Then to bring this physical knowledge, this spatial knowledge to the page, to draw these shapes and movements, was something quite different from an intellectual or abstract lesson. ( But they did not want to perform this for their parents! )

   The haunting, musical early poems of William Butler Yeats, and the lilting, pithy, canny wisdom of Robert Burns, the melancholic, morose, adolescent, echoing psalms of Poe, the whimsy and absurdity of Ogden Nash and Dr. Seuss, and limericks and Shel Silverstein, all recited beautifully in class, standing, in some cases from memory. I asked them to perform for you.Absolutely not! So instead we had our little back-water carnival based loosely on our continuing tracking of the European Debt Crisis. Relaxed, pleasant ( thanks for all the food! ) but without the challenge of real Presentation. Alas.
   We  took on the Diamond Interchanges of the French engineers, a complicated, intertwining braiding pattern, designed to avoid serious left turn accidents ( T-bones ) at busy highway interchanges. They were carefully drawn by the students and finally understood; a very contemporary new traffic pattern just beginning to be employed in the U.S. Thus geometry, form drawing, weaving, engineering, physics, social policy and public safety all woven into one lesson.
   ” It was as if you threw the apple up and instead of falling back down it just kept going up! ” So marveled the recent Nobel Laureate at his astonishment at discovering that all the precepts and constructs of Physics and Astrophysics were undone by his findings; corroborated simultaneously by parallel researchers: that the Universe, for all its’ gravity and contraction, was actually expanding – what energy was it, what unknown forces, contradicted the weighing down of matter – dark energy? What glorious discussions we had in class on that cosmic surprise!
   Then again we hear that the God Particle is near discovery in the atom smashers of Europe. What will that mean? Again a lively conversation breaks out about creation, existence, genetics and religion at the Finnstitute.
   My friend Bones at Cayuga Lumber lets the students pick through some piles of cut-offs in the saw room. They look for imagery in the wood grain that they can bring out with paint. We go to my art show at Temple Beth El and I show them some oils on wood I’ve done using the grain as the main inspiration. Back at school in the Foundation kitchen they let the wood work its’ magic with color and brush. A sense of discovery and delight fills their faces.
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Class Notes, November 2011

  Blowing through the spools the kids were definitely surprised to see the card clinging to the bottom of the spool instead of flying away! Bernoulli’s Principle at work was really the basis for all aeronautic success. Be sure and ask them what the principle states and how the wing of a plane acts out the laws discovered by the Swiss scientist. We went to the beautiful cemetery near Cornell to write the stories of some of its denizens as imagined by the students sitting under the large, quiet trees. We visited my retrospective art exhibit at Temple Beth El to look at some of the oil on wood paintings I’d done, as a starting point for their own creative efforts. We went to Cayuga Lumber and picked through cutoffs thanks to Bones and with Bill’s help, so that we can start their own works of art. I got some really nice, expensive basswood bolts, from a supplier, for woodcarving and we’ve started projects. I’ve got a good assortment of wood-carving and woodworking tools, but always welcome more.
   How remarkable that the social turmoil in Greece should have such a  dramatic effect on world stock markets, reaching ten year highs when the European Union says they’ll bail out the little country, and plummeting when the Prime Minister says the country must have a referendum. The big rich European countries want the Greeks to tighten their belts in exchange for a bailout, and half the country’s workers are on strike because they feel they don’t have enough. It’s classic Economics and instant curriculum. I found a wonderful World Travel game that explores all the world’s countries, their capitals, demographics, flags, economies, etc. and the air travel routes connecting them. We’ll be playing it, as an expansion from our playing of Borderline which tests their knowledge of U.S. states and their borders.
   In recent language arts we’ve been doing recitation of Poe’s “Annabel Lee”, Burns’ “To a Mouse”, and “To a Louse” to bring pithy humor and humanity to current themes. The students wrote beautiful, thoughtful descriptive paragraphs, and in vocabulary quizzing were very adept at identifying the correct meanings. As the weather gets cold and the children turn inward, we will turn to writing, creative and expository, more and more, to enable them to express themselves, sharpen their language skills, and find an inner reservoir to draw on, find peace in, now and in years to come.
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Class Notes, October 2011

 The site at the Finnstitute has evolved from the clamorous kitchen with it’s easy access to the big gathering room and the outside play spaces, which required daily set up and break down; to the quiet, warm, carpeted Meditation room which engenders more thoughtful contemplation and conscientious learning, and requires set up on Mon. break down on Wed. It also calls for indoor shoes and some indoor decorum and self-control because of the proximity to the Little Leaf 3,4,5 class next door. We still thankfully get to have snack and lunch and woodwork and messy experiments in the kitchen. The play space, soccer field, basketball court, and patio have been a great source of energetic social interaction, and these occasionally raucous teens and pre-teens always come back inside almost civilized. Some students have begun to help, during Finnsitute time,  with the nature lodge I’m building on Fridays with the students K-5 of Little Leaf. That makes a healthy connection between the two educational groups. We’ve also drawn up a plan to install a new deck and railings to support the slide at the correct height on the playground I built years ago with my Stone Circle students. We’ve done drawings, checked prices and drawn up an estimate which we’re submitting to the Foundation of Light, as if we were the contractors, which we are. That also builds a bridge between school and ‘tute’.
   We’ve been focusing on experiments that are hands-on and striking, and writing many of them down in simple scientific method. Let me say, at this point, it would be really healthy and helpful for each student to have a notebook for writing down all our work in science, math, creative writing, economics, social history, architecture and shelter, etc. and so keep a continuing record for themselves and for you as parents,of what we’ve been working on. This will make your job of understanding and reporting on academic and creative activities so much easier. Also a drawing pad for architectural drawings, sketching, pastels, etc is an essential tool if the child is to be prepared and successful at the Finnstitute.
   Some of the experiments we done so far have dealt with: Ghost penny and retina retention, Lift that cube using salt and ice, Pulse detector made of match and tack, Floating frankfurter, a curious optical illusion, Circles out of lines geometry changed by spinning, Hot and cold and room temperature explores judging subjectively ( personal reaction ) and objectively ( scientific measurement ), Probability in possible combinations of boys and girls in families with surprising proportions and combinations ( numerical! ), Paper fold proof of geometric laws with simple folding technique, Lightning fast addition using number secrets to astound, Magic multiplication to give your friend his favorite digit, in the millions, Subjective color, creating Fechner discs in black and white, which when spun, create color. ( We liked this experiment so much we convinced Larry at the Sciencenter to let us try and make a big disc and hook it up to one of the windmills we built at  the Sciencenter last spring. More on this in another report.), Gravity seesaw, made of melting candles, Finger in the bowl, seeming to defy reason, Irregular balance finding the center of gravity, the Unbreakable toothpick explaining first second and third class levers, Floating ball the mystery of air pressure made simple, Magic money startling power of refraction, Overcoming friction how thr pyramids were possible. Many more will follow.
    After a visit to see how our windmills were spinning we realized we wanted to keep the lightweight, volatile one un-slowed down by its load or possible work. This led to our class study of Ohm’s Law, where we begin to understand the relationships between current(amps), potential difference(volts) and resistance(ohms).
   Next week I’ll write about some of our work in Language arts, grammar, creative writing, fine arts, architecture, world economics and woodwork.
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Class Notes, June 14, 2011

Do you know the 36 countries of North America and the chief rivers and lakes? And the capitals? Or how about our neighbors to the south in South America, all 14 countries and capitals and waterways? Neither did we, but we’ve spent some time learning them; and unscrambling some animal scrambles on birds, reptiles and mammals of North and South America. We learned about compass roses and designed our own, and the Northern and Southern, Eastern and Western Hemispheres. We saw how latitude divides the globe north and south in Degrees and Minutes, and how longitude divides the globe east and west, also in degrees and minutes. We had a lively discussion about the equator at zero degrees latitude, and the Prime Meridian at zero degrees longitude. The fact that the day changed either side of the Dateline caused quite a stir.

We’ve been studying Matter, and quizzing about what we’ve learned and discussing animatedly the basic principles, or more correctly, the properties of matter; the specific properties which show the differences in objects, and the general properties which show the commonalities in all objects. We took our time learning about the four general properties of Matter: Mass, Weight, Volume, and Density; how Density never changes unless matter is added to or taken away from an object; how weight changes dependent upon location and relation to other objects and the gravity that exists between objects; how volume is the space an object occupies, and how Density is the Mass per unit of volume. We looked at the Density of various common materials. We talked about the density of water, how ice was less dense, and why icebergs floated mostly below the surface. We discussed the unsinkable Titanic and how, once the air in the giant ship was replaced with water, the density of the vessel became greater than 1 g and- down it went.

We had a wonderful trip to Myers Point park, and practiced the cooperative vicissitudes of paddling canoes, why they float, why the canoe turns left when you paddle on the right. The children swam, ate, played on the playground; we discussed the remarkable case of the twin Friars from St. Bonaventure University, who were born the same day and died the same day 92 years later, both of heart attacks – we discussed Nature vs. Nurture.

We studied the woodcuts of some Expressionist masters and cut pieces of pine and started our own woodcuts, and the children worked with great enthusiasm and warmth (and safely!). I went to the Johnson Art Museum after class today, and found some woodcuts from the 1600’s, so we’ll take a short excursion there tomorrow, to see the work of the Masters.

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Class Notes June 5, 2011

Thanks to the parents who helped on our trip to Cornell plantations. We further studied the botany of the new wildflowers, and studied tree shapes and leaf patterns, which took our classroom study into the splendor of nature. Thanks also for the help transporting kids to our property the last two Wednesday afternoons. The children have worked hard on their forts, built a sturdy picnic table and worked on the site, sawing, raking and constructing to help make our sleep-over successful. We stopped at Danby Pond on our way to the property, and we talked about the unique and remarkable feature of that small body of water. I’ve never found the exact location but there is a water divide in that pond, and the water in the south end of the pond heads south through marshes and streams into Catatonk Creek, south into the Susquehanna River, then further south emptying into the Chesapeake Bay, and finally the Ocean. The water at the north end of the pond goes north into Buttermilk Creek, pouring over Buttermilk Falls ( of which it is the source ), north on the inlet,then north on Cayuga Lake and on through the locks into Lake Ontario, the northeast up into the St. Lawrence Seaway and out into the Ocean – The same ocean but almost a thousand miles apart!! all from the same pond in Danby.

With the current historic and tragic tornadoes hitting Missouri and neighboring states, the description given was the Midwest. I looked into some atlases and geography textbooks and found a more descriptive and useful grouping of states. New England, Mid Atlantic, North East Central, North West Central, Southern Atlantic, South East Central, South West Central, Mountain, and Pacific Regions, all bounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the Great Lakes, the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, the Gulf of Mexico, the Appalachian Mountains, the Rocky Mountains, The Sierra Nevada and Coastal, Ranges, and the Pacific Ocean. We studied these regions and the three to eight states in each. We all agreed how geographically-sensible these divisions were and worked on memorizing them for a quiz ( as well as the state capitals ).
All of the children contributed five spelling words to a list of 70 words, which we studied and quizzed twice. We also been wrestling with a wonderful collection of Geometric Puzzlers which necessitated reviewing Area calculations,Pi,the Pythagorean Theorem, and other formulas.

We’ve been enjoying Devils and Frogs, a Japanese game; we’ve also been playing some New Games, developed by Stewart Brand and the Whole Earth folks in the sixties, like Hunker Hawser, Smaug’s Jewels, Go Tag, etc. Most of the students are finishing or have finished their woodwork projects, after extensive sanding and three or four coats of food-safe butcher’s wax finish.

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