Last Week of Sonlight Core F Eastern Hemisphere Explorer

My Life This Week

Finishing up Sonlight Core F – Eastern Hemisphere, planning for Core G – World History Year 1:  Ancients to Medieval.   Getting ready for Eagle Court of Honor Ceremony!  We are keeping an eye on our fennel plant – we have two more crysalides! Doing lots of laundry as we get Number 1 Son ready to go to George Mason.

In Our Homeschool This Week:

We school year round – albeit unintentionally.   The first summer after we decided to homeschool, we worked on Math (repeating third grade math) and began the wonderful Zoology series by Jeannie Fulbright Exploring Creation with Zoology – Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day.  Homeschooling was new to all of us,  and focusing on these two subjects enabled us to ease into it.  Last summer we continued because it was so effective the year before with math, and it gave us a chance to work on composition skills with our IEW curriculum.   We read The Hobbit aloud, and did a lot of reading about weather too.

This summer we were seriously behind.  It was my fault.  We spent an extra week in Antarctica because I fell in love with the drama of Sir Ernest Shackleton and the Endurance.  We  spent two extra weeks in Japan because I love Hokusai and Hiroshige, so we added in books about printmaking and painted a fish, and studied tea across Asia (which wasn’t in the curriculum)!  We loved learning about Korea so much that we wanted to read a few extra books.  We stayed on track through South and Central Asia.  Even extra reading on the Silk Road didn’t slow us down too much.  India was six weeks and that was about right.  But then after taking unplanned weeks off in May – for testing, a wonderful Latin Practicum courtesy of our local Classical  Conversations group, and for the HEAV (Home Educators Association of Virginia) Convention, we started June and still had the Middle East and Africa to study.  YIKES!

So, we have pushed along.  With co-op and a few other things on hiatus for the summer, we compressed the schedule, doubled up on some reading and managed to get finished without really feeling rushed.   This week GraceNotes finished the Sonlight Core F “Eastern Hemisphere Explorer Notebook”  and was SO EXCITED! Me too!  It is a tremendous accomplishment!  Eastern Hemisphere Explorer consists of timelines to be completed, maps to label and fill in, and questions to answer about the religions, economy, natural resources, culture and famous people of each and every Eastern Hemisphere country or region we’ve studied.  I’ve added notebooking pages and special writing assignments as various topics have come up.  She has prepared a Missionary Biography page for each missionary we’ve studied this year, and her year-long project was a dictionary compiled of words and phrases from the various countries (largely Asian) that we’ve studied!

This week we finished reading about David Livingstone (missionary/adventurer/doctor), and the  Western tribes of Africa.  Even though we were anxious to finish, I found a few gaping holes in the Africa curriculum, so I added in a few picture books about Nelson Mandela, Wangari Maathai, and the concept of micro loans.  AND CALLED IT GOOD!

I Find Myself Inspired By: 

Chick Fil-A, the new Virginia Conference UMC bishop, Reverend Young Jin Cho, and Rev. E.M. Bounds.

A Thought I Keep Having:

I’m borrowing from the Francis Schaeffer Studies Organization:  Disagreeing with someone is not the same as hating them.  It has been an interesting year watching certain special interest groups express more actual hate than those whom they have labelled as “haters,”  but are more accurately labelled “disagree-ers.”  And we’ve seen that it can be dangerous, or costly, to disagree, but sometimes we must speak up anyway.

I’m Reading:

I’m pre-reading GraceNotes’s readers for our first term of Ancient History, so this week I’m reading Theras’ and His Town by Caroline Dale Snedeker,  and The Trojan War by Olivia Coolidge.  Last week I read the Golden Goblet, by Eloise Jarvis McGraw,  and the week before that I read Hittite Warrior by Joanne Williamson.  All good!  She will love them!  For my devotions I’m reading an out of print copy of E. M. Bound’s books on Prayer (it’s a compilation) one chapter a day, and working my way day by day through Prayers for Today: A Yearlong Journey of Contemplative Prayer, by Kurt Bjorklund.  I’m also continuing my Summer (soon to be Autumn) Apologetics course with Victory of Reason by Rodney Stark.

I’m Cooking:

As little as possible, but made lasagna for a dear friend who is having surgery on her ankles.  We also tried a crockpot version of Beef Stroganoff.  We used meatballs instead of roast (and we added caraway seeds).  It turned out great and did not make my kitchen hot!

I’m Praying For: 

The dear friend having surgery on her ankles, Youcef Nadarkhani, the Assam region of India which is reeling from violence after experiencing devastating flooding, South Sudan,  The Virginia Conference UMC Bishop Reverend Young Jin Cho, and the United States of America’s political process.

A Quote , Video, Photo  or Link to Share: 

Janie B. Cheaney in a World Magazine Article:

“But heaven is not a white hanky of consolation in times of grief, nor a windy platitude. It’s closer than we realize, joined to earth at the hip. “How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts!” sing the Sons of Korah (Psalm 84). An image of heaven springs to our minds, but the place of the song is on earth—the Temple in Jerusalem… N.T. Wright contrasts the pantheist view of God-as-everything and the deist view of God-as-elsewhere: “Judaism and Christianity have a view of God in the world that is much more interesting and complex—where God and the world, heaven and earth actually overlap and interlock.”   

Read the whole article here.   

This post is part of the weekly wrap up series!  Thanks for reading!

2 thoughts on “Last Week of Sonlight Core F Eastern Hemisphere Explorer

  1. Hi, we are going to trek through core f next year with sonlight. I am curious about the tweaks you made and was wondering if you would mind sharing. More specifically i am interested to know About the weeks you added notebooking pages and special writing assignments, and if you used the sonlight vocab/dictionary words or if you added these yourself as you saw a need. Thanks!

    1. Hi – Thanks for reading!

      I should start by saying that as we were working through Core F, I had begun a shift to Charlotte Mason techniques and philosophy. It was also the last year that Sonlight sold the “Eastern Hemisphere Explorer” (EHE) pages (in essence a huge notebooking package with wonderful mapping activities, timelines to complete, political and natural resource studies etc) with the core, so I’m not sure how the core is organized now.

      In our homeschool, we use dictation for spelling. We simply discuss vocabulary words as they come up in the reading. We keep a commonplace book and use written narration for language arts and grammar. We also study Latin which we have found to be an excellent way to learn grammar, as well as build English vocabulary!

      For Core F specific writing assignments, I required a Missionary Biography for each Missionary covered (as you’ll see there are several!) in which I needed to know why they became a missionary, in addition to a chronologically organized basic life history. She wrote a page (at least) about each explorer covered – much more on the fascinating Shackleton. (Shackleton was an add-in for Antarctica – I highly recommend.) She wrote a compare and contrast of Ibn Battuta (Muslim early-medieval known-world traveler) and Benjamin of Tudela (Jewish early-medieval known-world traveler) with Marco Polo which was my add-in for Middle East section. As she went through the book list, she kept a list of native words and the English translation. This was an EHE suggestion for one of the early books, but we kept it going and by the end of the core, it had become an Eastern Hemisphere “Dictionary” and she was very proud of it! We also added in poetry for each region covered. I had purchased anthologies of native poetry for children (which I have since sold) and she would select her favorite, copy the text and illustrate, then tuck in with the EHE pages on that region. She had writing assignments in her Apologia science, as well as the Apologia worldview study that she did that year. Over the previous summer we had worked through IEW’s intro course to get some basic structure and organization help. During the Core we were working through a Latin and Greek roots course. I do not use Sonlight LA.

      I hope this is helpful. I realize you are wishing I provided week #’s but since we would linger here and there, for sanity’s sake, I began to look at the schedule as “the next thing to do.” I did have a planning process that I used for each “region” where I looked for a field trip, art, pulled together the poetry, reviewed the books, looked at the book lists from the Sonlight Forum for add-ins, and reviewed the notebooking pages. The extra writing requirements usually followed discussion and were based on what had been interesting. It is SO much easier to write about what you are interested in – even more so for kids.

      We loved Core F! I pray that you will be blessed by your trek through Core F!

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