Let’s Play Catch Up!

Oh my, am I behind in my TOG blogging or what!?  I wish I could use the excuse that we were just too busy creating amazing projects, exploring wonderful books, and just living out the history.  But the truth is…….we got a little bogged down in the middle section of Year 1 with the history of Israel and all the judges and kings and prophets.  Can I be honest and admit that I was getting tired of the Israelites?

The last week I blogged was Week 11 and we are now in Week 25So, let’s catch up, shall we?

Week 13-Early Greeks.  This week we began some Greek mythology with The Gods and Goddesses of Olympus which quickly became a favorite.  We read the story of Jason and the Golden Fleece and listened to Theseus and the Minotaur from Jim Weiss.  We also read about the Trojan War which was Tiger’s favorite part.
I had planned to do a fresco painting on wet plaster but the mess seemed too overwhelming so we painted water color frescoes on regular paper instead.  I even planned to make Greek costumes but then it sounded too complicated so we scrapped that idea and traipsed around in Daddy’s old white undershirts belted around the waist.
We acted out the story of Theseus and the Minotaur and made a maze out of pillows in our living room.  The kids had fun making it through the maze and even Ladybug participated.  

Week 14-Life in Early Greece
This week was a continuation of Week 13.  We finished reading the books that were assigned in the previous week and then discussed the lifestyle of the early Greeks.  We listened to the Jim Weiss mythology CD’s and then painted paper plates like Greek pottery.

Week 15-The Promised Land
And right here we lost all our momentum.  I was just getting into the Greek thing and then we were put right back into the Holy Land.  At this point, I was tired of the Israelites.  The information is wonderful, thorough, and indepth but I was tired of the overlap between TOG and our Bible curriculum.  I was just “Old Testamented” out!
But we pressed on and read the story of Joshua in three different Children’s Bibles.  We made an “armored” vest by covering a paper sack in aluminum foil, marching around the house the kids yelled and waited for the walls to come tumbling down.  Thankfully, Tiger is an expert at knocking down blocks so our walls fell rather quickly and dramatically.

Week 16-The Judges and Samuel
This week we were once again in the Children’s Bibles for the stories about Samuel.  And no, I did not do any projects this week.

Week 17-Saul
We are still in Israel and still reading out of the Children’s Bible.  At this point we were really missing the wonderful read alouds.  Next time around I am going to find some picture books or other supplements to correspond to the “Israelite” weeks.  We were just needing more books!
I had planned to make a model of a lyre but I wasn’t feeling overly inspired.  So, Curly drew a picture of Saul and we wrote a short paragraph about him.

Week 18-David
We read the story of David and enjoyed reading Psalms for Young Children each day.
For this week, we built and indoor cave using bean bags, pillows, and blankets and the kids enjoyed hiding out during our reading times.

Week 19-Solomon
We read stories about Solomon and some Proverbs.  The kids enjoyed To Everything There is a Season as we discussed the wisdom of Solomon.
For our project, the kids acted out the story of Solomon and Queen Sheba.

Week 20-Divided Kingdom
We read the stories of Elijah and wished for beautiful picture books.
The project I had planned was to bake bread but when I thought about how often I have to bake bread, I decided to skip the baking for the week.  Gluten free and vegan bread is not necessarily fun to make and since I have to make all of our bread anyway, I decided to pull a loaf out of the freezer.  Cheating, I know!

Week 21-Assyrians
There is not much info on Assyria for the younger crowd.  Those Assyrians were pretty rough so we skimmed over the information and talked about Jonah.  I am determined to find a good picture book about that man for next time!
Our project was to carve a relief out of clay.  I have a huge block of self hardening clay so I cut off a piece for each kiddo and rolled it flat with a rolling pin.  Then they used toothpicks to carve shapes and designs.  Once they hardened, we painted them.

Week 22-Babylon
Time to read about Daniel in our story Bible.  Then we went stargazing with our new telescope as we talked about the advanced Babylonian civilization.

Week 23-Medes and Persians
We read about Esther in the story Bible and in Esther’s Story.  (A note about Esther’s story:  Some references are made to Abraham and Sarah and that Sarah had special powers protecting her.  This book will need some editing.  I simply crossed out a few references and added my own reference to GOD and we were good to go.  The pictures are beautiful in this book!)
We also studied Purim in Celebrate and Dance, Sing, Remember.
Curly made an illustrated book about Esther that we used for our presentation night.  For our project, Curly designed her own coins using aluminum foil and Sharpies.  Then she paid me.  Even at Lextin you can’t escape oppressive taxes.  

And at this point we were out of the section that uses only a Child’s Bible as a reference and back to the Greeks.  I was missing those Greeks with their myths and all the reference books listed for each week.  I also determined to plan ahead and go for some projects again.  Next time around, I will be prepared for the mid-year 1 slump and hopefully be armed with extra resources and more inspiring ideas.  I will also try to study the New Testament in our Bible Time so we aren’t overlapping the studies.

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