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Archive for December 13th, 2009

Satori learned a lot about maps and geography this week, and I did have plans to draw a huge map on the floor, but that can wait. Instead I started putting up our history timeline, starting with Ancient History. Each laminated timeline is about 44 inches long, and we’ve got 4 to represent Ancient to Modern times. It will take up the narrow side of the wall perfectly. These will be our timelines that are all already filled out. We’ll also be using timelines that we fill in ourselves as we go, I’ll talk more about those soon.


If you click on the photo above, it will open up into a huge photo in which you can see the detail. The above timeline was purchased as a set of 4 of the Classical Education Laminated Timeline Set for $39.95 at the Learning Through History Shop. Later this week, once I get the rest of the timelines up, I’ll share a photo of them all lined up on the wall.

I got a little carried away at the Learning Through History shop earlier this year, so we have a few specialty laminated timelines to put up as well.

I don’t know what got into my husband this weekend! Despite a cold, he had some creative ideas for Satori. First, he wanted to show the distance between the sun and all the planets, and he used our floor to demonstrate. Our floor is the perfect space background, it’s black with millions of specks! Using chalk it turns into the biggest chalkboard. On one end of the room he drew our Sun, and then mapped out all the planets in accurate scale. Mercury through Mars were all close together, with Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune spread out across the middle of the long room. And Pluto was way on the other side of the room!

30 centimeters = 1 AU (Astronomical Unit)


He also drew the relative sizes of the Sun verses all the planets. And finally, he took our National Geographic (from the latest issue) and mapped out how far to the planet Gilese in our Milky Way galaxy, which is 20 light years away. On that scale, this time Pluto was less than a centimeter away from the sun, and Gilese on the other side of the room! It’s so informative to view distances mapped out like this! Satori now can’t wait until we unpack our telescope, but I think we’ll wait until summer of 2010, it’s too cold and snowy right now.

He and Satori love to do that kind of stuff. Earlier this summer they measured dinosaurs. 🙂

You might notice the basement got a bit messy today! David then designed an obstacle course for Satori to run through. Jumping from rubber mat to rubber mat, crawling through tunnels, sliding up and down mountains, bouncing on my Bosu fitness balls. We cleaned most of it up, but you can still see some of the course. Yay for David this weekend!

I’ve uploaded our SOTW Lesson Plans on my Google Docs as public today. This is a work in progress and just helps me visualize the lessons in one handy place. Maybe this will help others too that are using Story of the World and the Activity Guide.

Also, I’ve found some great free resources! First up, a free Story of the World workbook that you can download immediately. Use this to write down narrations, illustrate drawings, keep a list of related books you’ve read, store photos of your activities, and more. It has a handy 2-day week, which you could easily extend to a 3-day week. (You’ll need to already own the Story of the World book and Activity Guide.)


The above workbook will help you build the ultimate history binder. I suppose you want a suitable cover and spine for your binder? No worries, download the free cover here or purchase one for just $1.50! (Scroll down for the free covers.)

Want more to choose from? Kathy Jo has over 70 Notebook Covers for all your homeschooling needs, from History to Science to Language Arts and more.

Need some interactive quizzes? No problem thanks to Elizabeth Stapel! She’s got chapters 1-34 covered, and some great reviews.