Roman Gladiator

In our history studies we learned about the Roman Empire.
G thought it would be fun to dress up like a Roman gladiator (he doesn’t quite grasp how horrible the gladiators’ lives were). We created armor for his legs and arms, and a shield. He already had the helmet, so I wanted to match the look.

For the shield: first we cut 9 circles out of a box. Then we glued silver cereal bags (they work better than tin foil because they are thicker) onto the circles. We taped around the edge of the larger circle with silver duct tape. We painted the whole thing black, and rubbed most of the paint off with a dry cloth, to make it look like the helmet. Then we attached the circles with brads. Then, I painted the red, and black edges. Finally, we attached a duct tape handle on the back with silver thumb tacks.
For the armor: We cut rounded squares out of cereal boxes. Then we followed much the same process as the shield, but this time we created a design out of the brads. We made the straps out of black duct tape.

Now he is ready to fight.

Peter and the Wolf

For music class we have been reading through Story of the Orchestra
It’s a fun overview of composers, and instruments.

We’ve also been listening to classical music. It’s not something I used to enjoy very much, but with the kids I’ve taken a renewed interest. It helps that Leondard Bernstein
did so many great things for kids, one of them being Peter and the Wolf.

When we studied about Greek theater masks in The Mystery of History, I decided that we should try our hand at making some masks. At first I wanted to try papermache, but decided to simplify my life and make masks out of old cereal boxes.

The first thing we did is to cut out oval face shapes. Then I cut out the eyes. For the duck and bird, I cut out beaks. For Peter and his grandfather, I cut out noses and mouths. For the wolf I cut out a long snout shape. Finally, for the cat I cut out a mouth shape. I taped the various noses and beaks on with masking tape, and gave the masks to the boys to paint.

Once the base coat was dry we added details.

The duck and bird were given feathers.

I sketched noses and fur on the wolf and cat.

The wolf looks mean doesn’t he?

For the grandfather I used a brown, tan, white, and peach crayon to add wrinkles and details. We also cut out a frowny mouth since he’s not a very happy character.

Last but not least, I sketched a bit of detail on Peter, and we glued curly yarn hair on him.

The Timeline

*sorry for the bad pictures…they were last minute + bad lighting

We have been studying through Mystery of History, and have been trying to develop a timeline that works for us.

We have very limited space to hang a huge timeline in our tight house. So, at first I was just planning on doing timeline work in a notebook.

But, since G is still young, and very tactile, I realized that we needed something hanging up that he could look at every day. If we had ceilings, I would have hung it over his bed.

Finally, I decided to follow the advice in Mystery of History, and make the timeline vertical instead of horizontal. Also, because I can’t just run to the store whenever I need supplies, and I didn’t have any poster board on hand, I decided to make our timeline out of fabric. We will be able to roll it up, and put it away when it’s not in use. On our first run through, I used multi colored duct tape for the lines, but it didn’t take long for it all to fall off. Next, I sewed ribbons. It was a bear to keep from going very crooked, but I just try to pretend not to see the really crooked parts.

The way the Mystery of History timeline is laid out is pretty rigid, to keep from having a messy timeline. But, it works for me. We are doing our own timeline figures…and I think they are turning out really cute…G is doing a great job. I’m thinking of scanning them and offering them if anyone is interested.

So, that’s how we made our timeline.


So, here’s the part that I really like, curriculum. I love new books just as much as G does.

After lots of research, thinking, and rethinking here’s what we settled on. (Note: I bought almost all of it through the Book Depository (the UK one) which has FREE International shipping! Sweet right?) True to form, after reading my friend’s posts on curriculum (hi, Brooke), I’ve got a list of things I wish I had added in. No problem, though, we’ll do it next year.

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