History With Homeschoolers

Today we attended one of the monthly “History With Homeschoolers” programs at the Tyler Mahoning Valley History Center. The Mahoning Valley Historical Society opened the Tyler Center about 3 years ago. It boasts a permanent collection of exhibits and also offers a variety of classes, lectures and other programs relating to local and regional history.

Today, we learned about the steel industry and how it affected the economy of the area. Next month, we will talk about why so many people immigrated here from the turn of the century through the sixties, all due to the steel industry.



Book Club 4-01-2016

Today we attended book club at our co-op. The kids read  The One and Only Ivan  and had a lively discussion, followed by a scavenger hunt.

I love that one of the kids is running the discussion. She’s brought some questions for the group to think about.


The scavenger hunt was fun and included items from the story (a mop, a drawing book, etc). To wrap up, they broke up into groups and were asked to create a billboard to attract customers to visit your new animal at your zoo. The rules were:

  • No more than six words on the billboard
  • There had to be a picture of the animal
  • Your billboard had to have a border of some kind
  • Your billboard had to depict what the animal ate

The four groups came up with some really unique animals and some very creative billboards. We extended the amount of time for this activity by nearly a half hour because they were really having fun with it. Just before lunch, they presented their billboard designs to the group at large.

History was in the afternoon and it included a lesson on England around the time of Richard the Lionhearted. They focused on Robin Hood and his legend, made a sample Magna Carta, and made little bows and arrows out of popsicle sticks.



CoOp Week 4 February

Today we had our regular Friday Co-Op. Sickness seems to have taken hold of the group, as nearly half the families were absent. But those who attended enjoyed working on History (Story of the World Book 2, Chapters 14-15). They learned about English history and built or drew castles out of a variety of materials.

After lunch, we attended the Homeschool Players at the Dublin Grange Theatre. The kids are working on a Dr. Seuss-ified version of “MacBeth”, which will be presented along with the Afterschool Players’ Seuss-ified version of “Hamlet”, in mid-March.


Pompeii from the British Museum

Tonight our whole family went to the local Cinemark theater to see “Pompeii From The British Museum”. This was a super-cool documentary-style rebroadcast from the British Museum in London, who had an extraordinary exhibit on Pompeii and Herculaneum last year.

Fathom Events, The British Museum and More2Screen are thrilled to bring back Pompeii from the British Museum – an exclusive private view of the major exhibition Life and Death in Pompeii and Herculaneum. This extraordinary one-night event will take place on Thursday, October 23 at 7:00 p.m. (local time) in select cinemas nationwide.

The exhibition, first shown in cinemas last year, explores the homes and lives of the inhabitants of the thriving industrial hub of Pompeii and the small seaside town of Herculaneum nearly 2,000 year ago when Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79AD. Introduced by British Museum Director Neil McGregor, cinema audiences will be treated to an exclusive, family-friendly view of the exhibition with insights from renowned experts who help bring these fascinating objects to life. With accompanying music, poetry and readings from eyewitness accounts, you will go behind the scenes of the exhibition to discover the stories of these famous Roman cities. Don’t miss the chance to travel back in history and experience daily life in the Roman Empire before the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius left Pompeii and Herculaneum frozen in time.

Mount Vesuvius

Minecraft Homeschool: This Amazing World Week 3

This week on MCHS, the class is learning about the Volcán de Parícutin, which appeared in a Mexican cornfield. After reading and watching a video about the Volcano and the Ring Of Fire, O8 took her quiz. This is the first time she missed a question, and she was kind of bummed about that (a good sign, in my opinion!) After the Learn It section, she headed over to the Minecraft server to work on her Build It project. The assignment was to build a farm field and place a volcano in the center of it. The team build project was to make a village surrounding a farm, with a volcano in the center.

Some screenshots from the MCHS Facebook page:

this amazing world week 3-2

this amazing world week 3

Minecraft Homeschool: This Amazing World Week 1

O8 has signed up for a class through Minecraft Homeschool, which offers a variety of 6-week classes ostensibly for homeschoolers (though I imagine other students participate, too, as it is SO COOL).  This was the first week of her first class, “This Amazing World”.  They’re learning about a variety of, well, amazing things, starting with the Grand Canyon. Someone bothered to create a model of Grand Canyon in Minecraft, and the students can interact with it fully on the MCHS server. They can build shelters in and among the canyon walls, just as the ancient peoples once did (well, minus redstone!)

First, she had to do a Learn It module, which consisted of reading materials about Grand Canyon on the National Park Service’s website. We visited Grand Canyon in 2011, which she still remembers (who remembers things from when they were 5?!) After the quiz, on which she scored 100% (and was rather proud of) she did her individual Build It. This was to be a shelter that was camouflaged from any casual teacher or principal flying through the Grand Canyon. She chose a spot in the canyon wall that already had a little “crack” (empty block) and mined in one layer, over several blocks, and then into the wall before opening it up into a small room.

We did not do the team build project as we ran out of time, and she wanted to move on to Week 2. I am hoping she will come back to it before the class ends.