Thursday, April 28, 2011

KONOS Unit #2: Stewardship - Africa Wk3

For "Week 3" (again we took longer than a week for this "week" in the KONOS Africa book) we focused on being stewards of all the work God has given us and working "as unto the Lord" in everything we do, whether chores or schoolwork or what have you.  So, we had plenty of practice being hard workers with cheerful attitudes.  We definitely will continue to work on this for a long time, including me! :)  The other focus areas were Morocco, Bedouins, & camels.

Here, the kids are dramatizing a camel caravan across the  Sahara Desert.  Sam, below is the caravan leader with her salt "slabs" (just salt containers) loaded on her camel "coffee table w/ bean bag hump".  And above Jake is a caravan raider who is ready to raid the caravan and steal the goods...

but don't worry Leah is part of the Camel Corps that patrols the desert and lends aid to the caravans.  Doesn't she look fierce in her leotard?!  But either way she was successful in warding off the raider!  She saved the day!  Then they took turns playing the different parts. 
Fez, Morocco was our next lesson and how it was founded and named.  Then the kids got to make their own fez to wear using old plastic ice cream etc. containers and red felt.  We also located Morocco on the map and glued on a small red fez and a drew on a Moroccan flag.  The kids also made their own small flags for each of them to have one.

The kids also got to participate in their own Moroccan souk or bazaar where they each found things (aka dragging everything out from the whole house) for their own "shop" to trade or bargain with one another.  They especially liked it when I was the shopper since I really knew how to bargain and walk away if I didn't feel I was getting a good enough of a deal.  And if I did walk away from Jake's shop he would almost give the items away!

Another day we pretended to be nomadic Bedouins and first set up our tent under the kitchen table where they had mint tea and any guest who entered had to drink 4 cups of mint tea and were treated with hospitality.  They also got to do their regular schoolwork in the tent, which they thought was pretty cool! 

But since we were nomads we couldn't stay under the kitchen table tent all day, so they packed up and loaded up the animals and their next stop was....

A homemade tent in the livingroom.  This took a lot more work (good practice for this week) and more creativity.  But they are always up for this kind of challenge!

We are now in the midst of Week 4 and I will post that when we are done.  We technically already did Week 5  because I used that week for when we hosted our Geography Co-op (The Republic of the Congo) but we will revisit it again and go over the areas that we didn't get to since it was just for one day.

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Monday, April 25, 2011

KONOS Unit #2: Stewardship - Africa

For this KONOS unit we are using their Africa in a Bag unit where the units are more planned out for you.  Although these activities are from weeks 1 & 2 of the curriculum, we actually took a LOT longer than that to do them.  In the curriculum they give you a number of choices of activities to choose from and we tend to want to do most of them and also have homeschool coops that we belong to (so we don't do KONOS activities those days) so it takes us a lot longer than their suggested time frame.  Anyhoo, here are pictures of some of the things we did.

The 1st week we focused on Stewardship in general, the Sahara Desert, Egypt, & Alexander the Great.  We learned about the desert's array of animals, including the gecko.  So, one of the suggested activities was to play gecko tag where everyone is a gecko and has a "tail" (bandanna tucked into their pants) and then they have to pull off each others' tails (don't worry they learned that they grow back) and then you are it if your tail is pulled off.  It was a lot of fun and wore me out! 

We made a Stewardship chart to keep track of the different areas of Stewardship and how our kids are doing in that area and then they will focus each week on a different area and see if they can improve in that area.  So, Joseph's life from the Bible was a good example of being a faithful steward.  And the kids got to try and make mud bricks, both with straw and without to see the importance of adding the straw and relating it to Pharaoh making the Israelites gather their own straw as well as make the bricks in Exodus 5.  And the kids could definitely tell the difference.  They also got to play with mud so that is always fun! 

 We also made pyramids (their own version) with sugar cubes and frosting.  This was a little more difficult than they thought especially when you only have so many sugar cubes and they taste so   yummy! :)  Bella mostly just put the frosting on the cubes and then proceeded to lick it off!

Here the kids are making clay cartouches of their names in hieroglyphics.  First we went to an online website where we typed in their names and printed them off and then they tried to engrave their clay with those symbols for their cartouche.

We also read about what pharaohs would put into their pyramids and made paper pyramids and drew pictures inside of what might be found there.  Africa in a Bag also includes a large black outline map of Africa where they have you label it with the different countries, the mountain ranges, the type of vegetation for different areas, and little replicas of things like a felt shaped pyramid or a small black stone for the Rosetta Stone.   

The 2nd week our focus was on being good stewards of the gospel, Islam, the Tuareg, and some international relations between North Africa & the Middle East.  So, we kept track of how we were doing with sharing the gospel on our chart.   And the kids got dressed up as Tuaregs, made a Tuareg shield from cardboard and painted it to resemble Oryx Antelope hides after looking at pictures of them and dramatized their life and learned about their religion.  They learned some of the basic principles of Islam and what the Bible has to say about those teachings and looked at a picture of a mosque online.  They read about the Suez Canal and the Aswan High Dam and how it
affected the area.  By the time we were done with these "2 weeks" it was time for our Christmas studies and Christmas break.  We did have a 1 week Lego unit study along side a Nutcracker unit study in there too (since Sam & I were going to go to the Nutcracker and I thought Jake would enjoy the Lego unit).  Then after Christmas we continued with Africa again which I will post next with "week 4". 
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KONOS - Trust: Sheep & Weaving Unit

Our first KONOS unit of the 2010-2011 school year was Trust: Sheep & Weaving and the kids really enjoyed it.  There were lots of Bible passages, hymns, and people of the Bible to focus on. A really good devotional that the unit recommends is A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23 by Phillip Keller.  For our read aloud we read Mountain Born which I highly recommend as well.  Here the kids used a Bible passage for their phonics work.  
I found this cute sheep snack idea online to go with our unit.

I also planned our unit at the time that there was a Wool & Sheep Festival nearby.  So, the kids got to see newborn lambs, see a live shearing demonstration, a sheep herding demo., the girls got to learn how to felt, and many other neat things that really helped to cement our lessons.

Part of our unit was to use natural dyes to dye some wool and we used beets, onions, and black beans (don't recommend- but we already had black bean "juice" from making them) to dye.

We belong to a Co-op that is studying American Girls and their time period this year and my daughter had picked Josephina as our girl when it was our turn to host and this went perfectly with our Sheep Unit.  So, we planned it around the same time as our unit and we had everyone practice some weaving among other things from Josephina's time. 
We ordered this free Pendleton Wool Kit online that was recommended on the KONOS yahoo group and it contains a booklet that shows you the process from sheep to clothing with actual pieces of wool, lanolin, fabric, etc.  We also watched a Pendleton Woolen Mills factory youtube video that was very good.  We really enjoyed learning all about sheep & weaving but mostly (what I love about KONOS) about trusting in our Lord & Savior as our Good Shepherd.

2010-2011 Curriculum

Here is our 2010-2011 curriculum plan.  Some things we aren't doing all school year long depending upon when they finish it.  For instance Sam finished her handwriting a long time ago and then I added in the Grammar Songs just recently.  Outside activities also affect their schedules like when we are doing Enrichment Classes, our Co-op days, field trips, swim lessons, etc.  On those days I plan a lighter schedule or we don't do any of their regular lessons depending upon the time and length of the activity, but they are certainly learning none the less. 


Bible: Holy Bible, KONOS, Many other resources that we have
Math: Math U See & On Hand Math Games & Manipulatives
Handwriting: Handwriting Without Tears
Other: Enrichment Classes Sept. - Nov. (Mondays)
Co-ops: American Girl (1x/ mth) & Around the World (2x/ mth -World Geography)


Samantha (4th Grade):
Bible - daily
Math U See - daily
Grammar Songs - 2x/ wk
HWOT  - 3x/ wk
Spelling Wisdom (Copywork & Dictation) - 3x/ wk
Dance Mat Typing & Email Family - 2x/ wk
Write Letters - Fridays
KONOS (everything else) - daily

Jake (2nd Grade):
Bible - daily 
Math U See - daily
Rocket Phonics - Mon. to Thurs.
HWOT -  Mon. to Thurs.
Write Letters - Fridays
KONOS (everything else) - daily

Leah (Kindergarten):
Bible - daily
Math U See - daily
Hooked on Phonics - Mon. to Thurs.
HWOT - Mon. to Thurs.
Write Letters - Fridays
KONOS (everything else) - daily

Bella (3):
Joins us whenever she can (especially KONOS)
Scheduled playtime w/ siblings during school time
Learning by playing (the best kind of all)!!


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