The Fountain of Youth

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Ah yes, the Fountain of Youth.  Ponce DeLeon began the search  over 500 years ago, and lets face we are still looking for it today in every jar of age defying creme or a bottle of viagra.  On Monday we had discussed Ponce DeLeon and his futile search for the mythical fountain, so I decided to have their journal follow suit.  After completion of Day 17 of the workbook it was time was write, and today’s topic was “What would you do if you discovered the Fountain of Youth?”

The boys, who currently enjoy the wonders of youth did not seem to care about saving any for themselves.  Instead one considered selling it and using the money to buy video games, where another decided it would be far better to build a museum around it and allow people to come and drink it.  The question is….. What would you do if you discovered the Fountain of Youth?

The Discovery of our State

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In case you haven’t figured it out, I live in Florida.  I am technically a native (born here, but I lived up north for the first 12 years of my life), and my husband is second generation Floridian (a rare breed).  For all it’s misgivings, it is not that bad of a place to live… sure it is hot and sticky for 9 months out of the year, but we have Disney and miles of awesome beaches.  So, I decided that today we would continue discussing our state’s history and talk about our European Founder, Ponce DeLeon.  The boys have heard his name on several occasions, in fact we use to go swimming at Deleon Springs State Park (if you ever get a chance to go, do it!  You won’t regret it!)  We watched a Biography special on him that was located on the Biography Channel’s website.  You can watch the full episode here (it is rated TV14 because some of the art work shows nudity, slavery is discussed, and rape and cannibalism is briefly mentioned), and I would watch it before showing it to young children. The only issue that I had was the mention of rape, so I made sure that I fast forwarded through that particular part.

Afterwards, we finished up day 16 in our work books and then wrote a journal entry regarding the interesting things that we discovered on our trip to the Polk Museum of Art.

Another Rainy Day

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This rain is driving me and the boys nuts! We have not been able to have any outside time for three days now. The most we have been able to do is run outside and take the dogs out before the next thunderstorm comes.

Today we worked on day 4 in the workbooks. It was pretty much all math, so it was a relaxing break for the boys (they both love math). Then we moved on to the journals. The topic for today was “How can you help prepare for a hurricane”. A wrote about 2 pages, K was having a grumpy day so I was only able to get the bare minimum out of him.

I picked Social Studies for today. It is my favorite subject, and I really look forward to these lessons. The topic was the Calusa Indians of Southwest Florida. They are a bit of a mystery because they disappeared in the late 1700’s, so the only accounts that we have are from the very first Spanish explorers. When I had visited Tallahassee a few years ago the Florida History Museum had several masks from this particular group and I was absolutely fascinated by them. I found a reading and worksheet page at the Florida History Curriculum website. It has tons of worksheets for 4th grade students regarding Florida History, and they are all easy to download, pdf files. They are all still based off of the old Sunshine State Standard, but I figured that they would work well for my purposes.

I couldn’t leave K out of the learning process. After A had finished the reading section and the corresponding worksheet, it was then his turn to play teacher and explain to his brother what he had just read. After they had finished, it was time for them to make their own masks. I found some really neat ideas on the website for the Historical Society of Palm Beach County. The handout is really long (like over 100 pages), so I just skimmed through it until I got near the end where the art projects were. They had two ways to do the masks, the first being paper mache, but I was not in the mood for the mess, so we went with the coloring sheets. They turned out really cool though! Now I am trying to convince the husband that we need to go on a field trip this weekend to South Florida. 😉

A's Calusa Mask

A’s Calusa Mask

K's Calusa Mask

K’s Calusa Mask