Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

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Studying the ocean is one of my favorite homeschool teaching topics. There’s such an expanse of material to enjoy. It’s got all sorts of science from physics (waves) to biology and chemistry. The habitat is complex, the animals diverse and amazing, and there are still unsolved mysteries for scientists to tackle. Oceanography was easily my favorite class in graduate school! After all, I was a scientist taking lots of graduate classes in education- of course my favorite class would be my science electives!

Just like there is no shortage of topics to study in oceanography, you’ll be excited to know that the resources available to help you teach it are no less expansive. Today’s post is all about Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool.

Basic Concepts in Oceanography

Oceanography is a wide area of study with many options, but here is a list of the basic concepts a study in oceans might entail. The older your students, the more in depth you can go with the topics. It’s fascinating to go beyond habitat and ocean life and study how oceans behave. Don’t miss out on learning about large scale ocean behaviors like The Coriolis Effect.

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

 

  • Name and Map the Oceans- Basic ocean geography and definition of an ocean
  • Composition of Ocean Water- What’s in sea water and what’s it made of?
  • Ocean Zones- Light determines a lot about how creatures live in the water. Learn about habitats and characteristics at various ocean depths.
  • Animals and Critters- Study animals and plants found in marine habitats.
  • Ocean behavior- currents, waves, and tides
  • Large Scale Phenomena- The Coriolis Effect, winds
  • Beaches- Erosion, barrier islands
  • Navigating the Ocean- How do people get around? What equipment do they use?
  • Ocean Floor- What’s down there? How do you study it? Can you map it?

 

Exploring Oceanography in Your Homeschool

Resources for Oceanography Studies

Below are some of our favorite resources on oceanography including curriculum, notebooking materials, and books.
Sea Life Notebook Pages | Harrington Harmonies

  • Sea Life Notebook Pages- These are fun set of pages which cover any sea animal you’d like to study. If you don’t find the one you need, then there are blank pages for you to use. The boys used their Kindles to do some research and jot down facts on their notebook pages. They are working on an animal report for writing.
  • NorthStar Geography- Middle and high school geography curriculum with a section on physical geography including the hydrosphere and oceans.
  • WinterPromise Sea & Sky- Our 4th and 7th graders are working through Sea & Sky this year. There’s a lot of ocean science involved which is fun for adventurous boys.
  • Amanda Bennett Oceans- A four week study of the world’s oceans.
  • Usborne Discovery Books- On various animals
  • Ocean by DK- Stunning pictures and information on oceans
  • Oceans for Every Kid- A Janice VanCleave book with ocean experiments
  • Awesome Ocean Science- An elementary book on ocean science
  • The Ocean Book- Marine activities from an aquatic center
  • Ocean-Opoly- A board game that plays like Monopoly with lots of ocean facts

 

Oceanography for Middle School

Media Options for Oceanography

It’s fun to watch videos about the ocean. Who doesn’t love seeing the creatures from the deep or sharks in their own habitat. The internet is a treasure trove of underwater exploration.

These are just a few examples of the wealth of information and fun videos you can find using YouTube. Do you know how to make a YouTube play list? It’s a great way to line up great videos for your kids for school.

Other Blog, She Wrote Posts Related to Oceanography

This isn’t the first time we’ve encountered the ocean in our studies. Here’s a look back at some recent and not so recent experiences from the past.

With a little time and some basic resources, your family can engage in a comprehensive study of Oceanography.

Geography bundle -- North Star Geography and WonderMaps

 

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Project: Middle Ages History & Fashion

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

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This year our 8th grader, Rebecca, has been working through history with an emphasis on fashion. She researches the history of fashion during that time period and then designs her own garments. During her study of the Middle Ages, Rebecca worked on two separate fashions- one from the early Middle Ages and another from later in the same period.

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

Research on Middle Ages History & Fashion

I’ve had fun looking for resources on the fashion of different time periods of history. Rebecca loves to explore and construct the most authentic garments.

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

The Pattern Drafting Process

How does she go about making a dress from an idea?

  • Using her research, Rebecca comes up with an overall vision for a garment.
  • She sketches the dress starting with the basic shape and adding details.
  • As she chooses her design, she considers construction techniques and does more research and/or watches tutorials
  • Then it’s time to measure the doll and begin drawing the patterns.

Need help on learning to draft patterns? I shared our resources in Rebecca’s Steampunk Project post.

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

Constructing the Garment

I admire her bravery! Her skills are confident and she’ll try something new with no hesitation.

  • Use authentic fabric if possible- though I have to say she did not enjoy working with the wool.
  • Use a serger- If you have a serger, you can use it to finish the seams before putting the pieces together. If not, then be sure to finish the seams carefully.
  • Frequently read tutorials- Rebecca spends a lot of time learning by reading sewing blogger tutorials. It’s free and it’s a great way to learn on your own! Her Kindle Fire is usually by her side when she is working on something so she can refer back to the tutorial easily.

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

Facts on Middle Ages Fashion

Rebecca uncovered some interesting details in her research of Middle Ages Fashion. Here are a few:

  • During the 13th century tunics were the base of all outfits.
  • Cloaks were a staple of the Middle Ages and worn over the tunic.
  • Children wore the same basic style in smaller sizes.
  • The longer your garments and cloaks, the more money you had. Peasants wore short length garments.
  • During the 14th century waist lines rose and women’s clothing became more fitted – some sleeves were so tight they had to be stitched together once on!
  • The 15th century showed the empire waist being popular.
  • Men’s garment length was shortening while lady’s lengths were increasing.

Rebecca chose to make a gown in keeping with 15th century fashion. The collar is made of “fur” and forms a V that goes to the waist and it has a thick belt which was popular at the time.

Blog, She Wrote: Project- Middle Ages History & Fashion

Reading List for the Middle Ages

Along with her research in fashion, she spent time immersed in both fiction and non-fiction titles about the same time period. A brief list of the titles she’s read include:

Some of these titles chronicle the end of the Roman Empire and the Dark Ages that followed.

Studying fashion and learning how these garments were made and put together is a great way to focus on one aspect of history. Rebecca has had a very focused year and it’s been great for building her sewing project portfolio. She’s learned a lot of techniques which are useful for full sized fashions.

I’m looking forward to sharing two of her latest projects with you soon. She has a fashion due this week for a local contest. Rebecca is hoping to do well enough to make it into the fashion show. Stay tuned!

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Geography Quest: St. Patrick Edition

Blog, She Wrote: Geography Quest- St. Patrick Edition

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I couldn’t let this day go by without a look at the patron saint of Ireland. Enjoy this Geography Quest which takes us to Ireland and the British Isles.

Who Was St. Patrick?

If your family celebrates St. Patrick’s Day, then you probably know all about this patron Saint of Ireland. If not, take some time to explore the legends and culture around the holiday.

  • Where is St. Patrick from?
  • What was his life’s mission?
  • Was he successful in his mission?
  • What is a patron Saint and how did Patrick become one?

Follow the Life of St. Patrick on The Map

You’ll need a map of Great Britain and Europe to complete this portion of the assignment.

  • Map Patrick’s birthplace
  • Map his first appearance in Ireland- do you know how he ended up there?
  • Locate the place he went to be educated (for his mission).

Patrick returned to Ireland prepared to convert the Irish to Christianity. Can you find how many churches he established there?

Learn More about Ireland

Visit Time for Kids Around the World website and enjoy a tour of Ireland & Great Britain.

  • Fact Page- Lists some statistics for Ireland and has pictures
  • Sight Seeing Guide- Lets you click around the map to see pictures of the locations and hear more facts
  • History Timeline- You can click on the timeline to see when Patrick arrived in Ireland and other events in the country’s history.
  • Challenge- Quizzes your student on what they’ve explored
  • Day in the Life- Introduces a young person from the country and takes you through their day

St. Patrick’s Day Art

There’s still time to pull out your chalks and paint some shamrocks. Tricia at Hodgepodge has a new spring chalk pastel book out and I’m pleased to share our results with you.

Blog, She Wrote: Geography Quest- St. Patrick Edition

St. Patrick used the shamrock as an illustration of the Trinity as he ministered to the people of Ireland. It’s easy to explain that there are three distinct parts to one compound leaf.

Celebrate Spring with Art for All Ages!If you’ve never used Hodgepodge chalk painting tutorials before, you are in for a treat! I use them with all of our kids for art lessons and I let my artsy daughter try out the lessons that appeal to her the most on her own. Either way, they are a delight to behold when they are complete.

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