# More on the American Revolution

Last week was our final week with Betsy Ross. We focused on the American Revolution and studied people and events leading up to and at the start of the war. We kicked off the week by watching Felicity- An American Girl Movie. It was a great tie in to how families were torn by the war. Once again this unit was a huge hit!

R8 works on her map of Old Boston
It has pop up features- very cool

We talked about Continental vs. British soldiers

The kids had fun playing the Liberty Kids computer game we’ve had for a while. In fact, they are still playing it this week.

You can even download it for free- from here. I hope it works. There a few other fun pieces of software on that site!

# Quilting Webquest

A Webquest on Quilting and Geometry- a fun math diversion for our Betsy Ross students

The web quest task is to make a quilt square that has two or three shapes and has symmetry. R8 is so in to symmetry. She recently modified her poster for her 4-H talk to include checking your airplane for symmetry so it will fly well!
They got to play around with shapes and practice some symmetry

E10 planned his out according to the criteria.

I’m not sure how it was translated on to his final square…

R8 planned a border as well.

The final copy which she traced onto her paper. And of course, because blogger loves me, it turned the photo around.

This was a fun little assignment that was a great add-on for our studies. Are you all just crazy excited to do a Betsy Ross unit now or what??

# Revolutionary War Webquest

Along with the resources I mentioned in an earlier post, we are using a Revolutionary War Webquest as the framework of our study of the American Revolution. I actually found lots of webquests just by doing a Google search on webquests for the Revolutionary War. I was able to find some really neat sites to help with our research and I chose this one because it seemed to encompass what I wanted my kids to do. Use the link above to see the whole scenario. Below I pulled out a list of the tasks and some details on researching a person’s contribution to the revolution.

1.Create a timeline of the events that took place during the Revolutionary War.

2.Create an A to Z booklet about different people, places, or things that were part of the war.

3.Research a person’s contribution to the Revolutionary War.Prepare a portrait, mini timeline, written report and persuasive presentation about the person.

4.Complete the four chapter Guided Reading and other worksheets as assigned

I am particularly interested in the requirements for the biographical information.

 Biographical research

• Select a person from the list below

• Become an expert on your person by researching the person’s background. Your research should focus on the following elements:

·You will need a portrait of your person.

·Dates and events for a mini time line of your person’s life. .

·Your person’s contribution to the Revolutionary War period of American history.

·Skills and education that contributed to your person’s accomplishments.

·Other important accomplishments.

• Create a nomination kit. The nomination kit needs to include:

a.Portrait of your person mounted on an 8 ½ x 11″ paper. The frame area can contain symbols and objects unique to your person. Below the mounted picture should be a nameplate with the full name of person and the person’s birth and death years.

b.Time-line suitable to be mounted under the portrait that will start at person’s birth date and end at their death date. The time line should include important accomplishments and events in your person’s life.

c.One page report (4-5 paragraphs, plus works cited) describing the role your person played in the Revolutionary War.(12 point times new roman font, double spaced)

4.Prepare a 2 to 4 minute persuasive speech about your nominee and why he/she should be included in the Revolutionary War Hall of Fame. The speech should include:

a.birth and death dates.

c.personal qualities, skills and education.

d.contribution to the Revolutionary War period of American history.

We should be finishing up the unit on Betsy Ross by the end of this coming week.

# My Brother Sam is Dead

E10 read My Brother Sam is Dead as a part of his Betsy Ross studies. He devoured it in just two days. I found some great book report forms at Ed Helper so he could write about what he read. I really like these forms because they go beyond just reporting the facts. A certain amount of extrapolation of thought is needed to complete these well.

There are all kinds of book report forms at EdHelper. The forms I have shared here are on the free section of the site. If you want to customize any of the forms, you need to buy the membership. I may do that soon just because I’m anxious to see what else I have access to at the basic membership. This site looks good for 4th grade and up. I had him use the form for Historical Fiction to tell me what he knew about the book.

Page 1- I brought them over just in case you are person who doesn’t follow links (I so know some of you don’t bother!) because I don’t want you to miss out.

Here’s a link to a Biography Form Sample 1- This one is good for reporting on biographies. We are studying some famous people from the time of the American Revolution as well. There’s another post coming on that one!

# A Closer Look at Germs

Last week, as part of our study of Betsy Ross, we took a closer look at the germs which can make us sick. It was a fabulous little lesson. I also used this link both found at Sheri’s blog, The Shades of Pink.

We listed ways that bacteria are harmful and ways that they are helpful. This gave us a chance to talk about personal hygeine too- great little health lesson.

They colored pictures of the three most commonly shaped bacteria and we talked about how they are a one celled organism. We use our Usborne Encyclopedia of Science to get some facts on them and what their names are. Usually these books have great internet links managed by Usborne so they are up to date with good links. Sometimes they have video or just a great kid’s page of information.

I have no idea why this picture won’t load correctly…we also talked about viruses and how they are different from bacteria.

The lesson site also has an exercise where you rub nutmeg all over your hands after putting oil on them. Then you try to wash your hands with water only to find out the nutmeg does not come off without soap. Just a little illustration on why you need soap to wash away the bacteria. So clever.

# Evidence of Molecules or Why Does Hot Air Rise?

We did an experiment to show the evidence of molecules and to illustrate how hot air rises. When Betsy goes to buy her ice skates in July, the black smith has to find them in the loft where it is super hot. So, why does hot air rise?

First you put a wet nickel on the top of a bottle and put your hands around it to warm up the air.

Then you wait to see when the nickel jumps! See it moved aside.
We illustrated what the molecules are doing in the bottle. The kids were able to tell me what cold molecules are doing compared to the hot ones. Yeah…a big chunk of prior knowledge on their part. With two science oriented parents, you should hear our dinner conversations some nights…and yes my science teacher self still loves an old fashioned chalkboard. I really, really miss the old black slate board I had in my classroom. Smooth- Mmmmm….

The kids made their own three panel paper.

They enjoyed it. The best part was J3 sitting down to dinner and telling Dan that you put the nickel on top and it moves because of air pressure after your hands warm the air in the bottle. Love that!

# Colonial Money…Cool Lesson

Thanks to Sheri over at Shades of Pink, I found a great lesson on Colonial money from Smithsonian Source. R8 and E10 did a great job of sorting through the paper money and drawing some conclusions from what they saw.

They were able to notice whether the money was made by colonies or states and to put them in chronological order. It was pretty interesting to learn that paper money is an American thing when before that coins were used to represent the value in gold or silver. Also, money could tell whether a colony was loyal to the king or had independent thinking.

# More Betsy Ross

Thought I’d update our study of Betsy Ross. We’ve been engaged in some language arts and social studies this past week. R8 has done one hand sewing project that turned out well. I’ll share that next.

Betsy Ross Notebook Cover
The next two pictures are E10′s work on literary point of view

Ben Franklin Fast Facts

R8′s Narration on the Liberty Bell- she was given the underlined words on cards and had to form sentences with them that told me about the chapter. It had been about 3 days since we’d read it. I copied her words to me.

booklet of “First Times”

Personification

Some fast facts on Quakers

As we get into our study of Betsy Ross, we’ll be discussing colonial times and the Revolutionary War. I thought I’d share some resources we’ll be using.

Dinah Zike fans? The color photos in her Big Book of Social Studies give some fun ideas on how to display facts. The thematic unit on My Country will provide some early American tidbits.

These three are Scholastic resources on Colonial American and The American Revolution. \$1 a piece friends. Scholastic sale and a friend who brought them to me.

# Betsy Ross

We have begun a study of the book Betsy Ross Designer of our Flag from the Childhood of Famous Americans series. This is one of E10′s favorite Beyond books of all time. He is joining R8 in her first row of the book. I’ll update with our progress. This was a project from last week and we have several more going right now. Thankfully for R8, Betsy was an excellent seamstress. So today, she’ll starting a handsewing project as well.

From the second chapter of Betsy Ross Designer of our Flag, we took on the job of making a corn husk doll from a kit.

I let R8 and E10 work on this together without a lot of help from me. They sat down with the directions and I helped here and there along the way. It was a good exercise in following directions along with team work. R8 learned how to step up and get her ideas in. A valuable lesson!

Part way there…she’s starting to look like a doll!

Finished doll with corn husk clothes only. Next week we’ll add in the apron which is a lavender fabric.

In addition to the corn husk doll kit, we also have this patchwork quilt kit from the Corps of Rediscovery. This is a fun company and we actually have the pioneer girl apron and bonnet from them as well.

Extra Book List:

The Flag Maker by Susan Campbell Bartoletti
Give Me Liberty! The Story of the Declaration of Independence by Russell Freedman
The Story of the One and Only Declaration of Independence by Judith St. George
Let It Begin Here! Lexington and Concord The First Battles of the American Revolution by Dennis Brindell Fradin
Felicity’s World Growing Up in Colonial America from The American Girl Collection

Stay tuned for more of our adventures and resources on Betsy Ross!