Monday, April 8, 2013

Homeschool Review and Lesson Plans: Jungle Islands

Mater Amabilis Level 1A recommends a study of Extreme Environments in Year 2 (third grade) for Earth Studies. The books are meant to be read independently, then narrated. I added a little notebooking and extra books from the library.

I already blogged about the book for our first term, 52 Days by Camel.

In the second term, we studied the Solomon Islands with Jungle Islands: My South Sea Adventure by Maria Coffey and Debora Pearson. This is another wonderful book in the same series as 52 Days by Camel, full of photographs and insight into the South Sea cultures and environment. I think First Son liked this book the best of the three we read this year in our Extreme Environments studies.

As I mentioned before, each week First Son would read from this book and narrate. Then I often asked him to complete a notebook page as well. I usually asked for a few words (labels, notes, a sentence or two) and a drawing, which I encouraged him to color. The library books were set out to entice additional reading, which sometimes happened.

Week 1

(No reading this week.)
Create a map of the Solomon Islands for your notebook. (First Son used the library book below and an atlas.)

Independent reading: From Kansas to Cannibals: The Story of Osa Johnson by Suzanne Middendorf Arruda - I shared this with First Son because Osa's life was truly fascinating and she was a country girl from Kansas, but we talked a little about how the native people of the islands and Africa were described and treated by Osa and her companions. (Their treatment of wildlife was also very different from what is expected today.) It made for exciting reading and some thoughtfulness on changing times and how we should always strive to be considerate of all people and careful in our stewardship of God's earth. She has a museum not too far away, but too far for a mid-year field trip.

Library book:
Solomon Islands (Enchantment of the World) by Judith Diamond

Week 2

Read the introduction, "Help! I'm Drowning!" and "My South Sea Adventure."

Week 3

Read chapter 1, "All Aboard!"
Research coconuts or sugar cane. Draw a picture of the life cycle of one of them for your notebook. (We went online for this research because there wasn't an appropriate book at our library.) Taste shredded coconut or make something with coconut milk for dinner.

Week 4

Read chapter 2, "Jungle Eyes."
Read about wildlife mentioned in the chapter (parrot, bats, sharks, or mudskippers). (Again, we went online for this research.) Draw an animal for your notebook with notes from your research.

Week 5

Read Life in a Coral Reef (Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science 2) by Wendy Pfeffer, Coral Reefs by Jason Chin, and This Is the Reef by Miriam Moss.
Draw and color a coral reef for your notebook with notes from your research.

First Son didn't make many notes, but he could name everything. The fish are frowning because they know the shark is going to eat them.
Library books:
Coral Reefs by Gail Gibbons
The Coral Reef: A Colorful Web of Life (Wonderful Water Biomes) by Philip Johansson

Week 6

Read chapter 3, "Come On In!"
Draw a picture of the war canoe built by the islanders and a picture of the kayak used by the author and photographer. Note the differences on your notebook page.

Week 7

Read chapter 4, "Crocodiles!"
Draw a picture of a crocodile for your notebook with written notes.

Week 8

Read chapter 5, "Land of the Skulls."

Week 9

Read chapter 6, "Into the Unknown."
Draw a page on frigate birds for your notebook. (We went online to find pictures of frigate birds of all ages.)

Week 10

Read chapter 7, "Make Way for Giants."
Draw a page on leatherback turtles for your notebook with written notes.

There are probably some good documentaries on leatherback turtles, but I didn't have time to screen any.

Week 11

Read chapter 8, "Diving into Adventure."

Week 12

Read chapter 9, "Up, Up, and Away."

I considered watching South Pacific at the end of our term, but decided in the end we didn't need more screen time.

I'll be doing this study again in three years with First Daughter, so be sure to share any ideas or other resources!

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