This morning we were all antsy for some outdoor fresh air and activity. We have been reading this book, Gold Rush Fever by Barbara Greenwood, in preparation for our upcoming trip where we will be panning for gold. We were reading about the Gold Rush of 1897-98 when everyone rushed to Dawson, Yukon territory to stake gold claims. The “stampeders” (as they were called) had to ascend the mountains, carrying all their goods and supplies for a year with them. They went up 3km of Long Hill and from there up a set of 1500 stairs, called ‘The Golden Stairs‘ to reach Chilkoot Pass. In order to simulate this experience of the Golden Stairs, we headed for the longest set of stairs in Guelph. We packed a bag of 10lb potatoes in the knapsack to carry. And we climbed the stairs (100 in all). Dawson decided to climb 1000 stairs, so he went up (and down!) 10 times. It was a great way to remember a bit more about some history in a very physical way. As well, it was a great way to burn off some cabin-fever energy! 🙂

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More fun with hieroglyphics!

Last week we did some cool cuneiform letters on clay tablets. This week we finally got to doing our hieroglyphics on papyrus paper. We happened to have pomegranate for breakfast and used the extra juice as ink to colour our paper. : )  We talked about how the Egyptians couldn’t just go to the store and buy paper, but that they had to make it themselves. (Not easy! Phew!) We also discussed what they may have used as inks – mainly pigments from plants. My original plan had been to try to re-create these pigments, however, I thought that using brushes and pigments might frustrate the kids more than not… we used pencil instead, in order to draw the pictographs which can sometimes be a bit tricky!

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Fun with hieroglyphics!

Oh my! This morning we did our reading from The Story of the World, did our accompanying map work and colouring sheet and then I hit YouTube to find some additional videos. This was so much fun! Check it out!

Horrible Histories-Hieroglyphics Song

Also found a sheet of the lyrics so that you can follow along:

The plan this week is to make clay tablets Sumerian style, as well as papyrus hieroglyphics (Egyptian). 🙂

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My only error here was not putting the clay on wax paper – it would have made clean up so much easier!

Archaeology Dig

A couple of weeks ago I put some everyday objects from our life into the garden.

The kids were absolutely enthralled to dig in the garden to find anything we could. (I didn’t let them know that I had ‘planted’ objects there for us to find.) As we dug around the grid I had constructed, I realized that I didn’t really remember exactly where I had dug the garden up. My landmark of a tree had been replaced this past weekend, so I had to guess where to put the grid. We found a few objects including some clay pot pieces, some foil, some paper and a bone. (The kids are calling it the ‘sabre tooth’!)

This activity is one suggested by our History curriculum, The Story of the World. I have never been one to love history. However, I am really looking forward to learning about history with my children!

As we eat lunch, the kids are still discussing what would be cool to find in the backyard. They want to continue digging after we eat!

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