We did manage to get to some other things this week. We saw Red Tails, which supported our reading at home on WWII topics very well. And we traveled to Centre College to see an L.A. Theatre Works radio play production, which was interesting. It was entitled The Rivalry, and detailed the Lincoln/Douglas debates. They apparently have a large collection of radio broadcast productions available for free download in various formats:
We attended the second Geography Club meeting. I do wish there were more older kids involved, but my son seems to be okay with the group present, so I intend to keep going for now.... They are covering the geography of North America right now, along with two specific states each meeting. I also have him working on various things for U.S. geography at home.
In science at home this week, they read their Einstein reports and we discussed his work with special and general relativity, as well as his search for a unified theory. We talked a little about the various theories put forth since Einstein's time in an attempt to find unification, and we talked a little about the variable speed of light theory. We then began exploring the properties of magnets in preparation for looking at electricity and electromagnetic theory....
A few kits I have at home to help me with looking at magnets:
(This last is an updated look from my kit. Dowling Magnets company puts out a lot of different magnet kits....)
These items, plus a few extra magnets we own, a piece of aluminum foil, and a box of straight pins stood me in good stead for our discussions. I also have a container or iron filings, somewhere, that I need to find for looking more at magnetic fields....
These are kits I've had since my kids were little, but it is simple enough to use the materials and expand the topic for older students by using info available online or contained in the Prentice Hall Science Explorer book I'm using as a reference: Electricity and Magnetism. I also supplement with library books. I've found with many science kits that those rated for older kids don't really contain materials (or even experiments or discussion) any different from those rated for younger kids, so I've stopped wasting my money trying to buy "older" kits....
When we move into electricity, I'll be using a Science in a Nutshell kit, Electrical Connections, to start off our study, then they'll be building various other electric models.
In our reading this week, we finished up the Einstein biography we'd started earlier, and read more about the various events of WWII from:
The Atlas of Past Times, Haywood; Time-Life 20th Century America; Scholastic's Encyclopedia of the United States at War.
We've been having some very strong WWII related discussions about the coercion and brainwashing of the German people; the atrocities committed against perceived "inferior" races; the strong, underground resistance that arose in many countries; the continuation of racism in the American military, the rise of the iron curtain after the war, etc.
We read The Tuskegee Airmen, Philip Brooks.
My son finished reading Ten True Tales: World War II Heroes, Zullo; and is almost finished with Code Talkers, Bruchac. He read the two chapters in Story of the World that pertain to WWII (28 and 29, I believe); and he is finishing up volume 9 in History of US (about chapter 28 to the end). I have handed him Number the Stars and The Triple Nickles to work on next week, once he has finished up his other book.
Other work proceeds as usual and isn't worth comment at this time. We're going to a high school open house next week and trying to schedule for him to shadow at another school. While I'm not thrilled with the idea of him going anywhere, particularly not next year, he may be leaving me sooner rather than later.... Then what?