Click to: riverhouses.org/2020-05-31
Quick Freshes are our regular Sunday notes on the homeschool week ahead. Pick one or two (or more) of the items below each week and use them to enrich your homeschooling schedule! Visit our River Houses calendar page (riverhouses.org/calendars) and print your own homeschool calendars and planners for the entire year.
🇺🇸 OUR STATE-OF-THE-WEEK is South Dakota, and our COUNTRIES are Singapore 🇸🇬, Slovakia 🇸🇰, Slovenia 🇸🇮, and the Solomon Islands 🇸🇧. (Our separate Sunday States & Countries post for the week went up just a few minutes ago.)
🌔 THE MOON at the beginning of this week is gibbous and waxing — a good time for moon watching! You can explore the night sky and the features of the moon in your recommended backyard astronomy guide and your homeschool world atlas, and you can learn a host of stellar and lunar facts on pages 342–357 in your almanac (riverhouses.org/books). Browse through our many astronomy posts for even more!
🗓 TODAY, Sunday (31 May 2020) — Today is the 152nd day of 2020; there are 214 days remaining in this leap year. Learn more about different kinds of modern and historical calendars on pages 350–356 in your River Houses almanac (riverhouses.org/books). 📚 Today is the last day of Leo Term and the last day of the River Houses academic year. 🗓 It’s also the birthday of the great American poet Walt Whitman (1819–1892), who contained multitudes. 🖋
Monday (1 June 2020) — Today is the first day of HERCULES TERM, our summer term in the River Houses, named for the Great Hero of the Heavens. 💪 Today is also the birthday of the great English poet of the sea John Masefield (1878–1967), author of the finest thing Herman Melville never said. ⚓️ Our homeschool poem-of-the-week for the first week of June is the anonymous medieval song “Sumer is i-cumin in,” for the beginning of Hercules Term. ⛱ Print your own River Houses Poetry Calendar (riverhouses.org/calendars) and follow along with us throughout the year. 🖋
Tuesday (2 June 2020) — Today is the birthday of poet and novelist Thomas Hardy (1840–1928), whose works have been loved and loathed by high school English students for generations. 📚 Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II was crowned on this day in 1953, making her now the longest-reigning monarch in British history and the longest-serving female head of state in world history. 👑 And since this is the first Tuesday of the month, today we’ll invite you to browse a new Dewey Decimal class with your students on your next visit to your local library. This month: the Literary 800s. 📚
Wednesday (3 June 2020) — Today is the birthday of Scottish physician and scientist James Hutton (1726–1797), one of the pioneers of modern geology. ⛏ And our Wednesday tour of World Heritage Sites this week will take you to the Historic Town of Banská Štiavnica in Slovakia. 🇸🇰
Thursday (4 June 2020) — On this day in 1783, the brothers Joseph-Michel and Jacques-Étienne Montgolfier made the first public demonstration of their hot air balloon at Annonay in the south of France, and the age of flight began. 🎈
Friday (5 June 2020) — The first installment of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin was published on this day in 1851 in the National Era newspaper. 📰 And on this day in 1989, as a popular uprising against the Chinese communist government was being brutally suppressed in Beijing, a lone man near Tiananmen Square ran out into the street and for a few minutes stopped an entire column of tanks from advancing. Photographs of “the Tank Man” have since become emblems of freedom worldwide — except in China, where they are censored. For a brief history of communism in China, see page 424 in your River Houses history encyclopedia (riverhouses.org/books). 🇨🇳 🗽 Our Friday Bird Families post this week will introduce you to the Wagtails and Pipits! Print your own River Houses Calendar of American Birds (riverhouses.org/calendars) and follow along with us throughout the year. 🦅 And, there’s a full moon tonight, so that means we’ll have a report on student research opportunities from the River Houses Lunar Society (riverhouses.org/lunar). 🌕
Saturday (6 June 2020) — The invasion of Normandy, code-named Operation Overlord, began on this day, D-Day, in 1944. It was the largest amphibious military operation in history and it began the liberation of Western Europe from Nazi occupation. For a brief review, see page 398 in your homeschool history encyclopedia (riverhouses.org/books). 🇫🇷 And since this is the first Saturday of the month, we’ll post our regular monthly preview today of some of the astronomical events you and your students can watch for over the next few weeks. 🔭
Sunday (7 June 2020) — On this day in 1776, Richard Henry Lee of Virginia presented a resolution to the Continental Congress “that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.” The formal adoption of the Lee Resolution less than a month later, on 2 July 1776, established American independence. 🇺🇸
🥂 OUR WEEKLY TOAST, for all summer travelers: “May the experience of the wanderer endear him more firmly to his native home.”
❡ Toasts can be a fun educational tradition for your family table. We offer one each week — you can take it up, or make up one of your own (“To North American dinosaurs!”), or invite a different person to come up with one for each meal (“To variety in toasting!”). What will you toast this week? 🥂
🌍 🇸🇮 EVERYTHING FLOWS: Slovenia in south-central Europe is one of our countries-of-the-week, so our Weekly World River is the beautiful Soča River, which flows down the Slovenian Alps into Italy and the Adriatic. You can find its location in your recommended homeschool atlas (riverhouses.org/books), and you can read more about it in the Soča River entry in Wikipedia or perhaps on your next visit to your local library.
❡ Let the river run: Why not do a homeschool study of world rivers over the course of the year? Take the one we select each week (above), or start with the river lists in your almanac (pages 691–693), and make it a project to look them all up in your atlas, or in a handy encyclopedia either online or on a weekly visit to your local library. A whole world of geographical learning awaits you. 🌍
What do you have planned for your homeschool this week? 😊
❡ Lively springs: This is one of our regular “Quick Freshes” posts looking at the homeschool week ahead. Add your name to our River Houses mailing list (riverhouses.org/newsletter) and get these weekly messages delivered right to your mailbox all through the year. You can also print your own River Houses calendars of educational events (riverhouses.org/calendars) and follow along with us. 🗓