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. Add your name to our free mailing list to get posts like these delivered right to your mailbox each week. Visit our River Houses calendar page to print your own homeschool calendars and planners for the entire year.
🇺🇸 OUR STATE-OF-THE-WEEK is California, and our COUNTRIES are Myanmar (Burma) 🇲🇲, Namibia 🇳🇦, Nauru 🇳🇷, and Nepal 🇳🇵. (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 at its third quarter — 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 371–386 in your almanac. Browse through our many astronomy posts for even more.
🗓 TODAY, Sunday (4 April 2021) — Today is the 94th day of 2021; there are 271 days remaining in this common year. Learn more about different kinds of modern and historical calendars on pages 387–393 in your River Houses almanac. 📚 Today is also Easter Sunday, the Christian holiday that commemorates the resurrection of Jesus. ✝️ And it’s also the birthday of the American Quaker artist Edward Hicks (1780–1849), famous for his “Peaceable Kingdom.” 🎨
Tuesday (6 April 2021) — The Civil War Battle of Shiloh began on this day in 1862 near Shiloh, Tennessee. Herman Melville would later commemorate the battle in his poem “Shiloh: A Requiem.” ⚔️ 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 Technological 600s. 📚
Wednesday (7 April 2021) — Today is the birthday of the great English poet William Wordsworth (1770–1850). 🌈 Our Wednesday tour of World Heritage Sites this week will take you to the Ancient Pyu Cities of Myanmar. 🇲🇲
Thursday (8 April 2021) — On this day in 1820, the famous ancient statue now known as the Venus de Milo was discovered on the Greek island of Milos in the southern Aegean Sea. 🏛 Our homeschool poem-of-the-week for the second week of April is Delmore Schwartz’s “Calmly We Walk through This April’s Day,” a beautiful, philosophical, Heraclitean, high-school-level poem for spring. 🌸 Print your own River Houses Poetry Calendar and follow along with us throughout the year. 🖋
Friday (9 April 2021) — On this day in 1865, Confederate general Robert E. Lee formally surrendered to Union general Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox Courthouse in Virginia, effectively ending the American Civil War. 🕊 Our Friday Bird Families post this week will introduce you to the friendly Chickadees, Titmice, and their allies. Print your own River Houses Calendar of American Birds and follow the flyways with us throughout the year. 🦅
Saturday (10 April 2021) — Today is the birthday of William Booth (1829–1912), the founder of the Salvation Army. ✝️ And since this is the second Saturday of the month, we’ll introduce you to another one of the Great Stars of the northern hemisphere night sky. This month: Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation Leo the Lion. 🌟
Sunday (11 April 2021) — Today is the birthday of the strange and wonderful eighteenth-century poet Christopher Smart (1722–1771). 🐈 It’s also the birthday of American educator and statesman Edward Everett (1794–1865), one of the most celebrated orators of his day, who in 1863 had the misfortune of speaking for the two hours before Abraham Lincoln delivered the two-minute Gettysburg Address. 🇺🇸
🥂 🖖 OUR WEEKLY TOAST, for First Contact Day, is a Vulcan traditional. The host says: “Peace and long life.” And the guests respond: “Live long and prosper.”
❡ 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 unpredictability in toasting!”). What will you toast this week? 🥂
🌏 🇲🇲 EVERYTHING FLOWS: Myanmar (Burma) in southern Asia is one of our countries-of-the-week, so our Weekly World River is western Burma’s Lemro River, which empties into the Bay of Bengal. You can find its location in your recommended homeschool atlas, and you can read more about it in the Lemro River entry in Wikipedia or perhaps on your next visit to your local library.
❡ Daughters of Ocean: 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 699–701), 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 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 and follow along with us. 🗓