Students from homeschool co-ops or virtual microschools are welcome to take classes with their friends! Click on the CONTACT US page on our website, list your co-op or microschool, share this post in your group message board and make other homeschool families aware of the discount.
High School US History
We are fast approaching the end of our High School U.S. History road. Carrying over from the nonviolent direct action of the Civil Rights Movement, we were able to see how that philosophy translated into other protests such as the Delano Grape Strike and Boycott with Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, and how the plight of migrant farm workers is still a hot topic today. We also spent some time learning the historical significance of the phrase often used by politicians, "Law & Order" and depending on the time period, what words they are trying to avoid when using it.
World History I
In this course, I try to expose my students to more than just history. This year we have discussed mythology, philosophy, art history, political science, and comparative religions. This week, we explored the power waged by the palace eunuchs in ancient China. We discussed how they utilized their disfavored social status to shrewdly gain political power over the Han Dynasty throne of China. During the same time period, we examined some of the ruins of Roman emperor Hadrian's architectural masterpieces. Finally, we compared two philosophical movements that took place in the same century, but hundreds of miles apart: Stoicism & Buddhism.
World History II
This week, we discussed the term "sinicization" in reference to China's first millennial influence over Japan, Korea, and Vietnam. In addition, our historians spent some time analyzing a primary source from the period of the Song Dynasty. It was a beautifully intricate scroll that gives us a fascinating glimpse of a day in the life of a citizen (a market, a temple, a street scene) of this Chinese empire. They also analyzed a secondary source, a video of the Battle of Manzikert from AD 1071.
"The title of this video is called the Battle of Manzikert 1070 - The Byzantine--Seljuq wars. The video is an animation, combat film, and documentary. It contains music, narration, color, special effects, and background noises. The video talks about the war between Romanos of Byzantium and Alp Arslan of the Seljuq Turks. They fought a battle in 1070 near Manzikert; Alp Arslan used his wits to outsmart Romanos and then defeat his army. I would say this video is geared towards historians or students who are visual learners and prefer action and drama over reading a book." ~ Brooklyn
"I think it's really interesting how Alp Arslan won against the Byzantines through quick thinking and consequence instead of using a more brute force-based tactic. The whole issue with Byzantine troops thinking Romanos was dead reminds me of Harold looking back at his troops without his helmet to assure them of his survival." ~ Elspeth
I am always searching for fun activities we can do together online, in spite of our students being in differing geographical locations. Using the savage dialogue of the Investiture conflict between Pope Gregory VII and King Henry IV, we created a fake iPhone text message argument. I was trying to encourage them to really get into it. One of our classmates asked me, "You're really enjoying this, aren't you?" I had to admit, I really was. LOL
MS US History
Sharing my own experiences of the end of the Cold War, living in Europe when at the fall of the Berlin Wall, I hoped to express the elation and amazement that was palpable the winter of 1989. I shared with them the video of my youngest daughter's Silver Award-winning National History Day Junior Group Performance in 2013: Weakening the Wall - Hidden 20th Century Turning Points.
As we wrap up our study of U.S. History, we took a look at social trends that are on the horizon, particularly pushed forward by the global pandemic, the creation of edge cities. We uncovered how many rural American towns with great internet connection are offering incentives for remote workers to come and live in their sleepy hamlets. We talked about how in the past, during the industrial era, factory jobs were a pull factor for people moving into cities, but it came at a cost. The pandemic revealed how crowded cities enacted greater restrictions on their citizens because of the population density. In a rural community, remote workers would be able to contribute to the town tax base while not needing to invest in zoning for brick and mortar office space.
African American History
As I have often shared, although my upbringing near several military installations was very multicultural, the education that I received did not do a great job of reflecting that. There is so much that I have had to learn and unlearn as I homeschooled my children and as I returned to school as a student myself. One of those gaps in my education was about how the Civil Rights Movement metamorphized into the Black Power Movement. My high school textbooks taught very little about Malcolm X, The Black Panthers, and absolutely nothing about Angela Davis. This week we spent a bit of time discussing why this era would be kept out of the public American History curriculum. We also learned about how the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover, curtailed the 1st Amendment rights of our own U.S. citizenry through the COINTELPRO operation.
Weaving in the Ends
Some of our classes wanted a final group project to work on. Some of our classes were like, "You've got to be kidding me." We'll see what happens next week!