Follow the Drinking Gourd


A sailor named Peg Leg Joe sees a need and bravely makes a musical plan to help runaway slaves get to the safety of the North.  -FIAR Manual

We rowed Who Owns the Sun? and Follow the Drinking Gourd back-to-back.  I had originally intended to hold off on doing any of the FIAR titles that had to do with American History until later when I planned on doing a year of American History chronologically, but our friends that we sometimes row with wanted to do these titles, so I figured we’d be flexible and go along with it.  It usually ends up being more fun to row with another family.

Social Studies:

We started the week on a Sunday evening, watching the Rainbow Reading episode for Follow the Drinking Gourd…


We put our story disk on one of the Southern states…


And we sat down for breakfast to discuss some of the aspects of slavery and the underground railroad…



We met our friends for breakfast at a restaurant that owned a field that was growing cotton.




(A little Arizona sunshine for ya there, boys!)

We brought home one little boll of cotton to study.


I had the boys work to pull all of the seeds out of this one little piece of cotton plant.


It took them quite a while to pull all of the seeds out.



I wanted them to get a glimpse of the difficulty of the task.


In the end, I believe we counted 39 seeds from one little boll of cotton!

Science: Constellations

So I came out one evening after putting Dalton to sleep and I couldn’t find the rest of my people anywhere.  I finally found them out back with the iPad…


If you’ve never used one of those apps that allows you to track the stars/constellations/planets/space debris, you have seriously been missing out!  It is the coolest thing.


You can point the iPad at the ground and see the space stuff on the other side of the planet!


And several weeks later we finally got around to using the rest of the glow-in-the-dark stickers from our solar system pack to make constellations on the ceiling of the boys’ room!  We used this book as a guide…


And spent about 2 hours putting all of the stickers up.


The hardest part was trying to decide which constellations should go where and which direction they should face, etc…especially since they appear in different places during different seasons.  In the end, though, we were really happy with how they turned out.


Their room is an awesome place to sleep, now!


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