Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Ambleside Online Year 4 - a review of our year

My original plan for covering Ambleside Online Year 4 which included substitutions to fit in with the Australian History of the time period covered is here:

An Educational Manifesto

We followed the schedule as shown in that post except for the short biography of James Ruse. About 3 chapters into the book it suddenly went missing - and I still haven't found it. Grrr...
So what did Moozle think of her books for this year?

Well these were her favourites:

The Incredible Journey
Our Sunburnt Country
History of Australia
How Did we Find Out About Numbers?
Karrawingi the Emu
Monarch of the Western Skies
The Story Book of Science

Probably the only books she complained about were George Finkel's James Cook, which she read herself and had no trouble narrating but thought was 'boring,' and Trial & Triumph, from which I only assigned selected chapters.

A few thoughts & ideas...

History of Australia - I read this aloud & edited slightly at times. It covers the same events as Our Sunburnt Country. Using both books isn't necessary because of this overlap but I preferred the first as I think it's written at a higher level and as I'm planning to continue with this book for years 5 & 6 it made sense to do it this way. Having said that, each book focusses a little differently to the other and I was happy for Moozle to read Our Sunburnt Country in her own time. If I needed my child to read independently and was short on time I'd give them OSC. 

Madame How & Lady Why - I posted the resources and rabbit trails we used with each chapter. It's not an easy book for children because it's not an easy book for a lot of adults, myself included, but I learnt so much with the reading & researching I did in making it accessible to Moozle. It connected well in places with the Story Book of Science which was helpful also as Moozle loved that book.

Story Book of Science - post & my Pinterest board with links of interest.

Reviews and Links to Resources:

Karrawingi the Emu
Monarch of the Western Skies
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow


We listened to the Arkangel audio books for All's Well That Ends Well and Macbeth, and we watched productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Macbeth. 
I think I still prefer the Naxos productions (e.g. The Tempest) that we've listened to over the Arkangel audios. The narrators are just as good and they usually cost less.

Age of Fable - the Preface was the hardest part of this book, and not just for my 10 year old. We both listened to that chapter on Librivox and then I read to Moozle after that. We've recently started Year 5 and she has started to read this book on her own.

Pandora's Box by Odilon Redon (1910-1912)

Picture Study

Edgar Degas, John William Waterhouse, J.M.W. Turner. Waterhouse is a great artist to look at alongside Age of Fable.

Music Appreciation

This year we concentrated on Handel &  Antonín Dvořák. See A Peek at a Week.

Read Alouds

I Can Jump Puddles
The Winged Watchman
A Fortunate Life


Timoleon was the only Plutarch life we managed to do this year and I must say I missed the old fella. We started the life of Themistocles today and there were some names I recognised from The Spartan (AO Year 12) that I read recently.

Robinson Crusoe - we listened to this Blackstone Audio book which I borrowed from the library & it  was very good


they call me mommy said...

I love this post, Carol! :) I'm struggling with Age of Fable for some reason...just the content matter...lovers etc...I know these stories are important to know, but I'm just hesitant for some reason...probably part of my problem is that I should pre-read the selections. Ugh. I find that difficult with a few students!

We all LOVE The Story Book of Science, we are just in the beginning chapters...that's interesting that your daughter found connections with MHLW! I can't wait to peek at your Story Book of Science link.

My oldest loved The Incredible Journey but HATED Bambi.

This is our first term for Plutarch! Overall, my dd is doing pretty well narrating and the Anne White Guides are so helpful!

Thanks for sharing what AO 4 looked like for you this go-round! :-) It's so helpful for us behind you!

they call me mommy said...

Oh and I can't wait to look into that audio Robinson Crusoe...although I just got a beautiful Scribner copy! :)

Carol said...

That's the reason I read Age of Fable to my daughter. I hadn't read the book before myself and her older brother didn't read it until he was older. If time is a problem you could put it aside until you have your next one doing year 4 & read it to both of them; leave it for a few years or even spread it out over a longer period of time so that you can fit it into your schedule & not feel overwhelmed?? The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is another book I wanted to read aloud even though my girl is a very good reader - it has some supernatural & superstitious elements I didn't want her reading on her own.

Tully Family said...

Thanks for sharing this- it's helpful to see a review. You've got so many wonderful books listed here!!!!

Carol said...

You're welcome, Heather.

Celeste said...

I always love reading your wrap-ups, Carol, since you are just a step ahead of me. (Well, a lot of steps ahead of me wisdom-wise, but just a step ahead of me with Moozle :)) We are finding your MHLW resources to be a great addition to our science studies this term, so thank you for compiling them!

Unknown said...

Very good ideas, Carol! Thank you! :)

Carol said...

Thanks, Celeste :)

Unknown said...

This is a wonderful wrap-up to the year. I've looked at Ambleside over the years and wondered how it would look in practice. Do you require many written narrations, or all they all oral?

Carol said...

Sara, I get them to do either an oral or written narration for each reading. It's been different for each child, but I gradually build up the written narrations I require and they can take different forms - eg an entry in a science notebook, a straight retelling or perhaps a more creative form such as a poem or a letter etc. For an older student I like them to do some sort of written work each day.