Parashah Re’eh (See)

Please join our family in reading in this week’s Parashah Re’eh, which means See. The themes of this week’s Parashah are blessings, curses, sorrow and joy.


Scripture Readings:

  1. Torah: Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17
  2. Prophets:  Isaiah 54:11-16:17
  3. B’rit Chadashah (New Covenant):  Besort HaGe’ulah (Gospels) John 16:1-17:26 and Iggerot (Letters) 1 John 4:1-6

Parashah in a Nutshell:  This week’s Parashah starts with Moses telling the Children of Israel, “See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse”.  The blessing that will come when they fulfill G‑d’s commandments, and the curse if they abandon them. These should be proclaimed on Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal when the people cross over into the Holy Land.  The Parashah goes on to explain that a temple should be established in “the place that G‑d will choose to make dwell His name there,” where the people should bring their sacrifices to Him.  It is forbidden to make offerings to G‑d in any other place. Moses goes onto tell them that a  false prophet, or one who entices others to worship idols, should be put to death. The identifying signs for kosher animals and fish, and the list of non-kosher birds are repeated. A tenth of all produce is to be eaten in Jerusalem, or else exchanged for money with which food is purchased and eaten there. In certain years this tithe is given to the poor instead. The firstborn cattle and sheep are to be offered in the Temple, and their meat eaten by the kohanim (priests). The mitzvah (commandment to of charity obligates a Jew to aid a needy fellow with a gift or loan. On the Sabbatical year (occurring every seventh year), all loans are to be forgiven. All indentured servants are to be set free after six years of service.  The Parashah concludes with the laws of the three pilgrimage festivals—Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot—when all should go to “see and be seen” before G‑d in the Holy Temple.

The Besort HaGe’ulah (Gospel) reading Yeshua continues his warning to the disciples about what will happen when he goes to the Father.  He comforts them by letting them know he will send the Helper, the Holy  Spirit. He further tells the disciples that their sorrow over Him leaving will turn into joy. He tells him that he has overcome world and that they can have peace in him. Chapter 17 is Yeshua’s High Priestly Prayer to the Father. The Iggerot (Letters) reading John tells us to test the spirits to see if they are from G-d.  We must discern the difference between the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error or delusion.

Study Helps and Projects

  1. Parashah in a Nutshell Video
  2. Adult Study Outline
  3. Children’s Study Outline
  4. Good Intentions Teaching by D.T. Lancaster (Beth Immanuel)
  5. Children’s Worksheet
  6. Video for Children for the Parashah from Torah Tots
  7. Craft:  That All May Be One Coloring Sheet




Parashah Eikev

Please join our family as study this week’s Torah Parashah is Eikev, which means Consequences or Because.  The themes of this Parashah eiare redemption, rebellion, repentance, and restoration.

Scripture Readings:

  1. Torah:  Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25
  2. Prophets: Isaiah 54:11-55:5
  3. B’rit Chadashah (New Covenant): Besort HaGe’ulah (Gospels) – John 13:31-15:27 & Iggerot (Letters) – Romans 8:31-39

Parashah in a Nutshell:

In this week’s Parashah, Moses continues his closing remarks to the children of Israel. He reminds them that G-d redeemed them from Egypt and that if they keep G-d’s commands in he Torah, they will prosper in the land promised to their forefathers (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob).  Moses recalls the failings of the first generation who were rebellious — their worship of the Golden Calf, the rebellion of Korach, the sin of the spies, angering of G‑d at Taveirah, Massah and Kivrot Hataavah.  He also speaks about their repentance and forgiveness that G-d has shown them through the Second Tablets that G-d made for them to restore His children to Him.  He calls their attention to the fact that for the forty years in the wilderness that G-d sustained them and it was to teach them that they need to rely solely upon G-d.  Moses describes the land they are about to enter and how it is blessed with the “seven kinds”.  He commands them to destroy the idols/gods of the current inhabitants, and to beware not to become prideful and remember who provided the land to them. In other words, to circumcise their hearts.

The Besort HaGe’ulah (Gospel) reading reveals that Yeshua (Jesus) is the way, the truth, and life. Yeshua promises to send the Ruach HaKodesh (the Holy Spirit). Yeshua teaches that He is the true vine and G-d is the vinedresser. Therefore, whoever abides in Him will bear much fruit. He reminds us that we must keep G-d commands and love one another. He warns of the hatred of the world and we are not of the world.  The Iggerot (Letters) reading Paul describes G-d’s everlasting love for us. So much is his love that he did not spare His Son’s life. We have everlasting life in His resurrection. He intercedes on our behalf before G-d. Nothing can separate us from the love of G-d in Yeshua. HalleluYah!

Study Helps & Projects:

  1. For Children: Torah Explorers
  2. Adult Study Outline
  3. Audio of Parashah Readings
  4. Video for Torah Portion
  5. Video for Children on the Torah Portion
  6. Make a mezuzah
  7. Children’s Lessons from YMTOI
  8. Coloring Page from Challah Crumb

Blessings from our family  to yours,



Grammar Course

This is a half-credit remedial grammar course that I developed for childiadren in order to help them understand the parts of speech. This course would be appropriate for upper elementary school to middle school aged children or those struggling with understanding these concepts.

The first part of the course is presented in a traditional Charlotte Mason method, and the second half using a project pack and  workbook. There are several resources used in this course. Some are available online for free others are required purchases.

You could add several literature selections and spelling to this course to create a one-credit language arts class.


(1) Grammar-land by M.L. Nesbitt.  A hard copy of the book can be purchased through Amazon or downloaded onto a Kindle.  You can download the text for free on Google Books or accessed for free online at Internet Archive.  The LibriVox (audiobook) can also be downloaded.

(2)  Daily Grammar website for better understanding of the parts of speech introduced in the book.

(3) A project pack, Operation: English Grammar, which can be purchased from Currclick.

(4) The Sentence English Workbook which can be purchased from Milestone Books.


Before beginning to read Grammar-land, download the worksheets for the book.

Day 1:  Read the introduction of Grammar-land.  Answer the following questions:  What is Grammar-land?  Where is Grammar-land?  Have you ever been to Grammar-land?  Who is Judge Grammar? Who are the nine parts of speech?

Day 2:  Read Chapter 1 and complete worksheet.

Day 3:  Read Chapter 2 and complete worksheet.

Day 4: Read Chapter 3 and complete worksheet.

Day 5: Read Chapter 4 and complete worksheet.

Day 7: Read Chapter 5 and complete worksheet.

Day 8:  Read Chapter 6 and complete worksheet.

Day 10:  Read Chapter 7 and complete worksheet.

Day 11: Read Chapter 8 and complete worksheet.

Day 12:  Read Chapter 9 and complete worksheet.

Day 13: Read Chapter 10 and complete worksheet.

Day 14:  Read Chapter 11 and complete worksheet.

Day 15: Read Chapter 12 and complete worksheet.

Day 16: Read Chapter 13 and complete worksheet.

Day 17:  Read Chapter 14 and complete worksheet.

Day 18:  Read Chapter 15 and complete worksheet.

Day 19:  Read Chapter 16 and complete worksheet.

Day 20: Read Chapter 17 and complete worksheet.

Day 21 – 39: Complete six exercises each day in Daily Grammar under the heading of Parts of Speech. Alternatively, you can purchase The Eight Parts of Speech Workbook from Milestone Books and complete a page a day in the workbook.

Day 40-57:  Complete the  Project Pack Operation: English Grammar, which can be purchased from Currclick.

Day 58-90:  Sentence Study. A Sentence is a group of words that expresses a complete thought. All sentences have two parts – the subject (tells who or what the sentence is about) and a predicate (tells what the subject does or is).

  1. View this video on how to diagram a sentence.
  2. View this video on how to diagram sentences.

Complete a worksheet a day from the Sentence English Workbook for Days 58 – 90.


SY2017/2018: Second Semester Phyiscal Fitness (P.E.)

The Second Semester of Physical Fitness for the SY 2017/2018 consists of an 18 week physical education study. The First Semester of Physical Fitness consists of an 18 week health educatioexercise.pngn study.  Thus both semesters make a year’s study of Physical Fitness.

We are using the book Health, Hygiene, and Nutrition for Grades 3-4 by Frank Schaffer Publications along with various videos, activities, and projects for the health education semester.

Please note that I developed this course for my children who are in grades 4, 3, and kindergarten.  For my kindergartener, I change all written assignments into oral narrative responses.

Week #1:  What is Physical Fitness?  Watch this video about the five components of physical fitness and this video on the same topic.  Answer the following questions:  (1) What are the five components of physical fitness? and (2) What are the skill components of physical fitness? You will take a physical fitness assessment today consisting of:  (1) a timed sprint, (2) a lifting assessment, (3) sit and reach flexibility assessment, (4) how many sit-ups can you complete.  Record your results in your health journal.  Look at this physical activity pyramid. Discuss the pyramid. Print a copy out for your health journal.

Week #2:  Tracking Your Physical Activity. Look up the definition of physical activity.  Read this article about physical activity.  Write the definition of physical activity in your health journal.  Watch and do the flexibility yoga on this video. (If your family does not approve of yoga, you can substitute this stretching video.) Complete page 75 of your work text.  Purchase a pedometer and track your steps daily in your health journal because at the end of the semester we will prepare a graph. You can use the 2017_2018 Physical Activity Log to track your steps.  Also, you can track your daily physical activity on this calendar.

Week #3:  What is Your Target Heart Rate?  Watch this video on how to feel your heart working, watch this video on how to determine your target heart rate, and this video on how to take your heart rate.  (We have a pulse oximeter at our home, so we use that device to take the pulse rate.)  Calculate your target heart rate and record it in your health journal or complete work text complete page 77. Continue to track your daily physical activity and steps in your health journal.

Week #4:  Flexibility Test.  Place a yard stick beside you and measure the distance of five stretches and record the inches in your health journal or complete page 78 of the work text. Continue to track your daily physical activity and steps in your health journal.

Week #5:  Strength Test.  We will test your upper, middle, and lower body strength.  The test includes the following activities:  (1) How many push ups can you complete?,  (2) How many sit ups can you complete?, and (3) How long can you stay in a position like you are sitting on a chair with your back against the wall?  Record your results on page 79 of the work text or in your health journal.  If you are using your work text, what are your ratings?  Are you considered to be high, average, below or low fitness level?  Continue to track your daily physical activity and steps in your health journal.

Weeks #6: What is Blood Pressure?  Watch this video about blood pressure and hypertension.  Answer these questions:  What is the name of the machine used to take your blood pressure?, (2) What is hypertension?, and (3) What are the parts of your blood pressure reading? Take your blood pressure. (We have a blood pressure machine at home.  If you don’t have one, you can take your blood pressure on a machine at a pharmacy, grocery store, and even Walmart.)   Record your blood pressure in your health journal. Complete an exercise video.  Continue to track your daily physical activity and steps in your health journal.

Weeks #7-13:  Tracking Physical Activity.   There are many workout videos available online.  Choose one for to complete each week. Continue to track your steps and record your physical activity.

Week #14-15:  Preparing the End of Semester Report. Begin to work on entering your steps into a spreadsheet program like Excel.  Choose a workout video to complete. Continue to track your steps and record your physical activity.

Week #17:  Creating the Graph for the End of Semester Report. Create a graph (bar or line graph) in Excel of your steps for this semester.  Write an essay of what you have learned this Semester and insert the graph into your essay.  Continue to track your steps and record your physical activity.

Week #18:  Physical Fitness Final Assessment. Complete page 86 of the work text.  Retake the physical fitness assessment from Week #1 consisting of:  (1) a timed sprint, (2) a lifting assessment, (3) sit and reach flexibility assessment, (4) how many sit-ups can you complete.  Record your results in your health journal. Prepare a graph to compare your results with your Week #1 results in Excel.  Was there improvement? Include these graph in your end of semester essay.



SY 2017/2018: Fine Arts Second Semester (Art)

The Second Semester of Fine Arts for the SY 2017/2018 consists of an 18 week art history study of Winslow Homer and watercolor techniques. The First Semester of Fine Arts (Music) is also an 18 week study and thus together make a year’s study of Fine Arts.

Winslow Homer
February 24, 1836 – September 29, 1910

Winslow Homer, an American landscape painter and printmaker is best known for his marine subjects,  he is considered one of the foremost painters in 19th-centuryWinslow_Homer_by_Sarony America.  His genre of art is called pastoralism and realism. He is self-taught and began his career working as a commercial illustrator. He began oil painting and produced major studio works characterized by weight and density. He then moved onto working extensively in watercolor. Homer was very private about his personal life and his methods, but he clearly had independence of style and a devotion to American subjects. His impact in the art world was revolutionary.

He was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1836 and is the second of three sons of Charles Savage Homer and Henrietta Benson Homer.  He grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He had a happy childhood and was an average student in school; however, his art talent was very evident.

After his graduation from high school graduation, his father arranged for an apprenticeship to J. H. Bufford, a Boston commercial lithographer where he worked on sheet music covers and other commercial work. In 1857, he began a freelance career contributing illustrations of Boston life and rural New England life to magazines such as Ballou’s Pictorial and Harper’s Weekly.

His early work consisted of commercial engravings of urban and country social scenes. These pieces were characterized by clean outlines, simplified forms, dramatic contrast of light and dark, and lively figure groupings.  These were the qualities that remained important throughout his career.  His quick success was mostly due to his strong understanding of graphic design and also to the adaptability of his designs to wood engraving.

In 1859, he opened a studio in the Tenth Street Studio Building in New York City, which was considered the artistic and publishing capital of the United States. Until 1863, he attended classes at the National Academy of Design, and studied briefly with Frédéric Rondel, who taught him the basics of painting. In only about a year of self-training, Homer was producing excellent oil work.

The American Civil War had a tremendous impact on Homer’s artistic style.  Harper’s sent Homer to the front lines of the American Civil War (1861–1865) to sketch battle scenes and camp life. His initial sketches were of the camp, commanders, and army.  He turned a few of his military sketches into paintings.

After the war, Homer refocuses his artist vision. Homer turned his attention primarily to scenes of childhood and young women, reflecting nostalgia for simpler times.  Homer was also interested in postwar subject matter that conveyed the silent tension between two communities seeking to understand their future. He demonstrates a maturity of feeling, depth of perception, and mastery of technique which was immediately recognized. His realism was objective, true to nature, and emotionally controlled.

Before exhibiting at the National Academy of Design, Homer traveled to Paris, France, in 1867 where he remained for a year. His most praised early painting, Prisoners from the Front, was on exhibit at the Exposition Universelle in Paris at the same time. This was a tremendous honor.  While he did not study formally when in Paris, he practiced landscape painting  and focused on depicting scenes from Parisian life. He also continuing to work for Harper’s during this time period.

Homer became a member of The Tile Club, a group of artists and writers who met frequently to exchange ideas and organize outings for painting, as well as foster the creation of decorative tiles. For a short time, he designed tiles for fireplaces.

When he returned to the United States, Homer started painting with watercolors during his 1873  summer stay in Gloucester, Massachusetts. From the beginning, his technique was natural, fluid and confident, demonstrating his talent for a difficult medium.   Homer spent two years (1881–1882) in the English coastal village of Cullercoats, Tyne and Wear. Many of the paintings at Cullercoats took as their subjects working men and women and their daily activities.

By 1900, Homer reached financial stability.  His paintings fetched good prices from museums and he began to receive rents from real estate properties. Homer continued producing excellent watercolors, mostly on trips to Canada and the Caribbean. His late seascapes are especially valued for their dramatic and forceful expression of natures powers, and for their beauty and intensity.

Homer died in 1910 at the age of 74 in his Prouts Neck studio and was interred in the Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His painting, Shooting the Rapids, Saguenay River, remains unfinished.

In 1962, the U.S. Post Office released a commemorative stamp honoring Winslow Homer. Homer’s famous oil painting “Breezing Up”  was chosen as the image for the design of this issue. On August 12, 2010, The Postal Service issued a 44-cent commemorative stamp featuring Homer’s “Boys in a Pasture” at the APS Stamp Show in Richmond, Virginia.

Works To Be Studied

We will utilize the Charlotte Mason method of picture study.  This Semester in Fine Arts we will study the following seven works by Homer:

  1. Prisoners from the Front
  2. Home Sweet Home
  3. Snap the Whip
  4. The Fog Warning
  5. Deer in the Adirondacks
  6. The Fox Hunt
  7. The Turtle Pond

First introduce Winslow Homer to your children by reading the narrative above.  There is a documentary style movie made about Winslow Homer’s life, Winslow Homer: An American Original, you may want to check your local library, Amazon or Ebay to see if you can find it.  It is difficult to find because it is out of print.  Also, discuss the historical events that unfolded during the artist’s life. In the case of Homer, the American Civil War. Discuss the type of  personality Winslow Homer had and if it had any impact upon the subject of his works or the medium he used.

For each piece of work ask the children to find the artists signature.  Discuss what the work shows and why they think the artists choose to create the work. Discuss the background information, if available of each piece.  Discuss the medium used to make the work — watercolor, oil pastel, pencil, etc. Discuss the color palette of the work. Be sure to place the work in a prominent place in your house where they can see it each day.  (In our house it’s hung on the refrigerator.) Allow your children to view the work until they can see it in their mind’s eye and describe it to you without looking at it. Display and discuss one work per week of the semester. At a minimum, the picture study component of this semester of Fine Arts should take seven weeks.


These resources should be completed prior to the end of this semester of Fine Arts. My children will complete one activity per week. Thus, taking ten weeks to complete.

  1. Video:  Winslow Homer: An American Artist
  2. Video:  Winslow Homer’s America
  3. Video:  Winslow Homer Art History Lectures Part 1, Part 2
  4. Activity (with Video):  How to Clean Watercolor Brushes
  5. Activity (with Video):  Watercolor Techniques
  6. Activity (with Video): Painting Like Homer
  7. Activity (with Video:  How to Paint a Simple Landscape in Watercolor
  8. Vocabulary for Fine Arts Second Semester (Art)
  9. Homer Notebooking Page
  10. Quizlet to Study Vocabulary and Works

Second Semester Fine Arts (Art) Examination & Grading

In order to issue a grade for my children for the second semester of fine arts in art, I evaluate and issue a grade for the notebooking page completed. I will also give my children the Fine Arts Second Semester Examination (Art) on the last week of the course. Alternatively , the Quizlet can be used to generate an examination which is automatically graded. The final grade of this semester is determined by averaging the notebooking grade with the examination.