Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Harry Potter Unit Study

Morgan came up and requested a unit study, which isn't a normal thing. We listen to many audio books, and he requested Harry Potter. He's only permitted to hear/read/watch the first two, but after listening to book one he wanted to know if we could do it for school. Considering it was the first time he requested a book, I told him I'd think about it. I managed to hold him off for about 2 months because he wanted a specific time as to when he was going to do this book for school. Thus began our current unit study... I found a few resources and had to brain storm the rest of it for myself. So this past week we've done a variety of different things:

  • Located England On the map
  • Read a biography about J.K. Rowling (the boys are now convinced Nana must know her)
  • we discussed bullying
  • we played a homemade contractions game
  • read about bran owls and filled out a notebooking page
  • tracked a few characters from the book
  • learned about reptiles, specifically a boa constrictor (a tad creepy)
  • located Brazil on a map and noted (visually) the distance between Brazil and England
  • Made doughnuts (seriously)
  • Made Knickbocker Glory's
  • Reviewed home address
  • we played with our teaching clock and discussed time (Morgan made the correlation of needing to count by 5's! Hooray!)
  • Math facts based on the number 36
  • We talked about turning the other cheek
  • loving one another
  • being picked on even though you're doing the right thing
  • We learned how to address a letter
  • we added up how many letters Harry received (it's over 100) via addition
  • we mapped our neighborhood
  • discussed lots of new vocabulary words and notebooked the
  • keeping a map of England and noting places mentioned on it
  • Northern and Southern Hemispheres
We also have a few crafts coming up, not to mention a bunch of fun science experiments. We'll also take advantage to learn about many of the herbs growing in the yard, start our own herb garden, and will be doing some star gazing this winter. We've not gotten very far in the book either.

Just for fun the boys made doughnuts as Harry's Uncle retrieves one for lunch. They had a lot of fun eating them. (I'll post the recipe since it's a yummy sugar-free one.)

Honey Doughnuts

We also happen to live in a house that has a cupboard under the stairs. Because, in the beginning of the book, this is Harry's bedroom, I had the boys retrieve their sleeping bags and try out the cupboard out. Jayden was all about it, but Morgan isn't fond of the cupboard. He was willing to crawl in so long as he could take his flashlight with him. (Thus the picture at the top of this post!)

Morgan, in the doorway of the closet

Jayden back in under the stairs, pretending he's asleep..

The boys had a lot of fun making Knickerbocker Glorys, which is kind of like a single serving ice cream trifle.. We used our Honey Ice Cream, homemade Raspberry jam (sweetened with stevia), whipped cream, and topped off with chocolate shavings. They were highly impressed.

Morgan's Knickerbocker Glory..

I also made the boys some recipe notebooking pages where they can take a picture of their concoction and paste it on, as well as rate the recipe with stars provided. They love coloring in the stars.. silly boys! We'll see if they enjoy eating Pumpkin Pasties as much..

Old-Fashioned Spicy Doughnuts

1 1/4 c milk

1/4 c butter

1/2 t salt

1 package yeast

1/4 c lukewarm water

about 5 cups sifted flour

1 1/2 t cinnamon

1/4 nutmeg

1/8 t mace

3/4 c honey

3 eggs

Directions: Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water. Scald milk add butter, honey and salt, cool to lukewarm. Add year and 2 1/2 c flour. Beat until smooth. Cover and let rise until bubbly Mix spices and add to above mixture. Add remaining flour to make a dough that can be kneaded, and knead until smooth. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk. Roll out 1/2 inch thick and cut with floured doughnut cutter. Let rise on board until doubled in size. Fry in deep fat (375F) 3 minutes, or until lightly browned, first on one side, then on the other. Drain on unglazed paper. Makes about 3 dozen doughnuts.

Notes: This recipe came from a VERY VERY old cookbook. I don't use mace or nutmeg, I just add extra cinnamon or mixed spices. These are NOT sweet. As in they have a hint of sweetness, they are NOT overly sweet like a normal doughnut. We like them, we aren't use to SWEET anymore. If you want them sweeter try adding another 1/4 honey or perhaps a 1/2 t of stevia. I drain mine on a paper bag. I also freeze the dough after the final rise because this makes up a LOT. The "day old" doughnuts can be a bit tough, just zap them in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Good as new. I promise.


tdrowlee said...

You can check out this site for tons of Hogwarts ideas - my sister did this Hogwarts Summer Correspondence School with her boys for homeschool - they took "harry potter" class names and made them into real homeschool lessons - herbology was a class on plants, care of magical creatures became care of muggle creatures, and so on.

It is all free and you can find the info at the above addy
Tristan from HSS

Andrea said...

How totally cool! My 10 yr old would LOVE it if I did a Harry Potter Unit study....(he doesn't need more encouragment- he's already obsessed with Harry Potter lol)

Julie said...

What a fun way to learn! Thanks for sharing.