Sunday, March 13, 2016

Aloha to Our 2015-2016 School Year!

This past week we celebrated the completion of our 2015-2016 school year and also completed our Hawaii unit study with a combined End-of-School Luau!

It was so much fun.

Hawaii really exceeded my expectations as a unit study topic. Going in, I had very little enthusiasm. Being that I find direct sunlight (and thus sunny beaches) unpleasant, I have always regarded Hawaii as something I'd rather avoid.

But our study of Hawaii completely blew me away with awesomeness!

There is a ton of wonderful literature on Hawaii, and lots of interesting topics to study. We learned about lots of wildlife (sharks, whales), geography and weather (tsunamis, volcanoes, islands), and tons of interesting historical and cultural topics such as Pearl Harbor (about which I previously knew almost nothing) and the leper colony and Father Damien (fascinating stuff).

Here are a few of our favorite books from this unit study:

  • "Magic Tree House: High Tide in Hawaii"
  • "The Mystery of the Black Pearl" (Box Car Children)
    • Our 9yo loved this one so much that we read it twice.
  • "What Was Pearl Harbor?"
    •  This one is also being read twice. 
  • "Father Damien"
  • "In the Shadow of Pali"
  • "Under the Blood Red Sun" 
    • Okay, this wasn't a favorite, but it did illustrate the plight of Japanese Americans in Hawaii at the time of Pearl Harbor

We were also able to use a friend's pictures from a recent trip to Hawaii as a fun perk during our study. 

In short, Hawaii was a big success, and our luau was a ton of fun. Here are a few recipes!

The big hit of the night was the Pork Char Siu - it was a huge favorite. Definitely a keeper - plus, having my husband barbecue it kept the heat and mess out of the kitchen!

A few pictures:

Happy Summer, everyone!


  1. Replies
    1. You too! So excited for your upcoming big date with the four littles! :)

  2. Ah! Love! Our kids love love love The Boxcar Children! We also read the "I Survive" series -look into it! Right now we're studying about St.Patrick and Ireland :) so cool!

    1. Hi, Cathy! We discovered those this year too!! They're great. our 9yo has read almost all of those that the library has - Gettysburg, Nazi Invasion, Tsunami, etc. A great find. And thanks for the reminder - I need to get out the story of St. Patrick for Thursday!!

      Off-topic, but I'm sorta-kinda working my way through the CS/turmeric/BS protocol. I'm only remembering 1-2 times per day, but I figure that I'll just keep going till the supplies are gone. :)


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