I grew up in New England and my kids are growing up in New England, so reading about early American history is always pretty exciting for us. By a happy accident we rowed this book right around the anniversary of Paul Revere’s ride!
Listen my children and you shall hear/Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere.
Here’s what we did!
- We talked about when the ride of Paul Revere took place and I had her add the date ~ April 18, 1775 ~ to her timeline book.
- We found Boston on the map, and I reminded her of a previous row that took place there.
- We talked about the signal used to alert Paul Revere and the other riders to the movements of the British troops “one if by land, two if by sea”….referring to the number of lanterns that would be lit in the Old North Church tower.
- As suggested in the manual, I asked Rose if she knew why the Somerset was in italics; she remembered from a previous row that that is how you deal with ship names in text.
- I read her the information on Henry Wadsworth Longfellow from the manual, and we read The Village Blacksmith, another of his poems.
- There was a long vocab list in the manual ~ lots of new and interesting words in this poem…like “spectral”, “grenadiers”, and “impetuous”. I briefly went over them with her.
- Our manual pointed out that much of this story revolves around light. Using the suggestions found in that section, we examined the illustrations for all sources of light.
- The manual also includes an interesting section on colonial architecture. I shared a bit of that information with her, and we looked for examples in the illustrations.
- We examined the scene where the British ship is reflected in the water. We talked about how the artist portrayed that reflection and another, quite different, reflection later in the book.
- We put our math caps on and figured out how old Longfelllow was when he wrote this poem -it’s pretty amazing!
- We talked about what causes fog and why it tends to form over rivers, as it does in this story.
- Rose watched a Liberty Kids episode about Paul Revere’s Ride. And later, I bought the whole series for us to watch together over the summer.