Category Archives: "Coming of Man"

The Shop is Closed Next Week

This year instead of going to Rivercane Rendezvous (and here) we are heading for a week at the Kolb Site.  It is one of the few sites in America that encourages non-degreed folks to come and dig like the pros. After our visit last year, we were invited to come on back.  LR is taking a week off of “regular school” – although his teachers are sending along work.  I imagine he will be doing his figures and letters Abe Lincoln style – by our firelight.  We are staying at the Little Pee Dee State Park and like the dig site, it is in the middle of no where.  So, I’m not even bothering to take the computer. I’ll take the camera to document the Erd Kinder child’s interaction with the professional life.


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Filed under "Coming of Man", American History, AV, Camping/Basic Survival Skills, Geography and World Studies, Geology, Going outs (Field Trips), JV, LR, Practical Life - Elementary, Students

Going Out and Getting Busy – Part II

Stonehenge: New Discoveries

Thursday, February 16, 2012 – 7:00pm     College of Charleston, Simons Center for the Arts, Room 309   Dr. Parker Pearson

Stonehenge is one of the great mysteries of the prehistoric world. After seven years of new excavations and research, archaeologists now have a completely new understanding of the date and purpose of this enigmatic monument. One of the key break-through has been to understand how Stonehenge formed part of a wider complex of monuments and landscape features within Salisbury Plain. Professor Parker Pearson will present the results of the Stonehenge Riverside Project, and discuss the current theories about Stonehenge – an astronomical observatory, a centre of healing or a place of the ancestors – and the identity of its Neolithic builders.

We now know much more about the people who built Stonehenge – where they came from, how they lived, and how they were organized. Not only has the project discovered a large settlement of many houses, thought to be for Stonehenge’s builders, at the nearby henge enclosure of Durrington Walls but it has also re-dated Stonehenge and investigated its surrounding monuments and sites, many of which were hitherto undated and unknown. This presentation will provide a brief overview of some of the project’s highlights, including the recent discovery of Bluestonehenge. One of the greatest mysteries – why some of Stonehenge’s stones were brought from 180 miles away – is currently being investigated and its brand new results will be presented at the lecture.

Kolb Site

March 10, 2012 – 9:00am until 4:00pm

Last year we took an overnight trip to Darlington to visit the Kolb Site.  This year we are planning on going and joining the dig for a few days.

However, they have an amazing Public Day on March 10th which is worth the rutted entrance road.


Filed under "Coming of Man", American History, Camping/Basic Survival Skills, European History, Geography and World Studies, Going outs (Field Trips), Practical Life - Elementary

Goings Out and Getting Busy – Part I

We are so blessed to live in a college town.  In the next month and a bit, there are a lot of lectures that we are going to go absorb.  Darwin Week is one of our favorite series of lectures.  Last year it brought us the  Blood Sucking Flies lecture and the year before an amazing talk about Neanderthals.  Since we are located in “The Holy City,” it is appropriate that the Darwin Week include a discussion of faiths and the coming of the universe.  This year the them is “Does Evolution Lead to Evil.”

The Evolution of Complex Animals: New insights into some very old problems in evolution.  

Monday, February 6 at 4:00 p.m.   CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium          Dr. Athula Wikramanayake

Over 500 million years ago, the Cambrian “explosion” yielded a remarkable diversity of animals with bilateral symmetry — animals which have evolved to constitute 95% of the world’s fauna today. Did such complex “bilaterian” animals evolve from simple, non-bilaterian organisms?

Need for Speed:  The Evolution of Decision-Making in a Rapidly Changing World

Tuesday, February 7 at 4:00 p.m.    CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium          Dr. Catalin V. Buhusi

Despite our sophisticated cognitive abilities, humans are notoriously bad at making rational decisions. Similar biases, aversions, and reference-dependent choices have been reported in other species, suggesting that evolution has shaped our ancestors’ brain to make decisions in a different kind of environment. How can we reconcile the apparent necessity of rapid decision-making with the need for building a long-term sustainable society for future generations?

THE 2012 TALKS ON TAP DARWIN WEEK EVENT:  Does Evolution Lead to Evil?  Two Christian Perspectives

Tuesday, February 7 at 7:30 p.m.      Second Presbyterian Church    Dr. Brad Harrub and Rev. James B. Miller

Critics have claimed that regardless of whether evolution is true or not, to believe that humanity had its origins in earlier non-human species leads to racism, eugenics, euthanasia, abortion, and youth violence. Join Rev. Jim Miller and Dr. Brad Harrub for a fascinating conversation on the potential ethical implications of evolutionary theory, with a robust question and answer time to follow.

Astrobiology:     The Search for Life in the Universe

Wednesday, February 8 at 4:00 p.m.     CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium       Dr. Luke S. Sollitt

Are we alone in the Universe? Until recently, this fundamental question about humanity’s place in the cosmos was the province of philosophy or science fiction. The nascent science of Astrobiology seeks to turn science fiction into science research, and answer it once and for all. Dr. Sollitt will discuss three main research areas in this new field: the search for habitable planets elsewhere in the universe, the study of so-called “extremophiles” on Earth, and the search for habitable zones and life elsewhere in the Solar System.

The Ice-Age Dispersal of Humans to the Americas: Do Stones, Bones, and Genes Tell the Same Story?

Thursday, February 9 at 4:00 p.m.          CofC School of Sciences and Math Auditorium        Dr. Ted Goebel

When did modern humans colonize the Americas? From where did they come and what routes did they take? These questions have puzzled scientists for decades, but until recently answers have proven difficult to find. New techniques of molecular genetic analysis, and a reinvigorated search for early archaeological sites across the western hemisphere, recently have led to some astounding results.



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Filed under "Coming of Man", Astronomy, Biology, Geography and World Studies, Geology, Going outs (Field Trips), Physics, Science

JV – in the news

I just discovered that JV was interviewed for an article at our last Rendeveous in North Georgia.  Who knew.  Thought I’d share it.

This was during a class he took on primitive medicine – “You are out in the woods with little to nothing.  What are you going to do if…”

His take away – mint family – go with the mint family.

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Filed under "Coming of Man", American History, Botany, Camping/Basic Survival Skills, Construction Skills, gardening, Geography and World Studies, Going outs (Field Trips), JV, Practical Life - Elementary, Science, Students

AV’s Weekend at Work

AV spent the weekend up above Asheville again.  It was one of his “work fare” weekends. (He couldn’t afford the class, so he is working for the property’s owner for the right to take the class.)  He is starting to feel ownership in the project.  He spent the weekend learning about burning steel wool in light of what he learned about steel this summer and sorting tools and digging a trench for a French drain.

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Filed under "Coming of Man", AV, Camping/Basic Survival Skills, Construction Skills, Geography and World Studies, Practical Life - Elementary

Working Out Timelines

Recently one of the children I work with was having difficulty locating dates in a sequence on a timeline.  We’ve incorporated “Casa” work to show the values beyond just written numbers.  I love the flexibility of Montessori materials.

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Filed under "Coming of Man", Geography and World Studies, MMcC

Clock of Eras

BW and DW working out a linear version of the Clock of Eras

The Clock of Eras is one of the Classic Montessori Lesson.  As all of the history lessons, it covers multiple disciplines – history, science, and math.

The presentation is given after the long black stip.   It is a link between the God With No Hands lesson and the Time Line of Life Lesson. It is a different way of looking at time as well.  It is a chart.  Don’t give into the temptation to make it into a puzzle or a deep scientific lesson.  It is  there to help children think about how long the earth had been around been around before humans.

Also the idea that everything has a job to do for the glory of God.  All the creatures came before to help make the world ready for humans and their survival.

We need to define a few terms:

  • Eon (and super-eon) is the largest length of geological time.  There are 4 eons. Eons are divided into eras.  Haden, Archean, Proterozoic, and Phanerozoic
  • Era is a period of geological time.  There are 12 eras in geological time.  These times are divided into periods.
  • Periods are the smallest measure of geological time that is documented on the Clock of Eras.
Again this is an IMPRESSIONISTIC Lesson.  It is meant to be brief and not over detailed.  Often people add and add to the lesson.  You can loose the main impressions in the details.  Less is more in this lesson.
Begin with a question:  
I wonder how long off all of the creating took?
Remind the children of the long black strip. Remind them of the little amount of time man has been around in comparison to the length of time that God ordained for the earth.
Today we are going to look  at time in a different way.  We are going to think of it as if it were the face of the clock.  Would you like to think of time like the hours and minutes of a clock?
We are going to look at all the time that the Earth has had a crust as like the 12 hours on the face of the clock.  The clock on the wall has the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11.12.  Now look at our chart it has the same 12 numbers.
(Take your time here.  This requires younger children to process a good bit.)
Point at the black section.
We’ll look at this first time period it is called an EON.  Remember the God With No Hands lesson?  We talked about how hot the Earth was when she was created and how it took a very, very long time to cool off?  This section represents the last bit of that cooling – when the Earth began to look like a shriveled apple.
Point at the yellow section.
In the time between 4 and 10 is the EON that represents the beginnings of a world we would recognize.  Between 4 and 5 on the clock is when the rains  began to come down and cleanse the sky so an atmosphere could form.  The rains were also washing the Earth.  They washed salts into the seas.  Many scientists also believe that this is when God created the first life – like a little drop of  jelly.
Point to the clock and the time between 5 and 6
After the little blob of jelly, other creatures were created.  They floated in the seas.  They ate the salts and the abundant minerals that were in the seas. They had a great work.  These tiny creatures’ had the job of making the seas ready for larger creatures.  They did their jobs perfectly and the sea floors are full of their skeletons to this day.  This time between 4 and 10 is called the Archaic Eon.  These words are Greek and Archaic means “very old.”
Point to the blue, brown, green and red areas of the clock.
Things began to move very quickly and all of these together are one EON.  To help us understand the changes we are going to divide the EONs into ERAs.
Point to the blue area.
After all these creatures did the work that God gave them, God created other creatures.  Many of these creatures began to live not only in the water but also on the land – they are called amphibians. This happened a very long time ago. We call this time Paleozoic Era.  paleo – old and zoic – animals.  So what was this the time of?
Point to the brown area.
Then after the amphibians began to become more comfortable on land this era began.  Geologists call this time the Mesozoic Era.  Meso – middle and what did zoic mean?   This is the time that the great reptiles and giant grasses and ferns lived.  The reptiles could stay on land and were able to go where no animals had ever been before.
Now let’s look at the clock again.  There isn’t much time left.  How much do you think is left on our 12 hour clock?
Point to the green section.
After the Mesozoic Era, we arrive to the Cenozoic Era.  Ceno means recent and zoic means???  The recent plants and animals that came during this time are the same ones we would recognize. The great reptiles all died out in this time. God created the birds and animals we would know.  All this time has passed and there are no humans.  There is only a little bit of time left. Something very special happens at the very end of the Cenozoic Era.  This last little bit is a section of the Era is red.  It is a period (a smaller piece of of the Era).
Point to the Red thread.
It is a special time – this red time.  Finally we have come to the time when humans were made.  This time period  is called the Neozoic Period  – neo means new.  All this time – all these hours and we have been here just this little sliver of time.

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Filed under "Coming of Man", BW, DW, Geography and World Studies, Geology, Physics, Science