Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Norse Myths

Moonshine has been thoroughly enjoying the Norse myths, and it really shows in her work.  She has become such a wonderful artist-- quite attentive to detail and completely absorbed in what she's doing.  Her enthusiasm is delightful.

It's my second time introducing a child to these wonderful stories, and this time around I'm pulling ideas from two additional sources-- Charles Kovacs' Norse Mythology and Eugene Schwartz's Grade 4 files-- as well as D'Aulaire's Norse Myths.  When I did this block with Sunburst so many, many moons ago, I just had the latter book to pull from, and it was fine.

This is not the first time that I'm left wondering if too many sources is a bad thing.  The Kovacs' book was just released in the last couple of years, and because I've grown quite fond of his work, I was eager to buy it.  Twice, as it turned out, because I inadvertently loaned out my first copy.  Anyway, so far it's a lovely book.  Both the Kovacs' and D'Aulaire's have engaging stories.  Visually though, the D'Aulaire's is incomparable.

There are discrepancies between the two re-tellings-- different names, different outcomes, and a different order to the stories.  Some characters are highlighted more in each source, which is neither good nor bad, just an observation.  I will probably continue forward with both books when we return to finish up next month.

The files from Eugene Schwartz have some good phrasing with the writing examples.  Moonshine wants to tell every part of the story in her writing, and I found the beginning a good compromise with some of his phrasing and some of our own.  Moonshine was smitten with the beginning of the Kovacs' story, so we borrowed his poetic introduction as well.  We're also borrowing ideas from Sunburst's main lesson book when it feels right.  It seems like that was created a lifetime ago... has it only been three years?

Both Moonshine and I were completely surprised with the quality of her work this time around.  There has definitely been a palpable shift.

We're having a bit of an issue with the quality of the latest batch of main lesson books that I ordered.  The ink from the fountain pen runs right though!  We've ended up doing a lot of pasting into our books.  As you can see below, it looks like she forgot to make a background and paste one in.   Oops.

When she's done with this block, I plan to have her go back to these images and work in some celtic knot form drawings where she can fit them in.

Sunburst would like me to point out that the following is a poem that she and I wrote together when she did this lesson.  Moonshine liked it so much that she asked to copy it into her own book.  Except for the opening pages, the rest of the writing was created from Moonshine's verbal retelling of the stories, and then me telling her, "It's too long, how can we make it short enough to fit in your book?"



  1. *Seriously* inspired by their beautiful main lesson books! Thank you for sharing them!
    Btw, I keep writing comments, but they aren't showing up for me. I have big time commenting issues with blogger and usually can't comment at all, so hopefully this will show up! Anyway, always love your blog and hearing about your exciting adventures! :)

  2. Beautiful work here Moonshine. The Misty Cottage twins are learning through the Norse myths this year too - as soon as they come back from their grandparents' house next week I will show them your lovely work so they can feel inspired as I do. Thank you.

  3. Thanks, Shonda! You are always so sweet! xo

  4. awesome, as always!

  5. Thanks Misty Cottage and Saraelise! :)

  6. These are lovely, Moonshine. I am really looking forward to starting these stories, although we have another 18 months or so to go before we do. They look like a lot of fun. I love your Odin! He looks very cool.

  7. I am so glad to have been led to your blog! Your children's work is delightful and very inspiring. I particularly like the drawing of Odin today. Here is a link to a few of our Norse myth pictures - my daughter is also in grade 4. Best Wishes, Rachel

  8. Thanks so much, Cathy!

    Thanks, Rachel. I'm heading straight over to check out your blog! :)

  9. Moonshine, I absolutely love the little knotted bird at the bottom of the page about Idun. I have made a bird from a knot like that before, too... it's one of my favorite doodles, actually. Your work is really, really fantastic. I am totally impressed :)

  10. Thanks, Alyss. Your comment really lit up Moonshine's face. :)

  11. Gorgeous! Moonshine, I am showing these to Alex for inspiration! Thanks for sharing. xo

  12. Thanks, Cari! We would love to see Alex's work. We miss his smiling face! And yours, too... big hugs across the ocean from all of us.

  13. Incredible work, Moonshine!! It is clear to see how much she is enjoying this block. Really outstanding work as always. We will reach Gr 4 for the first time next year and it is interesting to read what you think about the various resources. No idea just yet what we will go with. Thank you Moonshine for showing us your work! You must feel really proud.

  14. She is absolutely beaming. Thanks so much for the sweet comments, Kelly.

  15. Your work made me smile there is so much beauty. Thank you

    1. Thank you, elephant! :)


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