Cheaper By the Dozen

There are probably at least a dozen fun things you can do to bring fun and life to your homeschool today- but why not just pick one or two to enjoy with your children.

I’ll bet you have no idea where the word dozen comes from- unless you speak French! That’s right- dozen comes from the French word douzaine, which means a group of twelve. Maybe you’d like to have a croissant for breakfast, or french fries for lunch, or some french bread for dinner to remember the interesting origin of this unique word.

If you’re a Five in a Row user, you might find it interesting that one of the first things that pops into your mind when you think about a dozen is perhaps a very French story- Madeline by Ludwig Bemelmens. How many girls were there in the story? That’s right- twelve! One dozen girls that Miss Clavel looked after. If you haven’t read Madeline in a while- why not enjoy it today with your children. See how many pictures they can find where there are a dozen girls.

What do we mean by a bakers dozen? The term, of course, refers to a bakery giving their customer 13 items when they pay for twelve. Now where would a baker ever get such an idea? The concept goes back far earlier than our lifetimes. In fact, it dates back to medieval times when King Henry III (1200’s) decreed it law that any baker found to be shortchanging a customer was subject to severe penalties. (Gross things like getting their hand cut off, for instance- but don’t tell your younger children about that part!) So smart bakers began adding a 13th item to make SURE that a customer got all they had paid for! Go to a local donut shop and see if they offer a bakers dozen. It might be fun to buy donuts for breakfast with daddy on Saturday morning! (If you’ve done the delightful story Homer Price in Beyond Five in a Row you’ll instantly recall the hilarious donut scene from this wonderful story. Perhaps you’d like to go back re-read that chapter today!)

What a great opportunity to talk about giving more than is expected. How can we apply that today in our lives? The Bible talks about that very concept. (See Bible references below)

If you haven’t seen the movie, or read the book Cheaper by the Dozen– you’ll find it a delightful story set a long time ago- a fun summer pleasure to enjoy with your children.

See if you and your children can remember the names of all twelve disciples. (See Bible references below) By the way- see if your student knows that he is a disciple. The word disciple comes from the Latin word discipulus and means a learner.

Luke 6:38

Mark 3

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