The last couple of months in our homeschool history club, History’s Heroines, have been really fun ones (both for me and the girls).
In February, we met to discuss Lucille Ball. Before their study, I don’t think any of them knew who she was, nor had they seen any episodes of the I Love Lucy show. I’m happy to say that even after all these years, Lucy is still relevant. The girls loved her!
There was more to this lady than just a character on tv. The girls and I learned a lot from studying about her. As a young woman in acting school, Lucille Ball had been told that she would never have an acting career. She just didn’t have what it takes. The girls discussed different ways that they have of dealing with and rising above discouragement. They also learned about Lucy being questioned by the Committee for Un-American Activities regarding a possible affiliation with the Communist Party*. We had a great discussion about the public good vs. personal freedom and who should have the right to make those kinds of decisions.
Surprising facts that I learned about Lucy:
- Her hair was not naturally red. She used a secret formula made from Egyptian Henna in order to keep her signature color in place.
- She was sometimes called the Queen of the Bs for her many pre-I Love Lucy roles in Hollywood B movies. I’d love to watch some of those.
- The real Lucy and the fictional character Lucy were pregnant at the same time (season 2). Lucy’s onscreen pregnancy kept pace with her real one. They filmed a couple of episodes ahead so that her real-life c-section could take place on the same day as her tv delivery.
The activity I chose for that month was chocolate making. Anyone care to guess why?
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Next week, I’ll share our March activity and discussion on Julia Child.
*If you are looking for a good middle-grade historical fiction book that discusses the red scare and the Commtittee for Un-American Activity’s hearings, I’d recommend The Loud Silence of Francine Green by Karen Cushman.