Friday, February 27, 2015

Five In A Row: Night of the Moonjellies

We recently started another new-to-us book that LittleBear REALLY likes called Night of the Moonjellies.  It's about a little boy in New England who finds two moonjellies on a beach and then after a hectic day helping in his Grandparents' beachside restaurant, finds out more about where they belong.  It's out-of-print, expensive and very hard to find, but we hope to find a copy to add to our library since LittleBear likes it so much.

 the other one whose paws I could not get into our first picture...

Forgive the scarceness of pictures this week.  I'm not sure what happened there...

We also enjoyed talking about the beach, the ocean and jellyfish, including their anatomy and what they do all day.  Also, much of my family is from New England, so we learned a little bit about the regions of the US and continued our attempt to learn all 50 US States and their Capitols.

LittleBear also learned how to tell time on a clock with hands!  He expressed interest a couple weeks back and I realized we didn't have a clock like that in our house, so I found one I liked at Hobby Lobby and put it in the bathroom.  About that same time, our Math-U-See book started teaching lessons on it and now he's got a pretty good grip on it!

All in all, it was a good week and we are looking forward to the next book!!

Resources and printables I used for Night of the Moonjellies can be found at:

Go Along Books we used for Night of the Moonjellies (* indicate ones we especially liked):
*Hello Ocean by Pam Munoz Ryan
*Ocean Day by Shelley Rotner and Ken Kreisler
*Our Wet World by Sneed B. Collard III
*The Seashore Book by Charlotte Zoltow
*Jellyfish by Leighton Taylor
*Jellyfish by Rebecca Stefoff
*Discovering Jellyfish by Loriijo Metz

*See Under the Sea by Kate Davies
*Clam-I-Am by Tish Rabe
Southern New England by Thomas and Virginia Aylesworth
Northern New England by Thomas and Virginia Aylesworth
Connecticut by Susan Evento

Adding our story disk to New's a bit crowded on our map.  Lots of great stories!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Real Life Snow Day!!

We got about two inches of snow this morning that is now all melted, but that didn't stop us from enjoying ourselves and playing in it a bit!!

Sing it with me!  "Catch a falling snowflake, put it in your pocket, save it for a rainy day"...ok, maybe not.

 This one was absolutely delighted with the falling snow and super disappointed when she couldn't "make footprintses" anymore...

 At BSF this morning!!

Monday, February 16, 2015

Five In A Row: Katy and the Big Snow

For the past two weeks, we've been reading Katy and the Big Snow, which is a favorite around here for most of us.  I *almost* hoped it would snow as a great book illustration, but alas, it did not (probably just as well as LittleBear loathes anything cold).

Our calendar board for the week...

For Bible/Character Building, we talked about Responsibility and what that means.  We also talked about how Katy's responsibility was to clear the snow and I challenged LittleBear to think about what his responsibilities are.  In addition, we read stories each day out of our Children's Book of Character Building Book 2 and also out of our Read and Share Devotional.

For language arts and math, we continued to do pages out of Math-U-See Primer (lesson 25) and Explode the Code 2 (lesson 9).  We also finished our Handwriting Without Tears Kindergarten book.

For Social Studies, we talked about community helpers (sing it with me! "Oh, who are the people in your neighborhood?...")/running a city and then built our own city!  I had LittleBear cut out labels and then build and label each building.  We talked about what the city would be like if it didn't have an X (like a grocery store or fire station).

Cutting out labels! 

A Fire House and Pharmacy labeled...

The whole city with a pile of unused bricks in the middle...I think our white furry helper also took out a couple of buildings when his curiosity got the best of him...

Our beloved white furry helper who ALWAYS comes running when we sit on the couch to read a book together...

After that, we spent the rest of the week focusing on developing map skills.  We talked about where we are on a map from planet to street address and also reading a map, north/south/east/west, etc.  LittleBear loves maps, so this part of the week really interested him!

LittleBear's work this particular day...He did it all himself and I am crazy proud...this is huge improvement for him!

For Science, we talked a little about winter, but mostly about snow, snowflakes, etc.  LittleBear's favorite was learning about "Snowflake Bentley," a farmer in Vermont who was fascinated by snowflakes and tried to photograph them in the late 1800s-early 1900s.  When I explained that Grams' family lived in that same area of Vermont, he got super excited!

All-in-all, we enjoyed these two weeks and are already enjoying our new book this week!  Hooray for books!

Resources and printables I used for Katy and the Big Snow can be found at:
People In Your Neighborhood on Youtube (we watched several different ones of these)

Go Along Books we used for Katy and the Big Snow (* indicate ones we especially liked):
*The Mitten by Alvin Tresselt
*The Mystery of the Missing Red Mitten by Steven Kellogg
*The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
*There's A Map on My Lap by Tish Rabe
*The Tiny Snowflake by Arthur Ginolfi
*t's Snowing by Gail Gibbons
*Flakes and Flurries by Josepha Sherman
*Snow by Uri Shultevitz
*The Secret Life of a Snowflake by Kenneth Libbrecht
*Snowplows by Jeffrey Zuehlke
*Follow that Map!  A First Book of Mapping Skills by Scot Ritchie
*North, South, East, West by Franklyn Mansfield
*Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
*The Story of Snow by Mark Cassino with Jon Nelson, PhD
*What Do People Do All Day?  by Richard Scarry
*In the Town All Year Round by Rotraut Susanne Berner

Putting our story disk on the map, since we don't have a "Geopolis," we chose NYC who was receiving record snowfall at the time...

Friday, January 30, 2015

Five In A Row: Storm In The Night

This week we read a book I was initially hesitant to read, but has ended up being a really great choice for us.  I was concerned someone might start becoming afraid of thunderstorms, but ironically, the opposite has happened in that now I have two kids who love to talk about them.  Go figure!!!  This homeschooling thing is full of surprises.

Anyone who has talked to LadyBear this week might have heard that it's important to not stand under a tree, but instead go inside if there is a thunderstorm outside.  FYI, she is very passionate about this...
 Our girl, getting into the true spirit of the week with her lightning mask...

Each day we read the story from the Bible where Jesus calms the storm from the boat, using a different Bible or Bible story book we had in the house.

For Social Studies each day, we talked about the emotion of Fear and what we do when we find we are afraid.  The first day we talked about prayer and putting on our Armor of God.

 Armor of God Bear helps illustrate for us!

The next day we talked about reading the Bible and seeing what it has to say, since we believe it is true.
 Reading some Bible verses addressing fear that Mom chose for him..

Then we talked about listening to Praise and Worship songs when we are afraid.

Jammin' out to some songs about not being afraid because God is always with us...

The fourth day we talked about the importance of talking with Mom or Dad when we are afraid, so they can help us work through it.  Then the last day we talked about practical ways to prepare ourselves (within reason) in case a bad storm does happen.  We talked about storm safety and I showed the kids our emergency kits and what was included and talked about what we do if a bad storm hits us.
Ben going through his emergency (72 hr) kit, we found several things we need to update!

For Science each day, we tried to cover a different topic relating to storms.  I found a lot of great worksheets that were a major help here (linked in my Pinterest board if you're looking for them).  We learned about the Water Cycle and defined evaporation, condensation, and precipitation...

We studied different types of clouds...
Talking through different types of clouds...

We talked about how Clouds form with a cool science experiment...

We looked at the mechanics of thunderstorms in particular...
 Fun with static electricity!

And then we went to see the Magic School Bus "Kicking Up A Storm" exhibit at the Mayborn Museum that talks all about weather and thunderstorms!

Water Cycle review!!!

Math and Language Arts along with Handwriting were accomplished through our normal daily worksheets.  LittleBear has finished the Handwriting Without Tears Kindergarten book, but still needs practice, so I have been pulling some free worksheets off the web for him to do each day.

Loving the blue corn chips and the worksheets (ok, maybe not the worksheets so much...)

For Art, we talked about a few different paintings I found that addressed rain...We also tried drawing our own storm.

 Yup, that's a basket of unclean laundry in the background...just keepin' it real, y'all!

 LittleBear and his supercell thunderstorm complete with tornado!

And for our fun food activity, we attempted to make cloud cookies (you know, those cute puffy cookies made of meringue)...

So excited to be in the kitchen together!

Clearly meringue is not my gift...Oh well, the fun is in the trying, right?

All in all, I think this is the best week of school we have had in a while...mostly because Momma tried to have a really good attitude the whole week :)  We had SO many great books this week, it was really hard to get through them all, but we made it through most of them and even kept a few to read for fun next week.

Resources and printables I used for Storm In the Night can be found at:
Go Along Books we used for Storm In the Night (* indicate ones we especially liked):
*Little Cloud by Eric Carle
*Oh Say Can You Say What's the Weather Today? by Tish Rabe
*Weather (A Scholastic First Discovery Book) by Gallimard Jeunesse and Pascale de Bourgoing
*God's Armor for Me by Amelia Shearer
*Meteorology (A True Book) by Christine Taylor-Butler
*Down Comes the Rain by Franklyn M. Branley
*Flash, Crash, Rumble and Roll by Franklyn M. Branley
*A Raindrop's Journey by Suzanne Slade
*Thunderstorms (A True Book) by Chana Stiefel
*Watching the Weather: Thunder and Lightning by Elizabeth Miles
*Storms and the Earth by Nikki Bundey
*Like A Hundred Drums by Annette Griessman
*Lightning: Sheets, Streaks, Beads and Balls by Suzanne Harper
*Inside LIghtning by Melissa Stewart
*Storms by Seymour Simon
*A Drop of Water by Gordon Morrison
Hurricanes and Tornadoes (Eyewitness) by Jack Challoner (we didn't get to read this one)
Tales of Thunder & Lightning by Harry Devlin (we didn't get to read this one)
Experiements With Weather (A True Book) by Salvatore Tocci
Thundercake by Patricia Polacco (a lot of people rave about this one, but some of us couldn't get past the fact that the grandmother and child were walking around outside during a scary thunderstorm to collect the ingredients for the cake)

We chose to put our story disk on Tornado Alley because there was no specific location mentioned in the book...