Here’s what goodies I got this week:
2 bottles of FREE Softsoap body wash
2 sticks of Speedstick deodorant- both for $.88!
Candles BOGO- ends up as $5 each
Here’s what goodies I got this week:
2 bottles of FREE Softsoap body wash
2 sticks of Speedstick deodorant- both for $.88!
Candles BOGO- ends up as $5 each
I guess you could call that a big success, right?
It started out a little slow as the kids wanted to just play instead of watching the Signing Time video while I got lunch ready.
They enjoyed playing with Haddie’s new mask:
Her dance teacher was out of lollipops today after class so she improvised and gave the girls these masks. It quickly became Haddie’s superhero mask! And when we got home she came up with her own cape:
Yep, that’s a diaper changing pad. Don’t worry, it’s clean! Haddie has recently become obsessed with using these old pads for her baby dolls. And now it had an even more creative use.
The boys had fun with the mask, too:
Malachi kept wanting to wear Haddie’s purple fairy wings. He wanted to be a butterfly of course. And I let him wear them. Once. But don’t tell his dad! Lol.
They did end up watching some of the Signing Time DVD “Let’s Eat.” They learned signs like: eat, fork, spoon, knife, plate, cup, bowl, napkin, grow, garden, kitchen, cook, make.
We reviewed the signs and Spanish words that we’ve learned the last few weeks while they ate lunch.
For those that ate all their lunch got dessert (only after they signed “dessert”). Titus chose chocolate ice cream, it was black like our color for the month. Malachi choose M&Ms, which are of course black inside and circles (our shape for the month). I’m so crafty in getting those colors and shapes in 🙂
After lunch, we read a book about creation while doing some signs for water, the day’s numbers, God and stars. I tried to emphasize the third day of creation since that’s when God made plants.
Then we went outside to look for different kinds of plants. I tried to have them find different parts of plants, but they quickly gave up, complaining it was too hot. So we quickly gathered some leaves, roots, grass and stems to talk about in the shade. We discussed the different parts of plants, where seeds grow (like inside some fruits and veggies and outside others), what types of seeds we eat and those we don’t, etc. Then we came inside to do lead rubs. The boys thought they was really neat!
We spent some time finger painting. First, they made their own diagram of sorts of a flower:
Then they did their own free (and messy!) fingerpainting:
Next we read a story called “How My Garden Grows.”
Then we broke out the new trays (see my post about Tray Time).
The trays were really a hit! Titus kept asking if he could take them home so he could do school there. And when it was time to go, the boys kept saying we weren’t done with school yet! Haddie still wanted the boys to stay for school and then after they left, she wanted to keep “playing school.”
Oh, and I did use a kitchen timer set to 5 min for them to complete each tray.
Here’s what trays I did this week:
Kadoodles are egg shaped markers/paint that are probably meant for younger kids, but surprisingly our older kids had trouble with them. Lol. I had them draw on small paper plates and also asked them to practice drawing circles.
Here’s their works of kadoodle art:
Transferring- Spooning pom-pom balls into egg carton:
I asked the older two to sort the pom-poms according to color.
Stringing- putting small colored beads on pipe cleaners of matching colors.
I had the older ones put a certain number of beads on each. It was neat to see Malachi make the color connections. And he quickly got the hang of threading the small beads (the holes were pretty small).
Haddie decided that the stinging activity was her favorite. Titus said he liked the Kadoodles the best. And Malachi pointed at his pom-pom tray and showed me the color he liked best. Lol.
I’m excited to come up with next week’s tray activities. I may be daring and go for some messy ones, we’ll see.
You may remember that I posted previously about the Johnson family. You may have also read about their story in Florida TODAY. If not, here’s a quick bit of their story:
They were in Georgia for the 4th of July holiday and were rear ended by a speeding truck (80-100 mph) while at a stop light. Their 6 yr old daughter, Hannah, was killed on impact. Their 3 yr old son, Owen, suffered a spinal injury, broken bones, and is now a quadriplegic, dependent on a wheelchair and ventilator.
Their two daughters, Kathryn and Brooke, both suffered broken legs, broken arms and some internal injuries.
They spent the last two months in hospital and a rehab center and last week just moved back home to Palm Bay. While they were gone, their home was renovated to allow for Owen’s medical needs.
I don’t know this family personally, but for some reason it just touched me closely. Maybe because their 3 yr old was so badly injured and because he’s Haddie’s age. Either way, they’ve been in our family prayer time pretty much every night. And Haddie asks to see pictures of Owen.
They returned home last week, and had to settle back in quickly. The girls started school yesterday and the parents, Susie and David, took Owen to Orlando to his new specialist. Afterwards, while running errands, Owen stopped breathing, turned blue and had to be rushed via ambulance to the hospital. He apparently flat lined in the ambulance and had a seizure. After getting to the hospital and having a number tests, he was stabilized and back to “normal.” But they’re still trying to figure out what happened.
So, please, please, keep this family in your prayers. They need all the help they can get.
Oh, and Susie is also pregnant. She was about 20 weeks at the time of the accident and suffered some broken ribs, but the baby wasn’t harmed. I’m guessing she’s due in about 3 months or so. So, please keep Baby Renee in your prayers too.
If you’d like more info, check out their online blog:
On their website you can see pictures, read their updates and also subscribe to their blog for email updates. You’ll be amazed at their great attitudes and their dependence in God through it all.
While browsing homeschooling blogs, I came across the concept for tot trays. These are colorful trays that are each set up with different activities (many of them using simple around the house items) that help to teach kids (preschool and toddlers) fine motor skills among other things. Here are some of the websites that introduced me to the tray idea:
I’m going to try introducing the tray idea tomorrow during school and see how it goes. My plan is to have 3 trays (one for each kid) and let them each have a turn with a different tray. I’m thinking I may use a timer to give them all a fair chance to complete each activity. And I think I’ll let them play with the trays in between our other planned science and languages activities, especially when I can tell they need a break.
Here are some of the ideas I’ve come up with so far:
Tray Time Ideas
Macaroni, Ziti noodles
Using tongs (salad tongs, smaller ones) to pick up items (play food, foam items)
Spoon transfer from one bowl to another (or to an egg carton)–Pom poms, ice cubes, etc
Cutting with scissors
Sorting (by colors, sizes, items)
Peg games (Oriental Trading)
Sweeping items into taped area (use dry beans, etc)
Texture painting (pantyhose w rice, dry beans, etc inside)
Magazine cut-outs (sort by color, letter, put on same colored paper, etc)
Nuts & bolts
I’ve been browsing some different homeschooling websites the last few days (mainly since Haddie was sick and wouldn’t sleep anywhere except on my lap for nap times).
I’m getting more and more excited about all the homeschooling possibilities! There are seriously so many that at times it gets overwhelming. Of course, at Haddie’s age (3) I don’t have to be too organized (but I am!) or too seriously deep with the curriculum I use. However, I’m trying to plan ahead and get a feel for all the possibilities out there.
I discovered the FIAR method, which stands for Five In A Row. From what I understand, it basically focuses on one children’s book a week and teaches one subject each of the 5 days of the week (hence the name). The curriculum is on sale online and you can either buy the book or check it out from the library. You read the book each day and then focus on one particular subject. The activities seem very hands on and creative. And I think you can use the same material for multiple ages (I think it gives different or more complex activities/lessons for older children). I think this idea is neat and would be neat to use at least once in a while.
There’s also a Before FIAR and After FIAR for younger and older children.
Here’s a few websites and blogs that show some examples of the FIAR method:
There’s also the Charlotte Mason method. This method doesn’t follow “unit study” methods, but instead emphasizes living learning and the kids making many of the connections themselves instead of being lectured by their parents. It also emphasizes reading literature and poetry; interesting ways to learn grammar, spelling and public speech; learning from nature daily.
Here’s an interesting homeschooling blog that discusses Charlotte Mason’s approach:
There’s also the Montessori method. I haven’t read much yet on it, but its next on my web reading list. Here’s the blog I going to check out:
And I found this awesome curriculum for math called Life of Fred or LoF. Its real life math and is supposed to be even more complete than average school math curriculum. It’s very reasonably priced (cheaper than most everything from Amazon), are books that can be used over and over again because the kids use paper to write their answers on, goes from elementary math to college level math, the kids can do it independently (once they can read), and is supposedly really fun because its a story they read as they learn. I think we’ll probably use this material at least to try it out once Haddie gets older.
Talking to Haddie about the creation story:
Me: God rested on the 7th day.
H: who made Him feel better after he got arrested?
Me: no, (laughing) he didn’t get arrested. He rested.
H: Who arrested him?
Me: no, he wasn’t arrested. He took a rest. He took a nap. Well, not really, but he rested.
H: Well, who tucked him in bed.
Me: No one.
H: he tucked himself in?
Today was my third day of teaching the kids science and languages. Take a look at my previous post if you want to check out the lesson plans I wrote up. I’d love for anyone to benefit from my work. But they’re not super impressive or anything.
Here’s what we did today:
We explored the different parts of plants.
They collected examples of the different parts of plants and glued them on their papers.
They planted flower seeds (sunflowers or morning glory). In these pictures they’re getting dirt from the big bucket to put in their smaller pots (made from
Bamboo! Found them at Walgreens for $.79 each).
We reviewed our lessons on butterflies (from the last 2 weeks) and then let our butterflies go. Haddie and Titus enjoyed holding them (even though T doesn’t look too excited here). Malachi was strangely terrified of them.
They sang a Bible song (“Read Your Bible, Pray Everyday”) with Seth.
And Seth read them a story about Creation. By this time they were dragging and losing attention, so I figured having Seth read would be a good change of pace.
The kids colored a mini book about the creation story while listening to the “God Made Everything” song. These books and the CD are from the new Bible story book that I ordered from Twin Sister’s Publications. So far, I’m pretty impressed with the books and CDs I bought!
Titus did a great job coloring, although most of it was in black. He says it’s his favorite color. And you can really tell! Lol.
This is one of the best jobs that Haddie has done coloring. I was amazed how careful she was being.
Today was a great day! They started out a bit bored and distracted looking, but it didn’t take too long to get then more interested. They really are adjusting to sitting still better and getting used to the whole school idea. I’m excited to teach again next week! And I can’t wait to see how much they continue learning and growing!
Last night I finished up my next 2 lessons for science & languages. I planned to teach a lot outside since we are studying plants. I wanted to have the kids find different kinds of plants and such and I thought I would teach them as we went. But of course, it started clouding up and thundering about an hour before we were to start. So I hurried up and collected a number of different plants and got all our materials ready on the porch instead. And as seems to be the trend, I ended up using some parts of both lessons, so I revised them both afterwards today so I can make sure to teach the rest of the lessons next week. Also, the kids didn’t end up watching all of the Signing Time video, so I revised the list of signs that they learned. Anyways, here are the original lesson plans and the revised.
If for some reason these files won’t open, let me know and I’ll post them in a different format.
Here’s also a link that’s got a lot of good information about plants and some diagrams.
Click on the Leaves, Seeds, Fruits PDF
They’re probably a bit intense for preschoolers, but they’ll at least give you some good information so you can be well informed and maybe at least use the diagrams to introduce the kids to the basic concepts.
I got some pretty great deals on baby products from CVS this week, which are going to come in handy since four friends/family members are preggo.
Here’s all I bought:
And I spent $33.05 and saved $53.57.
Here’s the breakdown:
Diapers were 2/$18. Plus they are offering a deal of spend $25 on baby products get $10 back in extra bucks.
So I bought 3 packs of diapers for $27. Used 3 coupons totaling $6. And got $10 back. So, I ended up getting 3 packs of diapers for $11!
They are also having a deal on Johnson & Johnson baby bath products $3 each.
I had a coupon from their coupon kiosk (make sure you always head straight there when you first get in the store, you never know what you might get free!), for $3 extrabucks back on any $10 baby products (excluding diapers). And I had 2 Johnson & Johnson coupons totaling $1.
So, I got 3 bottles of J&J bath stuff and 1 tube of diaper cream for $8. Not too bad.
The Powerades were $1 each. These have really come in handy for the days when I’m working outside. A friend suggested I drink these to prevent getting dehydrated and headaches. I think it’s been working!
The frozen pizzas were BOGO (at $7.49 each…ridiculous if you were buying one at regular price!). And I had 2 $1 off coupons. So I got 2 pizzas for $5.49! Great deal!
I also bought 2 bottles of aloe gel since my back was killing me from my sunburn. They weren’t on sale, but I got 25% off of them thanks to the email coupon.
As far as other coupons: I used a 25% off coupon (only for nonsale items) from my email, $10 in Extrabucks from last week’s purchases, and another $5 in extrabucks from the beauty club (you get $5 for every $50 you spend on beauty items, precoupon prices!).
And I got another $10 back in Extrabucks for next week from the diapers, and $1 Extrabucks from my reusable bag tag.
Pretty sweet deals if you ask me!
I’ve never actually made any kind of stuffed vegetable before, but I had some extra zucchini that were going to go bad soon, so I gave this recipe a whirl:
And I have to say, it was mighty tasty! Mine definitely weren’t as neat looking as hers though. Mine were overflowing with the stuffing, but I didn’t mind. Haddie even ate a little bit and this was the best that she’s ever eaten zucchini. I’m thinking next time I’ll maybe try stuffing it with shredded chicken and Alfredo sauce. Mmm. Sounds good!