P31 Wannabe

HS: Three Names (FIAR 2) August 25, 2012

Filed under: Books,FIAR,Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 1:52 pm



Homeschool Share: This is where I found the past & present sheets, prairie pics, New title activity, ordinal numbers page (look under the lapbook link for most of these)

Tornado Lapbook Resources

My Fiar Pinterest Board

Additional Simile Books

Tornado in a jar

Prairie Coloring Page

Making Butter

Marbles Games

Day one:
Before we read the book, I had Haddie guess what the book was about based on the title. After we read it, I tried to have her come up with different titles for the book (after explaining what a title was). I don’t think she fully grasped the idea of the title applying to the content of the book because hers were quite out there. I’m going to try this exercise again after we read the book a few more times.

We learned some new vocab words thanks to some printable cards I found online:


Then we looked online for more picture examples of each. Next, we looked up the rules for the basic game of marbles (called Ring it). I read a few different sites but they weren’t very helpful. I finally found this YouTube video that was super helpful and easy to understand.

We first tried to play on the kitchen floor but the tile was way to hard to play on and the marbles rolled too easy. So we made our circle out of tape on my bedroom rug, which worked out much better.


It was hard for Haddie to shoot the marble with her little hands so she ended up settling for flicking it. We played a couple of rounds and then I let her just mess around shooting the marbles.

Later we colored a picture of prairie animals (she decided it needed a colorful sunset):


And at naptime we read from this book:


It is a super neat book with short stories and pictures about prairie life. We learned about the dangers of cooking over a fire, how they made maple syrup, torches and what was in their log cabins. We ended up reading 30+ pages of it in one sitting. It even has some neat experiments and recipes. Looking forward to incorporating into our lessons this week!

Day two:
Today we leaned about ordinal numbers. For the most part she already knew these, but not by the actual name. We did a dog worksheet with the ordinal numbers then I had her point then out as we read Three Names.

We also reviewed the vocab cards and had her call them out as we read the story. And at nap time we read more from the Pioneer Sampler book.

Day Three
Today was a busy day with cleaning and running errands so we didn’t get to as much school. But we did read this neat book on tornados to go with our science from Three Names:


Then we watched some of Anne of Green Gables. I rented the DVD from the library and mainly just wanted her to watch a little bit to see some of the prairie type lifestyle (wagons, one room school house, dress, etc) but she surprised me by sitting still and watching quite a lot of it.

Day Four
Today we started out by making our own mini prairie. We went out in the backyard and collected sticks, weeds and rocks. Then we hot glued (well I did) a log cabin, and a tree and a small fence. She decorated it w mini animals and practiced tethering a lamb to the fence post (one of our vocab words). We also made sure to include a slough (vocab) in our prairie, too.




Next, for social studies, we worked on a past vs present worksheet (i.e. outhouse vs indoor bathroom) and made a mini prairie picture book. Then we made our own butter in a jar while watching the rest of Anne of Green Gables. Well, truthfully we started out making it in a jar by shaking it.


But she quickly got tired of it and after a while so did I. So I dumped it in the mixer and it was butter in like a minute.


She was quite a big fan of the butter. So much that we had to take the bowl away otherwise she would have eaten it all!


After our butter was finished, we headed outside for a prairie fashioned picnic lunch complete with tin pails and potatoes like they had in the book.


Before naptime we read a couple different prairie themed books about ferrets and prairie dogs and about a prairie town.

Day Five
Today we started off by reading another tornado book then attempting to make a tornado in a bottle. It didn’t work as great as I had hoped but it was still fun. Seth tried to make a tornado using two 2-liters and a small piece of PVC. It worked well but it leaked so they had to play with it outside.

We also learned about shadows for art time. We looked through the book to find shadows and their light sources. Then we practiced drawing shadows.

Later on we started working on learning some of the states. I had her color the ones that had people we knew living there (Florida and Tennessee). Then she colored Hawaii because that’s where lilo and stitch live. Then we learned two states that have prairies in them (Texas and Oklahoma).


Day six

Yes, we did school on Saturday ūüôā we were on a roll and I wanted to finish the book and activities that I had planned.

Today we learned about vanishing points by looking at one of the painting in the book then practiced drawing our own similar scene:


Next we reviewed the states we learned yesterday (she still gets stuck in Oklahoma, even though I sing it nice and obnoxiously to her). Then we added two more prairie states: Kansas and Nebraska.

Then we learned about similes by reading these great books:


Then we did a couple of fun simile worksheets:



Then we read Three Names one final time. As we read I had her point out the vocab words, ordinal numbers, anything from our past vs present sheet, and any similes.

We had a great week and enjoyed all the fun extra activities I found online. This week I mixed up all the subjects by doing bits and pieces of each different days. I didn’t have an approach for this planned out but did the activities that I felt like doing and best fit with her mood and ability to sit still each day. And for the last few days I briefly reviewed whatever worksheet or words we had learned the day before. This seemed to help stick the concepts in her mind.

Also during the week we played many games (princess yahtzee jr, Hiss game, go fish, hello kitty rummikub, pretty pretty princess and busy town). I try to let her do most of the counting and moving of pieces to work on her math skills. We also reviewed our phonics cards for the “at” and “an” words. And we did some strawberry shortcake phonics worksheets. Most of these activities were requested by her. So we included these as we had time. So we ended up with a very well rounded out week!


Menu planner August 18, 2012

Filed under: Deals!,Life,Monthly Meal Planning — Lacey @ 10:13 pm

A few weeks ago I found this lovely notepad in the dollar section at target:


It was just the thing I needed to get motivated to start planning out my meals again. I’ve been slacking for a while now. I got so excited I’ve planned out 4 weeks. I really like that it has a handy shopping list organized by food type. It makes planning so much easier.

I glued a magnet in the back and now it has a nice place on my fridge. I only plan out dinners. Lunches are usually sandwiches, salads or leftovers. Also, I don’t plan dinners for Sunday nights because we’re usually gone with church events. And we have study or dgroup on tues and wed nights and meals are provided or we eat out afterwards.

Here’s my meal plans for the next 4 weeks:

Week one:
1. Coconut almond chicken w asparagus and roasted carrots
2. Chicken bacon pasta w salad
3. Enchilada stuffed zucchini and best broccoli
4. Cheeseburger wraps w roasted veggies

Week two:
1. Taquitos w mexican dip
2. Beef and zucchini skillet with salad
3. Sweet and spicy chicken w rice
4. Chicken Parmesan w spaghetti and salad

Week three:
1. Texas skillet
2. Lasagna w salad
3. Chicken baked burritos w refried bean dip

Week four:
1. Lemon tilapia w best broccoli
2. Tacos w Mexican dip
3. Chicken and asparagus penne


Enchilada Zucchini Boats

Filed under: Main Courses,Recipes — Lacey @ 8:03 pm

Like I’ve prob mentioned before, I like finding new ways to use zucchini. Plus I’m trying to eat healthy and leave out any unnecessary carbs. This recipe turned out well and honestly you could even taste the zucchini. A good plus for anyone who’s not real fond of it.

Enchilada Stuffed Zucchini Boats

I left out the chiles in adobe sauce and used regular diced onions instead of green ones. I served it with the best broccoli of your life and homemade sweet salsa. Made for a good combo!


Cheeseburger Wraps

Filed under: Main Courses,Recipes — Lacey @ 7:53 pm

Mmmm….these were so good


I’m sure you can guess where I found this recipe…pinterest!
It was very yummy and easy to make.

Cheeseburger Wraps

I used fresh chopped onion and cooked them with the hamburger. And I skipped the parmesan cheese. Also, I’d recommend using the larger tortilla or wrap shells. I used the whole wheat ones that I had on hand and they were a bit of a squeeze. I served roasted veggies (onions, potatoes and carrots) with them.


HS: The Giraffe that Walked to Paris (FIAR 2)

Filed under: Books,FIAR,Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 2:37 pm

This is our first FIAR book. We ended up taking 2 weeks to row it because of Haddie’s birthday falling last week and being busy with those activities among other things.

This was really a cute book and based on the true story of the first giraffe that went to France. I expanded a bit on the curriculum thanks to pinterest and some of my favorite homeschool blogs. Here’s some of the helpful links I found:

My FIAR pinterest board: This has most of the links I used, plus some other neat materials that I didn’t end up using

Clothespin Giraffe

Printable Eiffel Tower

FIAR site w/ neat resources

G Giraffe

Homeschool Share Resources: This is where I found the Bible verses, vocab page, giraffe coloring page, etc.


We found a giraffe from her stuffed toys and she held it each time we read the book.

Our first lesson was social studies. We focused first on geography. We found Egypt, France and the Mediterranean Sea. We also found the Nile River and Red Sea and talked briefly about Moses ‘ connection to those areas.

We colored an map of France I found online and drew France’s flag. Then we drew some pyramids and Egypt’s flag.



We looked at some pictures from library books about each country.


We made an Eiffel tower and pyramid from blocks.


And we made an Eiffel tower from card stock. I found the printable pattern on pinterest. Good thing it wasn’t hard to figure out because the instructions were in French.


For the math day, we talked about how many inches were in a foot. Then we measured how tall the giraffe was in the book (11 ft). We measured the wall, but it wasn’t tall enough. We went outside and measured her playground, but it wasn’t tall enough.


Then we measured the roof of the playground, but it was too tall!


And then we measured out 11 ft and laid next to it. We discovered that if we laid head to foot we were still about 2-3 ft shorter than the giraffe.


For science, we read a library book about giraffes. Then we went to the zoo to see real giraffes.




We got lucky when we got to the giraffe exhibit. At least 6 giraffes were gathered up close. I didnt even know they had that many! We got to feed one a cracker. And then Haddie drew a picture of one in her nature journal.


(Don’t mind the upside giraffe. It loade weird)

The art we did over a couple different days. With making a clothespin giraffe and nicely coloring a giraffe picture (she insisted we do it together).



We also talked about the facial expressions the illustrator painted in the book. We went through and looked at all the king’s expressions and guessed what he was feeling. Here Haddie is practicing looking mad like the King:

Then Haddie drew a few of the facial expressions we saw in the book.


I also added some Bible verses to our lessons that I found online. The set was printed in giraffe outlines and applied to the story.


We really enjoyed this first book and I’m excited about our next one! We’re gonna learn all about prairie life and do some neat projects!


Sweet Salsa

Filed under: Recipes,Side Dishes/Snacks — Lacey @ 1:28 pm

Last night while making enchilada stuffed zucchini, I had extra cilantro left and decided to make some more homemade salsa. Then I remembered that I had a lot of peaches and thought I’d be brave and experiment with making a sweet fruit salsa. And the results were quite delicious. Seth ate a ton of it. And the whole batch was gone by the end of the night.

I didn’t really measure while I was cooking. So here are the ingredients and an estimate of how much I used. Put all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until chopped fine. And that’s it!

3 peaches, halved and pitted (no need to peel)
Handful of fresh pineapple chunks
Half a bunch of cilantro
Juice of 1 lime
Half of a bell pepper (red or yellow)
Half an onion (or less)
A couple garlic cloves, chopped


This year’s HS curriculum: Five in a Row (FIAR) August 16, 2012

Filed under: Books,FIAR,Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 7:17 pm

This year for homeschooling my cousin and I decided to change up how we’re homeschooling. ¬†Last year we co-taught by splitting the subjects and switching off one day a week with the three kids. ¬†This year, we’re doing our things but still consulting each other and hopefully planning some joint field trips and activities. ¬†We’re also both doing the Five in a Row curriculum. She bought volume 1 and I bought volume 2. ¬†That way we can switch after we finish our own books.

Last week we started the new Five in a Row curriculum. ¬†It’s one of the cheapest homeschool curriculum as you only have to buy the teacher’s manual and then can borrow the required books (and additional resources) from the library. ¬†The basic idea of FIve in a Row is that you “row” (aka read) the same book 5 days in a row and each day you focus on a different subject (social studies, math, science, language arts and art) each day. ¬†The lessons you teach for each subject comes from themes in the book. ¬†So far I have liked the flexibility of this method. ¬†If I know we’re going to be pretty busy on a certain day, I can plan to do one of the lighter lessons/subjects. ¬†Also, you can use the curriculum for multiple ages (4-8). ¬†They also have a Before FIAR and After FIAR for younger and older students. I like that you can make the subjects as easy or hard as you want. ¬†You can be creative and add a lot of extra projects or just do a basic overview. And there are tons of extra resources available free online. ¬†There are a number of blogs devoted to FIAR homeschool and lots of projects searchable via google or pinterest. ¬†I’m excited about all the possibilities!

On top of the FIAR curriculum, I am going to try using Hooked on Phonics for reading. ¬†I found 3 sets (K, 1 & 2 grades) at my favorite thrift store and was able to talk them down to $5 a set since they were missing some pieces. ¬†I was given an older set of Hooked on Phonics previously (think cassette tapes), and for the most part it looks like I’ll be able to use parts from each to get a pretty much complete set. ¬†Haddie has completed the first lesson set and can now read “at, sat, fat, bat, cat, hat, mat.” I’ve been working on pointing them out in stories as we’re reading and stopping to let her read those words, plus “I, a, the.”

We are also going to be doing various workbooks that we have and adding in languages as I feel like it. ¬†I may teach her some Spanish words that correspond with the story we’re reading. ¬†And we’ll be watching her Signing Time DVDs for the Sign language portion.

Technically she’s still in preschool, but I have a feeling a lot of the material we will cover is Kindergarten. We don’t have to officially declare with the school system until next year when she’s 5, but I’m going to try to get more organized and practice keeping better track of our lessons and materials.