P31 Wannabe

The Wizard of Oz May 5, 2014

Filed under: Books,Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 7:50 pm

We started this series kinda by accident. I found a number of books at a library sale with this being one of them:

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I didn’t have intentions of actually reading it w H yet. Honestly I’d never read it and wasn’t sure if she’d be ready for the contents. But once she saw the book she begged for me to read it to her. And she loved it! I enjoyed it, too. So much so that I started looking online for more L. Frank Baum books. That’s when I discovered that there is an entire series of Oz books (15!). Since H was so excited about them, I went ahead and ordered the set from amazon for around $30. Our set has five big books which each contain 3 of the Oz books.

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This made it easier to read and keep track of which books come when. I was getting quite confused when I was searching for them from the library. The original single edition books have long titles that can make it all pretty confusing!

So, since H was enjoying reading (listening) to the series so much I decided to so a unit study of sorts.

We got the original movie to watch from the library. It was interesting to watch right after reading the book. There are so many differences and it was neat to be able to discuss them with H.

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We’ve also watched a number of other versions from the library, too.

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I watched this one first to make sure it was appropriate for her to watch.

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And I watched this one first too, but deemed it inappropriate for her. It was interesting but quite bizarre. It would have made more sense after reading a couple more books into the series.

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She also watched the first two (so far) of a 4 disc set from the library that I forgot to take a picture of.

She’s really enjoyed watching all these different adaptations and doesn’t seem to be bored with the Oz series at all.

I also did a Pinterest search for more activities to do along the Oz theme. Here’s my Pinterest board.

From my searches online, we made green spectacles like they use in the city of Oz.

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We did some watercolor themed Oz art. These are my pictures (they’re not that great, but I had fun doing them), she jumped around and didn’t completely finish any of her pictures (and I forgot to take pictures).

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H also did a number of worksheets that I found online from Pinterest and teachers pay teachers (I only used the free ones). I was pleasantly surprised at how many there were!

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We also got this abridged but still very accurate illustrated children’s book from the library. I had daddy read it to H so that he could enjoy the story with her, too.

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We also read a lot of the second and third books while we were on a mini road trip with big brother driving. It was neat for the kids and I to all enjoy the story together, especially big brother since it’s not usually around when we read and do school. It gave us a lot of good laughs and discussion.

Right now we’re halfway through the 6th book in the series (out of 15). H is still enjoying it a lot. In this book, Aunt Em and Uncle Henry finally get to see that the land of Oz is real and they meet all kinds of interesting creatures including paper dolls, puzzle people, and more….

My plan is to keep reading the books while we are doing our other Five in a Row curriculum. And if H gets bored with the books we’ll take a break until she shows more interest.

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Have you buried it? April 22, 2014

Filed under: God thoughts — Lacey @ 1:54 am

Tonight while reading my devotion a few things came to mind that I wanted to flesh out for myself and share with you at the same time.

I’m reading through the NLT daily New Testament in a year Bible with my hubby. We’re a few days behind so I ended up reading a couple extra days worth of reading together. I read (out loud to Seth) Luke 18:18-19:48. By reading these passages together I found a few things that I had never noticed before (disclaimer I didn’t pull out any deep study books to double check my thoughts, so if I’m wrong feel free to correct me and again read it for yourself, don’t just take my word for it).

First, on his way into Jericho, Jesus heals a blind man who happens to be sitting beside the road where He and the crowd are traveling. After this quick healing, the formally blind man “followed Jesus, praising God. And all who saw it praised God, too.” (18:43).

Next, Jesus, the excited crowd and presumedly the still rejoicing blind man make their way into Jericho where they now meet Zacchaeus in the infamous sycamore tree. See, I never connected these two event together before. I can imagine how excited and rowdy this crowd must have been. The buzz must have been contagious. No wonder Zacchaeus was anxious to see what was going on. To see what this miracle working Jesus was going to do next.

After Zacchaeus has his life changing encounter with Christ (and a meal I assume, at his house), Jesus and the crowd and maybe still the blind man and Zacchaeus continue on their journey to Jerusalem. Do you think the previously blind man ate dinner with Zacchaeus and was a recipient of Zacchaeus’ new found generosity to the poor?

After all this talk about money with Zacchaeus and to “correct the impression that the Kingdom of God would begin right away” (19:11), Jesus tells the parable of the 10 Mina or elsewhere described as talents. I’ll come back to this in a minute.

After all of these events that took place between the edges of Jericho into the border of Jerusalem, now comes the triumphal entry. Did Jesus still have the same excited crowd following Him that saw the healing of the blind man? Scripture says that the people “were displeased” and “grumbled” when Jesus stopped to fellowship with Zacchaeus at his home (19:7). Did they stick around afterwards to see this triumphal entry? Did they get over their bitterness toward Jesus’ new found friend? Was Zacchaeus and the healed blind man in the crowd at the triumphal entry too? What happened to them during the following week and what was their reaction when Jesus was betrayed and crucified? Did they hide like the disciples? Did they give up hope? We’re they among the people that Jesus later appeared to?

And then Jesus went from the triumphal entry to clearing out the temple again. That’s quite an exciting and exhausting day. What a roller coaster of emotions for the crowd, let alone Jesus’ disciples. No wonder they didn’t understand it all. I’d be lost and confused, too.

Ok, with all that now being said (a lot to take in, I know) but I really want to go back to is the parable of the Mina. I find it interesting that Jesus used a parable about money right after an infamous tax collector repented and promised to give away his corruptly earned riches.

I also found it interesting that 1 Mina was worth 3 months’ wages. And the nobleman gave away 10 of them. So he divided up 30 months worth of wages among 3 of his servants. Let’s assume a person make $500 a week. Just one Mina was worth 500×4 (weeks)x3 (months)= $6,000. So this nobleman gave his 3 servants a total of $60,000 to invest for him. We don’t know if he divided the Mina equally or not, but if we assume he did (I know you can’t exactly divide 10 by 3 equally but let’s just pretend to make it easier), the first servant made his master a profit of $200,000! (60,000/3 then x10) The second servant made $100,000. And the third servant gave his master back his original $20,000. All those amounts sure make the Mina and their profits sounds much more impressive, huh?

The main thing that stuck out to me is what happens when we apply the three servants to ourselves, especially the last one. I’ve heard people relate the Mina or talents to us and how we use the talents that God’s given us. I see how this applies. But let’s make it even simpler. What is the basic gift that God has given all of us Christians? Well, actually He’s given it to EVERYONE but it doesn’t apply unless we actually take the gift. So, like the servants in the parable, Christians have accepted the gift of salvation (aka Mina) and all that it entails (forgiveness, eternal life, hope, purpose, grace, etc). But what have you done with this gift? What have I done with it? When Jesus comes back is He going to find that you’ve made $200,000 worth on his investment in your life? Of course I’m not trying to put a price on salvation. I’m not trying to actually say that I expect God to be looking for a financial profit from the Gospel. I hope you understand what I’m meaning here. Are you making your salvation count? Does it just count for you or are you truly sharing the Gospel and investing it in others?

Have you buried your Mina and kept it to yourself? Do the people around you even know you’re a Christian? Have you gone beyond labeling yourself a Christian and actually planted the seeds in other’s lives? Have you made the Gospel real for those around you?

Or are you sitting nice and comfortably upon your buried treasure? It’s not enough to keep your salvation untarnished and intact.

The scary truth comes next ” ‘You wicked servant!’ The king roared ‘your own words condemn you…take the money from this servant and give it to the others…to those who use well what they are given, even more will be given. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away…'” (Luke 19:22, 24, 26).

 

One more reason why I love homeschooling… March 24, 2014

Filed under: Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 2:19 pm

There are tons of reasons why I love homeschooling. Some of them I’m mentioned before, others I probably haven’t even realized yet. Here’s a few off the top of my head…

Ability to set our own daily schedule (think sleeping in, staying up later…both of which this natural night owl loves).

No forced yearly schedule. I’m leaning more and more toward year round schooling. This year I only planned our curriculum schedule for the “regular” school year but I’m probably going to keep doing “school” over the summer. Although it will be more laid back and student driven. Year round school makes random breaks, less work every day and more all possible.

No need to get dressed up. Yep, many day we stay in our pjs. Most of the girls’ pjs and their play clothes are one and the same.

Getting to spend so much quality time with my kiddos. I am so glad that I get to spend more time with them than essentially anyone else. I’m glad I’m the one that’s there for all the laughs, scraped knees, all the “firsts.”

Today I was reminded again of another big reason I love homeschooling…the ability to learn from impromptu moments that pop up. Unplanned learning moments are some of the best there are! It’s learning from real life experiences. Something that brick and mortar, weekday schools don’t usually bring, at least not much anymore.

It’s moments like these…

Walking with friends to the school track across the street (we live right across from a jr/sr high school) to see a bird’s nest. This bird is called a Killdeer.

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I had never heard of such a bird. My dad first pointed it out a week ago when we took H bike riding around the track. We took our friends to go see it today and got to see it in action. The killdeer usually lays it’s eggs on the ground since their eggs look like rocks (if you look closely at the above picture you should be able to see the eggs under the bird). One of the parents sits on the eggs and when confronted with a possible threat, it puffs up, spreads it’s wings and makes this crazy high pitched chirping squawking attack noise. The kids think it’s hilarious to step back and forth watching the bird sit normally then puff up and squawk, sit back, then puff up… While the bird was doing its crazy calls, its mate came flying back to help protect its nest. The mate will walk around like its wing is injured in order to distract and draw away the predator. Then once it’s drawn the threat away, the so called injured bird runs or flys off. It’s the craziest thing to watch! If we didn’t homeschool and weren’t home to be able to explore our world and take flexible breaks from “school work” we would never have gotten to see the killdeer in action! I wouldn’t even know what it is!

Another impromptu lesson H has gotten to learn today… Concrete! Daddy has been laying some concrete in the back yard and since the girls are home, they’ve been able to watch the process and H has even been helping. Daddy even let her make her own little rectangle of concrete for whatever she wants.

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What other Kindergartener learns how to mix and pour concrete? What a concrete mixer and bags of concrete look like? How to level out and trowel concrete? What wet concrete looks like and to stay away from it?

I love that my girls are learning more than the traditional feminine skills! They will definitely be learning how to change oil and tires probably before they can even drive!

H even got to practice “building” with a hammer, nails, and wood scraps.

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Can I just say again, that I love homeschooling?

 

Y is for Yo-yo March 7, 2014

Filed under: Homeschooling,Life,Tot School — Lacey @ 1:45 am

I was horrible at being on top of tot school with this letter. For some reason it seriously took us 3 weeks to go through “Y” even though I really didn’t do any extra activities. I guess life was just super busy, I was worn out and K participated in a lot of H’s school fun so there wasn’t much time for letter school.

Here’s the little we accomplished over these weeks:
K did a few of the 1+1+1=1 worksheets (you can find the link to this awesome blog on my right side bar if you’re on a computer).

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K especially likes to use her bingo for markers to do some of the worksheets. She’s slowly getting better at not being so wild with them and splattering the paint all over.

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We read some books that had “Y” themes:

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I also bought her a yo-yo to play with. Of course she’s too young to actually yo-yo, I still wanted her to understand what a yo-yo was since it was used on all her worksheets. K and big sis had fun watching Daddy show off his yo-yo skills, too!

I cut out her foam “Y” to go on her wall but I haven’t decorated it. Yes, I’m still behind! Our next letter is B! Hopefully I’ll get it posted soon (WordPress is behind all wonky and frustrating me a lot right now!).

 

E is for Egg February 19, 2014

Filed under: Homeschooling,Life,Tot School — Lacey @ 12:52 am

K is starting to get the hang of this school thing. She’s even been asking to do “cool” and tries to pull out her school basket when big sis starts her school work. Unfortunately I didn’t get too do as many of the fun egg activities as I had planned.  We ran out of time and I ran out of energy! Plus we were busy doing big sis’ school about Ping and China. I planned D (duck) and E (egg) when big sis was doing her Ping FIAR study so that we could get double dip and reinforce it all even more!  K enjoyed having a Chinese dinner with big sis and making a chinese fan among other things.

We actually did these activities over two weeks.  I meant to only spend one week per letter, but I didn’t feel like we did enough of it the first week, so we spread it into another week.

I love these pictures of her working hard on her school (mind you, she probably crawled down a min or two later.  Her attention span still isn’t very long!). The worksheets shown are all from the tot school section of the 1+1+1=1 blog.

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She really enjoys putting the stickers over the letters.  Although she still tries to take them back off at times.  And I’ve been finding the circle stickers randomly around the house.  lol.

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She is still isn’t quite getting the color matching concept, but we’ll keep trying.  I color the word with the correct color (we only have a black and white printer), and then I have to repeatedly point to the right one for K to color.

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These are some of the duck/egg books we borrowed from the library.  For some of them K sat nice and still, and others she attempted to steal the book, or just got down and played with something else while I continued to read to big sis.

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I am also starting to get letter themed books from the library (not sure why I didn’t think about it for the first couple letters we studied).  I don’t expect her to really get the letter sounds at this point (she is 26 months old), but I know the extra exposure won’t hurt her.  And it may even help further reinforce the sounds with big sis (she’s 5).

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We had Daddy get the Easter decorations from the attic early so we could play with plastic eggs.  K had a lot of fun opening and closing the various sizes of eggs.  Big sis had fun filling the eggs with small toys.  Later she also hid the eggs for K to find.  This kept them nice and busy so I could fix dinner! K should be an egg finding expert in a couple months when Easter is actually here.

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Finally, here’s the foam E I made for K’s wall by her crib.  I put eggs on it, too.  And yes, it’s not very fancy.  I’m going to use them to spell her name.  Ironically all the letters we’ve studied so far are in her first and middle name.

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Next up, letter Y so we can finish spelling her first name!

 

Tot School: K is for Keys

Filed under: Homeschooling,Life,Tot School — Lacey @ 12:45 am

Last week I tried planning out which letters I should teach K when. I tried to relate them to H’s FIAR studies (next week we’re rowing Ping so we’ll do D for duck and E for eggs). But some studies just couldn’t be matched up. During my research for alphabet tot school, I saw a suggestion to teach the letters that are in the child’s name. They suggested that this is helpful because the child will have more interest in the letter when you keep relating it back to their name and they’ll be one step closer to being able to spell it, since they’ll know those letters first. So, this week we are doing K for Kady. We did “A” last week and we’ll be doing “D” next week. The “Y” will work itself in within the next month. Then I’ll prob just fill in the alphabet in order when it doesn’t relate to H’s FIAR books.

Here’s some of the activities we did:

I brought out the K and keys paper. I tried to get her to trace her fingers over the letter with me, and to point out the keys in the K’s. Then I let her color it. She didn’t color much and ended up being more interested in peeling the paper off the crayons. I finally gave up trying to get her attention and let her peel away. After all, that’s kind of a fine motor activity anyways, right? Lol. And besides it kept her busy so I could do school with big sis.

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Later I brought out the playdough, K cookie cutters, k magnet and the most exciting of all… Keys! She loved getting to play with keys! They were just ones we let H have to play with. Mainly those ones that come on junk mail for car sales. K kept trying to turn the key while pushing it into my arm. Not the most pleasant. I was trying to brain storm a way for her to have a real working key and lock that would be easy enough for her to use. I’ll have to talk to Daddy about that later. She enjoyed pushing the keys into the playdough and trying to turn them in it.

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We used a worksheet from 1+1+1=1 (she has awesome materials on her website for tot school!). I colored the name of each color and tried to get her to put the matching marker cap on each one. She didn’t really get it. And she was more interested in putting the caps on her fingers. I’ll keep doing this with each letter though and hopefully she’ll understand it more soon. At least she’ll be hearing me name the colors if nothing else.

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I made a sensory bowl with popcorn kernels, the k cookie cutters, k magnet and keys. She had a lot of fun with this and kept herself busy while I made dinner. Although she did make quite a mess with the kernels all over my kitchen floor. We swept them up, but combined with my dirty floor, they were too gross to use again. But she had fun while it lasted. And even big sis wanted in on the fun!

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We tore up foil into small pieces (she enjoyed this part the most), then glued it onto a printout of a key (glue on the back of the print out so you have a clear pattern to cut out). She wasn’t too interested in sticking the pieces to the glue after the first couple. It took some coaxing. After it was finished we taped it to the wall by her bed with the “a” and apple from last week.

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We also made this cute guy. I found the print out on Pinterest. She colored it (with some help), I cut it out and together we glued it together. This “roo” (as K calls it) is hanging on her wall, too!

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We also did a few other worksheets from 1+1+1=1 that I forgot to take pics of.

Next week we’re learning about D as we continue learning the letters in her name and it also goes with big sis’ book we’re rowing!

 

 

The Story About Ping (FIAR 1)

Filed under: Books,FIAR,Homeschooling,Life — Lacey @ 12:11 am

(We finished rowing this book about 2 weeks ago.  I’m slowly trying to catch up on my postings. Check out my Pinterest FIAR board for the resources/blogs where I found most of my ideas.)

We really enjoyed rowing this book. The story was cute. H had a lot of fun learning about China, K can now very clearly say “duck” and H still goes around the house singing “la-la-lei.”

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Day 1
We started out by reading Ping. Then we read a few books about China. Both of which I highly recommend.

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One of the books had a recipe for Chinese Moon Cookies, so of course we just HAD to make them. At least that’s what H said! They didn’t turn out quite as expected. They were too sticky (even after being in the fridge) to roll out, so I plopped blobs of them onto the cookie sheets. They ended up a bit flat, but they were yummy and were gone in no time!

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We watched a couple YouTube videos about China. One was a step by step description of a formal Chinese tea ceremony. The other was about silk worms. The video showed how silk worms are raised, fed, and spin their cocoons. Then how the cocoons are later turned into silk thread. I would not want to be a silk farmer (is that what they’re called?). They have thousands of worms in their houses in this weird shelf bin thing. Then when the worms outgrow their shelves, they dump them on the ground in this room. There are literally thousands of worms crawling all over the ground. Ugh. And the farmer has to keep replenishing the leaves around the clock. That’s worse than a newborn baby! At least newborns are cute! And did you know that the silk worms are basically killed while they are in their cocoons? If the moths actually come out of their cocoons, the silk is then useless because it has been torn. Makes me feel a little bad for those worms. Oh, the things you can learn from YouTube!

We also finished our day by playing a card game called Duck Duck Bruce (since it has ducks in it). It’s a fun game made by Gamewright. Seriously any game by them is great! (We love Moose in the House, Hiss and Sleeping Queens.)

Day 2
Today while we read Ping H graphed Ping’s family:

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We read a few more books about China and the Yangtze River where the story of Ping takes place.

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We found China on our big map. H drew the Yangtze River on a map of China and colored China’s flag.

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The I let her have some free time with paints (at her request). She painted/drew some neat pictures of China completed with cherry blossoms and Ping. I was rather impressed with her Ping picture.

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She also watched Mulan 2 since it’s set in China. Nice excuse, huh?

Day 3
Today we read some more books about China and the Yangtze River.

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H colored a map of our country and China. And then we made Chinese lanterns.

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H made a lot of lanterns and hung them all over the house for Chinese decorations and Valentine’s Day (she made them all pink and red).

This is the book where we found our lantern craft and the other Chinese crafts we did. I highly recommend it!

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Then we read a few fun stories about ducks.

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Day 4
Today H started out doing a few duck themed worksheets.

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Then we read some more China books. H really liked the Mei Ling book and keeps using the name Mei Ling when she’s playing.

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H worked on a few parts of the China lap book (that we turned into a regular book instead).

Day 5
H did a few more Ping focused worksheets.

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We talked about fiction vs nonfiction books and we came up with some examples of each.

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I told H that Ping is considered a classic story and we discussed what that meant. She found it neat that the book was written before her great grandma (Mama) was born and that Mama, Nana, Me and H could have all read Ping while we were each growing up! (Although I never had heard of it before our study.)

We also briefly discussed repetition and found some examples in the story. We talked about why the author would want to use it. And I told her about how the Bible has some good examples is repetition.

We also talked about discernment. We discussed how not everything that looks good is actually good (the rice cake trap for Ping). And we talked about punishments and consequences. Ironically a couple days before we started this book, H admitted to me that she thought she might have lied while in the kid’s program at church. She was very upset about it even though it wasn’t really a big deal (I didn’t tell her that part). It made me happy that she was truly so concerned about doing what is right. After she talked to me about it, she asked if we could learn about not lying and doing the right thing in school. That request surprised me and it just so happened that this book had a similar message about not avoiding punishment and consequences. H thought it was neat. And the lesson really hit home!

We also got some more art fun in. We practiced drawing reflections in water and movement in water with colored pencils (like the artist in Ping did).

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Then we made a Chinese Spinning drum (pictured on the cover of the Chinese art book posted about in day 3). I forgot I take a picture though!

We also read some more fun duck books.

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Day 6

Today we read a few more fun duck books:

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We made a passport book for H to use for all the future FIAR books we study.  I also created country stamps for the countries we learned about with our last book (How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World).  I found the passport template on Pinterest.

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Then it was time for some fun water and buoyancy experiments (H’s favorite type of school activity).  We read and tried the experiments we found in this book:

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I had H collect some household objects and toys.  We filled the bathtub with water and then I had H predict whether each object would float or sink.

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As she predicted each item, she threw it in and we recorded the results.

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Then we got some heavier metal objects.  First she put them into the tub and they clearly sunk.  Then we created a boat out of foil.  She still thought that they’d sink, so she was surprised when they floated.

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Then the girls had to get into the tub of course and play with all the random toys.  Isn’t science fun?

H also did a Ping copywork page.  She really needs to work on her handwriting. I try to get her to take her time and focus.  She can write neat, but she’s always rushing. I try to keep in mind that she’s only 5.  I debate with myself whether or not to force the neatness.  For now I’m convinced to just give her time to mature and as she gets older I’ll crack down more.

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Day 7

Today we counted Ping’s family again while reading the story, and this time H recorded them with tally marks.

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Next, we did some more science experiments.  We read the book Ducks Don’t Get Wet.  I forgot to take a picture of this one, but I highly recommend it. Then we experimented with oils since ducks’ feathers are covered with oil, which helps them float. We put olive oil on one bag and nothing on the other.  Then H dropped water onto the bags.  The water didn’t absorb into the oiled bag, but it of course saturated the plain bag.

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Next we skimmed through this book:

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Then we did an experiment with different kinds of liquids.  We used some of the items listed in the book above, but we also added a few I read about on Pinterest with a similar experiment.  We put in food colored water, dish soap, honey, vegetable oil and corn syrup.  Our top layer is so foamy because I poured the water and then the soap in first.  Didn’t think about the foamy results.  Duh.  I’d recommend not adding the two together.  I think it’d work better with adding some of the other oils in between.  The oils separated better after sitting for a few hours.  H thought all the layers were really neat.

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Next, H did a few duck worksheets from homeschool share (I think?):

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Next, we put together H’s China book. H drew Ping on the cover with fireworks since the Chinese invented fireworks. All the lapbook pieces were from homeschoolshare.com

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This is a picture of a rice farmer and a horse drawn carriage:

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We also watched some neat videos on Youtube. The first couple were about farmers from China who create heart and square shaped watermelon.  Then we watched some videos about 10 unique fruits from China, 10 nonchinese Chinese foods, and 10 things you can only buy in China.

Then we had a Chinese dinner.  H put on her Mulan dress and we put her hair up in a bun complete with chopsticks.  We ate cashew chicken, stick rice, egg rolls and attempted to use chopsticks (fail!). We had a little picnic on the kitchen floor since Chinese eat at low tables (we didn’t have one to use).  We also listened to classic chinese music from a pandora station.

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And after dinner we made some Chinese fans (from the Chinese craft book mentioned earlier). They ended up quite huge!

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Day 8

We read some more fun duck and egg books:

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These egg/duck books were really neat.  H loved them both.  K loved the duck pictures in the Duck book.

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We used the Duck book to fill out a worksheet (from homeschool share) about what ducks can do at various ages (forgot to take a pic of it). Then H did her setting notebook and chose Yangtze as her vocab word.  I tried to encourage some other words, but this is what she really wanted.  And she drew Ping on the Yangtze river.

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Day 9

We read another silly book about eggs today:

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Today was actually the Chinese New Year, we read a few more Chinese books:

 

 

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And then H made her own dragon (from the Chinese art book):

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Next, we learned about reflections.  We found all the reflections in the water in The Story About Ping.  Then we read:

 

 

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The I See Myself book had some neat exercises that we did with a small mirror and a flashlight.  I also showed H how words are reflected backwards in mirrors and then I wrote her name backwards and she looked at in the mirror.  She thought that was pretty cool!

Later H drew her own dragon:

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Ping was a lot of fun to row.  H loved learning about China and continues to tell our extended family what items China invented and loved showing her China book off.  And now she wants to make a country book for each of our other rows!