Wednesday, March 30, 2011

B is for Bunny

We are doing some bunny related activities from homeschool share. I have cut out 26 "decorated" eggs from left over pieces of scrapbook paper. I am going to put the alphabet on these for the kids to put in order. I printed out a bingo marker bunny page for little-man to stamp from  It has been a really good day today. Tippy-toe can spell egg and added it to his reading index card flip book. We reviewed his other words. Pitty-pat got a fashion paper doll for Christmas and didn't show any interest. Today she got my leftover scrapbook paper to make more clothes. It is good tracing and cuting practice. She worked for two hours on it. Cam got some computer time.

BFIAR book list

Time to check on our progress with the BFIAR book list for little-man and company.

Corduroy, by Don Freeman*done 2010 He loved this book!

Blueberries for Sal, by Robert McCloskey*done 2010 Enjoyed all the activities with this one.

Goodnight Moon, by Margaret Wise Brown*done 2010 I really am not a fan of this book.
Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear? by Nancy W. Carlstrom *done 2010 Our family has enjoyed these books for 20 years.
Caps for Sale, by Esphyr Slobodkina *done 2010We're Going on a Bear Hunt, by Michael Rosen *done 2010 We like this one.

The Runaway Bunny, by Margaret Wise Brown *done 2011 Enjoying this one.

 These are the ones we have to do yet.
Yellow Ball, by Molly Bang
My Blue Boat, by Chris L. Demarest
The Little Rabbit, by Judy Dunn
Ask Mr. Bear, by Marjorie Flack
The Big Green Pocketbook, by Candice Ransom
The ABC Bunny, by Wanda Gag
If Jesus Came to My House, by Joan Gale Thomas
The Carrot Seed, by Ruth Krauss
The Snowy Day, by Ezra Jack Keats
The Quiet Way Home, by Bonny Becker
Play With Me, by Marie Hall Ets
Prayer for a Child, by Rachel Field
I Am an Artist, by Pat L. Collins
Angus Lost, by Marjorie Flack
Katy No-Pocket, by Emmy Payne
The Red Carpet, by Rex Parkin
Jenny's Surprise Summer, by Eugenie

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

bible plan for preschoolers

MONTH #1 – Genesis 1:1 – In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
MONTH #2 – John 3:16 – For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
MONTH #3 – Romans 3:23 – For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
MONTH #4 – John 14:6 – Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
MONTH #5 – Hebrews 13:8 – Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
MONTH #6 – Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
MONTH #7 – Colossians 3:23 – Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men
MONTH #8 – Psalm 119:11 – I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.
MONTH #9 – Proverbs 30:5 – Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
MONTH #10 – Psalm 139:14 – I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
MONTH #11 – Romans 12:12 – Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
MONTH #12 – Matthew 5:16 – In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
There you have it – a one year plan for writing the Word of God onto the hearts of your precious children.  Don’t delay.  Go ahead and get started today!
I found this here and wanted to save it so here it is I can refer to it without loosing it.

BFIAR- The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown

This week we are "rowing" The Runaway Bunny. It is a charming story of a little bunny who tests his mother's love for him. It reminds me of when Pitty-pat first came to live with me. She had received alot of attention for running away in the past. In fact she even bragged about being brought back to a laundromat by the police! (This is at age 5 years old) So she tried it here just once. I ran after her and marched her home. She did not like the consequences of not being allowed to play outside for a whole week while little brother did get to go outside. It wasn't so much fun anymore.
We discussed how much the momma bunny loved her little bunny and didn't want to have him run away but keep him safe at home. I enjoy the tie-in to how God's love is everywhere we are too.

We made a lapbook from the ideas at homeschool share.We made just one book to share this time since I still have alot of the pieces of the last two allover the table. It is mostly for little-man since this book is more geared toward his age anyway.
We had carrot sticks for a snack and talked about what bunnies eat---Dandelions,grass,carrots.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Quote for today

"Tell me, I’ll forget
Show me, I’ll remember
Involve me, I’ll understand"
~Chinese Proverb 
 Our learning style is mostly  a smorgasbord of Montessori with some Charlotte Mason thrown in with Waldorf for seasoning. I find the kids are hands on learners. Partly this is due to their age. I agree with Dr. Raymond and Dorthy Moore that kids shouldn't be put in classrooms at an early age. Learning should be fun and apply to real life. Yes, I have done my research. Homeschooling is as personal a decision as what Church to attend. There are different styles of learners-auditory,tactile,and many others. By homeschooling we get to pick and choose for the best of all three. There is no teaching to the test in my home because there is no pressure that mom will be fired or loose funding if they don't show a certain improvement on the  MEAP test.
Yes, I do plan to have the kids take a standardized test at some point. BUT it will be just to see what areas we need to do more work . Isn't that why the tests were invented in the first place? I want my kids to be able to critically think, logically think, and think for themselves, THINK. Standardized test take thinking out of the schools. Some of the dumbest people I know scored A's on tests but couldn't apply their knowledge outside the classroom. I am sure our learning styles will change as the kids get older.  Isn't that the way it should be?

Sunday, March 27, 2011

March Sensory Tub

I saw this great idea frog a frog pond sensory bin and I just had to copy it right away! As you can see Little-Man loved it too! I changed mine a little to make it more educational for the older ones to also use.We will soon be studying the life cycle of the frog. In mine is a base of blue glass for the water, googly eyes for the frog eggs, a flat rock,felt lily pads (I found the pattern here), a green spoon from the dollar store, and green frogs from the dollar store. Total cost today $3.16  It is such a big hit Little-man cried when I took it away for nap time. I saw it here and that's where I got my idea. Thanks so much for the jump start!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Quote for today

"I really am living happily ever after"
How ironic this one is today! I saw it here on moore's minuets blog.    Today doesn't feel happily ever after I must say. But hearing these words from Moore's minuets reminds me how lucky I really am.

"There are very few readers who truly are struggling with extreme circumstances and this post doesn't apply to them.

BUT to the REST OF US...
chin up bright eyes! Shake it off Princess

Your life is NOW. Don't waste a moment.

Be Blessed and Go! Live YOUR Happily Ever After."

Recipes for Aimee

Chicken and Mushroom Fettuccine
1 ½ pounds chicken breast tenders
2 packages (8oz ea) cremini mushrooms, cut into thirds
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
2 packages (8oz ea) cream cheese, cut into chunks
1 cup (2sticks) butter, but into pieces
1 ½ cups grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for garnish
1 ½ cups whole milk
1 package (1lb) fettuccine

Spray inside of 5 qt crock pot with nonstick cooking spray. Arrange chicken in single layer in bottom of crock pot. Top with mushrooms. Sprinkle salt, black pepper, and garlic powder over mushrooms. Stir together cream cheese, butter, Parmesan cheese and milk in medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk constantly until smooth and heated through. Pour over mushrooms, pushing down any that float to surface.

Cover and cook on low 4 – 5 hours or high 2 to 2 ½ hours. Serve over cooked
I found this recipe here and thought Aimee would like it.

What are we doing today?

Tippy-toe has been set loose with a new set of small magnets from the dollar store. he is all over the house checking things out. (cost $1.00 ) He has been occupying himself alone for over an hour. This is cheap entertainment I mean hands on learning. In order to earn the magnets he had to do some handwriting, not his favorite activity.
Pitty-pat also did some handwriting worksheets. Now she is working with the "I Never Forget a Face! matching game and world map". It is a memory game using children around the world in costume. She can point out Michigan, Hawaii, and Japan. I asked Aaron to get a poster frame so I can hang the map up in the family room without Little-man destroying it. Little-man is "helping" her.
Cam has the rock collection out looking over the new additions from the set I bought at the dollar store last week. Amazing how adding one thing makes the set new again.
Little man worked with his abc mat and magnets while the older kids did their handwriting sheets.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

He can read!

Tippy-toe is reading sight words! I printed out a couple of see,say,write and read worksheets from tls books. He is so proud of himself recognizing the words-bunny, hat, see, in, the, I. We put them in a index card spiral so he can practice them. He just beamed from ear to ear! I am going to find more of these style sheets for him to work on. Everything just clicked for him today. He has been wanting to read for awhile now. I haven't pushed him (because of the biological family history of dyslexia). I wanted him to be mature enough to not get frustrated if it wasn't easy. Today it came easy! I am so proud of him. Then he knew a word Pitty-pat didn't recognize--Bunny. Boy did his buttons pop. He felt so proud of himself. I was so happy for him. This reading stuff has been the hardest subject for me to teach. As I said before I was four years old when I started to read so I don't remember HOW I learned to read. It has made teaching reading difficult for me to do. By the time  I was four I could read the newspaper without help. I have always loved to read. I read to my kids everyday if I can. I read the books my older kids bring home so we have something in common to talk about together. So reading is very important in my home. Little man has his own library of board books. He loves his books. I am so happy about today.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Frugal Family Meals

I have friends who run a catering business this week our family was blessed with leftovers, a large bag of romaine lettuce, a gollon ziploc of cooked chicken breast,a gallon of salsibury steak, and three dozen eggs from their chickens. For dinner we had a Caesar style salad with boiled eggs and ranch dressing. Today we had mom's famous scrabbled eggs for breakfast I made enough extra to freeze for Chinese fried rice later this week. Then for lunch we used the rest to make a taco salad with venison burger. All three meals cost just pennies--all we had to buy was chips and cheese. Twice this week we have had spaghetti-- once plain with bread sticks and then the kids requested it again so I made meat sauce and garlic toasts for the second batch. These are all good wholesome meals that cost very little to feed a big family. Update Tuesday night we had the steak over noodles and twice this week I have set out chicken breast to put in my lunch for work the rest is frozen for a later meal when i just don't feel like cooking. Thank so much to my good friends!

I have been taking my breakfast and lunch to work. It was costing me about $50.00 every two weeks to eat at work but i am down to less than $10.00 out of each pay check. It takes more time but the meals are better flavored. Mostly I take planned leftovers-make an extra meal or just a little more of the vegetables at dinner to take the next day. It isn't as convenient as running down to the cafeteria but I sure do like the extra money in my check.

Montessori and more Activity Bags

I have a trip out of state coming up. So I have put together about 30 new  activity bags for my 3 Little's--- ages 2, 7, 8 years old. I am going list them here in no particular order, rhythm or reason. Some have the links and some do not, it was hit or miss if I got interrupted while searching for ideas. Most are not my original idea. I will link and give credit as I clean up my lists. I will add photos as I get time but this is as always a record for myself of what we are doing.
  1. alphabet flash cards-black and white print outs of each letter.
  2. pony beads and pipe cleaners
  3. small magnet set (purchased from the dollar store), paperclip, magnet and non-magnet cards
  4. Bird Bag- bird three part cards, bird chart with parts to label
  5. magnetic numbers 1-5, black and white number cards
  6. poem book-I bought a small photo album book and printed some of our favorite poems to fit in the pockets.*my original idea*
  7. Baby Faces Book-I bought a small photo album book and put cut outs of different faces
  8. Favorite things book-i first made one of these for my now 22 year old daughter when she was 2 years old. Again a small photo album and pictures of words she knows like duck, puppy and people she recognises like daddy, mommy, sissy etc.
  9. Button Match- I printed a sheet from here and put in the colored buttons sort and match
  10. Upper and Lower case letter match-I found a tear pack of scrapbook letters from the dollar store of paper letters made by K&Company(*my original idea*)
  11. Shape Cards and shape dice-the die came from a magic set we bought Tippy-toe for Christmas
  12. hot or cold sheets-printed out hot or cold sheet and cut out pictures to sort hot  and cold things
  13. Tongs, pom ball and square cup with lid
  14. Cars theme sequence strips
  15. Farm theme sequence strips
  16. Air, land , Water-sorting cards, 3 part cards
  17. Red blue number rods and cards-printed from
  18. Fruit or vegetable-3 part cards and picture cut from magazines
  19. shape recognition-cards and matcing shape cut outs
  20. Giraffe 6 piece puzzle
  21. spelling card match game- from the dollar store be continued

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Quote for the day

"A candle looses nothing by lighting another candle" unknown ---heard it on CNN tonight

It's Spring!

Today Aaaron pointed out my tulips and other spring flowers had just pushed their way out of the ground.I took the kids for a walk yesterday and we looked for signs of spring.  We didn't see any, but this morning I saw 2 Robins in my beech tree.I can't wait for warmer weather.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Japan Lapbook

In the light of the disaster in Japan we are doing a lapbook so the kids can better understand where Japan is and who the people are that are suffering there. It makes it more real and personal. I want the kids to feel real empathy for these people.
  1. We have started with some a lapbook from lapbook lessons and more lapbook elements from homeschool share.
  2. I printed a flag and map to color. from here
  3. Activity Village has koi kites. 
  4. I printed paper dolls from making friends.These are in traditional dress. as well as these awsome coloring page of traditional dress found here.
  5. We found the characters for numbers1 through 10. I wanted to make flash cards but pitty-pat used them to do copy work of the symbols. We discussed calligraphy.
  6. I read them fun facts from Scholastic about Japan. I enjoyed the section on manners and how important they are in Japan.
  7. I printed out some origami patterns to try out.Some are from here at enchanted learning and here at ActivityVillage
  8. We watched a video message from a high school friend who teaches in Japan that was made to let everyone know he is ok.
  9. Japanese theme lunch- Ramen noodles and frozen mixed vegetables. Easy peasy! I did find a recipe at family fun for candy sushi I plan to try this weekend as well as buying real sushi at a local grocery store made fresh on the weekend. I happen to love sushi but I am not taking them an hour away to the nearest sushi restaurant.
  10. Zen sand garden- We already have a meditation sand garden we bought at the local dollar store and embellished with more polished rocks. This can be kind of messy.
"I've seen the village and I do NOT want it raising MY children"--unknown  thanks for the quote Aimee

Sunday, March 13, 2011

mini green house

Today the kids are planting in our mini green house. Aaron bought it for me before our trip. Tippy-toe put it together with some help. It was like a giant erector set. We have saved some egg cartons for planting and some trays I recycled. The water is from water bottles the older kids have left around the house that would otherwise just be dumped out. So in effect it is also a lesson on recycling.
I have printed out a couple of lessons to fill the time until the plants start sprouting. The first is from EasyFunSchool about how "seeds are baby plants". We used pinto beans from the pantry.
I bought tomatoes, corn and cilantro seeds to start. I have a small raised bed which we have been composing in all winter. It is made from the boards of an old water bed  frame. So we have limited space to grow. But I hope to grow as much as we can this summer. In our yard we already have an herb garden( thyme, sage, mint,and chives), raspberries, Egyptian onions, and  a small strawberry bed. I plan to tuck more food plants in the flower beds around the yard. It is important for the kids to learn to grow some of their own food. I have read a couple of really good books on permaculture by Bill Mollison. Everyone could do this on any size lot.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Explaining the destruction to the kids

Sorry no postings lately we have all been taking turns passing around this viral illness for the last 2 weeks--fever, sore throats, cough, headache, and chills. very little school has been accomplished.
Yesterday, Aaron and I watched the news about Japan. With my daughter and son-n-law in Hawaii we were glued to the TV for most of the day (I slept for 4 hours after my cold medicines kicked in). Finally we shared with Pitty-pat and Tippy-toe some of the destruction on TV. I saw real empathy in their little faces. We got out the map and did some geography-Japan,Hawaii,Alaska, California.
We talked about the force of water. I used the illustration of shoving water across the bath tub to make a big splash up on the wall. Their little heads nodded, now they could understand.
We have been discussing the three states of matter-gas, liquid , and solid. We viewed the pictures of the nuclear reactor and talked about the poisonous gases being released.
I remember the hard history lessons I saw first person and I want them to remember these events so they can tell their children. We are sad. We hurt in our hearts for the people of Japan. We said a prayer for the people of Japan.