Friday, September 28, 2012

Grammar Stage Ancient History-Week 2



Memorization

  • Genesis 2:7-8 "Then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and the man became a living creature.  Then the Lord made a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he placed the man who he had formed."

Day 1


History Readings
  • Genesis 2
  • A Is for Adam - D
  • When Dragons' Hearts Were Good
    • This is a super cute fictional story about what it might have been like in the Garden of Eden before the fall.  It comes with a CD that tells the story and has a song to go with it.  Trevor really enjoys listening to the story and turning the pages as the narrator reads!

Activities

Reading/Writing

 

Day 2


History Readings

Activities
  • Make a Family Tree
    • I printed pictures of each of our family members (grandmas and grandpas, aunts, uncles, and cousins) and drew circles on a page where everyone should go.  Trevor had to figure out where to put each face.  This was difficult for him, but we got to talk a lot about how everyone fit together!

Reading/Writing

Day 3


History Readings

Activity
  • Garden of Eden Diarama
    • Using materials we had on hand (an old box, toilet paper tubes, tissue paper, and pipe cleaners) we created the Garden of Eden!  Our main focus was on placing the "tree of the knowledge of good and evil" in the center of the box.  I think it turned out pretty well!

Reading/Writing

Extra
  • Nature Journal page on a Katydid.

Day 4


History Readings
  • Genesis 3:1-5
  • A is for Adam - G & H

Activity
  • Treat Temptation
    • I put some candies on a tray and  told the kids that they could not eat them.  I told them that they could eat whatever they wanted that day, but not the candies.  I kept the candies out where they could reach them all day.  Luck for me, they did not ask for anything crazy to eat, but I did try to remember to let them eat what they wanted (for example, not making them finish all their dinner, or giving them an apple in the middle of doing something else).  I am happy to report that they did not eat the candies!  I let them eat them the next day =)

Reading/Writing


Supplemental History Reading



Read Alouds



Besides not feeling like there is enough time in the day, I am really pleased with how well this year is going!  Essentially we do school and clean the house in the morning (though the house is never completely kept up), eat lunch, take naps, then daddy comes home.  Of course there is playing in there too.  The days just seem to go by so fast!  I could have Trevor not nap, but I am not ready to give that up yet.  He doesn't sleep every day, but he at least rests and then reads books on his bed for a total of almost two hours while Mackenzie sleeps.  Do you have your children have a quiet time in the day? 

Happy Learning!

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Learning Together


I recently was talking to a friend who is in her first year of homeschooling.  She has four boys, one who is a toddler and three who are in elementary school.  I asked her how it was going and it sounded good, but like there was a lot going on (obviously, with four boys!)  I asked her if they were all doing separate studies, she said they were.  I advised her to think of any subjects that they could do together.

My children are little, but we start each day out around the breakfast table learning together.  This is a pattern that I hope to keep as they grow!  We review items from our memory box (Bible verses, poems, definitions, etc.), read a character building story, read our history lesson, sing songs, etc.

This is a great way to start the day.  It starts us off immediately and on the same page.  It streamlines things by tackling items together and at the same time.  The little one gets to learn from the older one, just by observation.  I am always amazed when I ask my 4 year old a question and the 2 year old answers it before he does =)

When we are reviewing material, first I ask the little one things that she might know.  For example, our first memory verse of the year was Genesis 1:1-2.  My 4 year old knew Genesis 1:1 from last year, so verse 2 was the new one for him.  When we review that verse, I ask my 2 year old to say Genesis 1:1 and then ask my 4 year old to say both verses together.  When we read from our history lessons, I begin by asking my 2 year old basic questions, maybe based off of a picture or something like that.  I may ask her to find something red on the page or to tell me if so-and-so was happy or sad in the story.  Then I move on to asking my 4 year old age-appropriate questions for him.  It's neat because it really is doing life together and watching and helping each other learn and grow.

Many of you have older children, and you might be wondering if this can work for you too.  Definitely! The history reading could be just the starting point for individual work that the older child need to work on later in the day.  Older children could read aloud essays they have written, or lead the family in a song or devotion.  Older children still need to be memorizing things, so add their items to your list (or box, or binder, etc.) and quiz them right along with everyone else.   You could share prayer requests with one another and spend some time in prayer.  You could perform a science experiment, or demonstrate scientific concepts for your children.  Like history, this might be all your younger children need, but it could be a jumping off point for further research or assignments for your older children.  A perfect idea for this time is reading quality books aloud and having your children dictate them back to you, starting with the youngest and having each older child build upon what the younger ones have said.

Those are just a few ideas.  The beauty of learning together is that you decide exactly what it will be to meet the needs of your family!  It may be more work for Mom in the moment (compared to just handing out workbooks to everyone for their individual studies), but it is simpler in the end because you don't have to keep on top of 2 (or 3  or 4 or 10) different programs.

Obviously there are certain subjects that children need to do separately.  I would not recommend trying to teach a young one to read during circle time (though you could include phonograms or words to read in your memory box for them), and each child is probably going to have to do their math work independently.  But, if your time together could be a unifying starting point for the day, imagine how great that could be for you kids (and you)!

My friend Kendra, from Preschoolers and Peace, has written an ebook on this subject, titled Circle Time.  I recently read this and loved it!  She is generously giving away one copy of Circle Time to one of you!  This is a great book to read if you are interested in starting a time of learning together in your family, or if you are looking for ideas or suggestions to improve what you have already been doing.  So, what is in Circle Time?

  • Why do Circle Time?
  • How long is enough?
  • What to include for different ages.
  • Expanding Circle Time with older children.
  • Sample time schedules
  • How to keep the littlest ones happy.
  • Questions and Advice from other moms.
  • Resource, Activities, and Ideas lists
  • Organizational sheets for Mom.
  •  and more!

Sound good?  It is!  Enter below to win a copy to read for yourself!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy Learning Together!

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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Trivium Tuesdays-Classical Link-Up #25

Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  If this is your first time here, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.

Don't forget to visit the All Things Classical Blog Post Index if you are trying to remember a post that someone linked up or are just looking for encouragement or help on a specific topic related to Classical homeschooling.  I have organized most of the posts that you have linked up here at Trivium Tuesdays so that you can easily find posts on the topic you are looking for.
Portrait of Martin Luther, 1529
My featured post from last week is An Interview with Martin Luther on Classical Education from Trivium Pursuit.   I just loved this post, because it was practically classical in and of itself!  They posed questions to Martin Luther about education, and then answered them from quotes of him from a few of his writings.  I love that it was straight from a historical source.  If you missed it last week, check it out to see what Martin Luther had to say =)

I also want to give an honorable mention to Teacups in my Garden for her post about their Great Books List, because it speaks the classical mindset so well, and also because I can't resist a great books list!


Now onto this week's link-up!

Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please place my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) on your blog post so others can learn about this link-up!
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!

I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)

Happy Linking!

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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Home and Blog Planning Pages


Like probably all of you, I want to be more organized.  Like probably all of you, I have tried many different ways of doing this.  Like probably all of you, I have failed at most all of these attempts.  I have tried the physical planner/binder approach.  The problem with this is that if the binder is closed, I don't see what I need to remember =)  If I keep the binder open, it takes up half of my desk, and even then, only one pages is opened at a time.  I have tried the digital calendar/tasks method, but again, if I'm using something else on the computer then I don't see my calendar.  Out of sight, out of mind I guess.  I thought if I could find something that would remind me of upcoming tasks and appointments, let me prioritize items, and auto-reschedule when needed, that I would thrive.  Maybe something is out there like that, but honestly I haven't found it, or haven't figured out how to make it work just right.  And frankly, I really do like writing things down on paper, so I decided to come up with my own simple planning sheets.

I made a page for Home, Food, Blog, Monthly Appointments, and Weekly Summary.  So far I'm LOVING it and I want to share it with you!  You could keep these sheets in a binder, but I keep them pinned on a cork board on the wall next to my desk.  See them in action in a picture from my 'school room' post, here.  That way I can see them all whenever I'm at the computer and am able to jot things down as they come to mind.  I'll briefly explain to you what each sheet is for.



Home

This page has a place for you to write down daily, weekly, and monthly tasks, and also any goals or ideas you have to work on related to your home.  You can fill out the sheet and then use it month after month, or print one out each month and check things off as you go.  Seriously, my home has been cleaner since I started using this.  It is so easy to quickly look and see what needs to be done each morning.  There are boxes next to each line that can be used to write the day/date that the item needs to be done on, prioritize your chores, check off that you did the item, etc.

download the Home planning page

Food

This page has a line for each day of the month so you can plan ahead up to a months worth of meals.  In the second column you can write down what items you will need from the grocery store to make those meals.  I do not take this sheet with me to the store (but you could!), I copy my list down onto another paper because I know it would never make it back home if I took it with me =)   sometimes I plan a weeks worth of meals at a time and then go back and plan more, other times I'll fill out the whole month.  You can use it however best suits your family's needs!

download the Food planning page

 

Blog

On this page, you can write down your blog posts for the month.  This makes it easy to work ahead and not have to scramble each morning to get a post together.  You can also write down your goals, ideas, etc.  I like to write down ideas I have for future posts, items I need to be looking out for that are being shipped to me for review, things I need to be promoting, etc.  Once again, the lines have boxes next to them so you can prioritize, mark completed, etc.  Writing all this down has really helped me to be more organized and focused in my blogging.  Obviously if you are not a blogger, you can disregard this page. 

download the Blog planning page

 

Monthly Appointments

This is simply a page that has a place for each date of the month so you can write down your appointments.  There is nothing special about this page over any other calendar type page, except that it coordinates with the others =)

download the Monthly Appointments page

 

Weekly Summary

This is the very best page!  I was inspired by a page that I saw similar to this when I was browsing down the office isle at my grocery store.  That page was designed for another use, but I saw how perfect the idea could work for organizing my life, so that is why I created these pages to begin with.  You print out a new Weekly Summary page each week.  There is a column for each day of the week and a row for each of the for other pages (Blog, Home, Food, and Appointments).  At he beginning of each week, you look at your monthly pages and write down what you need to do in each one of those areas on your weekly summary.  It is a nice way to review what is coming that week and to break your tasks down into smaller chunks.  Really it's just a great page to be able to look down a column and see what you need to do that day, already separated by category, and also to see the week at a glance.

download the Weekly Summary page


I hope that I have explained these pages clearly enough.  Feel free to ask any questions if you have any.  If you are looking for a planning system that is more in depth than a simple page-a-day planner, but not as intricate as some I've seen people offer, then I encourage you to give this a shot!  Let me know if you download these and what you think!

I'm offering these to you for FREE right now because of the awesome Print-A-Poloza that is going on right now at iHomeschool Network.  Each day has a different theme, and you can go link up your free printables and check out everyone else's!


Photobucket

Happy Planning!

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Friday, September 21, 2012

Grammar Stage Ancient History - Week 1


This year we added history to our studies.  My oldest child is 4 years old and he has been asking tons of "What did people do before they had....?" questions, so I thought now would be a great time to start history.  We are not following a structured curriculum, we are just reading lots of living books and doing activities to go along with the topics.  I would like to start sharing with you what we have been doing.  The focus each week will most likely be history since that is our spine, but I will include our other subjects as well.  So here is what we did for our first week of school...

 

Memorization

  • Genesis 1:1-2 "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.  The earth was without form, and void, and darkness covered the face of the deep."
  • Science - The sun rises in the east and sets in the west.
  • Geography - The names of the seven continents (North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and Antarctica).
  • Definition - Ex Nihilo means "Out of Nothing"

 

Day 1

History Readings
Activities
  • Begin Timeline
  • Color Days of Creation circles and add to timeline
Reading/Writing

 

Day 2

History Readings
Activity
Reading/Writing

 

Day 3

History Readings
Activity
  • People/Animal/Plant Chart
    • We cut out pictures of people, animals, and plants from magazines and categorized them accordingly.  We glued them onto a paper under those headings and added it to our history binder.
 Reading/Writing

 

Day 4

History Readings
Activity
  • Visit the Zoo
    • We talked about the similarities and differences between animals and people, completed a notebooking page titled "Am I An Animal?" and put it into our history binder.
Reading/Writing

 

Supplemental History Reading



Right now we are planning on only doing lesson plan type schooling four days a week, leaving the fifth day for things like field trips, homeschool group, sports classes, etc.  This week went really well for the first week!  It is really feeling like the homeschool journey has begun =)  I didn't mention above, but my two year old participates in everything listed above except that I give her preschool type things (letters, numbers, colors, matching, puzzles, etc.) to do while my four year old is doing this writing and reading to me.   

How did your week go?

Happy Learning!

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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Singing the Continents


This year we are studying the ancient times for school.  We try to connect as many subjects as possible to this history spine, so when we read that God said, "Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear."(Genesis 1:9), we took the time to learn about the land on the earth.  We colored a blank picture of the map and wrote in the names of the continents.  You could do a search on the internet for "blank world map" or use a printable like this from Our Worldwide Classroom.

I wanted to add the names of the continents to our memory box, but saw that the long, unfamiliar names were going to be difficult for my four year old to remember.  Like many moms, I am sure, I understand the value of music in helping children remember things.  If you've been around here for a while, you might remember some of the other things we've learned through music, and now here is another one! 

Get ready for this!  It's going to be a classic =)  Created by yours truly....



Trevor caught on to the song the first day, in fact he pretty much had it down after a few times of me singing it.  What I didn't expect was for Mackenzie, my two year old, to start singing it as well!  Last week when Trevor sang the song for my mom, she commented saying "pretty soon Mackenzie is going to know it too!"  Well, now she does =)  That is one thing I love about homeschooling, your little ones will learn all sorts of things that you never would have thought to teach them at such young ages...and just by being there!

You can thank me later after this tune has been in your head all day =)

Happy Singing!

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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Trivium Tuesdays-Classical Link-Up #24

Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  If this is your first time here, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.

Don't forget to visit the All Things Classical Blog Post Index if you are trying to remember a post that someone linked up or are just looking for encouragement or help on a specific topic related to Classical homeschooling.  I have organized most of the posts that you have linked up here at Trivium Tuesdays so that you can easily find posts on the topic you are looking for.

My first feature from last week is How Do I Instill a Love of Reading in my Students from Teacups in the Garden.  Don't we all want to raise children who love to read?  This post really encouraged me with ideas for how and why to promote reading in my home.  One specific idea she had was to make sure your children are watching you (mom) read for fun, not just when you have to.  To get other ideas make sure to check out the post!


My second feature is Repetition is Classical Education from Rachel's Reflections.  She talks about wondering how to visit ancient history again after studying it in a previous cycle.  She likens learning history to learning a song.  We listen to a song over and over, we learn it, come to love it, and soon it just plays in our heads.  Wouldn't it be lovely for history to just play in our heads like that?  Rachel has much more to say in her post, so link up and then go check it out if you missed it last week!

Now onto this week's link-up!

Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please place my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) on your blog post so others can learn about this link-up!
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!

I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)

Happy Linking!

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Friday, September 14, 2012

Goals for a Four Year Old


Last month my son turned 4 years old.  If you've been around here for a while, you may remember that I like to evaluate my children every 6 months.  This is just reviewing the purpose statement I have written for them, looking at their strengths and weaknesses, seeing what they have accomplished over the past 6 months, then setting goals for them for the next 6 months.

This may sound intense, but I promise it is not =)   It is just a way to make sure that I am being purposeful in my parenting and it also provides a good record to look back on in the future!  I will share with you some of what I wrote down this time.  I'm going to leave out the part about his weaknesses, because he may be little, but he's a person too =)

First I went back and looked at the goals I had written down for him from last time....

Academic

  • Be able to write all the letters of the alphabet (yes!)
  • Be able to pronounce phonograms 1-45 in Writing Road to Reading (yes!)
  • Be able to read and write all the words in sections A-G in Writing Road to Reading (yes!)
  • Be able to count to 100 (yes!)
  • Be able to skip count by 10's, 5's, and 2's (10's and 5's yes! I forgot to keep working on the 2's)
  • Be able to read and write numbers up to 100 (yes!)
  • Memorize 50 Bible verses (I didn't go back and count, but it was around there)
  • Be able to add and subtract using manipulatives (yes!)

 

Life Skills

  • Master using scissors (yes!)
  • Participate in a sport (took two sessions of gymnastics)
  • Be able to dress and undress himself (yes! with the exception of doing zippers, but I am confident that with the coming of jacket season that he will get that down in no time!)

 

Character

  • Learn to consider others before himself
  • Learn to not interrupt
  • Learn to not take toys from Mackenzie
  • We have made great strides in these things, but obviously these sort of character issues are lifelong =)


Then I start a new page for this year....

Trevor's Purpose Statement:

To become a man of God.  A strong, discerning, compassionate leader, equipped to be a husband, father, and provider.

Specific Goals (with the purpose statement in mind):


Academic -
  • Be able to add and subtract numbers totaling up to ten
  • Be able to skip count 2's
  • Be able to tell time
  • Learn to write all letters in cursive
  • Be able to read and write all words in sections H and I in Writing Road to Reading
  • Memorize the basic events on our timeline from Creation to Christ
  • Memorize at least 50 new items for our memory box (Bible verses, poems, science facts, etc.


Life Skills -
  • Master the use of a zipper
  • Learn to tie shoes
  • Learn to ride a bike without training wheels
  • Learn to interact with adults more appropriately (eye contact, answering questions, not running in front of them, etc.)


Character -
  • Learn to channel anger appropriately
  • Learn to channel energy appropriately
  • Consider others better than himself
  • Be a diligent worker (don't be lazy or give up)

 

Trevor's Strengths:

  • He is incredibaly smart and has very good mental capacity
  • He is gaining interest and confidence  in reading without me asking him to
  • He is getting much stronger (physically)
  • He has great hand-eye coordination (like hitting a tennis ball)
  • Most of the time he is very appreciative (of food, gifts, etc.)
  • He is beginning to be a hard worker (notably with his chores)
  • He desires to be a 'strong worker man' when he plays
  • He is continuing to grow in his creative play

 

I (mom) Will:

  • Remember to encourage him more specifically (like "your letter Y's are looking so good!)
  • Give him lots of opportunities to release energy
  • Have regular read-alone times
  • Have him tackle 'man' jobs with daddy
  • Give him regular opportunities to serve others


Now, I don't share this to suggest that every 4 year old should look like my son.  God gifts us each uniquely and we all have our own strengths and weaknesses.  I share this to give you ideas if you happen to be looking for some, and also to encourage you to take a moment to evaluate your child and set some goals for this coming year!  Even if your child did not recently have a birthday, this is a great time of year to do this because most people are just getting back into the swing of things with school.  This can give you specific areas to work on in the coming months and specific things to pray for your child about!

Do you keep written records of your child's growth, achievements, areas of struggle? 

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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Trivium Tuesdays-Classical Link Up #23

Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  If this is your first time here, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.

Don't forget to visit the All Things Classical Blog Post Index if you are trying to remember a post that someone linked up or are just looking for encouragement or help on a specific topic related to Classical homeschooling.  I have organized most of the posts that you have linked up here at Trivium Tuesdays so that you can easily find posts on the topic you are looking for.

I have two features for you this week!  I enjoy reading all that you share each week and am always inspired to do more and be better after hearing from you all.  Thank you for sharing with us each week, and a special welcome to those of you who are relatively new here.  I just love finding new great blogs!

My first feature is Book Binding - Creating Your Own Family Library from Teaching Stars.  We use a lot of public domain books and I never know what to do with them.  Should I print them all out?  Should I invest in an e-reader?  (Am I think only one left on the planet who does not have one?!?)  I've been printing out chapters at a time, but then the pages inevitably get lost or ruined.  Kristen from Teaching Stars shows us how she makes books for her kids!  I bet that this would work great for all the eBooks I now have from Heritage History! (I've got a giveaway going on right now...have you entered???)

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Hard at work building a book!

My second feature is A Logic Mystery from Trivium Pursuit.  I was so excited to see them join us here at Trivium Tuesdays, but they didn't link up until yesterday so I didn't want you to miss this fun logic story.  Print out this story and read it to you kids, I'm sure they will have a great time solving this mystery!

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Now onto this week's link-up!

Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please place my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) on your blog post so others can learn about this link-up!
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!

I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)

Happy Linking!



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Monday, September 10, 2012

Charting the Sun's Movement in the Sky


I'm excited to get back to writing posts about actual things we are doing in school =)  We have started back into full swing and are focusing on history this year!  In true classical style, we will try to connect other areas of study to this history backbone, helping our learning to not be segmented.

Since this is our first year of history, we are starting at the very beginning.  We opened our Bibles and read Genesis chapter 1.  We also read lots of books having to do with creation, including A is for Adam, selections from Heritage History, and various library books.

In Genesis 1:14-15 it says,

"And God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night.  And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years, and let them be lights in expanse of the heavens to give light upon the earth."

I thought that this would be a great time to cover some basic science about the sun!  The plan was to discover how the sun moves in the sky, to learn that the earth actually turns around the sun, and to memorize that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west.  This is what we did:

  1. Print out the page I created to help us chart the sun's movement. (See the Preschool Science Printable Pack below)
  2. Cut out the pieces and have them ready with a piece of cardstock to glue them onto. Glue the boy onto the middle/bottom of the cardstock.
  3. Go outside first thing in the morning and have your child look for the sun in the sky.  Once they spot it, have them point their arm towards it.  Tell them to remember how their arm is positioned.
  4. Go to your piece of cardstock with the little boy on it.  Have your child put an arm on the boy in the position that they pointed up toward the sun at outside. Glue it down once they have it in the right spot.
  5. Have them draw a sun on the page in the direction that the arm is pointing.
  6. Have them write the time underneath the arm they glued on.
  7. Repeat steps 3-6 each hour throughout the day.
  8. Have your child look at their finished paper and observe what happened to the sun in the sky as the day progressed.  Explain that they can tell the approximate time of the day by looking at where the sun is in the sky.
  9. Write Genesis 1:14-15 on their paper (or have them write it) and show how God gave us the sun so that we could keep track of the days!

After that, we brought out the globe and I showed my son how the earth actually is the thing that moves, not the sun, and that it takes the earth 24 hours to spin around one time (making one day).

Memory Box Item: The sun rises in the east and sets in the west.

I added the memory sentence to our memory box and our sun-charting page to our new history binder, both for regular review! 

I know this is very basic, but it's a great place to start for a child's first exposure to the celestial beings!  If your child is a little older, or has already been exposed to these things, you could add making a diagram of the earth/moon/sun, have them also memorize the fact about the earth taking 24 hours to spin once on its axis, or introduce them to the other planets.

What other fun ways have you introduced the sun and the movement of the earth to your child?





 Would you like to have an activity sheet and printable instructions for this and 9 other science activities for preschoolers?

Get my Preschool Science (& Nature) printable pack for free!






 Looking for more preschool information?  Click on the picture below to find a list of all the preschool posts here at Living and Learning at Home, plus some of my favorite preschool resources!


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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Heritage History Giveaway (take three)

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Here's round three of my Heritage History giveaway!

Two months ago I shared with you a great new living books curriculum called Heritage History.  You can read my review here.  Basically they compile and reformat public domain books that tell history in a living, story sort of way.  The books are in e-book format for you to use on your computer, print out, or read on your e-reader device.

Have you seen that Heritage History has recently set up a blog?  On it they spotlight authors, share more information about specific books, let us know about new books they have added to their collection, and more!  It is a great place to visit if you are using their curriculum or if you want to learn more about the types of books they offer.  If you haven't been over there yet, go check it out!

They have also come out with a series of videos to watch that help you to understand more about what they offer.  Here is one that is an overview of what they are all about, but if you'd like to watch more, click here.





Heritage History sells complete curriculum packages for $24.99, extra book libraries for $19.99, and also individual books in case you just see one that you want!  (But you can win a curriculum set or library today by entering below!!!)

Curriculum Sets:
  • Young Readers (an overview of history)
  • Ancient Greece
  • Ancient Rome
  • British Middle Ages
  • British Empire

Libraries:
  • Early America
  • Spanish Empire
  • Christian Europe
  • Modern Europe

Heritage History has been kind enough to give me one set (either curriculum or library) to give away to one of my readers.  The best part is that you get to pick out which set you want!

If you don't want to wait (or if you don't win =) Heritage History has two great promotions going on right now.
  1. With the purchase of any curriculum package, can you get the Spanish Empire library FREE.  Just add both items to you cart, then enter discount code 'MAZEbugs' to get the Spanish Empire library FREE.
  2. Either sign up on their email list or make any purchase and you will be entered to win a Kindle Fire loaded with the curriculum set of your choice! (Click here to learn more and sign up for their emails...scroll down to the bottom of the page.)

Please use the Rafflecopter below to enter this great giveaway!  This is a great way to get some fantastic history material for this coming school year! Oh, and don't worry if you don't win, I'm going to have one more Heritage History giveaway next month =)

Happy Winning!

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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Review: Explore Meteor Crater and Petrified Forest


A while back I was able to watch and review Explore Yellowstone and Explore the Grand Canyon from the Awesome Science series.  I enjoyed them, so I was excited to be able to watch the third  DVD in this series, Explore Meteor Crater and Petrified Forest!

If you have seen the first two in the series (or read reviews of them), this installment is very much the same.  Noah Justice (the narrator) speaks well, giving the watcher a great amount of information.  There is so much packed into this half hour lesson that I think anyone would have to watch it more than once to soak it all in.

I love that the Awesome Science DVDs start with the basis that the Bible is true and that we view all evidence through the lens of Scripture.  The good news is that the Bible can be trusted to provide us accurate information!  Many times Noah Justice acknowledges and even agrees with the evolutionists conclusions (like that the trees in the petrified forest had to have been violently ripped up from the ground), but he brings them back to the Bible (mostly the flood) for the starting point instead of millions of years ago.

Specifically,  this DVD talks about how the catastrophe of the Biblical flood caused all kinds of amazing things like laying layer after layer of sediment, carving deep canyons in the matter of days, and burying trees and animals as the land re-formed.  I also like how it sites similar aftermaths from Mount Saint Helen as proof that these things could, indeed, have happened in a short amount of time.

I completely recommend adding this DVD to your collection and using it as a supplement to your curriculum.  Because of the great amount of information in this DVD, I don't recommend using it alone.  I would first introduce your child to some of the topics and terms covered, and then use this to learn more and see it all put together.

Happy Discovering!

I received these DVDs from New Leaf Publishing for the purpose of this revie.  I was not required to give a positive review and all opinions are my own.
 

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