November 30, 2009

We are a busy bunch...

...but will be back to blogging very soon.

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November 24, 2009

Advent Countdown Ideas

Check out Crafty Crows compilations of Advent Countdown. Great ideas!

November 23, 2009

Christmas Projects

#1 Operation Christmas Child

This is our 4th year preparing the shoeboxes. It's so easy and fun for all the family.

#2 FIAR Ornament Exchange

Our second year with the Ornament Exchange with the Five in a Row community. Here are pictures of the ornaments we are mailing to the families in our group. Then in return we will receive ornaments for the boys to place in a small tree for our school room. I'll post pictures of the completed tree once alll the ornaments arrive.

You can see last year's ornaments here.

Happy Candy Boy/Girl from Oriental Trading

Nativity ornament from Oriental Trading
#3 Advent Calendar
Last year we started this tradition of opening up a little bag every day in December till Christmas. Inside the bag we added a paper with portions of the nativity story to read plus a little gift to go with it (pencil, eraser, little candy, mini ornament, etc. )
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November 18, 2009

The Glorious Flight

Our week with The Glorious Flight was simple due to illness spreading around our house. We did a lot reading about the story of aviation. We also made our own paper gliders. To make the gliders a bit more sophisticared, we glued a small triangle for a "rudder " to the back of the gliders and cut out little flaps to fold in the wings. This made them spin a lot and the boys loved it!
We also blew up balloons (without tying them) and realeased them to show how a jet engine fuel works. The released air pushes the balloon forward very much like a real jet. : )

One of the Five in a Row lessons from the manual was to make a list of ways to travel. Caleb did very good and together we came up with 27 different ways! He included a few animals like horse and camel and then told me: "And Mom, don't forget elephant, people use those to travel in Sri Lanka!". He remembered this from How To Make an Apple Pie And See The World.

A fun tag-along activity for Noah was to work on these floor puzzles by Melissa & Doug. The set is called "Going Places" and includes four puzzles of train, boat, airplane and truck. Here's my proud preschooler, doing school in his jammies and showing his completed puzzles (next to the Huggies box that mama forgot to put away!!)

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November 17, 2009

Sarah is 10 months today!

Hello again! Sarah here. I'm 10 months old today! Two more months and it will be my birthday. This past month I was sick with colds a lot but I'm doing better now. I've been very busy exploring both our home and backyard. My legs are getting stronger every day and my Mami thinks I will be walking very soon. I love to wave my hands to say hello and goodbye. I'm also starting to enjoy music and books being read to me.

Here's me with my Mami. She loves this picture of us together.

And here's me wearing my hula skirt for our church's fall fest on Halloween.

The weather has been in Houston that I've started to enjoy our yard with my big brothers. This swing is my favorite thing right now. And I love that my brothers are swinging with me even more!

Hope you enjoyed the latest shots. See you next month!

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Thanksgiving Plans

With colds going on in our house, we took a break from Five in a Row and are enjoying Thanksgiving Day books and activities. I will post pictures of these next week.

Check out our previous Thanksgiving Day fun!

This week we will...

Sarah Morton's Day

One Little, Two Little, Three Little Pilgrims

On the Very First Thanksgiving Day

A Time to Remember

Cranberry Thanksgiving (will read this week and do a mini-row next week)

Memory Work:
Psalm 100

Listen to Story Hour's Thanksgiving Day narration (thank you Ruth!)
Watch Nest Entertainment's "The First Thanksgiving Day"

Thanksgiving Lapbook by Live n Learn Press

Will make some fun turkey themed crafts from this fantastic list.

November 11, 2009

How To Make An Apple Pie...

Still catching up with my posts on our FIAR units, but here's some shots from our week with "How To Make An Apple Pie And See The World".
Other stories we read this week:
"The Apple Pie Tree"
"Ten Apples Up On Top"
"How To Make A Cherry Pie and See The United States"
"The Apple Pie That Papa Baked"
Every day during out unit study week, we tried a different type of apple.
Our favorites...
*Dad's - Gala & Fuji
*Mom's - Honeycrisp
*Caleb's - Granny Smith
*Noah's - Jonagold and Golden Delicious
* Sarah's - all of them!!!

Noah making apple prints.

Caleb's map of the girl's travels, starting and finishing in Texas, of course!

Art Lesson: drawing a street scene. Caleb told me the "people" look big because they are more important than the buildings. Later on he came back to tell me he had decided the people were really "transformers". Only in a home schooled child can get away with this one, right?

And the boys very first homemade apple pie. They did all the steps by themselves (except the oven part!). We followed the basic recipe on the back of the book. It turned out very yummy! We chose to eat it plain like in the story.
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November 10, 2009

Who Owns the Sun?

Here is a page from Caleb's notebook with our art lessons for our week with "Who Owns the Sun?". These two lessons are from the FIAR manual. First we looked over the beautiful story illustrations and tried to match some of the colors with our crayola box. The boys learned many new shades. Caleb added them to this crayons coloring picture.
We also tried to copy some of the illustration using watercolors. Can you guess where these two paintings come from? : )

This story provides a wonderful descriptive-poetic text, with lots of references to the senses. During one of our readings, I had the boys point at the board whenever they heard a reference to one of their senses in the story. This proved to be a very simple but fun activity. It helped them both practice attentiveness. They enjoyed it so much that asked for it to be done the following day. Just one look at the simple drawings below and I think it's clear that we don't need to be artistic to have a creative and fun learning day at home. I'm definitely encouraged by that!!

To further study the senses we used a few Usborne books resources. The boys really enjoyed "How Do Your Senses Work" (one of the Flip Flap Body series).

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Mike Mulligan And His Steam Shovel

One of Caleb's favorite children's book is "Mike Mulligan And His Steam Shovel". So I was so excited to row this book!!
Homeschool Share has great printouts to go along with this unit. We used most of them for our week. Here's a sample of Caleb's notebook for the week.
For Noah (my preschooler) I focused on the topics of "digging", "building" and "squares". I added this set of books by Michael Rex for him to explore this week and he LOVED them.
Homeschool Share has a neat "Boxed In Game" printout. I used it to practice making squares. Instead of writing their initials, the boys used stamps to mark their squares.
One afternoon the boys had fun digging canals for the boats to sail through like Mike Mulligan and Mary Anne did in the story.
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November 06, 2009

Nature Faces

Another fun idea I borrowed from Amy's Blog was to go make these nature faces. Check out her blog to see all the creative "faces" they came up with.
We went on a nature walk to a park in our neighborhood and collected all kinds of things a long the way: sticks, leaves, stones, acorns, pinecones, berries, flowers, grass, etc.
We drew different circles with chalk on our driveway and the boys got to work making faces with their collected things.
They were busy for over an hour working on these. Here's my favorite ones...

Caleb working on a "hairy man" face.

Noah's "happy baby"

Sad Face

Happy Face
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Candy Math

Earlier this week we did a fun math session using candy. I borrowed the idea from Walking by the Way (printout available at the site).
Amy shared tons of ideas to do math, languages arts and science using candy.
For our session, I gave each boy a ziploc bags and told them to choose a variety of candy from their weekend's collection and bring it to mom.
I handed them a cookie tray and the sheet below for them to sort, count and finish their graph.

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November 03, 2009

The Rag Coat

The boys favorite activity for our week with The Rag Coat, was making their own quilt pattern of the "Joseph Coat of Many Colors". We used the template given in the manual and glued triangle cutouts from scrapbook paper.

A good read along book for this unit is "A Quilt for Baby" by Kim Lewis. A simple story of a mom who is telling her new baby all about the quilt she made for him. The quilt tells the story of the farm where they live. Very cute and my preschooler loved this story.

After several readings, our boys decided to pull out their favorite quilt and make a story from the squares. I shared with them the quilt was given to us by my dear friend Laura when Caleb was born.

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Soccer Season Pics

Took some cute pics of the kids last Saturday at soccer field so had to share here, especially for Lola and Abuela (grandmas). Caleb is having a blast in soccer. Once again that beautiful smile God gave him never leaves his face the entire game. Noah and Sarah love to cheer their big brother too. We love being out on Saturday mornings for the games now that we got the perfect weather going on here. Looking at these smiling faces makes me praise God for the gift of family. We are so undeserving of it. Only by His grace!!

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