Friday, September 27, 2013
This week we took a little mini family vacation! We spent a night in our states capital, saw the zoo and toured the capital building. Here are my three munchkins enjoying lunch together on our trip.
The rest of the week was pretty normal. Below is Caleb's English copy work, he did a much better job with his handwriting!
And he's doing great at spelling! It really made a difference to have him write the words when he was reviewing them. Usually he uses a salt tray!
We found a new park that had a few small trails for our nature walk this week. Caleb found two different acorns on the ground, so we picked them up. We found two different types of oak leaves and did rubbings of them after comparing them. The weather has been beautiful here!
For our bible time, we continued to learn how Jesus is the bread of life. The kids made a napkin holder that looks like bread. Caleb wrote Jesus is the bread of life on the side, but it's hard to see in the picture.
Science was still about yeast and bread, so of course we made bread! Caleb really liked kneading the dough!
Here's our finished loaf! The kids each made a small roll so they could taste their bread. We wrapped the loaf up and took it to our neighbor with a copy of our bible verse.
We continued learning about pilgrims also, but this week we learned about the French that settled in Detroit. We made birch bark canoes like the Indians made.
And a few books! There is also a Johnny Appleseed book that we read for Rebekah's Kindergarten. She finished up the Apple unit and started the Nest unit this week. I'll post more about the nest unit next week!
But here is her apple tree painting. We put a copy of a little poem in the corner (that was in our curriculum).
And just in case it seems like my kids are always behaved and every school day is perfect, here's a picture from a few days ago. Caleb had a VERY bad attitude about everything, so he wrote sentences before we ever started school that day.
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Thursday, September 26, 2013
Rebekah was given her first 18 inch doll! She's been eyeing this doll at Walmart for several months. Thank you Grandma & Grandpa, she loves it! The doll came with only a swimming suit on, so I decided to make a dress for her also. I used Simplicity Pattern #3572. I love this pattern because it gives you 3 different sizes to make! I made the medium dress, and it's actually a bit big. But that way it's easy for Rebekah to take on and off. (The store bought dresses she also got are REALLY tight and I have to help her.) I think Rebekah might be getting a few doll shirts, skirts, and tights for Christmas!
You can see the other clothes I've made with this pattern: baby doll pajamas and a shirt and tights.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
We've continued our studies of Pilgrims by studying the Dutch settlers that came to New York (or rather New Amsterdam). They brought livestock with them, so they were able to have milk and butter! We visited a dairy bottling factory and tasted some chocolate milk (thankfully they also bottled lemonade so Rebekah could have a treat). Below are their drawings of how milk gets to us. Caleb's is on top and Rebekah's is on the bottom. They copied what I drew...
Here's Caleb shaking our homemade butter in a jar! It seems like it takes forever, and then all of a sudden it turns into butter!
Here it is. Caleb said it was the best butter he ever tasted!
Our science fit nicely with our history this week as well. We learned about yeast and bread making. Below is an experiment we did. We filled the bottle with warm water, yeast, and sugar, and then watched it blow up the balloon.
They drew a picture.
The next day we filled the bottle with warm water, yeast, and salt... Nothing happened.
And here is Caleb's picture.
A few of our book basket books:
We read The Courage of Sarah Noble as our read aloud. As usual, we read it much faster than scheduled! I heard that a lot of kids don't like this book, but mine loved it, especially Rebekah.
I also found this book at the library. Caleb made a paper ship, and we made a colonial toy. See the plastic cup with yarn and a tin foil ball? (Ours aren't exactly authentic!) They are supposed to get the ball in the cup. We made 3 so even Joshua could play. They were even a big hit the next day at a family birthday party!
Our scripture verse fit perfectly with history too! "Jesus is the bread of life..." John 6:35. Below is a picture of both of our Names of Jesus posters. Every time we learn a new name of Jesus and scripture, they will add it to their posters.
I also pulled out a game I used last year for reading practice. Instead of reading words now, he is doing his 10 math facts.
Rebekah's week was spent learning about apples! It just so happened that my in-laws dropped off LOTS of apples from their apple trees this week, perfect timing! We've had apples to eat raw, apple fritters, apple muffins, apple butter, applesauce many different ways, fried apples, and of course apple pie!
Here are her books this week:
And here I am helping Caleb roll out the pie crust while Rebekah fills her pie crust with apples. They really enjoyed making the pies, I may have had a hard time doing it with them... let's just say maybe God needed me to work on patience! We gave one pie to Grandpa for his birthday and ate the rest at our family birthday party, they were yummy!
And lastly, I snapped a picture of Rebekah's number chart and cup. At the beginning of the year she had a hard time counting 13 and 14, but I think she's finally got it!
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Friday, September 20, 2013
Rebekah wanted a Princess Tea Party for her birthday this year. It was the first one we've ever done with friends, and it turned out cute. We decorated with dollar store plates, napkins, and a pink table cloth. We made paper flowers for the table, and Rebekah hung balloons everywhere. She even decorated the couches by putting the birthday napkins on the arms!
And here is Rebekah blowing out the candle on her cupcake tower. She requested cupcakes with pink frosting and a white crown. I used royal icing to make white crowns and let them get hard for about 5 days. They were definitely the kids favorite part!
For the icing, I blended up some freeze dried berries and used that in place of red food coloring. We've been trying to stay away from food dyes, and this worked out very well! Here's a close up.
My baby girl is 5 now!
Monday, September 16, 2013
I decided to dry some of my basil to use later. I just washed it and dried it off with paper towels, although it was still damp. Then I put it in the oven really low, about 175 degrees, for about 1 hour. I was busy doing other things, so I'm not exactly sure how long it was in there. Below is what it looked like after it came out.
I crunched it up using my hands and put it in a plastic baggie. That's it. I think the oven took a bit of the flavor out of it, but I'm sure it will still be good. I think I'll use a little more than my recipes call for.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
I recently posted about how Canning Tomato Sauce is hard work. My friends, I have found a much easier way!!! No blanching and no peeling skin! How can this be? I used the blender!!! Here's what I did: wash tomatoes and cut off the top, give it a squeeze over the sink to get rid of some of the juice and seeds, then throw it in the blender. Don't peel, just throw it in.
Then puree it! The skins puree down to little bitty pieces that I can deal with.
Pour it from the blender into a pot and simmer it until it's thick. It will be foamy from the blending, but after simmering for a little while, all that foam disappears.
Here it is reduced into sauce. Doesn't it look amazing! When I did sauce the other day, it still seemed chunky, so I ended up blending it at that point anyway. This time it was perfect.
I followed the same directions as before for canning the sauce (see Canning Tomato Sauce).
That's it, so simple!
Saturday, September 14, 2013
I can't believe we've already finished 5 weeks of school! It's been going very well so far, with only a few road bumps (or shall we say screaming fits...). Joshua has been "doing school" every day too. Above he is playing with some foam puzzles. I've also been taping a piece of paper to the table and giving him crayons or a pencil to color with, he really likes it for about 2 minutes! I keep rotating his activities, and read him books while the big kids are busy working. And he also gets lots of snacks! In the mornings while Joshua is awake, we usually can get through bible and art together, all of Rebekah's kindergarten and Caleb's spelling, english, and math. Caleb and Rebekah can usually work at the same time, I just explain things back and forth to each. Then the afternoons are for history, reading aloud, and science.
For bible time, we've still been learning that "Jesus is the light of the world". Both kids have memorized John 8:12. They made these window hangers with crayon shavings.
For history, we learned about the Pilgrims that came on the Mayflower. Above is Caleb's version of their settlement and below is Rebekah's.
Below, they are covering a paper with oil. The Pilgrims used oil paper windows in their houses. We compared ours with a regular piece of paper. The oil paper lets in more light and is more waterproof.
We also planted corn in an old cottage cheese container, just like the Pilgrims planted. We even put 3 fish in it (made out of paper). After about 4 days, nothing is happening... oh well, they thought it was fun.
And below are the books we read. We really liked the three books on the top. They told what daily life would have been like back then. And we had a family movie night to watch the movie! I love when I can combine family time and school time!
Below, Caleb is using a bin of salt to practice writing his spelling words. It must have really helped him remember them, because he got his first 100% on his spelling test (see the next pic).
Caleb started English this week (before we were just practicing handwriting). I was a little nervous about starting because that meant more reading and writing, which he usually hates. I was pleasantly surprised. We are using Primary Language Lessons for our curriculum. The picture below is what he copied out of the book. Notice some letters are capital, some are big, some are tiny... I decided I needed to have him use special handwriting paper!
I love this one! Below is the exact same passage, but I read him the passage and he wrote it down without looking at the book. I love how he wrote squirrel!
And lastly for Caleb, is one of his art papers from this week.
Rebekah loves doing school. She finished up Ll Leaf this week. Here she is painting the outlines of some leaves that we collected. She made a book out of her paintings (see next pic).
And here are a few pictures of her school pages. (Those are lentils on her letter Ls).
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