Thursday, April 26, 2012

Rainbows! - April 2012

In April we did a Rainbow study. I got lots of idea for activities from the Teach Preschool blog. We read Magic School Bus Makes a Rainbow and then got busy making lots of rainbows of our own. On the first day we learned the order of the colors: red, orange yellow - green, blue, purple. We said it as a chant and Freddie helped us remember it all month (since I frequently forgot!) Here are some pics from our rainbow work.

Paper Rainbows

Fluffy Cloud Rainbows

 Pasta Rainbows

Rainbow Toast

Painting with the left-over milk paints

Calendar Notebooks - April 2012

We've been doing Calendar Notebooks for a few months now. Most of our pages come from the 1+1+1=1 blog, but some are from other sites, and some I made up on my own based on their needs. They have become part of our daily routine. Each of the kids' notebooks are tailor-made to their unique needs.They each have calendar pages in the front, but for instance, for Sarah, I write the numbers in highlighter for her to trace; Flossie has a number tracing sheet opposite of her calendar page so she can look at it if she needs a reminder on how to write some of her numbers; Freddie and Jem can write their own in print; Scout's pages are in cursive. The older kids have Days of the Week and Month of the Year pages. Sarah skips these for now. She has Animal ABC pages, Alphabet and Number pages, and Shapes and Color pages. Freddie and Flossie have a Today's Number Is page that they do in dry erase marker every day. Flossie also has Animal ABCs and Shapes and Colors. Freddie has Sight Word and Word Family pages. I just bumped Scout and Jem up from Today's number pages to their own  individualized Daily Math review pages. They all have Daily Drawing pages. You can see all of this below.  The whole thing takes about 15 to 20 minutes max. I have asked the kids if they are getting bored with daily calendars. Do they think they are valuable or just busy work? And they all unanimously said there is no way they want to stop doing them, so I guess they are a hit!

Animal ABCs (I should note, for pages like the alligator colors or the squares below, they only choose two to do each day, not the whole page)

Let's Draw Squares
Animal ABCs
Daily Drawing
Let's Draw Circles
Daily Drawing - Sight Words
Word Family
Jem's Daily Math Practice

USA Map (They color in one state each day)
Scout's Daily Math Practice

Freddie's Today's Number Is  and  Number Splitter
Flossie - Write Your Numbers - Tracing

Scout - Write Your Numbers - Cursive
Jem - Write Your Numbers - Print
Freddie writing numbers in his Calendar page using his Write Your Numbers page as a guide
I have added this video in a past blog but thought I should include it here too. Here is Flossie using her Number Splitter worksheet to help her do her Today's Number Is page. She is 4. (Sorry it's sideways. I can't figure out how to get it turned around!)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Estrella War Field Trip - 3/29/12

On the last Thursday of March we went to the Estrella War.  It was hot, hot, hot this year!! you never know what you are going to get with this event, but the weather is always severe. One year it was poring rain and got flooded out. Another year I remember horrible sun just like this time. One year we froze. Well, I brought my giant umbrella trying to cover at least two possibilities :)  It did help with the sun a bit, but we were definitely wilting by the time we left. In years past there were also much more demonstrations of medieval life and we got to see the actual war. This year we went a day early and the war part hadn't started yet! We did get to see some sparring, some archery, rapier fights, and the kids got to practice with the big shields and weapons. Of course there was food and vendors (not as many as usual though, and our favorite homemade lemonade guy couldn't make it this year). Over all, we had fun though. It was a long hot day and everyone was pooped out by the late afternoon.
I asked the kids what their favorite part was. Freddie, Flossie, and Sarah all agreed that it was the snow cones/ice creams and the souvenir swords/magic wands we got. Clearly this was over their heads! Scout liked the archery (thanks to Hunger Games) and that she got to get some Henna on her hand/arm.  Jem liked the archery too and the fighting with the shields. He also liked the key shop. Remind me next year to take them all to Baskin Robbins and call it a day!!