Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Three Little Kittens {Halloween 2012}

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The girls love the nursery rhyme "The Three Little Kittens Who Lost their Mittens" so when I was brainstorming costume ideas that would include all three girls, it was immediate choice. I used this "Quick and Easy Cat Ears" tutorial from Tally's Treasury to create their ears. The tails were cut from the same felt and I attached them to elastic bands so that they could use them for dress up all year long (and I wouldn't be tying on tails every day)!
Poor baby Coralee was running a fever on Halloween day, so she stayed home with Daddy while the other two girls and I went trick-or-treating.
During her five year old birthday interview, I asked Marin what her favorite holiday was. Expecting her to say Christmas, I was humored when she actually said Halloween. Makes sense I guess. Who doesn't love dressing up and eating FREE candy?!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Kindergarten {Our First Six Weeks}

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While this probably isn't of much interest to most readers, I want to post these recaps as an archive of our Kindergarten year. Posting these will keep me accountable and help when planning school for Adalyn in the future. 

Kindergarten Recap (Our First Six Weeks)
September 3 - October 12, 2012

Read aloud to the girls: Little House in the Big Woods and Little House on the Prairie, both by Laura Ingles Wilder.

Completed the Sing Spell Read and Write book “All Aboard” the first of the two books that make up the Kindergarten program. Marin can now confidently write all of the upper and lower case letters and her full name. She learned songs to memorize letter sounds, vowel sounds and the Ferris Wheel song that teaches beginning letter blends.

Completed lessons 27 through 45 of “The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading.” Introduced various punctuation marks (period, commas, exclamation marks, question mark) memorized sight words (I, yes, the and A).

Marin, read sets one and two of the Bob Book Series (12 books in all).

We completed Lessons one through 14 in “First Language Lessons.” Marin learned the definition of a noun and the difference between a common and proper noun and why we capitalize a proper noun. We also worked on picture and story narrations and memorized “The Caterpillar” by Christian G. Rosetti

Completed Lessons one through 15 of the Math.U.See Primer book. Marin can count to 100 and write her numbers 0-20 with confidence. Understands place value to 100 and addition plus one and memorization of addition with doubles (1+1 through 5+5).

Finished the Clothing and Fashion section of “The Usborne book of Living Long Ago.” This history book was wonderful and Marin enjoyed it so much. We covered things like the first clothing, Vikings, Romans, European fashion, North American Indians etc.

Covered the “Our World” section of “The Usborne Children’s Encyclopedia.” It was amazing to watch Marin’s curiosity when learning about hurricanes and tsunamis.

In her Calendar note book Marin made daily notations on a calendar where we learned the days of the week and the months of the year. She kept track of the number of days of school numerically and with tally marks. Every day she practiced writing the Month and charted the weather. She learned to say (memorize) and dial her home phone number and mailing address. 

Plus we had lots of play time and crafts and artwork. Like this:

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Retro Wedding Shower Invitation

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Created an invitation design for a 1950s retro inspired wedding shower. The final cards were printed as 4x6 prints and mailed in these rainbow colored envelopes. The wedding is going to be so colorful and fun!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Busy Bags {For Adalyn}

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One of the biggest challenges I've faced this first month of Homeschooling is keeping my middle daughter Adalyn, the two year old, entertained while I instruct Marin. Cutting paper, gluing paper to paper and playing with stickers only held her attention for a brief little while. I began saving empty plastic containers and filling them with buttons for her to sort between and dump from one container to another. Once I discovered how hands on she was I began looking for "busy bag" ideas to keep her entertained. Here's what I came up with after researching so many great ideas. (See source list at the end of this post.)
Color Trees: Separate felt triangles from the color coordinating clothes pins and have the child find the matching pieces and place them together. 
Pom Pom Magnets: Child sorts colored, magnetic pom poms on to color coordinating popsicle sticks covered in magnetic tape. You might also create a unique pattern on one stick and ask your child to mimic the pattern on another stick.
Button Snake: When I saw this idea, I was excited to recreate my own version. Using rainbow colored felt I cut hearts with slits large enough for this plastic button to slide through. Simple to create with items I already had.
Number Cards with Jewels: In a "girl house" you can never have too much bling. I created these number cards with circles just the right size for jazzing up with these sparkly princess jewels. I laminated the cards and give just one to Adalyn at a time (right now). Once she fills in the circles, we count them together.
 Above is how I store each of these activities. In a three, ring pencil holder. These slide into a 3" binder.
Princess Matching Game: On one side are permanent patterns. On the other side the child must find the objects that match the left side and recreate it on the right. I just bought a big bag of foam shapes and letter half size foam cards. Unfortunately  more often that not, Adalyn just wants peel the backing from the foam pieces and stick them to her hands.
Clothesline: This is hands down Marin's favorite activity. The pattern is free on Money Saving Mom and was super easy to make.
More Busy Bag Resources:
Motherhood on a Dime
Money Saving Mom
Second Story Window
Play At Home Mom


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