Friday Five

Friday Five~ History Edition

Hi all! It’s Friday and that means its time to share all of our favorite learning materials! This week we are talking history! I for one love history! I love to hear about all the things that people have worked so hard on over the year and to learn about how things were done then. It is really one of the most exciting things to study! So here are my five favorite picks for history!

1) Story of the World: I love this program! I think that this is seriously the best history program out there! It is in a story form and is really a great way to continue learning about the history of man after the great lessons! Bunny is loving the story so far and is really interested. That is the goal of learning about history.

2) Montessori Great Lessons: These are the PERFECT way to start thinking about how the universe and all it contains came to be! These offers a solid basis for the study for all the other parts of history as well as everything else! If you want to check these out, be sure to stop HERE. I have my versions of the God with No Hands Charts and the Timeline of Life on my Freebies Page!

3) A Street Through Time: I love this book! I came across it by chance at the library and it is awesome! My goal for teaching history is simple to give the girls an overview of where the world has been. I think that there are some dates that they should know, but we are not going to be big into memorizing lots of dates. However, I wanted to find something that allowed them to see how time has changed. This book is it. The book shows one street through all of history and about how it changes! It is very cool!

4) American Girl: I know that there are a lot of people who either hate or love this big company, but I think that for learning American history, this is so much fun for the girls. I love that the books teach, not only what was going on at that time, but also how to handle tricky situations as a young girl. It is a great way to learn about the complex layers of our history!

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5) Toob: I have to admit, I have a slight obsession with these little mini figures. There are some for all the different animals and there are also quite a few of them for different times in history. Having these while we are learning about a time period allows the girls a chance to play with their knowledge of the time! And we all know that play makes learning better!

So those are my five picks! What about you? Do you have five favorite history resources? I would love to hear about them! So play along!

Friday Five~ Art Edition

Welcome all! Its Friday!!!!! That means its time for the Friday Five! I for one am so excited to be hosting this for Lori this week while she is on her well deserved blog break! This week we are doing one of my all time favorite subjects~ ART! I love this area of study because I think that it easily crosses into all the other subjects easily and allows for self expression in ways that other things don’t! If you stop here often, you know that we have a well stocked art shelf that is open to the girls all the time and they use it a lot! But here are the five things that I think are the best of the best for us right now!

1. The Artful Parent: This book is amazingly full of simple, easy to put together art projects that you and your kids can do together! What is not to love about that? Plus if you don’t want to buy the book, you can always visit her blog for hundreds of ideas as well! I think I have been able to do more with my kids using this book then any of the others I have found! So if you need a little push to get some projects in, this is a great place to start!Click to View Video and Other Images

2. Liquid Water Color: This stuff is amazing! It colors things like food coloring does, but the colors are bolder, better. I also can be used as straight paint, and you can do all the normal water color stuff with them! I have used them to die sand, color rice, for salt painting, coloring wooden eggs, and a bunch of other stuff! This is one of those odd items that you don’t know how you ever lived without!

3. Art Frames: These are the balck frames that are all over my school room. The front of these open up so you can easily change the piece of art inside! What I love about these is that it give kids a sense that you think that their ideas and creations are worth enough to show the world. They can see that you think that they should grace the wall of your house for everyone to see. Nothing is more special then thinking that your work is special to the people you love! Plus, its instant decoration for the house! 😉

4. Art Lab Books: I love these book because they offer a project for you to do that mimics a famous piece by an artist. It is a great way to incorporate some art study in the fun of creating! These books are especially good to use with some artist three part cards or prints from the artist to keep the study going further. My Bunny really loved the project from this series!

5. Bits and Pieces: I seriously think that there is nothing more exciting then piles of stuff just for you to create with! Now I know that this isn’t something that everyone can do, but just having recycled materials, sequins, markers, ribbon, and googly eyes can spark endless fun! Having materials, even just a few, available all the time, is a the best way to encourage kids to think, create, and share their knowledge in art!

So those are my picks for art this week! Now it is your turn! What are your five favorite art resources for kids? I would love to hear about your favorite products, programs, and materials for making art a part of your home!

Friday Five~ Geography

Today we are sharing some of my favorite Montessori items! I love love love the way Montessori treats Geography! It is like an adventure to meet new friends and find new places to play! I think that every kid should be able to view the world as an exciting and interesting place to visit! So how do we do this? By puzzle maps, continent boxes, and just plain exploring! So here are my Friday Five picks!

1) Continent Boxes: These are so much fun! Each continent gets a box and inside are pictures, items, and other things that help the child get a collective idea of what each continent is about! In ours we have pictures of landmarks, people, food, instruments, birds, and animals that are from the continent. I also have souvenirs, money, animal figures, etc from different countries in the continent! What do we do with these? Explore them! Its fun to take a tour. Plus for Bunny, I ask her to find a picture that she likes and we research it more! By the way, I made my own cards (took DAYS) but you can buy them at Montessori Print Shop! Right now they are having a sale! Here is a link for the 20% off!

2) Puzzle Maps: LOVE these! All of a sudden learning where countires are is a game! We have the contient puzzle and we use it all the time! I use the puzzle pieces for stencils, we use it for learning where things are, and my girls loved to match the puzzle pieces to the other contient things in the school room!

3) Sandpaper Globe/ Continet Globe: If you can buy only one, go for the colored one! We use it all the time! Not just for geography but also for space work too, and for our celebration of life birthday tradition! Plus its small for little hands to use!

4) True Books Continent Collection: This is a great set of books to have on hand so when someone decides that they love a certain continent, you can have a place to start researching! I got the whole collection at Rainbow Resources for only $28! I can see us using these a lot this year since we will be doing one continent at month!

5) Global Babies/ Children Around the World: These books are some that we have on our shelves at home. Global Babies is great book that I love to give to small kids. It is a board book filled with pictures of babies all over the world! I find that little one love looking at other babies, and this book is a fun way to start geography. The Children Around the World book is published by UNICEF. It is a bit out dated, but still offer an interesting (if slightly narrow) look into the lives on children in other countries. It shows their favorite food, where they go to school, what their families look like, and other bits about the children. It is not the perfect picture of each country, but it is a great place to start! My kids found it interesting to look at the differences and the similarities between them selves and other kids. It is a really good book!

So those are my pick! As always, I would love to see what you would choose! Be sure to pop over to Montessori Moments and see what other homeschoolers picked as their favorite resources in geography! Plus, link up while you are there! We love it when people play along! I hope you are all having a great week! Happy Schooling!

Friday Five~ Science

Well its Friday and it is time to share our five favorite materials! This week we are talking about our favorite science materials! Here are the five we love here!

1) Montessori Botany/zoology Puzzles/ Control Chart: We love these there! These puzzles are pretty, simple, and fun! Pup will builds them all the time and is learning a lot as she goes along! Plus this is one of those works that our friend love when they come to visit! These were well worth the extra money to buy the sets. The match the puzzles exactly and have a labeled control chart, blank control chart, and labels for each puzzle. I have used them as tracing work, copied them for coloring, and played games with them! Plus they are made our of plastic so they last forever!

2) Magic School Bus Movies: My girls LOVE these movies and have learned so much! Plus there is an episode for almost everything! I know these videos are pretty old, but they are such a great way to “see” science in a different way! Plus they are available on Netflix!


3) Nature Trays: I love these because there are a million ways to use these! It can be a personal collection from nature walks, or it can used to show real object from a theme that you are studying. I find that my girls enjoy setting them up and also exploring the object. Sometimes it inspired more questions, sometimes they just look! But it is a simple way to have science on hand!

4) Garden: This is science has really become real for my girls! Natural science can be learned almost totally in the garden. Now to be fair, I really don’t garden well and my success rate is not so good, but my girl know all about plants and it all started in the garden. To be honest, I think we learned about plants, insects, soil, rocks, and…well a ton of other stuff all in our planting. It is all inner connected and it is the easiest way to live cosmic education!

5) Animals: A visual encyclopedia: This book is just great! I think that they have updated it since this version, but it has everything about animals. Plus it is arranged by animal classifications (mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates). This makes it easy for kids to start researching on their own, since they already are familiar with these basic classifications! I am looking into buying some of the other titles in this series!

6) Ollo Robotics Kit: This is the new kit that I bought for Bunny this year. She wants to build a real robot and this set is really detailed! It comes with 12 weeks of lesson plans and get really in depth. This is for older kids, but is a great hands on way to learn about making thing move and the science behind it! I am really looking forward to using this! Bunny is SUPER excited! We will see how it works!

So there is my five (ok, ok six) picks! I love to do science and so do my girls! It is the one thing that they both said that they wanted to do this year for school! In fact, it is sometimes the only thing they want to do! 🙂 Now I know you are just dying to see the other things that other have picked and I know you have a ton of great materials that you love too! So, be sure to pop on by Montessori Moments to play along with the Friday Five Link up! It is a fun one! Happy Schooling everyone!

Friday Five~ Montessori Language

Well I am excited to tell you that Lori over at Montessori Moments is starting a new link up called Friday Five! Each Friday, she is sharing her favorite things from a section of the Montessori classroom! Today she shared her five favorite things in the Language area! Here are mine:

1. Sandpaper Letters: I love these, the kids love these, and they are an amazing way for kids to learn the letter sounds simply! Pup has learned her letter sounds so quickly with these and I have had other kiddos over to my house and they have learned too! Who knew learning to read, write, and spell could be as simple as sand covered letters? I use the D’neialian script since its a bit like cursive and print at the same time!

2. Metal Insets: We LOVE these here! When I first started doing Montessori work, I was confused about why these were considered a language materials. When I found out it was about learning to use and control a pencil, I could instantly see it working! Both of my girls used these a lot! In fact we used them to make pictures. Snowmen, houses, even people have been made using the insets!

3.Grammar Farm: Grammar farm is actually not something we have used as much as I thought we would but we still love it! 🙂 Honestly, you don’t need to have use a farm, any play scape set up would work just as well. Use a doll house, a construction scene, or a train set. The make some tags with words for each part of a sentence (Noun, Adjective, Verb, etc). The child sets up the piece and uses the work tags to build sentence about the objects. Its fun and game like! A perfect way to play with sentence parts! Bunny didn’t get to use it too much because she was still trying to read! But I think this year she will still have fun with it!

4. Grammar Symbols: I love these for teaching grammar! There is a bit of a story behind each one and this really allows the child to “see” each part of the sentence when they see the symbol. Bunny loves them totally and always wants to know more about them. I think that one of the things she loves to do is to put the right symbol over the words in a sentence and use all the colors!

5. Object Boxes: I love these because there are about a million fun ways to use them! The set above is from Montessori Services and it really does have about everything! I am thinking about buying this for Pup this year because we are missing a lot of sounds and this has them all! You can make sound boxes with these, opposites, rhyming, eye spy, and well a bunch of other games! There is a lot learning packed into these little bits!

So those are my picks! Want to play along? Well pop on over to Montessori Moments for a fun linky party! Stop and see what others are saying are the best Montessori language materials!