Montessori Work Day

Apple Pie, Apple Prints, and Apple Trees!

Today was our apple day! 🙂 We made some pie first thing this morning with the kids! Bug and Pup washed the apples, and Bunny learned how to put the crust in the pie plate. Then all of the girls got a chance to peel the apples and cut them up. I also let them mix in the sugar and cinnamon, and make the crumb top! They had fun and it was such a great practical life project! 🙂

While our pie baked, we made apple prints. Now as a mental note to myself NEVER DO THIS AGAIN!!!! I think I said this to myself the last time I tried this project, but I mean it this time! It is such a fun idea, but unless you are a able to cut the apple exactly straight, it just doesn’t work. If you try this without having great cutting skills (like me) you will end up with red and green blobs that don’t look like apples and some disappointed kids! 🙂 They did have fun putting the paint on the apples however, so it wasn’t a total fail! 🙂 Here are the pictures of our apple prints.

Finally we walked down the road to the an apple tree that just happens to live by the street! Talk about perfect! The girls were really excited about seeing the apples growing! I made up a song about the life cycle of an apple that we sang as we walked. The girls really loved it! Bug even remembered it later on! Music is such a great way to help kids remember information! If you want to sing our song I will write it at the end of the post! 🙂 Here are the pictures of them observing the tree. I took along our recycled crayons so they could do some rubbings! This was a hit too!

Life Cycle of an Apple Song
Sung to the song Farmer in the Dell
The farmer plants a seed
The Farmer plants a seed
Hey Ho What do you know?
The farmer plants a seed.
The seed becomes a seedling
The seed becomes a seedling
Hey Ho What do you know?
The seed becomes a seedling
The seedling grow into a tree
The seedling grows into a tree
Hey Ho What do you know?
The seedling grows into a tree.
The tree grows a bud
The tree grows a bud
Hey Ho What do you know?
The tree grows a bud.
The bud becomes a blossom
The bud becomes a blossom
Hey Ho What do you know?
The bud becomes a blossom.
The blossom becomes an apple
The blossom becomes an apple
Hey Ho What do you know?
The blossom becomes an apple
The apple grows a seed
The apple grows a seed
Hey Ho What do you know?
The apple grows a seed.
So there you have it! That about wraps up the apple activities that I have planned! 🙂 I am trying to keep my weekly projects simple so I dont get overwhelmed! Today was almost too much for me! I did tell Bunny that she could earn her Apple Badge by telling me what she learned. Here is her report on apples! I think she learned more then I knew!
Here is her new badge! 🙂

Outside Prepared Enviroment!!!!

Well as promised here is the pictures of my new project!!!! I (and my hubbie) made a work station for the girls to use while they are outside. The idea started when I read Sam’s Blog over at the Secret Garden. She is making an outside garden for the kids in her school to work out in when they want to, and she is doing some beautiful things! I love that she was also making some language areas and science areas for the kids to continue their classroom work outside! I fell in LOVE! I was thinking “gosh how cool would it be to let the girls go to a school where they had the freedom to go in and out when they want and keeping learning in both places”. Then it hit me, I have a backyard that is all open for me to do whatever I want!!!!!! Duh! So I started dreaming! When I mentioned my idea to my neighbor, she told me that she had an old garden table that I could have!!!! I was so excited! It also had two stools!!!! She is an amazing neighbor and it was so kind! So I took it and and my hubbie slaved away on it on Sunday!!! He cut the legs down, power washed the dirt and old finish off it, and stained it a really nice red. It turned out really nice! Then I finished it up this morning for the girls to work at! So far it has been a great hit! I LOVE it! It is just a really sweet place for the girls to keep their stuff and work on projects outside! A lot of the work that I made for our work station were ideas that came from the book Playful Learning. This book is full of great ideas and I love her learning ideas! If you have a chance to check it out I really recommend it! She also has a blog that had a ton of giveaways going right now and you can check that out here! So anyway, enough chit chat! 😉 Here are the pictures of our work station! Let me know what you think!

Here is our Work Station! Cute right?

I have rock for building and side walk chalk!

Scrub brushes! I found them at the Dollar Tree for a $1!!!

Here are some wire sculptures that Bunny made while I was setting it up!

Here is the bunting I made! I love bunting! It just really made it so cute!

There is a little drawer that has a box with colored pencils and regular pencils!

Here are the tubs that the work boxes are in. I wanted to make sure that they were all in several layers of protection so the weather doesn’t hurt it! Inside these tubs are some typical school boxes that have the work in!

I even have a place now for their watering cans!

Here is a leaf project where you observe a leaf and then make it with wire. Bunny saw this is Playful Learning and wanted to do it! It is tricky, but she had enjoyed making other things out of the wire too!

Here is a box for doing rubbings!

These are story rocks! They have been a huge hit with Bunny and they were super easy to make! Just a little paint and some clear coat! What you do is tell a story using the rocks to help illustrate it!

Here are some blank books for Bunny to write in.

I also put the odds and ends that Bunny used for her fairy garden out here for her to use.

Finally I have some show strings, clothes pins, and fabric pieces to let the girls make forts or what ever else they come up with! They love free play!

Here is Bunny showing me her wire work! 🙂

Here is Pup trying to rub a leaf! We have to practice that! 🙂
All in all it is a really cool area that will allow me to give then work time outside! I think I will be able to rotate the boxes and have some seasonal fun here!

Montessori Monday ~ A is for Apple

Well I have been away from my blog for quite a few days! I’m sorry for that! 🙂 I have been super busy helping a friend out and getting a super special project finished for the girls! I’ll give you a hint…its an outside work area! Wait till you see it! Its gonna be great!

Anyway…back to this post. Today we officially started our alphabet of the week. We started with”a” is for apple! I made a few trays and the girls did some pretty good work. I think Bunny got almost a full 2 hour work period in. Its a good start! Bug and Tadpole were here today and I think that they had a lot of fun too.
One thing that I am really thinking about is the way we work together. We are a homeschoolers and I think that we need to keep that in mind. I really notice that when I let go of my idea of what they should learn, they learn better! This is especially true for Bunny. So I need to make sure that I let her tell me when she is ready for more work, and really watch her to know when that is. I also need to realize that I will never have a perfect Montessori room. My girls will never truly run the house the way Montessori children care for their “children’s house”. Why? Because they are in our family home. So my kids are allowed to go where they want to in out house, and they are responsible for helping take care of the house. But instead of it being their work, its our work! We are a family and our work reflects that relationship.  I think that it is the thought that will make our year so much better and easier. It allowes me to have our girls really work with me and that will help us to grow close! So that being said, here is the pictures of our first real day of work.

Here is our alphabet basket for the week.
“A” is for apple, alligator, and art.

Our sandpaper letter for the week.

Here is what our weekly shelf looks like.

Polishing an apple work.

Spooning acorn tops.

Pouring “fairy jewels”. 🙂

Here are the geometric solid I have on a tray.
 It was a desperate attempt to get someone interested in them. Its not working! 🙁

Here is our weekly book basket. This is something that I am really going to focus on. I want the girls to really fall in love with living books, so this is something that we will have every week!

Bug, Tadpole, and Pup all worked with cylinder blocks.

Pup is mastering the buttoning frame! I am proud of her. She chose this work herself last week and she has been working with it alot! Today she had at least 15 min into working with this! Total concentration!

She and Bug loved polishing the apples. They also got to learn how to wait their turn! 😉

Bunny took a lot of time to color her Apple Blossom Fairy picture today! She did a great job!

There also was a lot of work today with the rough smooth boards. Bug loved them, and Pup and  Tadpole wanted to do it too!

This is not a great picture, but I was really proud of Bug for rolling her own run!

Bug and Pup were reading stories together!

Bunny did a couple of addition problems with exchange. She was a little unsure of what she did last year, but after a few minutes, she jumped back in! She did a great job!

Painting. You will see a ton of this this year! Bug and Pup are totally in love with this work, so I will really try and find a way for them to paint more. I guess I need to find a way to have an art area.

Here is Bunny’s picture of Mrs. Applebee. Mrs. Applebee is the first character that is in Elizabeth Foss’s Along the Alphabet Path and she really did a great job! I love that she wrote apple!
So that is the start to our school week! Its going really well so far! To see more Montessori work, check out the Montessori Monday link up over at One Hook Wonder and Living Montessori Now!

Our First Day of School!

Well today became our first official day of school! I didn’t think Bug and Tadpole were coming over till next week, but they came to day, so we hit the school room! As most first days go, it was a little sporadic, but was a good start. I let the girls explore what they wanted to do. I have everything pretty scaled down to just the basic material (cylinder blocks, knobless cylinders, pink tower, red rods, metal insets, a few practical life, and some toddler work). Most of the work that we did today was all easy work that everyone had worked with last year, but this is a great way to head back into real work time! It was really relaxed and the kids really moved around from work to work without any real concentration, but again this is to be expected right off the bat! I really think that we are going to have a great year! Next week I will start my alphabet letter for the girls! I really think that it will be a fun way to work on sounds! Here are some pictures from today:

I have 3 geometric solids on a tray right now (like a demonstration tray) and I a really hoping someone thinks that they look like fun! These have been one work that really has not interest anyone for more then a fleeting moment. We’ll see of it works! Tadpole and Pup tried it, but didn’t really like them! 🙂

I also presented Tadpole with the coin box and it was a really awesome hit! He worked really hard on this for about 7 or 8 whole minutes ( for an active 1 year old boy this is a lifetime!) 😉 He mastered it!

He also worked with some crayons!

Pup really took it upon herself to show him how to some work! It was really cute to watch her show him how do the work! She did a good job too, he did do it the way she showed him!

Here she is doing a puzzle.

Bug did some flower arranging.

She also started to work with Pink Tower!

I loved that she not only corrected her work, but she also lined the edges up carefully! She did a wonderful job. I think I will present the red rods next!

She also did some painting in the afternoon! She really loved it! In her own words it was “so amazing and wonderful! The best thing she ever did!”

This is her painting of a Poodle….

….and this is her painting of her Mother.

We also found some really large oak leaves while we were outside and so I made the girls fairy hats! 🙂 They LOVED them! All I did was pull the edges together and sick some flower stems through the edges! Super simple and super fun!

Here is a close up of Bunny’s hat!
So that is what our first day looked like! I hope that the rest goes well too!I think it will. Bugs mom said that she was excited to work at “her school”!
 How has your school year been going?