new skills

More Leaf work….

Today was had a great school day! We started off by taking a walk to the mail box that turned into a leaf hunt! Bunny has really seemed to grasp the science behind the leaves changing and we were able to talk about that more. We also looked at different types of leaves to see the shapes and edges. Bunny got this idea from this book I got at the library. It is a really amazing book with a TON of information woven into a story! The best learning books are the fun ones! If you are looking for a great fall book to read, this is a good one!

Bunny found the same leaves that the little bear in the book! When we got home she matched them to the ones in the book! She thought it was great and we also got to talk about the different kinds of leaves!

After our walk we headed down to the school room for a project! This project came from Let’s Lasso the Moon. Her girls made these trees in school and I knew we needed to do it too! First we traced the girls hand and upper arm onto a brown paper, and cut them out. Then we laid it on some wax paper and sprinkled some crayon shavings {the girls helped me peel the crayons and I used a pencild sharpener to make shavings! Easiest way to make shaving ever!} on the fingers and a few at the bottom. Then we put another piece of wax paper on top and ironed {between two towels}. The results were so pretty and they look awesome in my front windows! Bunny liked doing it and added a few flowers to the bottom of it, and Pup ….well Pup LOVES everything that has to do with her body and art! 🙂 She has showed it off to everyone! 🙂

Then we hit some more work! Bunny got the math works out! I wanted to introduce her to the tens board. I tried, but the paper ones we have just don’t seem as inspiring, so I used the number cards to teach her the tens numbers. We then counted by 10s. This was new for her and she really liked it, and I know that she was starting to get it because she used the dots on the side of the Tinkerbell rug to count by 10s! I hope that this is just the beginning! Then I pulled out the Hundreds Board. I showd it to Bunny and she wanted to do it all! It took her a long time but she did it! She even saw the pattern and was able to mostly get the number names! It was a great day in Math!!!!!

Pup worked on some knobless cylinders and did a matching shadow game. She loves matching right now and I need to get a few more of those works out for her!

So that was our very busy day! I hope that you are having a great time schooling this year! It means alot to me to have such great people stopping by and letting me know what you think about our work! Thanks for all the support! Happy Schooling everyone!

Montessori Stamp Game~ a DIY version

Bunny has been working really hard on her golden bead work and she is now very board with addition (her words, not mine)! So I thought I would look into getting the stamp game so that she could have a new and more challenging element! The Montessori stamp game is a box of wooden tiles that are green, red, blue, and green again. Each tile has the number 1, 10, 100, or 1000 so that the child can use them instead of bead to help move them toward abstraction! For example, if you were to build the number 4625, you would get 4 green 1000 tiles, 6 red 100 tiles, 2 blue 10 tiles, and 5 green 1 tiles. Then you would make the other number and push the tiles together to add the numbers together! Super easy and fun for the kids!
Well a stamp game set (like the one above) run about $30 plus shipping! I was hoping to hold off on too much more school spending, and it just looked like it was too easy to make! Well I went to research wooden tiles. Simply put, to make it out of wooden tiles was going to cost me just as much as buying! So I wanted another way. Then I saw the pile of buttons I had laying around from other Montessori works and I wondered if I could use them! So I pulled it together and put each of the colored buttons in small containers with the number on the lid. Then I put it out and presented it to Bunny this week. She really liked it! We built a number together and then she built one. Then we did an addition problem! The other good thing about the stamp game is that it takes less material which means Bunny can move her work upstairs if she needs to. This means we can work, even when Tadpole (who eats everything) is here! So here are the pictures of my DIY stamp game:
Here is laid out. I put the bead at the top so Bunny could see the values. Maybe not what I should have done, but she didn’t seem to refer to them.

Here is her addition problem

Here she is thinking really hard! 🙂

It is really fun and I think we will do some more this week! The only thing that I am not sure about is that I don’t have the number on each button. Does anyone know if that is necessary or will the buttons work? If you have a thought let me know! I would love to hear what you think! Happy Schooling!

"M" is for Monarch Migration and Maps

Well here is our work day today! It was another day that just didn’t go as expected. The kids are all a little unsettled. I have been really frustrated by the seeming inability to focus. But after some deep thought this afternoon, I have decided that we are all just needing a new family rhythm. Things have changed alot, we started school again, Bug and Tadpole are here twice a week, and we even have some co-op classes we are attending (if you want to see how that is going visit our blog HOPE in the home). This is alot of new changes that have just left everyone feeling a little chaotic (probably more me then them). So I am going look at the positives that we did do, and let go of the negative feelings I am having. I wrote out all of my frustrations on my other blog Peace Love and Blessing. So on to the pictures of our day! Again it seems like a lot of work, and there was some really good work done, however alot of it was fleeting and they moved around alot. I think that the best work was done, again by Bunny. She made maps of the rooms in our house, completed a subtraction problem all by herself without me down there at all, and wrote and read some words!!!!!! Bug did Pink Tower on its side and tried the Red Rods. So Sit back and enjoy our day! 🙂

We talked a little bit about Monarch Migration today as an extension of yesterday’s park experience. It was also a great chance to talk about maps. So we made maps of where we thought a Monarch would would fly on their way to Mexico. The girls first drew it in permanent marker, then we added watercolor!

Here is the final products of the girls Monarch Migration Maps!

Bunny worked on polishing pennies. We did the presentation out of the Montessori at Home! She loved it! It was not so much about practical life, as it was about experimenting! She tried all sorts of things. She finally decided that the best way to clean the pennies was to wash it in water, add baking soda, and then scrubbing with the lemon juice. This made some bubbling on the penny as the baking soda reacted with the lemon! She really had fun figuring out what worked best! I thought it was clever of her to use them all at once!

I showed Bug (and Pup) how to do Pink Tower on the side! Bug loved it and did an amazing job!
She was pretty proud of it! 🙂 

She then asked if she could do it the regular way. I of course said yes! 🙂

I also threw together the fastest sensory tub ever! I am now without any pasta in my pantry, but it was worth all the work that the kids did with it! I made it in an attempt to have Tadpole doing something while I helped the others. The others I think had more fun with it! 😉 He liked it too and spent quite a while working with it!

Bunny also showed Bug how to do the knobless cylinder extension.

She then was able to put everything back and she did ! Yeah Bug!
Red Rod Maze!

The girls did a cool extension with the maze that I think we will repeat! The walked it holding cups of pasta (from the sensory tub)! This was a wonderful body awareness activity. Much like walking the line, but with the maze! It also seemed more fun for the kids!

Tadpole is still working with the Honey Bear! He did it a million times! Anyone have another work like this that I can get together?

Bunny was SOOOOO proud of the subtraction problem she did alone!

Bunny and I had some time to make maps of a room of our house (It was nap time). We used these hunt for treasure that we hid and marked on the map! She had a ton of fun with this! We did it a few times! Bunny even drew a map all on her own! She did a great job! Its a hard thing to translate what you see in a room to a floor plan! This idea came from Playful Learning!

After nap time, Bug decided that she loved to work in the basement. So I showed her how to write her sounds on the chalk board. She was ready to do this, and she did really well! I was surprised! After she traced the letter, she wrote it really well! I was proud of her! This is “M”.

Here is “A”.

Here she is trying the red rods for the first time.

She did pretty well, but I think we need to re present this another day.

Bunny came down while Bug was working and I convinced her to try the object box with a chalk board. She is really resistant to moveable alphabet (probably my fault) and she does like to write! She did a great job!

After she wrote these, she turned to me with a HUGE smile and glowing eyes and told me “Mom, I can READ!!!!” This was followed up by a ton of jumping abound and excitement! It was more writing then reading, but we all very excited!!!!!! It looks like maybe she will head into reading soon! I may be counting my chickens, but you never know!!!!!

She was really excited! I couldn’t even get a shot that wasn’t blurry cause she was jumping up and down!!!!
So it was really good day, and very busy! Everyone did a great job! I hope the rest of the days go as well! Happy Schooling! 🙂

Other work from this week!

I haven’t had a chance to put up pictures of the other work that we did this week. The girls did many other things in addition to our apple work! I was really happy with the work that they did! Here is what they did.

Bug wanted to try some knobless cylinders.

Tadpole worked with a cylinder block. He did pretty well. Its hard to find good work for him to do. If anyone has ant ideas I would love to hear them. He is 18 mos. 🙂

Bunny worked with the object box and did really good work. Shes pretty resistant to language work, but I keep offering activities for her to practice. I hope that one day she just has that Montessori language explosion!

Here is a page in one our outside books that Bunny drew. Its the outside work station! I think it looks good!
I also presented golden bead static subtraction to Bunny. She LOVED it! I guess that she was getting board with just addition! Oops!

One to One work.

I tired word families with Bunny. It went ok. 🙂 I keep trying different ideas.

Bunny wrote her “a” on the chalk board.

I also found both of my girls doing work before we even got dressed! 🙂 Here are their before breakfast work!

Sharpening pencils

World Puzzle, she did about half of it! 🙂 But she sis really well!

She also begged to use the sand tray. This is something she has wanted to use for a long time, so I showed her how to write “a” in the sand. She did really well. She would draw a circle shape and say “aaaaa”. It was really cute!

Here is a picture of her “a”

She was really proud of her work!

Bunny did rock matching work.

She also explored the nature tray.

Here is Pup with her around the world book!
Whew! It was a long week! Amazingly we haven’t done school the last few days!I really hope this week goes as well! We are doing “M” next! I plan on doing the Montessori SMAT order of letter presentation. I have a few things all ready to go!
How was your week?

Swimming Fun!

I have been working really hard with Bunny to get her swimming. She has been afraid to go into the water and just sits on the steps of my mom’s pool (playing happily of course). She was too afraid of how deep the water is (my mom’s pool is 5ft all the way across). So I took her to a pool that had a shallower end and she could touch in, and that did the trick! She was so happy to kick around on a kick board! Then I took her to my mom’s the next day and I told her that she could kick around the same way with swimmies. She said that she really wasn’t going to. So I told her that she could earn a badge (this is a new thing that we are doing this summer and is also a cornerstone of my plan for the school year, but more on that later). The badge idea made her think, and before long she was a little fish all over the pool! We are all so proud of her! She did amazing! Then, it got better, Pup also got brave enough to swim without being held. I always have swimmies on both of them, but Pup didn’t want to free float. After watching my sister (age 18mos) who will swim like a fish and Bunny who got brave enough to swim, she went for it, and LOVED it! 🙂 She was also swimming like a fish! It was great! Both my little ones are swimming! I am so proud of them! Here are the pictures of them in the pool! (sorry about how bad the pics are, I only had my phone on me and the glare was awful!)

Bunny was so proud of herself! 🙂

Here she is with my sister! They were so happy to swim together!

If you look close you can see how excited Pup is to be swimming! 🙂