Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Buttonwood Farm trip

Today we did some kitchen science (and math too!) by making delicious ultimate-pretzel-crusted-peanut-butter-cookie-candy-brownie-bars.  They had fun mixing, reading & following the directions, and learning fractions.  We were heading out on a fun field trip for the afternoon but the boys were willing to work on a bit of schoolwork before hand so we dove right in.

We also made silly putty and checked on our rock candy; which I'm sad to say isn't going very well.   We noticed lots of crystals forming on the sides and bottom of the jar but not much happening on our sticks. 

We read on- line and found that if there's too much sugar in the solution the sugar crystals will attach to each other within the solution and if that happens to just add a bit more water and re-heat the solution stirring in the "extra" sugar.  So we took out the sticks, added some water and heated it all back up.  However, once we added our sticks back in the little bit of starter sugar that had been on them fell off and now we have plain sticks in the sugar solution!  I'm getting pretty aggravated and the boys are getting very discouraged.  I told them I'd try one last time to fix it and if that doesn't work we're just pouring it down the drain and we'll try again another time. 

Playing wit silly putty 

My boys have been playing words with friends with various family  members over the last few days and they just love it!  I am too since they are learning so much.  They're learning new spelling words, new vocabulary words and they have really surprised me with their strategies. 

They've been reading books and writing reports for the Bookworm Wednesday movies they want to go to.   While I was helping Alec to write his report Ian offered to read a book to Evan and I noticed he even used different voices for the characters and lots of expression.  This is a huge improvement over what all his teachers dubbed his robot reading voice.  The book Evan chose had huge vocabulary words and Ian tried so hard to sound out words like lackadaisical, stoic, unflappable, lethargic and sluggish; he did pretty well to.   They both asked what all the words meant and so again they're learning new vocabulary words. 

We started filling out our Barnes and Noble summer reading program sheets too so the boys can hand them in and pick out a new book next time we go to the store.  As they were doing this they remembered other books they had read and wrote them in the reading log/ journals.   Then Alec did a few letters in his new cursive writing workbook.  I found a series called Pictures in Cursive that combine fine arts and writing.  I figured that was the perfect combination for Alec.  He just loved it and did such a great job!  I was amazed at the sheer amount of writing the boys did this morning with little to no complaining.

Evan had a long bath today during which he started throwing all kinds of toys into the tub and would call me over to see what floats and what sinks.  Self- guided, age- appropriate science!

During lunch they watched Deadliest Catch and learned all about large fish, snakes, eels of South America (which none of them want to go to!).  

Then we had some field trip fun!!

We headed out late this afternoon with my mother in law and nephew to Buttonwood Farm.  They have a huge fundraiser every year when sunflowers bloom to raise money for the make a wish foundation.  There's homemade ice cream, a wagon ride through the sunflower field where you stop and feed the cows, sunflower bouquets and tons of people. 

We went last year for our first time and my boys not only remembered it but actually asked to go again this year.  

I wasn't sure if we were going to make it there this week since two of the boys are on medication that cautions being in the sun to long but we loaded them up on sunscreen and bug spray and hoped that going later in the afternoon when the sun wasn't so high would be sufficient enough to keep them from getting burns.

We devoured our ice cream (in the shade), went on a wagon ride and fed the cows, saw chickens, and took photos in the sunflower field; most of which was in the shade.  We bought a few sunflower bouquets and headed home for dinner.

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