Thursday, October 11, 2012

Who's plan?

         I woke up this morning with no idea of what we'd do this morning.  Our afternoon would be filled with trampoline and soccer practice as usual but I was truly at a blank this morning.  So I turned to the boys and asked them what they'd like to do today.  Ian immediately told me he wanted to work in his McRuffy book for math so I agreed.   But I still wasn't happy that we had no "fun" stuff planned.  I had a few art ideas and many game ideas for reading, math and science but for some reason I just had no direction today.  I didn't have much ambition either so perhaps that's where the problem stemmed from I don't know.  Sometimes I'm so overwhelmed with ideas I've found on Pinterest, in my Family Fun magazines, or even in my many learning games books that I just can't focus.  I keep joking it's like I have ADD of homeschooling, I'm easily distracted and want to try everything we see or hear about.  Teaching in a classroom was very different in that I had a set curriculum for each subject and clear objectives set up by the school and state that had to be met by the end of the year.  We opened the books at the beginning and worked our way through, skipping some thing along the way but for the most part we progressed straight through until the end.  Homeschooling isn't like that.  It's not as cut and dried.  It certainly could be but my main drive in choosing to homeschool was allowing us to carve our own path.  Sometimes that path loops around, sometimes we take a really long, winding, side road, sometimes we head in one direction and then turn right back around.  It's easy to get lost sometimes, but in the end we always find our way back.  I don't panic when I have day like this where I'm feeling a bit lost about what to do, I just let the kids lead and follow them for a while.   
           After McRuffy math and dot to dot sheets for Evan the boys decided to play a game of Pirate Cove (you can find a link to purchase/ view the game here).  It's a game of logic put out by Lego, where each player tried to guess the other players' secret codes hidden inside the treasure chest.  Ian has been looking for this game for a few days and kept telling me that if he could find it they could work on their problem solving skills.   They played a round or two and then I convinced them to head outside.
          We went on a nature walk around the yard and neighborhood while collecting leaves.  It was a beautiful fall day and I wanted to get outside for a bit and enjoy it while preparing for an art project.  The boys had seen a hedgehog/ leaf project on pinterest (here's the link, while it's not in English the pictures made the process very easy to follow along with since it's such a simple project) and thought he was just adorable so we decided to make our own.  To start with we wanted a large assortment of leaves in various colors and sizes.  Once back inside I gave them each a hedgehog cut out of heavy paper ( I used watercolor paper but oak tag, old cereal boxes, etc would work good too).  They glued their leaves onto the hedgehogs back for his spines and we read a family favorite book called Apple Trouble all about a hedgehog who gets apples, berries, flowers, etc. caught in her spines.  Evan had been looking for this book at bedtime and I thought it was the perfect tie in to our art project this morning.  They came out adorable too, don't you think? 
           We did a quick science experiment from our book "Science in a Bag."  We looked at the effect of oxygen on apple slices and the effects of vitamin C too.  We took one apple and cut it in thirds (don't worry about them being equal).  We then took one slice and placed it in a Ziploc bag that we tried to squeeze as much air out of as possible and zipped it shut.  We left one apple slice out on the counter.  These two apples are the oxygen comparison.    For the remaining slice of  apple dip it in either lemon or orange juice and set on counter next to the untreated apple; this is your vitamin C comparison.  The one in the open air will turn brown much faster than the one in the Ziploc bag and the one with the vitamin C.  Within just a short time you'll see a difference and the difference increases with the length of time you leave them out and exposed.


Our apples after an hour
   
  School was over and it was time for lunch, trampoline and soccer.  All in all I was thrilled with the way our day turned out and all the wonderful things we accomplished this morning.





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