Wednesday, February 12, 2014

5 Ways to Beat The Winter Blues

I asked the boys to brainstorm some ideas for our school day before we started.  They seemed as uninterested in school as I was.

I think we're all suffering from a severe case of the blues (or is it blahs!?  I don't know but I can't wait to get out side when the weather finally warms up!).  We finally came up with a list of things we'd like to tackle for the day.



To help combat the winter blues:

  • We've been trying to play more games
  • I've been asking the boys what they want to do
  • We focus on a few fun projects
  • We don't worry about covering ALL the subjects each day
  • I allow a lot more screen time and look for ways to add TV/Movies and even Video games into our days

We started with science and tried to make it snow: 

I've been reading a few blogs about where people boiled water and then threw it up into the air; if the water is hot enough and the day is cold enough it's supposed to turn instantly to snow. 

I was nervous to try this though; I'm not always the most coordinated person on the planet and I was so afraid I'd burn myself (as many news reports will tell you is happening!).  We finally settled on a small pitcher of water that we heated to boiling in the microwave. 

Perhaps we didn't boil it enough or the day was already warming up to much but our experiment didn't work.  We talked about why it might not have worked and brainstormed possible solutions to get the experiment to work next time.

It's frustrating when science experiments don't work but we still use failed experiments as learning opportunities!


It may look like snow.. but we thought it looked and felt like steam
From science we went to math; both boys played the file folder games we made last week (I used the ones found in this book).  Evan and I played two rounds of Nine in a Hive and tied both times.  He rarely had to think or count to know which numbers added to nine!  

 We finished up math with a math minute and Alec was so excited to pass his times 5 test.  Tomorrow he'll move onto the times 11's!

Multiplication Mountain

Nine in a Hive

While the older boys were finishing up math, Evan and I read a book.  He read The Rain Rained to me and he did an excellent job!

Little Leveled Readers: The Rain Rained (Level A) by [Fleming, Maria]

 We then worked on setting up our Musical Sight Words game:

The older boys are kind enough to play along with Evan and we played for a VERY long time today to get some of that extra energy out again.  The boys took turns making up ways to move while the music was playing. 

They were very creative on some of the moves they came up with (walk like a ninja and practice your knee chamber, walk like a zombie, When the music stopped they had to read the word next to them; Evan did a great job! 

I can finally say with confidence that he's learning sight words... slowly, but surely. 

Reading the words when the music stopped

Sight word musical chairs
We read quite a few books today.  We started a new chapter book called Breaking Stalin's Nose; all about a Russian boy during the time of communism.  We also read Dream Big by Michael Jordan,  Rhinos Who Snowboard, and At the Wish of a Fish


We finished up our day watching some more of the Olympics and then playing Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games.  Among other things, we got to see the Luge, which was new for my boys, and we saw the spikes on their gloves, the make up of their sleigh and watched them speed down the course.

Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games - Nintendo Wii

    

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