Saturday, March 26, 2011

Culture Supplement Schedule K-2

This schedule is for 2010 and before.  We finished Sonlight's® Core K two years ago.  I have a few posts for it under "Cultures" in my Categories.  Also, on my Freebies page, I've got a few printables and now I have revamped my schedule and included it as a freebie to supplement Core K®!  I really hope that it is helpful for people who may want to stretch out Core K or add some cultural activities to it.  This was made to supplement core K, and was never intended to stand alone on its own.

There are seven books that are used throughout the year, including Sonlight's® choices for art appreciation, all scheduled out.  Regarding the placement of countries and length of time studying certain countries, I have tried to place France with The Family Under the Bridge, Germany with Twenty and Ten, etc.  Sometimes it didn't line up perfectly.  We spent more time on a couple of countries we were most interested in OR when I found so many good materials to use.  I used a lot of library books, and I have noted the call numbers for those.  If you don't know an author and can't find the book, please let me know in the comments section of this post.  Alternatively, you could just find a book in your own library to replace the book you can't find.

Let me explain how we used this supplement.  In the morning, we would do cultures, along with all the activities, crafts, art projects, recipes, and internet links.  Then in the evening we would do the Core readings as bedtime stories.  It worked out nice, as the core readings were just stories, where as the culture materials needed to be done during the day after reading a few books.

Culture Supplement K-2

Let me know how you like it!  I hope it blesses someone!

DISCLAIMER:  I have NO affiliation with Sonlight® at all. I just want to share my supplement schedule.


Friday, March 25, 2011

Spring Flowers!

March showers bring March flowers, right?  :)  We've had a lot of overcast, dreary, depressing, rainy days for weeks, and today the sun came out and we got treated to many different types of spring wildflowers.

Seeing as I have to make everything a lesson and our studies wouldn't be complete without books, here are some books!  Also, try soaking a white carnation in food coloring dyed water might be fun.  We did celery, and it turned out great.

How Flowers Grow by Emma Helbrough

Also, a good flower identification book from Amazon would be helpful, as I have no idea what these little beauties are called.


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Fitting In Some Preschool

For a quick and easy lesson for Beeps (4) we had her sort a deck of cards, first by color, next by shape, and finally by number.  We had to spread this out over 2 days, as she got bored with sorting that many cards!  It was easy to fit this into our filled-up day!

What are some quick and easy things that you do with your preschooler?


Monday, March 21, 2011

Down by the Creek

There are many creeks to explore in our area, but this one has the easiest access.  I hope you like the pictures!  We found a lot of fossils in the rocky bed, and I really would like to know what they are.  Does anyone know where we can research it further?  Or do you know what these fossils are?  They seem to be really common, as we found a lot of them.  I've also included some sketches the girls drew after our adventures.

Beeps got a tick, though, so I don't know if I can talk them (or me!) into going back.  ;)  I do have a strong aversion to nasty, flat ticks, but I jest!

Check out these kids' sites for rocks and fossils!
Everything Fossils

Rock Hound Kid

Some good books on rocks and fossils.
Kingfisher Young Knowledge: Rocks and Fossils by Chris Pellant

Fossils Tell of Long Ago by Aliki

Rocks and Fossils Eyewonder

Here are some of the fossils and rocks we found.

What causes this?  Anyone know of some good links about fossils and rocks that are easy to navigate and easy to understand?

I was fascinated by these monstrous overhanging trees/roots.

The girls are having fun!

The creek was like steps.  It was so peaceful.

The girls found this ant activity, and they insisted I take a picture.  I think we'll advance this interest and sketch and learn more about ant homes.  I might make some notebook pages to go with this, so I'll update that later if I do.  Here are some books to go with a side study on ants!

Updated with Ant printable
Ant notebook page

Ant Cities by Arthur Dorros

Beeps found tons of these seed pods; she was enthralled with them, investigating all the holes.


Friday, March 18, 2011

Plains Native Americans

There was so much information and printables out there regarding the Plains Native Americans, that I didn't make anything to go with it.  Our favorite printables come from Dynamic 2 Moms.

We made a pocket out of the buffalo and found printables on Google Images on the different ways they used parts of the buffalo.  This sketch is from our 6yo.

More from Dyanmic 2 Moms.

I had the girls sketch a buffalo skin.

Our stuff is mostly the same, so I'm trying to think of something fresh.  Any ideas or links?


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Hopi Native Americans

I am hoping to spark some creativity in anyone who reads this for things to put in notebooks.  I hope it helps!  The girls really got into sketching the Southwest US.  We read If You Lived With the Hopi Indians over several weeks.  I couldn't find many printables on this people group, so I made a few.

We used Google Images to find these images in Farmer vs Hunter minibook.  The How to Make a Zuni Pot is from Easy Make and Learn Projects: Southwest Indians.

The first sketch is mine ;), and the second is Dreamer's.  Can you see one of the reasons of why we call her Dreamer?

The next 2 are Coco's sketches of the Southwestern Desert and the Southwest Native Americans.

I love how the kids are playing tag and how their arms are outstretched, reaching.  She pays attention to those details evidently! :)


Monday, March 14, 2011

Prairie Fire!

For our American history studies, we read Little House on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder.  After we read about the Prairie Fire, the girls were inspired to illustrate the chapter.  This one is Coco's (8).

As a side, the girls were mildly displeased with how the Ingalls' did all of that work and had to leave.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Lewis and Clark Unit & Printables

We decided to lightly skim over Lewis and Clark this year since we're going to hit it again in 2 years, as we are changing curricula.

  • Lewis and Clark and Me: A Dog's Tale by Laurie Myers - We really liked this book.  The dog's point of view was humorous and kept the girls' interest.  All of the stories included are from Lewis' journal, including a beaver attack that almost kills Seaman.

  • Seaman's Journal: On the Trail With Lewis and Clark by Patti Reeder Eubank - This book was absolutely beautiful.  If you are trying to decide between this one and the previous, pick this one.  Although it is a picture book, it is packed full of interesting tidbits of the Corps of Discovery.  There are plant and animal species beautifully illustrated with great detail and follows the general story of Lewis and Clark.

We tried to use lapbook components in our notebooks to try to fill any major gaps, but the above books gave our girls a nice grounding in this topic.  Here are some blogs that have some really nice printables on Lewis and Clark.  We didn't get to use the Raising Superheros printables, but we're saving them for the next time we go through Lewis and Clark.

The map is from Interactive 3-D Maps.  The lapnote components are from the above Dynamic 2 Moms website.

We also like to print out thumbnail pictures of the books we read and put them on the appropriate notebook pages.  As the girls look through their notebooks, it jump-starts their memories of the books we have read and is a continual review of the things we have covered.

Here is a drawing by Coco (then 7) of Lewis and his dog, Seaman.  Can you see Lewis' journal on the ground?  ;)  These drawings are almost all guided by Draw Write Now: Book 5.


Saturday, March 12, 2011

Our Renditions of Paintings

Coco particularly liked this painting by Martin Johnson Heade called Thunderstorm on Narragansett Bay.  She decided to do her own rendition of this beautiful work of art.

Here's her take on it!

Dreamer liked a petroglyph found in Utah sandstone, Fremont/Anasazi or Fremont-style.  Here's her rendition.


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Errrrr?! More Counting?

In this photo, we've just glued some items from our craft bin onto index cards with the right number.  Another idea would be to place an index card labeled with a number in a cup (Dixie cups would work well!), and the child can count in the correct number of beans, beads, buttons, or whatever into the cups to help reinforce 1 to 1 correlation and number recognition.  

It may look like all we do in our preschool is count, but that's not true.  We read too.  ;)  Seriously, though, this particular girl likes math, but has no interest in learning letters, let alone their sounds!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011


The Colonial America section was huge in our curriculum.  We made many recipes and read a lot of books.  We didn't get to many crafting activities, though.  We also did timeline stuff from WP.

Here is a list of books we read (WP does not schedule all of these):

This is a map of a colonial village.  I can't remember which book this was from, Colonial America or History Pockets.  As a whole, I like the History Pockets better, and in my opinion the age range of 1-3 and 4-6 are right on target, as we haven't enjoyed the 4-6 range as scheduled for our 1st and 2nd graders as much as the 1-3 History Pockets.

Here's a sample map from Colonial America.

We added in Ox-Cart Man for our colonial study (love this book!)  We used the lapbook found on here on Homeschool Share and put the components in our notebook.  It turned out quite nicely!

The house is from History Pockets, the outside of a colonial home.  Wax paper is used to signify the oiled paper that they used for their windows.  The drawing on the bottom is Dreamer's (6) drawing of colonial people.  She drew them for a month straight, so she had a lot of practice!

Here is the inside of the cabin.


Southwest Native American Pottery


We used this book for some hands-on in our WinterPromise American Story 1 curriculum.  Our girls are quite crafty, and this type of activity is right down their alley.  Some of the more detailed coloring got to them, though, so we skip many of these assignments.

I think a more open-ended and creative project would be just a clay pot shape and let them create their own designs, perhaps after looking at examples online or in books we've read.

Do you have any other ideas for studying the Southwest Native Americans?


Monday, March 7, 2011

Growing Potatoes

Doesn't every preschooler have to put a potato in water and watch the roots grow?  It's so easy and satisfying for their little minds!  Give it a try.  I found that a potato with a lot of eyes on it works the best.  The girls were apprehensive of the "hair" growing on it, but soon were enthralled with growth!

Here's when we first placed it in water. . .

And here it has grown into a new life form (minus mold)!  Neat, right?  You can see the multitude of white roots growing and lots of leaf shoots.  It's not in the best light, so I think I'll move it to a sunny window and hope the leaves will come out more.  Now I need to put it in some soil.  Does anyone have any tips on that?


Saturday, March 5, 2011

Johnny Cakes

We're onto the Pioneers now!  There was so much information about the Colonials and the Revolutionary War that most of our time was spent there, and I'm ready to get on to the Pioneers.  We read Little House on the Prairie, which we loved.  There were some strange ways to relate this in there like repeatedly saying "fat woman" to describe the neighbor lady.  Dreamer (6) was disturbed by this and finally asked me to stop saying fat.  She's attuned to feelings being hurt.  Anyhow, the whole series is worthy of purchase.  Check it out!

To kick off the new unit, we made some Johnnycakes.  This recipe was particularly good.  Plain, but good.  It's amazing that these people ate this sort of thing day in and day out.

Recipe for Johnnycakes taken from Pioneer Days.

1 c cornmeal
1 t salt
1 T butter
1 T sugar
1 c water
1/2 c milk
vegetable oil
syrup (optional)

Place the cornmeal, salt, butter, and sugar in a mixing bowl.
Boil water in covered pan and pour into bowl.
Add the milk to the bowl. Mix thoroughly with a spoon.
Cover pan with light coat of oil and heat pan, reduce heat to medium.
Drop batter by spoonfuls, cook like a pancake.

Serve with syrup or plain!  They're pretty good!