Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Maori Clothing

As a fun way to get the clothing study for New Zealand in the boys got to design some.  The only thing that I made was the dolls to get them started.  Then each of the boys designed the patterns and made the pieces.  Once they sewed it together they added any extra embellishments that they wanted.  Sam made the girl on the right and Gabe made the boy on the left.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Snow play

Sensory lessons are very big in our home.  We try to do a lot of things to help both boys, but Gabe in particular.  When he was younger he got diagnosed with Sensory integration and low muscle tone.  These activities really do help him.  Looking for ideas for a new activity I came across the idea for snow dough.
All you need is two ingredients,  Baking soda and conditioner.  You need 3 cups of baking soda to 1/2 cup of the conditioner.  So I got the nice big box for $2 at wal-mart. Even though all the other pictures have Gabe in it, Sam did play with it too.  Those are his hands, he is a teenage boy that hates having his picture taken.  He however did not have as much fun as Gabe did.
Once you added the ingredients simply mix to the right texture.  We did add a little bit extra on the conditioner to get the texture we wanted.
Once it was mixed he dumped it on a tray and began playing with his super heroes in the "snow".  He literally spent hours playing with it.  I had to tell him to clean up.  LOL

I did make clean up fun though.  Since there was conditioner in it, they wanted to see how the baking soda reacted with vinegar.  It was very sudsy.
As part of our New Zealand studies the boys are working on the language.  Where they also speak english in New Zealand some of the words are a little different than ours.  To make it fun for the boys I made them a memory game with the new zealand version of our words.
Through out the whole game, Gabe was trash talking big time.  Well Sam got revenge, he kicked Gabe's butt at the game. That is Gabe's look of defeat in the picture.  LOL all in good fun.

Metric math chocolate style...

One of the things that we changed with the start of the new year was the math Sam was doing.  He had been working on Pre-Algebra and struggling with it.  We are not by any means done with it, just stepping away for a little bit then going to come back to it.  In the mean time he really wanted to learn the metric system.  Now we needed to learn fun ways to teach the metric system.
I think that his dad hit it out of the park on fun and yumminess for this lesson.  Using the ever trusty pinterest he found a recipe for Double Chocolate buns.  The recipe was written in Metrics, so for the lesson Sam had to convert it to US standards.  Then of course he had to make them to see if he did his math right.  We are a gluten free family so as an extra thing Sam transferred the recipe to be gluten free.
The buns turned out supper moist and really yummy.  He did a great job on them and they will definitely be on our make again list.  Here is the link to the actual recipe if you want to make it yourself. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Learning through art...

The boys are doing a lot of art based projects to learn with.  Here are just a few from the past week.
This is Sam's Science lesson.  Other than learning about animals we are working on learning health/body science.  Inspired by an idea I saw on pinterest he drew out the digestive track and how a certain type of food would effect the body when it went through.  He has an obsession with New Zealand so he choose the kiwi as his food.  All the white spots are flaps that tell how it will effect that part of the body.
They even had art projects this week.  This is the scribble art lesson from the 52 art lab book that I got from the library.  Gabe's is on the top it is his favorite animal, the orangutan.  Sam's is on the bottom.  I was really impressed with the pops of color he put in, very unlike him to let go like that.  His is the Scottish terrier.

A final project that I had them do was to make a tourism poster for the New Zealand study.  Sam's is on the top and Gabe's is on the bottom.  I thought that they were both good but needed a little more so I am going to have them do it again soon.

A busy weird week

So this past week was crazy busy, and definitely weird.  The week started off great.  Rob and I got up early to hit the gym at the beginning of the week.  I took the following picture on the way there.  It was of the sun rise behind us.  I love the sun rises here they are truly beautiful.  I took this one as a good sign for the upcoming day.  It was a good day, then the simplest thing went wrong and it caused the week to become a little more unusual.
I was not fully prepared for the week and I was hurrying to get all prepared for the boys so they could stay on track.  However things fell apart when I ran out of ink.  I could not print or photocopy anything,  Since I really had no extra money right then I had to do things by hand instead of getting ink.  So with all my regular  work and teaching the kids I fell behind.
I took it as a good learning experience for the boys.  I wanted to show them that just because your planned idea of how something should go failed does not mean that it still can not happen.  You just need to change your method,  The above photo is how I got them their Story of the World maps.  I used tracing paper and copied it from the book.  Then hung it in the window to make it easier to trace on regular paper.  They got their maps still, just took me a little longer.  I had to make a couple other things by hand too, they got to see me never quit though.  I however am going to buy new ink tonight.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

A day about New Zealand art and money

Our day was so jam packed with projects that I split this into two different posts.  Our Civil War study is in the next entry.  This one is all about New Zealand and what we covered today. 

I started out by having them learn about the money.  I made them some play money so that they could see what it all looked like.  I just found some images on google printed them out and laminated them.  When the lesson was done we put the money in our continent bins.
The boys looked up things such as what was on the money, the history of it, value, and to what it was made from.  Did you know it is made from a special type of plastic polymer. 
After they started working on art projects.  This is their Koru design.  It is used in a lot of Maori design, as well as some other cultures.  If you want to learn the meaning behind it check it out here.  Gabe's design is on the top and Sam's is on the bottom.
After they made totem poles because they are very popular in the Maori culture.  Sam's is on the left and Gabe's is on the right.
Finally what I personally felt was the best project of all, Maori Warriors.  The warriors have lots of tattoos all over the body (especially the face). Well I was not about to let the boys actually tattoo themselves so we took pictures so they could draw tattoos on themselves that way.
First up Sam.  His before on the top of course.  His tongue is sticking out because that is supposed to be a threatening look to his opponents.  I love how his after one came out.  We thought after that we should have taken his glasses off.  oops
Gabe wanted to do his whole body.  The top of course is the before and the bottom is the after.  My boys, so threatening, LOL

I feel that the first week back was a success.  We had lots of fun which was nice.  Make sure to check back and see what I have in store for week two. 

Civil War with a side of Nachos

 This is about the civil war lessons that the kids did yesterday.  We have started of our studies by reading and doing the projects from the civil war for kids book.  We only read 1 chapter and the boys did the 3 projects at the end of the chapter.  First up they made the Freedom Star Quilt. The directions were to make an actual size one, we did not need that though so I just had them draw out one.

Gabe's Quilt is on the left and Sam's is on the right.
After Designing the quilts the second project was to write a message in secret code they used during the war.  They each wrote a special message to their dad.

The third project they where supposed to dress themselves to look like the soldiers of each side.  I however do not have a whole lot of clothes from the 1860's lying around so I had to come up with a different idea.  I had the little wooden people shapes so I had them design them to look the soldiers.  The North is of course on the top and south on the bottom.  In each photo Gabe's is on the left and Sam's is on the right.

Finally our budding little chef  Gabe made us some nachos for lunch.  He was so proud of them because he did the whole meal himself.  He thought that they looked like a sun exploding.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Another productive day here for school.  The boys are keeping such a good pace that they able to keep the day light by choice. They had sculpting with clay.  Which they where to choose a land mark from around the world to sculpt.  Then to bake banana bread.  That is it, a nice simple day.  They actually where able to start on tomorrows work too.  We got a chapter of story of the world in for tomorrows lesson.

This is Gabe's sculpture.  He calls it Tahj Mahal at night.  Very cute, he gave it to me as  gift.
Sam has a strong desire to move to New Zealand when he is older.  Everything he has a choice in becomes about New Zealand.  When he got to choose what to do of course he choose something from there.  This is the Sky Tower in Auckland.  Sam calls it Sky Tower in a wind storm.
This was from the Story of the World lesson.  It was made by Sam and is called Napoleons Triangle.  Sam was excited at first to do it because the measurements were written in centimeters.  Like I said he wants to move to New Zealand, so he is trying to learn about the metric system.  
We went gluten free here about a year ago.  It has been challenging but overall we are really glad that we have.  The hardest part is the baked goods.  We love baking here and things just are usually not the same gluten free.  Well I have found a brownie recipe that you would never have a clue that it is gluten free.  It is one of our favorites if you could not tell.  LOL.  Check out the recipe here, you will be glad that you did.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Some Graphing and art....

I am so pleased with how well this week is flowing along. In the past the kids have usually fallen behind and I am stressing how to get them caught up.  Well they have already gotten lessons done from tomorrows plan.  The only one that is falling behind is me.  The kids are moving along so quickly I am having a hard time getting to my stuff.    Now I just have to figure out how to get them to get their work done and get mine done at the same time. Well that is a problem this momma can deal with.

Todays lesson was about math.  Sam's lesson was not that exciting to show, it was just a worksheet.  However he was excited to do it because he is learning about the metric system, something he really wants to do. I will share his lesson on it next week because it involves food.  Yummy. 

Gabe as you can see from the following pictures he really enjoyed the lesson for him today.  We started working with graphs.  We focused on making different types.  First I read The Tally O'Malley book to him.  It was a cute little book that showed about tally graphing.

Then he was so excited to get started.  My silly little boy just really wanted to eat the Willy Wonka Randoms.  He started out by grouping into all the different colors.  There was five groups including a group of multi-colored ones.
He then started taking each color and breaking it down to be easier to count.

After he got his totals he started making the graphs.  He made a tally, bar, and line graphs.

Well then the fun really happened.  He got to have a snack and be silly of course.  The top one incase you can not tell is a monkey head.  Then he tried to be so sophisticated with a mustache.  Yup we do laugh a lot with this little guy around here.

This was the lesson that they did that was for tomorrow.  We got the book 52 art lab for kids from the library.  The first lab was about conture drawing.  They did not really follow the lesson to well but I love the end results.  Sam is on the top and Gabe is on the bottom.

Monday, September 08, 2014

A new start.....

I have been so busy and burning out quickly with everything going on in life I knew that something had to change.  I started looking back at the older entries and realized how much fun we use to have.  They activities were creative and playful.  It was time to get back to that.  I needed to get back to blogging because I would only want to post fun things so school will have to be fun.  Right?  It has to be right, makes sense to me.  We started back to school today so time to start testing that theory.
It started out kind of slow.  Each boy worked on learning about animal habitats.  Sam was assigned to design habitats for three different animals.  He needed to make sure that it had everything that the animal would need to survive.  For Gabe I found an adorable set on Teachers pay Teachers called Habitat for Sale.  It had some really great worksheets plus an adorable memory game.

I played the memory game with Gabe.  He was so excited to have gotten the first match against me.  Unfortunately his luck did not last and I beat him pretty bad at the game.  Look at how cute those cards were though.

I got time in with Gabe reading today.  Favorite thing of mine is snuggling with him while he reads.  I also wanted to make sure and share Sam's drawings with you. 
The Giraffe habitat
The Alligator habitat
The Green Tree Frog Habitat
So Check back to see what else we are doing.  The boys are looking forward to the rest of the fun we have scheduled.  Here is to a better School year then we have had in a long time.