Friday, February 14, 2014

Quick Takes of the Past Two Weeks of Eclectic Homeschooling

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Happy Valentine's Day!

If the roads clear, we hope to enjoy part of this day on a field trip with homeschool friends and the rest of it here at home, having a Saint Valentine's Tea, doing lessons and simply living, loving and learning together at home.

http://traininghappyhearts.blogspot.com/2014/02/enjoy-gfcf-plant-strong-saint-valentine.html


Speaking of loving, before I get into the quick takes, if you love giveaways, please feel free to enter the one I have running for just a bit longer for Hal and Melanie Young's My Beloved and My Friend e-book and audio download as well as the mega-giveaway of options great for early learners that is being offered in celebration of the book's launch!
http://traininghappyhearts.blogspot.com/2014/02/join-party-and-enter-giveaway-for-my.html

Now, back to some quick take highlights of the past two weeks here:

~1~
Snow Much Fun! 
 
Sledding has sometimes turned into jousting.  I only got this shot of the kids sledding one day since I had to put my camera away in order to have my hands free in case of injury when my crazy kids began racing down the driveway at one another, shovel ends in hands, pretending they were knights on steads!

Likewise, I only got a a shot or two on the snow drift pile before my camera had to be tucked into my pocket as my little knights began defending their castle with snowballs!

And on a day between big snowfalls, we enjoyed a family adventure into the woods, where the knights ventured out to explore an iced-over pond as Mommy and Daddy nervously reminded them not too go beyond the stick we'd tossed out for fear that they might step on a thin-ice portion of the pond.  Freedom with limits, right?
 
~2~
Building Simple Machines!
We are blessed to enjoy fantastic, free STEM programs at local libraries.  The children so enjoyed designing and testing pulley systems...
 
...testing ramps...
... and attempting to design roller coasters.


~3~
Handwriting and Fine Motor Skills

Nina and Luke focused on handwriting practice with lovely printables from Homeschool Encouragement.  In fact, Nina asked me to print more and more pages of the fan freebie that was offered the Facebook page earlier this month.

Jack preferred using the printables for cutting practice.  And, yes, I know those are awfully large scissors for awfully little hand,s but, honestly, they are the scissors Jack prefers.
 ~4~
Drawing at the Library

Luke and Nina enjoyed a drawing class for several weeks at a local library while Jack and I played with homeschool friends out in the hallway.  At the conclusion of the class, Luke, Nina and friends made speed murals, which Jack happily inspected.
 ~5~
More Science Fun!

What fun we all had seeing our silhouettes and learning how many calories and grapes we'd burn off while walking at a new exhibit at the Science Museum!

The kids also enjoyed other hands-on exhibits, such as this one where they got to put together the innards of a human body...

...and this one, where they designed (and re-designed!) claws to try to grab toys...

... and this one, where they used their skills and imagination to solve a paleontology mystery (while Mommy and Daddy smiled, remembering Luke's former long-lived passion for dinosaurs!)
 ~5~
Celebrating Feast Days and Random Holidays

We began the month by reading loads of books about St. Brigid on the first, celebrating Candlemas at a friend's home on the 2nd and having an Our Lady of Lourde's breakfast tea this past Tuesday. 

We also continued to celebrate federal holidays and random observances.  Here, the kids are holding up "Lincoln Hats" they made with crackers, Daiya cheese and nitrate-free hot dogs.  Not the healthiest meal, I know, especially with only a side of corn for a vegetable, but Lincoln was said to have liked corn and the kids wanted to make the hats.
~6~
Light It Up!

At am Outside the Box STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) gathering, I helped the kids make tapetrictity cards under the tutelage of another mom.  What an easy, fun project for exploring electric circuits!


~7~
Just Move!

We joined a homeschool co-op at NESA so the kids can enjoy exercise, sensory input and socialization during these cold, snowy winter months.   What a blast they had with the trapeze and foam put there!


After spending hours moving about NESA, Nina came home and chilled out by grabbing our homemade movable letters.  She surprised me by writing simple sentences with them while I was down doing some laundry.  Love when the kids choose learning as play!

Praying your Valentine's Day is filled with smiles and blessings and that your weeks unfold with as much hands-on fun and learning as ours have been filled with!

This post is being shared at Random 5 on Friday, 7 Quick Takes and Weekly Wrap-up.

4 comments:

Mägi said...

I love your family so much! You guys are wonderful. Thanks for sharing your week with us.

Divina K. said...

Looks like you had a fun couple of weeks!

In the top photo, what picture books did you read for tea time?

Martianne said...

Magi, thank you for the vote of confidence. I love when you pop in an comment as it reminds me to pop over to read about all your travels and thoughts. You inspire me. And Divina, those are the Sabuda and trompert books, plus a few more. If you click back to this post, you'll find a linked book basket - http://traininghappyhearts.blogspot.com/2014/02/enjoy-gfcf-plant-strong-saint-valentine.html

Nikki Hinkle said...

WOW you guys have been busy. I would have been holding my breath if mine ventured on the ice. Yikes. lol I wish our library had all the great activities yours features. We just have a little country library with not much to do . Thanks for sharing

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